Monday, 8 December 2014

Curlygirls: Treat Your Hair Right

A few days ago some friends of mine were bemoaning their poor brittle frizzy hair. They were born curly girls, but had never learned how to care properly for their beautiful curly hair.  One was debating whether she should cut her hair short, so sick was she of the brittle frizz. "NO!" her children cried, followed by a handful of suggestions to straighten it (Brazilian straightening came up, as did keratin straightening.)

Hush your mouth!

Despite what your fifteen-dollar junior hairdresser and your hair-ignorant high school BFF told you, straight hair is NOT "so cute" if you weren't born with it.

Naturally straight hair is shiny, silky and soft. First Ladyship has naturally straight hair that shines like gold.

Curly hair that's straightened is brittle, dull, dry and ugly. Square peg, round hole. Just, no.

Go read this book: Curly Girl: The Handbook. Knowledge is power. This knowledge will free you from frizz forever. It's at my local library and probably at yours.

But as you're reading this entry Right Now, here's some thing you Need To Know.

1. Shampoo is your enemy.  The purpose of shampoo is to clean dirty oil from your hair. Curly girls are not greasy girls (unlike our unfortunate straight-haired counterparts).  Sodium Laurel Sulfate and Sodium Laureth Sulfate will strip your lovely curly hair of its vital oils, leaving your hair dry and nasty. This is why we frizz and develop split ends.  Ditch the shampoo. You don't need it.

2. You can have clean hair every day, if you use the right product.  No, I'm not going to advertise some SLS-free shampoo product, though they are available, even in my local supermarket. Do not be deceived in thinking you must use "shampoo" to keep your hair clean.  Remember how your grandmother used cold cream to remove makeup from her face? A cheap conditioner will do the same thing for your hair. Use it in place of shampoo. It will attract and remove day-to-day dirt from your hair without compromising your natural oils. Then use your expensive conditioner, if you really need it (and you won't, eventually), to condition your hair.

3. Brushing your dry hair every day is a no-no.  You'll hear from "experts" telling you never to brush/comb your hair while wet because it'll stretch and break. This is a bit deceptive, as brushing one's hair, wet or dry, will cause it to stretch. Breaking comes when you pull too hard.  Curly hair does not slide easily through a brush/comb when dry, thus making it more prone to breaking. However. combing your curly hair while wet and lubricated with conditioner will reduce the chances of your hair stretching and breaking.

I wish more hairdressers knew more about curly hair and its proper care. Too many of them are trained for straight hair. That's a shame, for a crown of beautiful curls is a lovely thing indeed.

Her Grace has been shampoo-free for nearly ten years thanks to Curly Girl and, as you can see, her curls are beautiful. Also, she hates the term "so cute". 

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