View Full Version : Questions for curlies from a non-curly

April 16th, 2011, 06:06 PM
Dear curly friends,
A dear friend of mine is deeply frustrated with her curly hair. She says she hates curly hair and wishes her hair were straight. I suspect this is because she does not know how to make her hair do what she wants. Frizz and tangles are a big problem for her. To further complicate things, she's the ultimate wash and go girl...hates to spend time on her hair (partly, I think, because she doesn't think she's pretty :().

Her hair: approx. 2C, medium texture, porosity unknown, BSL when wet.

Her routine: Wash hair with a coney shampoo and work in a coney conditioner (Pantene). At the end of the shower, brush/detangle with a ball-bristle brush. Blot hair with towel. Get hair out of the way so she doesn't have to see it or deal with it. If it is left down, it tangles.
Hair is left loose at night on cotton pillowcases. Terrible tangles ensue.

But she won't blowdry her hair or do anything that takes that long. No heat styling. Solutions must be quick and simple to do.

Things I've suggested off the top of my head: Wide tooth comb for gentle detangling, silk or satin pillowcase, embrace the curls!

What tips can you share to simplify her relationship with her hair? Is there a low work/no work way she can straighten her hair without heat or chemicals?

Thank you for being such sweet, patient people!


April 16th, 2011, 06:12 PM
The thing about curls is it really is wash and go hair. You just have to do a little bit to it fresh out of the shower and then DON'T TOUCH IT.

So my suggestions to get her on the right track is to look up the curly girl method (there's an inexpensive booklet she can get).

Wash with conditioner only (avoid shampoo as it's too drying for regular use).

Use a leave-in (I use the same conditioner I wash with). Her hair should feel a little slick while still wet.

Don't wrap in a towel. Scrunch out most of the water while coaxing out the curls, then use a soft cotton cloth (like a t-shirt or diaper) to scrunch out the rest of the water.

Scrunch in gel.


Scunch again to get any crunchies out and flip head upside down and gently "scrub" the scalp to fluff up the roots a bit.

I go 2-3 days between washes, bunning my hair on top my head to preserve my curls.

April 16th, 2011, 06:21 PM
I think the best thing she can do is ditch the brush and get a wide-tooth comb, stop blotting, and use a leave in (pantene has some for curly hair), or a gel (pantene also has one for curly hair).

April 16th, 2011, 06:33 PM
I think the best thing she can do is ditch the brush and get a wide-tooth comb, stop blotting, and use a leave in (pantene has some for curly hair), or a gel (pantene also has one for curly hair).

What should she do instead of blotting?

April 16th, 2011, 06:45 PM
What should she do instead of blotting?

Plopping. http://www.naturallycurly.com/curlreading/curl-products/to-plop-or-not-to-plop

April 16th, 2011, 06:49 PM
I would recommend a towel turbie or whatever they're called. It will keep the hair out of the way as it dries and since it's out of the way, she's less likely to touch them so less frizz as well. She can plop with it as well as bumblebums suggested.

April 16th, 2011, 06:54 PM
coconut oil and definitely the satin/silk pillow case.

April 16th, 2011, 08:14 PM
Is your friend attached to her lengths? I know this is a bit controversial on a long hair community, but cutting off damaged/ grabby ends will make her curly hair easier to manage. If she may go Curly Girl or modified CG the cones will have to go along with the sulphate shampoo, seeing the real condition might be a shock. :(

Leave-in conditioner is quicker than wash out and recommended for CG. Alternatively she might consider the coconut oil shampoo method, it's one step and there are reports of it taming whilst bringing out the curl. I spent more than two decades trying to force my wavy hair to behave without heat styling but results were unsatisfactory and short-lived. If your friend doesn't want to spend the time mastering wrapping, then she'd be best learning to tame her curls. :shrug:

April 16th, 2011, 09:03 PM
What should she do instead of blotting?

In my experience, it is best to let curly hair air dry. I don't even squeeze excess water out of my hair after I wash it. It takes a lot longer to dry this way, but it is worth it!

