Curly hair routine: what you should and (definitely) shouldn’t be doing

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Curly hair is hard. There are so many mistakes you can make in trying to care for curly hair that sometimes it feels like a higher power is calling the shots on whether your curls will behave or go haywire.

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That’s why we’re rounding up all the important information curly-haired girls should know so they can correct their curly hair routines. And we were lucky enough to have a hair guru in Rob Reeves, VS Sassoon National Education Manager, share some of his best tips for curly hair.

Washing your curly hair

I never used to think you could go too wrong with washing curly hair but boy was I wrong…

Stop washing it so much

How often do you wash your curly hair? I average about three times a week, but as Rob explains, that’s too much for curls. He advises that you should try to reduce the number of times you shampoo your hair per week (once or twice is more than enough).

Sulphate-free is the way

Your curls are sensitive. So Rob advises that you always use a sulphate-free shampoo because it will be more gentle. Need to get your hands on a sulphate-free shampoo? beautyheaven loves Redken Frizz Dismiss Shampoo and Pureology Hydrate Sheer Shampoo.

Wide tooth combs only

Washing your hair is the one window where you can brush curly hair. “Never brush curls when dry only use a wide tooth comb on wet hair or in the shower while conditioner is in,” Rob advises. beautyheaven loves Rock & Ruddle Wide Tooth Comb and Lady Jayne Detangling Comb.

Between-wash maintenance is important

There is still maintenance to do on the days when you aren’t washing your hair! “Wet your hair in the shower and give your scalp a good massage to remove any excess oil and styling product,” explains Rob. “Then apply a conditioner or treatment (it’s important to never wet hair without added moisture) and ensure you comb through the product with wide tooth comb and then rinse. This will reset your curls ready to be styled again.” beautyheaven loves Klorane Conditioner with Chamomile and bhave Rescue Intense Repair Conditioner.

Drying your curly hair

I can tell you from years of experience that drying curly hair is bloody difficult. It’s the area where I run into the most issues. Some days it will air-dry bouncy and sleek and other days (way more often than not) it will air-dry with a fuzzy halo. And if I try to blow dry? That turns me into Hermione from Harry Potter (and we’re not talking Hermione with the cute grown-up waves at the end of the series, we’re talking first movie Hermione with the layers of thick frizz).

But as it turns out, it is possible to dry curly hair well. Try the following to farewell the fuzzy halo…

Use your damn diffuser

You know that nifty round thing with the spikes that comes with most hair dryers? That old thing is SUPER handy for curly hair. But you don’t use it in the same way you’d use a normal dryer (just a mistake I’d casually been making for my whole life). Instead, you actually have to place your hair into the diffuser.

“Embrace the diffuser attachment of your hair dryer (VS Sassoon Digital Sensor Hairdryer, of course!),” says Rob. “To use, randomly twist curls around fingers to add more definition and place them into the diffuser and then using a cupping motion (up and down) to dry the hair.”

Be gentle with the towel

If you prefer to towel-dry your hair, you need to do so carefully. “When towel drying, only ever gentle pat dry your hair, never ‘rough dry’ by rubbing the towel on the hair as this will reduce curl definition and add frizz,” says Rob.

Try hair plopping

It sounds odd but throwing your hair into a cotton t-shirt works wonders for curly hair. It’s called ‘hair plopping’. Plopping hair on top of your head and securing it with a cotton t-shirt helps your curls form and set – sans the frizz.

Styling your curly hair

Try incorporating these products into your curly hair styling routine for less frizz and more fun…

Heat protectants

Whether you’re straightening, curling or blow drying, you should tread carefully when styling your curly hair with heat. I know curly-haired ladies have a tendency (myself included) to go as hot as possible to try and wrangle their wild tresses but it can actually come back to bite you. It can cause some serious damage to your curls (and sometimes result in more frizz). So make sure you have the heat down low and always use a heat protectant. beautyheaven loves the VS Sassoon Digital Sensor Hot Air Styler (this styler tames frizz and has hair protect technology to reduce damage and dullness), ghd heat protect spray and L’OCCITANE Aromachologie Heat-Protective Control Mist.

Curl cream

Styling starts before your hair has even had a chance to dry! “Apply a curl cream into damp hair – I personally love a curl cream with a light hold like Babylisspro Argan oil Curl Cream,” says Rob. Keen for a new curl cream? beautyheaven loves SheaMoisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl Enhancing Smoothie and Moroccanoil Intense Curl Cream.

Sea salt spray

“Once diffused use a light sea salt spray to refine curls – my favourite Davroe sea salt spray, it’s vegan and Chem free,” says Rob. beautyheaven also loves KMS HAIRPLAY Sea Salt Spray and Fudge Sea Salt Spray.

Oil

Curly hair is often plagued by dryness and damage so an oil is a great way to add some extra nourishment and shine. “Curls love light oils, try a natural almond or coconut oil as a great leave-in option,” says Rob. beautyheaven loves Botáni Coconut Glow Body & Hair Oil and The Body Shop Coconut Nourishing Dry Oil For Body & Hair.

Do you have curly hair? What is your curly hair routine?

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