Transitioning to Natural Hair: Styling
Discovering the right products to use on my naturally curly hair, is when my texture went from curly, frizzy and poofy to bouncy, defined, and shiny. Now and then, even the healthiest of curls (thank you, OLAPLEX) can look a tad lackluster without the proper products to accentuate them. Reading up on where to begin with curly hair products can save you hundreds of dollars worth of experimenting unthinkingly on your own. There’s a great deal that goes into the ideal product, such as a scent you identify with, the ideal weight, and how much definition the product gives you. For instance, even a great product recommendation can be a total bust for you if the fragrance isn’t at all your vibe. A product that’s sticky to others might be the the hallelujah weight and consistency for you. After countless months of going through products, I’ve found ones that are just right for me and my texture, and though they may not all work for you– there are helpful tips I’ve learned with each that may help you find your match.
I have Type 3A curly hair, the curls resemble an uppercase S. On some days, I borderline a type 3B, depending on how much product I use, which resembles a lowercase s. The conjunction of products that work best for me are the following: mousse, gel, a leave-in, and oil. Whenever I’m applying a fresh batch of product, I start with damp hair, typically out of the shower, using a microfiber towel to scrunch and squeeze excess water out. Afterwards, I like to scrunch upwards with the palm of my hand and then shake it out from the root to assist in shaping.
On my shelf:
OLAPLEX No.6 Bond Smoother
Oribe Curl Shaping Mousse
DevaCurl Light Defining Gel
Oribe Gold Lust Nourishing Hair Oil
Mousse. In my teenage years, I experienced what I now only know as post traumatic products-that-leave-your-hair-crunchy stress disorder. Cheap drugstore mousse and the green gel that comes in a tub were, admittedly, a big part of that. I want my mane to look like I woke up with disco hair, which means using products that leave my hair feeling light, smooth, and untouched are a priority. I haven’t tested dozens of mousse, but I have tested a handful and found some left my hair feeling dry and sticky, some made my curls look amazing, but I didn’t love the scent, and now I have one that works for me. I like to start with mousse, scrunching it upwards throughout my head. I find when using mousse, my hair has the ideal base for high curl definition.
Leave-in. A leave-in is fairly new to my routine, I started using one when OLAPLEX No.6 Bond Smoother came out earlier this year. However, No.6 is way more than just a leave-in, it rebuilds the bonds in the hair making it healthier, it moisturizes, and eliminates frizz for up to 72 hours. *insert woman raising arm emoji* This has been a game changer in my routine. Sometimes, I even mix it in with my mousse and apply both simultaneously when my hair is damp. Once I finish scrunching it upwards throughout my head, I apply whats left at the root (where I get the most frizz) and my hair line to smooth my texture out. A little goes a long way with this product and the smell is lovely too!
Gel. For extra hold to lock in my curl definition, I use a light gel that I scrunch upwards on my damp hair on top of the mousse and OLAPLEX No.6 leave-in. I’m not in love with the fragrance, but this gel is too good to pass.
Oil. I use oil throughout the day to boost the shine of my hair and to moisturize. I haven’t found an oil I’m absolutely obsessed with yet, but I do love the smell and shine I get from Oribe’s Gold Lust, so I use that when I’m going out somewhere or to a meeting. If I’m running errands or having a chill day, I use avocado oil. I have a big bottle of avocado oil that cost me around $12 and I like to use it to moisturize my hair and give it shine. This is something I started doing recently. I love this tip for conserving product and saving money. Curly hair practically drinks oil and if you’re using a high end serum, it will cost you in the long run.