Are you struggling to style your curls, or just suffering from a case of the frizzies?
At Intrinsicurly Me, we care about each and every one of you on your #journeytocurly and we are here to help. In this article, we will cover the basics of styling and a few important factors to explore before you start.
Know Your Curl Pattern:
Knowing your curl type, whether it is from 2a to 4c, as well as figuring out your hair porosity dramatically improves your relationship with your hair.
Decoding your curl pattern or type can be confusing as several different textures can exist on the same head of curls, which all have to somehow look cohesive when you attempt to style it. Luckily, the road to understanding and embracing your curl pattern has been simplified over the years.
Generally, your curl type is determined by the shape of the follicle that your hair grows out of from your scalp. The flatter or more oval-shaped the follicle is, the curlier your hair will be. Your curl pattern is commonly identified by the shape that the strands of hair make, whether they kink, curve, or wind around themselves into spirals.
As previously mentioned, most people with textured hair have more than one type of curl pattern and are highly likely of showing a combination of kinky, coily, wavy, and curly. A simple breakdown: Type 1's are straight, Type 2's are wavy, Type 3's are curly, and Type 4's are coily. Easy, right?
The sub-classifications of A to C are based on the width or diameter of your wave, curl, or coil. Type A's have a wider pattern size, Type B's medium, and Type C's the smallest of the three. The real beauty of identifying your hair type is that at allows you to have more insight into understanding how to care for your specific texture.
Here is a basic graph of curl pattern to help you determine your own:
As you likely know by now, humidity can cause chaos on curly hair. Curly hair tends to be dry (especially now that it's winter) and tends to absorb all the humidity in the air. This causes your cuticles to expand which in turn causes *gasp* frizz. The secret to keeping frizz in check is… MOISTURE. Head over to our blogpost “10 Tips to Minimise Frizz” for a full overview on how to combat frizz.
Know How to Use a Blow-dryer:
The blow dryer can be a curly girl's nightmare if used improperly. Here are a few helpful tips to follow when using a blow-dryer:
- You may choose to either allow your hair to air dry for a while or to start diffusing while the hair is sopping wet, the choice is yours.
- When diffusing, stick to using a medium heat.
- Tip the head forward and place the diffuser bowl upwards towards the scalp
- Hold it for about 5 minutes, or until that section is around 90% dry, continuing doing this in sections moving around the head until all your hair is dry. Remember to always work side- to side, back to front.
- When dry, shake those curls out and give them a light scrunch for volume.
For more tips on how to correctly use a blow- dryer and different diffusing methods, head over to our blogpost “Diffuse Drying”
Accessories are your friends:
For curly-haired women on the run, a headband can be an actual lifesaver. If you pull your hair back in a band while it's damp, it's a great way to "flatten" the hair at the crown, leaving the curls at the ends. If you do use a headband, make sure not to pull it too tightly as it can disrupt the natural curl pattern which in turn can cause long term curl pattern damage. Later you can gently loosen the hairband and you'll have gorgeous body.
The same can be said for a silk scarf! There are so many easy ways you can style your natural curls with scarves or accessories without having to use heat. Here are a few of our favourites you can explore:
- Silk scarves & headbands – they come in all shapes, sizes and patterns and are one of the easiest ways to up your look and create a diversity.
- Butterfly clips or embellished hair clips – an easy way to pin back the hair around your face or create a quick and beautiful up-style.
- Puffy Headbands – a 90’s favourite making a huge comeback.
- Satin & Organza scrunchies – a curly girl staple.
- Banana clips – clips that are slightly curved and used to hold your hair in place
- Puff Cuffs – for girls with big, bouncy curls (especially type 3-4 curls), Puff Cuffs are a must-have.
Embrace the Product Cocktail:
"Product cocktailing" was essentially designed for the curly-haired community. Simply put, it is when you blend two products together to create the perfect blend for your hair texture. When you cocktail a product, you are creating a new version of each of those products versus when you layer them on your hair. Whether it be a gel and a cream like our Hold Me Baby Curly Hair Gel and Crème De La Curl Creme, or a cream plus a leave-in conditioner, any combination of our cocktail conditioners and styling products will have your hair winning every single time.
Your Towel Matters!
There are numerous ways that curly hair can be dried: Air drying, diffusing, plopping—but don't just grab a towel from the linen closet. We recommend you invest in our Scrunching Microfibre Towel, which will cut down your drying time as it absorbs excess water. It is also much gentler on the hair. Traditional towels are abrasive and is far too rough, which is basically just asking your hair to frizz and dry out.
Remember, each head of hair is unique, and you may find that certain styling techniques work better than others depending on your curl pattern and overall look. However you choose to wear your hair, make sure to treat those curls with the gentle kindness they deserve.