Thursday, August 29, 2013

Easy Ways to Improve Your Curly Hair

Hola, Chicas! As I mentioned in my curly hair routine, I've been working on getting my curls into tip top shape for the last year or so. Thankfully, improving my curls turned out to be much easier than I imagined. For the last several months I've been getting plenty of compliments and lots of questions, so I decided to share what I've learned so far.

Small Changes with a Big Impact 

Stop using shampoo!
Shampoo strips your hair of its vital natural oils, which makes your hair dry and adds to the frizz factor. Instead, try a cleansing conditioner. I know what you're thinking, "there's no way I'm going to get my hair clean with that". I didn't think my hair and scalp would be clean after my first use, but I was definitely wrong.

The key is working the product into your scalp well. I like to start by wetting my hair and massaging my scalp with my fingers. I make sure my hair has been wet for several minutes to loosen up any dirt before I start using the cleanser.

There are a lot of cleansing conditioners on the market, so find one that fits your hair needs and your budget. I personally use, DevaCurl No-Poo Cleansing Conditioner. No-Poo has a minty feel, so if you're using a different brand, I would recommend adding a few drops of mint essential oil. Mint is not only refreshing, but it can also promote hair growth and reduce dandruff.

This photo was taken after a hair cut at the DevaChan salon.

Towels = Frizz
Towel drying your hair can actually cause frizz and breakage. Before I leave the shower, I gently squeeze out the excess water from my hair...and that's it. If for some reason I do need to towel dry, I use a microfiber towel (you can also use a cotton t-shirt).

Let it Drip
Style your hair while it's completely wet. If you style it while it's starting to dry, you'll only up the frizz factor when you work in your styling product.  

Go Organic
Whenever possible, switch to natural products to eliminate the risk of causing further damage with harsh chemicals. Avoid products that contain sulfates and silicones. Sulfates are the lathering agents found in shampoos, which can dry out your hair. Silicones are found in products that promise shine, like serums. While they do offer you temporary shine, they also weigh down your hair and create a barrier which seals out moisture.

Cut the Damage
It may seem counterintuitive, but you may have to cut your hair at this beginning of this journey to get rid of some of the damage. I went to the Devachan salon here in New York and absolutely loved their work. They specialize in curly hair and cut it while it's dry to get the length and style just right. No risk of chopping off too much because of the spring factor!

Cool it Down
Avoid using heat on your hair whenever possible. I only use my hair dryer now on the cool setting with a diffuser to speed up the drying process after I style it.

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