Embracing and Maintaining Your Curly Hair

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First, a little background about curls. What causes hair to grow in an S shape? People with straight hair tend to have symmetric, round hair follicles on the head, which allow hair to grow straight and uniform. But those with curly hair have asymmetrical hair follicles, which cause hair to grow out in a curled pattern. 

Asymmetric follicles are not at all uncommon. In fact, they are quite normal. A huge percent of the population has curly hair, after all. Curled hair and asymmetric follicles are indeed genetic.

How should I care for my curls?

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Curly hair presents some unique challenges and requires special care. That said, owning your curls is a great way to stay true to yourself and embrace your natural beauty. Well-maintained curls are beautiful and should be celebrated. Plus, you can avoid all that heat damage and skip long hours at the salon getting pricey hair treatments. Future you will thank yourself for choosing to go the natural route.

Perhaps you have loved your curls from day one, or maybe you’re only now considering embracing your curls. Whatever the reason, learning a few tips and tricks for curl maintenance can help you get the most out of your splendid mane without suffering any of the typical pitfalls of curly hair.

Some of the most common curl complaints include frizz, dry hair, breakage, limp curls and weighed-down hair, dullness, and even awkward haircuts. If you've struggled with any of these problems, this article is for you.

A general rule of thumb for keeping all kinds of curls well maintained is to use products that are formulated specifically for curly hair. From serums to gels to leave-in conditioners to shampoo, these products are made with curly hair's needs in mind.

The difference between well-defined curls and messy ones comes down to a few elements. The condition of the hair and types of products used can affect how curls look. Environmental factors like humidity can also affect curls. With so many things at play, it can feel overwhelming when your curls just won't cooperate. Here is quick-start guide for troubleshooting some common curly hair problems:

Caring For frizzy Curls

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One of the biggest culprits of frizz is humidity. Humid weather means there is moisture in the air. When hair is exposed to moisture, the cuticle, or outermost layer of hair, opens up, allowing water from the air to enter the hair shaft. This can lead to puffy, frizzy strands. While we can’t control the weather, there are a few preventative measures you can take.

Hair that is properly moisturized and then styled will be less likely to absorb moisture from the air on humid days since the hair already contains enough moisture.

Try a moisturizing and nourishing shampoo and conditioner, followed by an intensive anti-frizz product, then style as normal. Styling afterwards helps seal already moisturized hair in place. 

Curly hair should also not be brushed wet or dried vigorously with a towel, which can rough up strands and lead to more frizz. Air drying is best. If you must blow dry, use a diffuser and allow time for hair to air dry at least partially before heat styling for best results.

Caring For Dry, Parched Curls

Curls love hydration and nourishment!  Keep hair moisturized by using the right shampoo and conditioner — it should say “moisturizing” right on the label. Curly hair tends to be drier than other hair types, so keeping curls hydrated is key. We recommend you Invest in an intensive hair mask to really replace the moisture and treat your hair with the mask at least once or twice a week depending on how often you wash your hair.  

Caring For Curly Hair Breakage

If you notice hair is breaking off instead of falling out from the root, hair breakage is what’s happening. Avoid hair products that contain alcohol, which can further dry out hair and lead to splitting strands. Chemical treatments and high heat can also result in breakage. Try to limit exposure to these factors as often as possible. It is a good idea to reduce heat styling or lower the temperature of your hair dryer if you notice breakage. A moisturizing treatment such as Somerfield Beauty's Intense hair mask cap range and Protein Boosters will also bring hydration back to dry strands so they will be less likely to break.

Maintaining The Shine

Choosing a product specified for adding shine is also a good idea. Shine-enhancing shampoos and conditioners are designed to impart a lustrous and silky look. Your regular day-to-day shampoo should be a gentle one formulated specifically for curly hair.

On the other hand, frequent use of hair products or heavy conditioners can lead to buildup, which dulls the look of hair by leaving a film on it. If hair seems more dull than normal, try a clarifying shampoo. It is stronger than regular shampoo, and works well to remove old product.  Further, hair that is weighed down by old product may look limp, so clarifying occasionally can help with this as well. These shampoos can be drying, so use sparingly and be sure to follow up with a moisturizing treatment.

Choosing The Best Haircuts for Curly Hair

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Curly hair should never be cut blunt and straight, which can result in a triangle shape once hair dries. Instead, curly haired women should favor cuts with a more rounded shape and well-placed layers.

Many curly-haired women are opting for dry cuts at the salon. Dry cutting means the hair is cut dry instead of wet. This is especially helpful for curly hair since it shrinks and changes shape as it dries much more than straight hair.

Dry cutting allows your stylist to see the final shape of the hair as it is cut. Best of all, the stylist is far less likely to cut hair too short. Since it is dry, hair shrinkage won’t be a problem. With more and more people embracing their curls, finding a reputable stylist who specializes in curly cuts is easier than ever.

Embrace Your Curls

Properly maintained curls are a thing of beauty. Once you learn how to manage them, wearing hair natural can save loads of time getting ready in the morning. Plus, you can save money by skipping pricey straightening treatments once you decide to commit to curls. With a proper care routine, curls offer many, many benefits.

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