No matter your hair type, some essential hair care tips apply to everyone. 1. Cleanse, 2. condition, and 3. protect. It is easy to remember, and absolutely essential, for looking after curls worth celebrating. But here at Curly By Nature, we are oh so aware that the world of curly hair can be unnecessarily confusing. Your natural tresses may require a different kind of TLC than most, but if you learn the fundamentals of your hair and its unique behaviour, we can help you build a healthy routine you can actually stick to, giving you the chance to celebrate your luscious locks forevermore!
Hair sits in a spectrum of varying types, including thickness, porosity, elasticity, density, curl pattern and more. And each combination has its own set of characteristics, which for hairstylists mainly, are extremely useful to know. For the AFRO hair crew, your locks can be extremely misunderstood especially when it comes to its length since it’s the curliest hair type of them all.
Let’s break it down:
- Fine (strand thickness): Just because you have afro-textured hair, does not always mean adopting heavier, tropical smelling products. No, the diversity of afro hair means that your fine hair will prefer much higher quality and the lightest of products. So like your wavy or curly counterpart, light curly creams or lotions are your new best friend.
- Medium (strand thickness): Can carry a more defined S/ O shape with the right product combination of a base gel or cream AND topper mousse or gel. But, like every other category, the health and condition of your hair will vary and you will find that the more hydrated and healthier your hair, the more defined your curls will appear, especially when soaking wet.
- Thick (strand thickness): Typically, adopting slightly heavier products or combinations will have your hair thanking you for it!
What’s Afros hair’s personality?… we hear you ask…
- Remember how we mentioned afros are the most deceiving of all the hair types? That’s because it’s the curliest. When straight, it can extend up to 5x the length, compared to when it’s in its natural afro state.
- When wet, afros can appear more defined and consequently tend to be easier to manage and handle if a conditioner or lubricant is used – but be careful as it will be more fragile than when it is in its naturally dry and healthy state.
- Due to its natural kinks, curls and coils, it can annoyingly tangle extremely easily.
- Thicker or more dense heads can typically see 3 strands shooting from 1 follicle and as a consequence, you’ll have lots of hair within one small area. If not maintained properly, it can be very frustrating. But do not fear, there are SO many techniques and methods to help make it easy to keep on top of!
- Afro hair has been known to dry out quickly due to its structure so proper conditioning and protection is vital.
- Sebum (your natural hair oil) is produced from the scalp, so if your scalp is healthy, it generally does not need grease or oils to be applied directly on the scalp. However, the ends of your hair won’t necessarily feel or look as healthy as the ends because the oil produced often struggles to travel from scalp to ends.
- Afro is super, wonderfully versatile- you can twist, plait or braid and it doesn’t unravel easily meaning your styles can usually last pretty long.
And how should you be treating your afro?
- One of the most important sections of the hair care routine for afro hair will be conditioning due to the natural, and often unruly, twists, turns, curls and coils.
- Remember our basic rules? Cleanse, condition and coat.
- When applying conditioners and gels, products should be smoothed down.
- 5 is your magic number. When mastering your wash routine, including detangling, cleansing and conditioning, use no more than 5 products at any one time – less is more [even if you do have 3 times as much in your bathroom or dresser!].
- Whilst drying your hair, scrunch your curls in an upward motion towards your scalp to help protect and define your curl and avoid the frizzy look, we all dread.
- Afros tend to dry out slightly quicker than most other hair types if it’s not protected with the correct products.
- The detangling process is essential to get down! Done incorrectly, it can leave your curls damaged.
- It’s essential the above techniques are combined with products specifically designed for your hair with the best quality ingredients. Using too much product will lead to your hair becoming heavy and losing its shape. Using the wrong product will cause flakes to sit and drip from your curls – and nobody’s got time for that!
Getting the best for your AFRO hair
Get specific advice for your unique AFRO, wavy, coily or undefined by taking our quiz to find out how to implement a personalised, quality care routine to take back control.
BUT if you’ve got your healthy hair regime on lock, take a look at our award-winning products specifically designed and formulated with you in mind.
Also, we love hearing about your journey and so does our community too so please share your story in the comments below!