Shiny, sleek, poker-straight hair has its place in the beauty world, but more and more women --celebrities and fashion it-girls included-- are embracing their naturally curly tresses instead of fighting them. But take note curly-haired cuties, the same beauty rules don’t apply to you as your straight-haired sisters. No matter how thin or thick your mane is, curly hair is extremely sensitive to styling factors. Defining your curls, eliminating dry ends, preventing frizz and finding the right cut are all things to consider on your quest toward gorgeous curly locks. These hairstyle cues will help you manage your curls.
The best way to cleanse your curls is with a moisturizing shampoo like essence ULTIME Omega Repair Shampoo. Traditional shampoos are too harsh for most curls, leaving them dry and frizzy. Extra-dry curly-haired girls should skip shampoo completely and try “cowashing” their hair with only a conditioner once a week. If your hair lacks oil or moisture, you don't need shampoo. But a moisturizing conditioner like essence ULTIME Omega Repair Conditioner is a necessity for curly strands. The curlier the hair, the longer it takes for natural oils to travel from the scalp to the ends, causing the lower half to appear dry and damaged.
Applying your styling products before you've even stepped out of the shower is one way to stave off frizz. Use your fingers to rake the styliste ULTIME Amino-Q Hold Gel through your sopping wet hair from roots to ends, then scrunch and squeeze upward toward the scalp. Using your fingers prevents breakage and preserves the shape of your curls. The more you manhandle curly hair, the more you ruffle the cuticle, creating frizz. Instead of rubbing damp hair with a terry-cloth towel, gently blot it with a microfiber cloth after you apply your product.
Excess heat alters the proteins that give curls their shape and over time, curls become limp. Limit blow-drying to just twice a week, and be sure to use a diffuser, which dries curls evenly for a full, uniform look. Flip your head upside down and diffuse right at the roots and mid-length, making sure to dry the area completely. Let your roots air-dry, as they tend to be more damaged. If you notice your curls have lost their bounce, abstain from heat-styling entirely and use a conditioning mask like essence ULTIME Omega Repair 60 Second Treatment. Moisture restores the curl pattern.
There's a right way to cut curly hair—and then there's the wrong way, which makes you want to wear a hat for six months. For curly-haired girls, getting a cut requires your stylist to assess your curls individually, instead of cutting in a uniform manner. And be prepared to be at the salon for a few hours, because a good curly cut will usually take a while. Make sure your stylist cuts your hair fully dry and curly to make sure she can see the shape as she cuts, and be sure your spirals are never too short. Steep, graduated layers give curly hair shape and volume, so ask your stylist to work in layers, parting it deeply to one side.
Curly hair can be your best asset or your biggest nightmare, depending on the day. Whether you have slight waves or tight ringlets, the key to keeping your curls healthy and gorgeous is all in your routine. With your favorite products from the essence ULTIME Omega Repair line, and our curly hair commandments, good hair days are inevitably in your future.