April 16th, 2011, 09:08 PM
She should try CO, she can use the same conditioner she is using now. If it doesn't work S&C is fine as long as she's happy with it. She should comb while the conditioner is in her hair. Work in something that will tame the frizzies and some oil when she gets out of the shower. Scrunch or style as usual. Voila! Wash and go hair!

ETA: I don't touch my hair with a towel. Instead, to keep it from dripping down my back, I put a t-shirt under my hair at the initial styling stage.

April 16th, 2011, 09:51 PM
This sounds EXACTLY like me a year ago. She's fallen into the market ploy of "How do you fix curly hair? Buy our products/shampoos/conditioners!!" I used to think the only way to "control" my curls was to put in product after product after product (or to just straighten it) I HATED my curls!!!!

But now? I love them! Best thing I ever did was to LAY OFF THE PRODUCT & stop shampooing. It sounds crazy to brain-washed curlies, but once you do it, you realize how beautiful you're actual hair is.

Tell her to drop the shampoo, use cones sparingly, use oils (olive oil, coconut oil) and water based gels instead of "product" to style and get a small trim to take off any damage from straightening so much. Also braid or bun her hair to sleep to avoid nightly tangles. Tell her to try it just for a few weeks... her hair wont be crunchy, her hair wont get tangled... she will literally fall in love with her hair. I definitely suggest she also looks into curly gurl (deva curl) blog posts and literature as well as curly-forums for support.

April 16th, 2011, 09:52 PM
Sorry for the double post :mad: still not sure how to delete a post?

April 16th, 2011, 09:59 PM
Its been a while since I had curls (length and henndigo has pulled a lot of the wave/curl out) but when I did, damp bunning was my best friend. It didn't make hair straighter but it did beat down some of curls and control frizz. I would just wrap my head in an absorbent towel for about 20 min after a shower to absorb some moisture then bun and go.

April 17th, 2011, 12:05 AM
For sure the best mantra is "Less is More" for wavy/curly locks.

I can't believe how much more I like my hair now that I quit with the products, the cones, the frequent shampoos, the brush and the hair dryer.

It is like a different world - and OMG - it takes about 1/5th the time it used to.

I hate spending time either and this method has made my life so much easier even now with waist length thick a** hair.

Just this week I tried a bit of Jojoba oil blended with my conditioner and the result was fantastic. My hair feels like silk and I love it.

If you could just get her to 3 things I think she will love you for it

1. Ditch the brush (wide toothed comb used gently only with conditioner soaked hair)

2. Ditch the sls shampoo and switch to CO only or CWC method

3. Start using a touch of oil - either on wet hair or mixed with conditioner or shampoo.

For me the use of oils has made the biggest difference in the feel and texture of my hair and has been the biggest help in helping control tangling - aside from never sleeping with it loose.
Jojoba is my favorite one at the moment, it really helped smooth the cuticle and keep it soft.

April 17th, 2011, 06:37 AM
The best things I've learned for my hair are:

1. Seal moisture in with oil (my favourite is argan oil) while the hair is still soaking wet. That's my only leave in - no need for drying gels or creams.
2. Comb out and drip dry - no towels whatsoever (apart from on my shoulders) The hair then forms its own clumps.

I don't love my hair though and, truth be told, I'd rather it be straight. I'm learning to live with it though! :)

April 17th, 2011, 07:58 AM
Like previous curlies, I comb while wet, don't use shampoo, don't brush, and oil. I use jojoba (now with a little coconut mixed in) as leave-in, and I comb in the shower, with water running down my hair. I don't use condish, as henna is good enough.

Last December I started braiding routinely. I braid my hair a few hours after washing and leave it braided about a week until I next wash. Before that I made a sort of half-bun with hair dangling to about shoulder length, which is just long enough to feel the curly ends without getting them damaged.

April 17th, 2011, 08:11 AM
I think the only change she needs to make is a silk sleeping cap or silk pillowcase. There's nothing wrong with damp-bunning to get it out of the way - I do that too, for the same reasons (it takes less time than styling it, and I don't like to have my hair in the way while it's drying)

April 17th, 2011, 01:11 PM
It's fascinating how much similarity there is from post to post, usually on LHC a broad questions gets an equally broad range of answers! I wonder if the oil v. leave-in conditioner preference could be explained by length and/ or thickness?