Locks and kinks and curls, oh my! Whether you have loose waves, tight kinks or anything in between, the Sunshine State’s heat is enemy to us all. We may angrily shake our fists at the sky and curse our ancestral line for our troublesome hair, but there’s no need to fret with various solutions. With these tips, you can take on the day’s obstacles with beautiful, voluptuous hair.
Although many may have a haircare routine catering to their own head of hair, not everyone realizes that our routine is the worst culprit of unhealthy curls. Over-dyeing, straightening, perming, teasing and infrequent washing are given no-no’s, but a majority of harm is done unknowingly.
However, unhealthy hairstyling habits can be altered for both stylish and healthy alternatives without adding too much effort in the morning.
Many females have used a flat-iron a few times in their lives, if not many. Be sure to protect your locks with these:
Heat Protectant Spray
Heat Protectant Spray is applied via spray bottle on hair before the use of the flat iron. Its main purpose is to protect the hair from burns and singes as well as ensure a loose and bouncy finish. This helps to avoid stiffness and heat-scarred strands. A few of my personal brand recommendations include TRESemmé, Shea Moisture, Cantu, and Aussie.
If you’re looking for a cheaper alternative, Hollywood Beauty olive oil works very well as a heat protectant and shine enhancer. It can be found in Elegant Beauty Supply, CVS, Walgreens or Wal-Mart for as low as $2 to $5 (Tip: Apply a thin coat– around 2-3 sprays. Applying too much product may make the strands difficult to straighten and stiff to the touch).
Identify Your Hair Texture
Hair comes in all shapes and sizes. Identifying your hair texture type will enable you to pin-point your unique texture, find the right products for you, and lead to finding your best hair routine.Embed from Getty Images
Type 2Embed from Getty Images
Type 3Embed from Getty Images
For looser curls like those in type 2, lighter products work best. Heavy and thick products can clump and weigh the curls down. Lightweight oils, sprays, dry shampoo/conditioner, and hairspray will leave you with a wavy, beachy look. Here are my suggested hair products and price comparisons for girls with section 2 hair types.
- Argan Oil of Morocco Shampoo
- Argan Oil of Morocco Conditioner
- Argan Oil of Morocco Extra Penetrating Oil
- Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl
- Enhancing Smoothie w/ Silk Protein & Neem Oil
- Aussie Miracle Curls Leave-In Detangling Milk
- Garnier Whole Blends Honey Repairing Mask
- Garnier Fructis Moroccan Sleek Oil Treatment
- Aussie Miracle Curls Crème Pudding
Coily curls like those in type 3 are unique, often known as “hair that takes many forms.” Section 3 girls can use light products, but also some heavy ‘pomades’ for various results. With these, you can slick-back, poof up, air-dry or blow-out.
- Africa’s Best Ultimate Herbal Oil (P.S., this smells heavenly!)
- ECO Styling Gel (Olive Oil)
- African Pride Olive Miracle Leave-In
- ORS Olive Oil Glossing Hair Polisher
- ORS Olive Oil Smooth-N-Hold Pudding
- Crème of Nature Curl Activator Crème
Afro-type type 4 hair is the only one that often defies gravity. Due to its extreme thickness and unapologetic girth, a lot of product is needed. Heavy pomades help keep the hair moisturized, oils penetrate the hair down to the roots to ensure full coverage, and light products are helpful when using to style and twist.
- Asiam Curling Jelly
- Cantu Define & Shine Custard
- ECO Styling Gel (Olive Oil)
- Dark and Lovely Au Naturale anti-shrinkage Coil Moisturizing Soufflé
- Beautiful Textures Curl Control Defining Pudding
Keep in mind these products are trial and error based. Not all products work how you want them to, but you shouldn’t give up! Try mixing and matching between sections and activating your curls with varying amounts of water. I guarantee that your match-made-in-heaven awaits.
Tips and Tricks
Here a few extra tips I’ve learned on how to better take care of your hair free of charge.
Avoid These at All Costs:
- Dyeing and perming, whether for covering up grays or just expressing yourself, can strip your natural oils and lead to breakage and dryness. Many dye kits and perm sets come with a special after wash, so look for those and be sure to use them!
- Unless you’re going to an 80’s themed party or just stuck in the past, try to keep teasing to a minimum.
- Washing your hair too often can lead to dryness and breakage. However, washing it too little (depending on texture) can leave it oily, clog pores, prevent growth, and cause dandruff.
When detangling your hair, it is healthiest to use a wide-toothed comb. If you use combs with skinny, tightly packed teeth (especially on thick hair) it will rip out a lot of hair during each wash or detangling session. Over time, your hair’s volume will decrease. Wide-tooth combs prevent breakage, are gentler and promote hair thickness.
Hair Masks and Deep Conditioning
Hair masks and deep conditioning sets can be your best friend. I recommend deep conditioning or using a hair mask once every week or two for the best results. They deeply repair damaged hair, promote hair growth, and often help with split ends.
There are also various homemade/DIY masks and treatments that serve as cheaper alternatives to having luxurious hair. Try these if you’re interested and on a budget:
- Egg and avocado hair mask
- Jojoba Oil rinse
- Jamaican Castor Oil (for strength)
- Peppermint Oil (for a clear and dandruff-free scalp)
- Tea Tree, Coconut, and Olive Oil
I will leave you with a few more of my favorite products. Good luck with your hair product exploration!
- Kinky Curly
- Lotta Body
- Aunt Jackie’s
- Silk Elements
- The Original Hair Mayonnaise
- Miss Jessie’s
- Carol’s Daughter
- Shea Miracle
- Mega Growth
words_rachelle barrett, photo_erik mclean