Top 10 Things I’ve Learned About Having Curly Hair
April 10, 2019
Having curly can be a little tough sometimes, especially if you’re not sure what to do with it. I slowly learned how to care for my type of curly hair, and what works and what doesn’t. Everyone’s hair is different, so it’s important to learn about what works for you. Here are the top 10 things I’ve learned about having curly hair. Hopefully these 10 things can help you with your hair journey too.
Just a quick background, I am of Latin descent and both my parents are Mexican. So, my curls are a little loose with about a medium thickness.
I didn’t always have curly hair. When I was little my hair had only a few waves in it. But when I cut it really short in 6th grade, it grew back curly!
I didn’t know what to do with it. And it took me years to realize I just needed to learn a little more about my hair type to understand what works for me.
Plus, I reached a point where I was straightening my hair so much that it always felt dry. It was so frizzy and that made me want to straighten my hair even more!
It was a vicious cycle. But eventually I winged myself off the hot tools (yes I was slightly addicted), and got my hair to a healthy place.
So, these are the top 10 things that I have learned on my journey to having healthy curly hair. Along the way, I also learned to love the hair I’ve been given. Let’s start with #1.
1. Some days it has a mind of its own, it’s best to go with the flow
These baby hairs/ flyaways have been with me since the beginning of time.
I used to get so upset when my flyaways would come poking out, especially when I worked out. That’s when they really like to have fun.
Honestly I was a little embarrassed. I’d see all these girls with pretty and shiny straight hair that looked like it was easy to brush. All they had to do was throw it in a ponytail and call it a day.
But for me, I needed gel and hairspray to keep everything in one place. And don’t even get me started on windy days.
However, over time and with the help of my husband Eric, I’ve slowly learned to embrace my flyaways. They are a part of me and my curly hair.
Life is about learning to love who we are and what we have, instead of feeling embarrassed or wishing we were the same as other people. Differences are what make us special and we should feel good about that.
Nowadays, instead of trying to tame my hairs or getting frustrated when my curls go one way and I want them to go another, I’ve learned to just go with the flow.
Having curly hair is a lot like having a partner…some days you love them and other days, they just get on your nerves. Hey its life!
When Eric and I annoy each other, we usually laugh about it 2 minutes later and hug it out. The same goes for my flyaways. I get annoyed, then we quickly make up.
We should be proud of our flyaways. After all, they make for fun pictures. And the more flyaways I have after a workout the better, because that means I worked my butt off and I’m proud of that too!
2. Your fingers are your best friend
You may be surprised when I tell you I threw out my hair brush a few years ago. And I haven’t looked back since.
When I decided to change to a healthier lifestyle, I also wanted to learn more about my hair. Growing up, having curly hair wasn’t necessarily the “in thing.” I used to beg my Mom to straighten my hair for me in middle school because I thought straight hair was prettier.
As I’ve grown up, I realized that maybe it wasn’t my hair, but rather me not knowing how to properly care for it.
So I did some reading online and watched YouTube videos to learn more about curly hair.
I learned that brushing my hair with a brush caused more breakage and frizziness. Two things we definitely don’t want.
Before I threw out my brush I started brushing my hair with my fingers. For me, this worked wonders. Not to mention, it was so awesome that I didn’t need to buy brushes anymore. Man why didn’t I learn this sooner!
Now, it’s also important to mention that there are certain times to brush through curly hair as you will see with #3 and 4.
3. Brush through your hair before washing it
I also learned that brushing through your curly hair before washing is another way to help with breakage. It’s a lot easier to brush through hair when it’s dry.
Right before you get in the shower is the best time. You aren’t causing any extra damage to your hair and this helps with washing your hair too.
If you have long curly hair like me, you might understand that it can easily get all tangled up, especially when it’s wet.
The only time to dry brush your hair is JUST BEFORE washing it and that’s exactly what I do. I’ll explain that next.
4. Dry brushing your hair = Frizz City
When you dry brush your hair it will cause frizz… dun dun dun!
Frizz – the bad word of curly hair. We don’t want it, we don’t want to talk about it, and we definitely don’t even like to hear the word.
The only time I’m ok with my hair getting frizzy is just before a shower because I know it’s going to get wet. Plus, I’m getting out all the kinks beforehand.
There are 2 times that I brush through my hair and that is before and after a shower.
Even when I have second or third day hair, I will usually spritz my curls with some water and add a little bit of oil to brighten them up. Other then that I don’t brush through it unless I’m jumpin’ in the shower.
Oh and I almost forgot to mention that I do have a comb, but I only use it for updos, braids, or slick back hair styles.
