Here’s my guide to the Curly Girl Method. I have tried to cover the basics but keep it simple.
-Avoid non soluble silicones and waxes.
-Stop brushing you hair.
-Stop using heat on your hair – including excessively hot showers/baths, curling tongs, straighteners and hairdryers (unless they are on a cool-warm setting).
-Change your regular towel to a microfiber one or a cotton t-shirt.
-Change your regular pillow case for a silk one.
Wash your hair with one of the following:
-ACV (apple cider vinegar).
-Low poo shampoo (Curly Girl Approved shampoo).
-Co-wash (washing your hair with a non silicone and Curly Girl Approved conditioner).
I personally recommend a combination of co-washing and loo poo. Co-washing alone could lead to long term scalp issues. I would encourage you to watch this video from the dermatologist Dr Dray to get a better understanding on this subject.
Ensure you massage your scalp well when washing (with fingertips or a scalp massager, not nails) – this is an important step as will loosen any dirt, if you don’t do this thoroughly your pores will get blocked which could lead to hair loss.
Conditioner your hair with a Curly Girl Approved conditioner.
At this stage detangle your hair with your fingers. If it is very knotty, add more conditioner.
Rinse lightly so that a small amount of conditioner remains in your hair.
Optional extra – apply a hair mask for 30 minutes then rinse. (Some people do the hair mask on dry hair before washing, but I personally prefer to do it after washing my hair).
With your hair wet, and upside-down or to one side scrunch a Curly Girl Approved gel or mouse into your hair while also squeezing out excess water.
Plop (I’ll let you google a definition for this one) your hair into a microfiber towel/turban or a t-shit for 5-15 minutes. Take out of the plop and give the hair a gentle squeeze with towel/t-shirt to get last bit of excess moisture out.
Lightly shake your head so that the hair falls into place. If necessary move your hair so that its sitting the right sides of your parting.
Apply a bit more approved gel or mouse
Allow to air dry or blow-dry on a cool-warm setting with a diffuser.
In this stage, don’t touch your hair until its 100% dry.
Don’t go to sleep with wet/damp hair – this can lead to a fungal infection.
Once 100% dry use your hands to scrunch out the dried gel. (This stage is called Scrunch Out The Crunch ( SOTC).
Now you’re good to go.
To maintain your curls until next wash day it’s recommended to:
-‘Refresh’ your curls in the morning with a spray bottle of water and a small amount of approved product such as your conditioner.
-Either sleep on a silk pillowcase with your hair in a pineapple (a ponytail close to your forehead) or sleep with your hair in a buff (see images in my tools section).
If you feel you hair isn’t looking great – bear in mind that everyones hair is different and also persevere as there is a transitioning phrase.
Master the basics first and then (if you’re interested) research the method further – find out your curl type, the porosity of your hair, whether you hair requires more protein etc. Then you can tweak the basic method so that you are more accurately tending to your hairs needs.