Embracing your natural curls has never been so popular, but getting the best from your natural texture involves a little bit of groundwork. After all, naturally curly hair demands its own specific styling products, cuts and aftercare.
From thick waves to bouncy curls and tight coils, there are so many different types of hair that are classified as ‘curly,’ but everyone’s individual hair pattern will vary, as we all have slightly different hair textures, hair growth and sensitivities, according to Errol Douglas, hairstylist and textured hair specialist for Living Proof.
“Curls are so different from person to person,” he explains. “It’s important you treat your individual curls by investing in the right products for your specific curl pattern (whether that’s a wave, a curl or a tighter coil).”
Here, Douglas reveals the six things he wants all curly-haired people to know, so they can get the most out of their beautiful natural texture.
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1. TARGET FRIZZ AND DRYNESS FIRST
“With clients I see in the salon, frizz and dryness are the top two concerns. Curly hair has a completely different molecular structure to straight hair: the amino acid and lipid distribution are totally different, which leaves curly hair feeling dry, fragile and more easily broken.”
2. UNDERSTAND YOUR HAIR STRUCTURE
“Curly hair doesn’t grow as evenly as straight hair and needs to be treated with extra care. It also requires a specific ‘curly’ cut. The cuticle lifts at every bend, so the lipid distribution is irregular, which means less shine and less hydration. Without a strong lipid barrier, hair is less able to defend itself from external stress.”
3. USE PRODUCTS SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED FOR CURLY HAIR
“The best products will address concerns unique to curls, like the patented Healthy Curl Complex in the Living Proof Curl Collection. It gives curls strength, leaving them three times stronger reducing breakage to encourage stronger, healthier, glossier curls.”
“I would recommend using products that give your hair hold rather than being too conditioning, such as the Living Proof Curl Enhancer and the Curl Defining Gel. These will help create volume and hold in the hair. Medium to thick curls often need help to enhance their definition and deliver a glossy finish.”
4. GO SILICONE-FREE WHERE POSSIBLE
“Clients are becoming more aware of the damaging effects of silicone on their hair. Despite the illusion of smoothness, it causes build up and is hard to remove. It also attracts dust and dirt to the hair which is actually more visible on curly hair than it is on straight hair.”
“All Living Proof products are free from silicones. The Curl Moisturising Shine Oil is particularly interesting as it’s lightweight and nourishing yet leaves the hair feeling hydrated and looking glossy all without the use of silicone.”
5. MAKE DETANGLING EASIER FOR YOURSELF
“Detangling the hair is a challenge I see my clients with curly hair regularly facing. Textured hair can get quite knotty, especially overnight with the friction against a pillow. Using a silk hair turban can minimise this friction.”
6. MINIMISE FRICTION WHEN WASHING HAIR
“When hair is wet, cuticles are more fragile – so the more friction there is, the more damage you may cause, which leads to dryness. Use gentle motions when washing, don’t be too vigorous, and try to avoid causing the hair to tangle. A good tip for those with really fragile hair is to apply the Moisturising Shine Oil to the hair first and leave for five minutes before washing out with the Curl Shampoo. It helps to ease the friction and detangle.”
From Harper’s Bazaar UK