5. There are different “types” of curly hair
I was amazed to find out that there are actually different types of curly hair. I was like wow, who knew!
You can have tight curls, small loose ones, or big loose curls, among a few other types.
There is this really cool website where you can take a quiz and learn more about your curly hair type. My hair is considered 3a from the quiz.
Learning things like this helped me understand why certain products would work for me, but not others.
6. Different types = Different products that work/don’t work
I used to put a bunch of hairspray, spray gel, and mousse in my hair. Anything to help tame my frizz is why I would pack it on, my poor hair.
Once I allowed it to heal from too much heat, hair dying, and chemicals, I was able to see what healthy products worked best.
Now, the only daily product I put in my hair is Avocado oil. I buy it in a big bottle, so I put it in this small glass bottle that I purchased at Whole Foods for daily use.
Once I get out of the shower I scrunch it in my hair and let it air dry.
I’ve never been good at diffusing or blow drying my hair so I just skip that step. Sometimes if I do have to go somewhere and I know it won’t dry in time I’ll just put it up in a bun or braid it.
Since my hair is not very thick, a lot of the products I was using before were too heavy. I was so worried about frizz, that I was actually weighing it down instead of creating volume.
Knowing your type of curl can help you to learn what products would work best for you.
Another product I use from time to time in my hair is some organic hairspray that I buy at Sprout’s.
These small changes have saved me so much in hair products.
I love that my hair routine is simple, and it helps to keep my hair happy and healthy too.
7. Find a stylist that knows curly hair
Another thing I learned is that the person that cuts your hair makes a difference too!
I got a haircut at a random salon once and it was one of the worst experiences for me. When the stylist cut my hair she thinned it out and my curls just looked wonky, I was so sad. It took some time for my hair to recover from that too.
After that experience I didn’t feel good about my hair, and I struggled even more with the fact that it’s curly.
But once I began a new journey and gained a different perspective, I learned that it’s important my stylist knows about curly hair and how to cut it.
I was lucky enough to find a stylist at an organic hair salon in my area who is so knowledgeable about curly hair. She has curly hair herself and she takes the time to teach me something new each time I go in for a trim.
I think having a good hair stylist has helped in getting my hair healthy and learning to love it.
You can do a Google search for salons in your area. I would recommend calling to see if anyone specializes in curly hair at the salon you’re interested in. Don’t be afraid to ask questions because your hair is important and it makes for a more enjoyable experience.
8. No heat = More curls and volume
Along with the right products and hair stylist, using less heat in my hair was a real game changer.
Once I stopped using my hair straightener everyday, I slowly saw the bounce in my curls come back. It wasn’t just a frizzy mess, but actual curls with some volume once it dried.
I do straighten my hair once in a long while, but I mostly like to wear it natural these days.
I think back and wonder why I was trying to hide my curls this whole time. All I really needed to do was put some oil and leave it be. I was actually creating more work for myself by wanting it to be straight all the time.
So if you are searching for more volume in your hair, the first place I would check is how often you apply heat to it. If it’s quite a bit, say daily like I used to, this could be a big factor into volume and curls.
9. Embrace the natural curl
It helped a lot when I started dating Eric because he loved my curls from the beginning.
He’s really helped me to love the parts of myself that I wish I could change, and that’s one of the reasons I love him so much.
Embracing my curls wasn’t just about my hair, it was also about learning to love myself, all parts included. By embracing what I’ve been given I feel so free.
I’ve discovered who I am and honestly I think curly hair really fits me. It’s crazy and out there, sometimes a little awkward haha, and it’s authentic and natural.
This might sound cheesy but I think a person’s natural hair can speak of who they are meant to be inside. Have you ever thought about what your hair says about you?
I love to do fun things with my hair, change up hairstyles and braid it. But I’m also happy that I am now comfortable enough to let it be natural too.
10. Don’t be afraid to stand out, curls are beautiful and so are you!
With that said, curls are bold, they’re crazy sometimes, aren’t always meant to be tamed, and above all they are beautiful.
I used to be afraid of standing out and being different. Now I know that me trying to keep my hair straight all the time was a reflection that.
Once I started working on self-love and acceptance, things began to change and that includes how I saw my curly hair. This is who I am meant to be and I feel blessed to have the hair that I’ve been given.
Curly hair is meant to stand out for a reason, so don’t be afraid to rock your curls. Be who you are meant to be. Learning about your hair can teach you about yourself along the way.
It’s all connected.
So free your flyaways and embrace your curls because they are what make you beautifully, uniquely, and authentically you.
I hope you found these 10 things helpful. Do you have your hair routine down packed? Do you feel it works best for your type of curly hair? Let me know in the comments below.