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Curly Hair Tips and Guides

To define and enhance natural curl shapes, curly hair products like hair masks, defining sprays and fondants nourish and protect through targeted ingredients. Curls vary in texture, thickness and shape, so discovering how to take care of curly hair is personal to your locks. Read on for expert-approved curly hair tips and the best curly hair guide for locked-in shine.

What Curly hair Type Are You?

From loose, long waves to tightly kinked coils, curly hair types have different care needs. When defining how to look after curly hair, we classify curls depending on follicle shape and density. 2a refers to stretched waves, 3b references bouncier ringlets, and 4c is used to indicate z-pattern curls. Define your curly hair type and find the best routine for your hair below.

curly hair

Wavy Hair

Curly hair which falls in this category has fine to medium hair thickness which is fairly elastic and mailable in shape. Curly hair tips for wavy hair types include encouraging volume by using only minimal amounts of heavy product and nurturing natural bendability with nourishing ingredients. Category 2 curly hair types include:

2a: Waves which are loose and stretched, showing almost all length without straightening.

2b: More distinct and tighter waves

2c: Spiral curls and s-shaped waves

curly hair

Curly Hair

Category 3 curly hair types have a higher hair density and relatively coarse-textured hair. As frizz is a common occurrence, curly hair advice for this hair type includes implementing smoothing product to protect and enhance natural shine. Category 3 curly hair types include:

3a: Big, loose curls that tend towards spiral shapes

3b: Ringlets with bouncier volume

3c: Tight corkscrew shapes

coily hair

Coily Hair

Curly hair types with the tightest curls fall into category 4. From s-curls to z-patterned coils, this hair type usually has a high hair density level and a dryer texture. Curly hair tips for coily types include using leave-in creams and hair masks to increase moisture when shaping hair. Category 4 curly hair types include:

4a: s-curl shaped, tight curls

4b: sharper angled, z-patterned coil shapes

4c: z-pattern coils which are tightly kinked

Find the right curly hair routine for you

However you like to style your curls, finding the right routine for curly hair promotes long-term shine, health and defined texture. How to take care of curly hair can look a little different for everyone. Whether your focus is on enhancing shine in ringlets or nourishing coils, a few transformative products are all you need. Perfect your hair care habits by reading our guide to curly hair routines.

How to care for your curly hair

For curls of all shapes and sizes, learning how to take care of curly hair comes down to the curly hair care formulas used and positive daily habits taken. Instead of taming curls, the best curly hair tips will help celebrate your natural shape. Curly hair is different to other hair textures due to how to the hair fibre is formed. For instance, curly hair tends to be dryer than straighter hair textures as the oil from the scalp can travel down the strand much easier with straight hair than when the hair follicle is curved, like in curly hair. To help look after curly hair, you may need to ski some washes, keep it nourished and use only the specifically formulated curly hair shampoos, conditioners and treatments. See below for our biggest curly hair tips on how to look after curly hair.

1. Use a sulfate-free shampoo

Sulfates are great at removing oil, debris and dirt from hair. Their ability to clean can sometimes impact the balance of hair and may remove essential lipids which can dehydrate the scalp area. Curly hair relies on moisture to keep shapes bouncy and retain shine and strength – so one of our biggest curly hair tips is to opt for sulfate-free products. Curl Manifesto Bain Hydration Douceur Curl Shampoo contains no sulfates and is instead enriched with Manuka honey and ceramides.

2. Avoid Excessive Shampooing

In order to maintain texture, curly hair needs its natural oils. While shampoos are pro’s at cleansing hair, too much use can cause strands to become dry. Our curly hair guide recommends shampooing a maximum of once per week and with sulfate-free formulas. In-between washes, Curl Manifesto Miracle Curl Refreshing Spray weightlessly rehydrates hair to support definition and shine. Discover more about how this hair hero revives curls.

3. Cut back on the heat tools

Heated styling tools can achieve an array of flawless looks, so it’s no surprise that many of us include them in our daily routines. Stylers like curling irons, straighteners and blow-dryers however rely on extreme levels of heat to conform hair, and frequent use can cause damage like breakage and split ends. To keep moisture locked in to curly hair and support the strength of locks, we recommend periods of rest. When you do use heated stylers, make sure you coat hair with a heat protectant beforehand. Curl Manifesto Crème De Jour Fondamentale Curly Hair Cream is developed specifically for curly hair, protecting hair from frizz and temperatures of up to 450°F/230°C.

