6 Ways to Have Healthy Curls
6 Ways to Have Healthy Curls
As curly ladies and gents our hair is often dry. If you’re anything like how I was for most of my life, I just kind of shrugged it off. We are told that because our hair is curly, we are doomed to a life of dry, damaged, and frizzy hair.
But that’s not true.
We can have healthy hair, and it can be beautiful. BUT, we need to take care of it properly.
Here are 6 ways you can have healthy curls.
1. Cut out shampoo.
Most mainstream shampoos have sulfates. Sulfates in shampoos are used to clean all the gunk off your hair and scalp. Want to hear something crazy? You can also find sulfates in dish soaps and laundry detergents.
Sulfates are designed to strip your hair of any and all oils. This is bad for a few reasons: 1) as a curly girl or guy your hair is already dry and NEEDS oil. By design, the oils can’t make it down all the coils in our hair, unlike our straight haired counterparts, who often times have the opposite problem. 2) constantly stripping your hair of oil will actually cause an overproduction of sebum, which will clog your hair follicles and make your scalp look greasy. And no one wants that.
So how do you avoid these nasty sulfates? Look for ingredients like sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and sodium laureth ether sulfate (SLES). We like to use our hair cleanser - a clarifying co wash that cleans away all the build up but still leaves your hair and scalp moisturized. Check it out here.
2. Cut out products with silicones.
A lot of mainstream conditioners and styling products have another nasty ingredient: silicone. Silicones coat your hair, kind of like a plastic. Why is this bad? Because 1) you can’t get rid of this plastic coating without using a sulfate shampoo (see above for why you should cut out sulfate shampoos) and 2) the coating prevents moisture from entering your hair strands.
To avoid using silicones, look for ingredients that end in -cone or -xane. When looking for products to use, try to find something with water as the first ingredient. Water is the only thing that can hydrate your hair. Everything else acts as a moisturizer to seal in hydration from the water.
We like to use our hair cream as a conditioner/leave in styling cream. It is silicone free. Check it out here.
3. Cut out the heat.
Yes, I know, this is a hard one. Now, I’m not saying you can’t straighten your hair EVER, but if you want healthy curls, you’re going to need to cut it out for a while. Why? Heat from blow dryers and flat irons burn your hair, causing breakage. The breakage not only leaves your ends jagged and unhealthy, but it can also thin out your hair shaft as a whole.
My recommendation? Use your blow dryer on the cool setting, and put the flat iron away indefinitely. If, once your hair is healthy, you find yourself with the urge to use it, use the lowest heat setting possible. You’ll also want to use a silicone based protectant before applying the heat. This is the only scenario in which I recommend a silicone based product. Remember, you’ll need to use a sulfate shampoo to get the silicones off your hair after.
4. Cut out the bleach.
Do you bleach your hair? If so, this is causing major damage to your curls. Bleaching and highlighting your hair cause your hair to be dry, brittle, and dull. What does all this equal in the end? Hair breakage. As we know from above, breakage leaves your ends jagged, broken, and thins out your whole hair shaft.
Now, this isn’t to say you can NEVER bleach or highlight your hair again. Lots of people with curly hair lighten their hair. You might just want to hold off until your hair has regained its health.
5. Style with water.
As mentioned earlier, water is the only thing that actually hydrates your hair. Everything else moisturizes and acts as a sealant so your hair stays hydrated. So what’s the best way to style your curls? Well, I’m glad you asked. The best way to style your hair is while it is still soaking wet.
Applying hair creams, leavins, and styling products to soaking wet hair will ensure you’re locking in the maximum amount of hydration for your curls. This is the best way to get defined curls as well.
6. Go for the big chop.
This is exactly what it sounds like. You can get a big chop, aka chop off all your hair to help with hair health. Basically, all you’re doing here is cutting off all the damaged hair while allowing your healthy hair to grow in.
Understandably, this option isn’t for everyone, as not everyone wants to have short hair. You can also do this by slowly cutting off the damaged hair, something you will need to do eventually, because, remember, you can’t revive damaged hair. You can only lessen the intensity of the damage and prevent further damage from happening. Eventually, it all will need to get chopped off anyway.
So there you have it: 6 ways to have healthy curls. Did you like what you read? Have a question? Know of another way to help prevent hair damage? Let me know in the comments!
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