(if you have not checked out Amy's blog, you HAVE to go see her red dresser, using ASCP in
Emperor's silk, it is hands down my favorite piece of upcycled furniture in blog land!!go here to see it)
So lets start with a quick hair anatomy lesson.
This shows the difference that straight, wavy and curly hair have. You can see why the curly or even wavy hair comes out of the scalp the way it does to form the curls or waves. It is just very different from straight hair.
Also, the outside of each strand of all hair looks like fish scales or shingles on a house. If your hair is healthy and shiny and in good conditions, your cuticle will look like the above picture.
This is hair is damaged, by either chemicals, heat, or a medical condition.
So now you know a little bit about what your hair should look like under a microscope as well as what it looks like coming out of your scalp.
Well curly hair lacks moisture because of the way it is formed, it can't hold it in as well as say someone with straight (round hair shaft) hair, because of the oval shape of curly or wavy hair. Therefore it has a less likely chance of the cuticles laying down smooth. So curly hair gets frizzy. It also is further helped along with the frizzy's because curly hair is like a bunch of arms, trying to grab all the moisture from the air it can get. If you live in a humid climate, you find your hair is non stop trying to grab the moisture out of theair which equals big frizzy hair.
See, we were not meant to wash our hair all the time, and curly girls should never wash their hair!! WHAT?? Not wash my hair, that is gross!! NOoooo, dirt, sweat, smoke and hair products, are all water soluble. What does that mean for your curly hair?? That by not using a shampoo you leave your natural oils where they should be. I am not talking about the oils that make your hair greasy, but the oil you can not see. Also think of the hair closest to your scalp as being like a newborn, all healthy and new. As you go further down the hair, it starts to age, and if you have long hair consider it to be like an older relative. Maybe frail and brittle, something you have to be delicate with.
There is a book I used to sell when I owned my salon called the Curly Girl Handbook.
I HIGHLY recommend it! It is a must for curly hair!
It breaks down and educates you on just why exactly do you have curly hair, why it gets frizzy and how you can have the most gorgeous hair ever!!It will give you step by step instructions on how to take care of curly hair.
Below are some examples with curly or wavy hair that does not have enough moisture:
Now look at healthy moisture filled curly or wavy hair:
See the difference?
So now what??
First you should stop washing your hair with shampoo.
Give yourself what I call a 'water shampoo'. See, our shampoo's contain surfactants, which are also in laundry soap, hand soap and dish washing liquid, among other things. What are surfactants? It is basically what gives your the bubbles. I know that people judge shampoo by how much and how easy it suds up. But if you have damaged or curly/wavy hair this is the worst thing you can do for your hair.
That's when the 'water shampoo' comes in. Just pretend there are big fat suds in your hands and just scrub your head and rinse well. Yep, that's it. I know you will hate it at first, but give yourself a month and you will LOVE the results on your hair!
Conditioners. These contain a lot of silicone. Yep, it feels awesome on your hair, but it is doing nothing to give you moisture. It is like putting a wax on your car. But not really protecting it like car wax does.
I believe in salon products and I am gonna tell you why.
First off, salon products are concentrated. They may be more expensive, but you get more out of a 12oz bottle of salon shampoo/conditioner than you do out of a store bought bottle that is 16oz. The store bought bottle contains more water, so you have to use more. Also another little known fact about products you buy on the supermarket/ drug store shelf. They have to have a shelf like of 10 years. Meaning, come back in ten years and they will still be the same. In order for this to happen, they have to add a lot of waxy stabilizers.
I tell my clients this: it's like owning a cashmere sweater and washing it in the dishwasher.
So, what should you use on your hair instead?
I have been trained at the Devachansalon in New York City. This salon is owned by Lorainne Massey who wrote the curly girl handbook and is considered the best in the industry for curly hair. Stylist from all over the world come to her salon for training. Including this Midwestern girl.
Lorainne Massey, her hair is amazing!!
If you were to only invest in one product to purchase, I would highly recommend the One Condition.
Buy the liter, it is more economical. There is a place on her website to search for salons in your area that sell Deva Curl products. If yo absolutely can not go with out washing your hair, they do have 2 different cleansers.
No-Poo and Low-Poo. They either have no suds or very low suds.
I am a Certified Curly hair Specialist. Meaning I give curly girl hair cuts. How are these different than someone 'cutting curly hair'? I start with dry hair. You need to see the hair in it's natural state so you can see where the weight is. I also do not use a comb, but cut each individual curl. Yes, if you go to a curly girl specialist you probably will pay more. But my clients can go fro 2-6 months between cuts. That is how important a great cut is to curly hair!! You can also search her sight for a stylist near you who is certified.
And lastly a great bit of info you will also find in more detail in the Curly Girl Handbook:
Do not use a towel to dry your hair. See all the little nubbies that help grab moisture?
Yep, they make your hair frizzy!
Instead, use an old T-shirt. Your hair will love you for it!!
I did a follow up post on how to apply products to curly hair that you can see here. If you have any questions about curly hair or any hair for that matter, just message me to my email or leave a comment below!!
I was not paid for this post by Deva and all the opinions here are my own.