4. Use Moisturising Hair Treatments

Daily environmental stressors like UV radiation, dry weather, chlorine and saltwater can dehydrate hair. To promote elasticity and provide deep nourishment to curly hair, implement a moisturising hair mask into your weekly routine. Curl Manifesto Masque Beurre Haute Nutrition Hair Mask was created for curly hair types and contains nutrient-rich manuka honey and ceramides to tame frizz and restore definition to curls.

5. Use a diffuser when blow drying

Blow-drying can revolutionise your curly hair routine, but the wrong technique can result in flat, frizzy hair. For increased bounce, invest in a blow-dryer diffuser attachment. This attachment softens the air flow from your blow-dryer and evenly disperses air into your curls, minimising frizz and supporting bouncy, defined curls. Make sure to spritz your hair with a heat protectant spray before using any form of styling tools. The Chroma Absolu Heat Protectant for Coloured Hair works to smooth and protect coloured or damaged hair, with 230°C thermo-protection.

6. Use a wide-tooth comb

Preserving your hair’s natural curl pattern post washing is an important element in how to take care of curly hair. Fine-toothed combs and hairbrushes can cause significant disruption to your curl pattern. Instead, use a wide-toothed comb and conditioner to gently detangle your hair while it’s saturated. Once rinsed, keep your curls intact by avoiding combs, brushes, and even running your hands through your hair.

7. Avoid heavy products that weigh down the hair

To maintain the fluid, bouncy nature of curly hair, lightweight products that don’t weigh down hair are recommended. Applying heavy formulas or too much product to curly hair can pull down your curls, resulting in flat or dull strands. Instead, apply dime sized amounts of lightweight styling products and keep your hair refreshed between washes with a leave in spray.

8. Trim hair regularly to avoid split ends

Split ends are the enemy of curly hair care - they disrupt your curl pattern and cause frizz, so it’s vital to remove them often. Encourage the full, bouncy potential of your curls by booking regular salon visits to trim split ends. Between hair appointments, take steps to avoid the occurrence of split ends by using a hair serum or oil designed to limit breakage by strengthening the hair fibre.

9. Dry hair with a cotton shirt instead of a towel

Regular terry towels can rough up your curl pattern, so one of the simplest curly hair tips is to upgrade the towel you’re using to dry your hair. A microfibre towel is much gentler on your hair because the fibres in the material are much finer than those of a regular bath towel. If you’re not ready to invest in a microfibre hair towel, try using an old t-shirt first - just ensure the material is 100% cotton.

10. Detangle from the ends first

When it comes to how to care for curly hair, a gentle hand is essential. Detangling curly hair can be time consuming, so you might be tempted to tug and pull at your curls. Not only is this technique painful, but it can also disrupt your curl pattern and remove hair that’s not ready to be shed. Instead, detangle the ends of your hair first and work your way up towards the root so you don’t pull the knots down.

11. Wash hair with cold water

While a hot shower is a relaxing way to unwind, high temperatures aren’t ideal for curly hair. Heat can have a significant impact on the appearance and health of your hair by causing dehydration and can open the hair cuticle, resulting in frizz. In terms of how to maintain curly hair on wash day - rinsing with cold water is recommended.

How to Perfect Your Curly Hair Routine

Now you are aware of some of the best curly hair tips, learn how to establish the best curly hair routine to promote luscious defined curls. However you like to style your curls, finding the right routine for curly hair promotes long-term shine, health and defined texture. How to take care of curly hair can look a little different for everyone, and may depend on your curl type: coily, curly or wavy. Whether your focus is on enhancing shine in ringlets or nourishing coils, a few transformative products are all you need. The Curl Manifesto collection includes specifically formulated shampoos, conditioners, sprays, cream and treatments to help you embrace your curls no matter the type.

To get started on your curly hair routine, follow these simple steps:

  1. Massage shampoo into your scalp to gently cleanse, and rinse thoroughly.
  2. Apply conditioner to seal the cuticle and provide additional nourishment and anti-frizz properties.
  3. Next, treat your curls with a hair mask and leave in for 5 to 30 minutes for a powerful dose of shine and moisture.
  4. Follow up with a leave-in conditioner like a hair cream to help provide long-lasting hydration and heat protection. Style like usual.
  5. Refresh your hair on day two (or three, or four) with a Curl Refreshing Spray for weightless lift and shine.

The Curly Girl Must Have

Curl Manifesto

Embrace your curls with the new Curly Girl Must-Have, Curl Manifesto. Suitable for all types of natural curls, this hair care for curly hair is formulated with hydrating Manuka Honey & Cementing Ceramides to define, strengthen and hydrate your locks. Manifest your curly hair now.

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The Right Products For You

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Frequently Asked Questions

Answers To Your Frequently Asked Curl Questions

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