“My hair is dry and frizzy, not curly.”
“It’s so rough and get tangles easily, I hate leaving it open 🙁 “
Does that sound familiar?
Almost half of the messages I get on Instagram are about how dry their hair is.
If you’ve read my previous posts, you will know by now that curly hair is naturally very dry.
IF you didn’t know that, I suggest you read this asap: 10 Things You Should Know About Curly Hair
Read it especially if you think a shampoo is going to transform your curls. Let’s get that misconception cleared straight away. 😆
In this post, I’ll explain how you can reduce the dryness drastically. I’ll tell you the mistakes you’re making every day with your curls and what you should do instead.
You deserve healthy, gorgeous curly hair, at the length you want. Let me show you how!
Also, if you’re new here, Hi! I’m Pallavi, the blogger behind this blog, Youtube Channel & private coaching group – Ask Jalebi. I coach and motivate young women (especially in India) how to groom and accept their naturally wavy, curly hair.
I had a horrible time after I got my hair chemically smoothened while growing up hating my natural hair. If this is you right now, don’t worry! Read the below article and follow the tips. At the end of the article you will find links to my most important posts on transforming your hair.
Read up & enjoy!
Table of Contents
- 1 Steps To Reduce Dryness in Wavy & Curly Hair
- 1.1 1. Shampoo Only Your Scalp
- 1.2 2. Dilute Your Shampoo with Water
- 1.3 3. Switch to a Shampoo WITHOUT Sulphates & Use a ‘Co-Wash’
- 1.4 4. Use a Creamy, Moisturising Conditioner
- 1.5 5. Don’t brush your curls DRY
- 1.6 6. Use a Leave in Conditioner/Curl Cream
- 1.7 7. Deep Condition your Hair
- 1.8 8. Protect your Curls at Night
- 1.9 9. Protect your Dry Ends with Oil & Prevent Split ends
- 1.10 10. AVOID HEAT as Much as Possible- (Straightener, Blow Dryer)
- 1.11 11. Drink Lot’s of Water
- 1.12 12. Be CONSISTENT
- 1.13 Share this:
- 1.14 Like this:
Steps To Reduce Dryness in Wavy & Curly Hair
1. Shampoo Only Your Scalp
A regular shampoo has harsh ingredients called sulphates that works like a detergent. It will create that lovely lather you like but also suck out your hair’s natural oils making it really, really dry.
These natural oils don’t get to travel down the length of your hair because of the curl’s shape. Shampooing the length of the hair vigorously will reduce it to a haystack!
So instead, next time you shower, just shampoo your scalp and when you rinse it out, it will slide down the length of your hair anyway.
2. Dilute Your Shampoo with Water
We LOVE pumping out large amounts of shampoo no?
Stop that immediately! The lesser shampoo you use on dry hair, the better.
So instead, simply mix enough water with the shampoo in a mug and then apply it in it’s diluted form.
Not only will it get easier to apply, the harshness will be reduced.
3. Switch to a Shampoo WITHOUT Sulphates & Use a ‘Co-Wash’
Pretty obvious once you learn how sulphates dry your hair right?
Not if you didn’t know shampoos without sulphates existed! Now that I’ve told you they do, get one for yourself.
These shampoos are called CG Friendly or Curly Girl Approved shampoos and have no harsh cleansers in them. They will clean your hair with minimal dryness.
You can alternate this with co-washing your curls. Co washing means cleaning your hair with a conditioner, not a shampoo.
If you’re going Ewww, I understand, but hear me out.
In co-washing, you do a lot more manual work, i.e use your fingers to scrub out the dirt in your scalp with a conditioner. Also, there are special products in the market called Co-washes. These are conditioning cleansers MADE to clean your scalp without removing moisture!
Using shampoos without sulphates or a co wash is an important part of following the CG Method, which I personally recommend you switch to. You can read more on CGM or CG Method and find such products in this list: Curly Hair Products in India
Ps- I personally don’t co wash often. I simply use a shampoo without sulphates that is gentle. If you are someone who works out or goes to the gym everyday, co-washing is a great option.
4. Use a Creamy, Moisturising Conditioner
So by now, I hope you learnt that shampoos aren’t what will save your curls. It’s conditioners.
It’s that magical, creamy conditioner that will smooth down your hair and form a protective barrier against the humid environment.
It will provide moisture to your curls, make them bouncy again and leave them healthy, like the hair you see in my pictures.
Remember though, if you have switched to a shampoo without sulphates or are going to co wash, make sure your conditioner does not have silicones as an ingredient. Find out why silicones are bad for you in this post: What You Need to Know About Following the CG Method for Curly Hair
“But I heard conditioners cause hair fall. 🙁 “
Hey, use good conditioners. Don’t use bad ones that have harmful chemicals in them. Just try it once & you’ll understand what I’m talking about.
- After shampooing, section your hair into 2-3 sections.
- Take generous amounts of conditioner ( and I mean generous) and apply it on the length of your hair (don’t apply on scalp).
- Use your fingers to detangle gently and use a wide toothed- comb next, starting from the bottom.
- Remember, be gentle. Hair is weakest when it’s wet and needs to be handled carefully. (This is also why you need to make sure the conditioner you are using has a lot of ‘slip’. Slip is the ability of a product to melt tangles and makes the hair strands slide against each other without friction.)
- Rinse it out completely or leave some in. (DIY Leave in Conditioner)
- If you have loose curls or waves, check out Squish to Condish Technique & welcome fat clumps!
You can find a conditioner in your budget in this list: Curly Hair Products in India
5. Don’t brush your curls DRY
if you have wavy or curly hair, you don’t need to comb your hair everyday, especially when it’s dry.
Ugh what, what is this girl even saying?
Hold it. Before you judge me, see the picture below.
This is the difference between combing your curls dry and combing after a conditioner followed with combing after a leave in conditioner.
I know this is the weirdest advice you may have gotten (I remember I thought it was bizzare the first time I came across it) but trust me, try it once to see.
When you wash your hair, twice or thrice a week, after applying a conditioner, use a wide-toothed comb. This distributes the conditioner properly throughout your hair, keeps the curl clumps together and reduces frizz.
The only other times you can comb your curls is after applying a leave in conditioner (explained later in this post) outside the shower and sometimes with oil applied to your hair before you shower.
I admit, due to travelling in the heat and metro, your hair can get super tangled up. Since hair is at it’s weakest when it’s wet, to reduce the tension on them when you comb after conditioner, you can prepare in advance by detangling a little with oil. This removes all the big knots, making your time in the shower easier and faster!
“But Pallavi, what do I do on days I don’t wash my hair?”
Refresh! Watch this video and do what I do in the morning between wash days. I promise, it will make it easier to get used to these changes and keep your hair hydrated.
6. Use a Leave in Conditioner/Curl Cream
After you’re done with your shower and your hair is still wet, smooth on a Leave-In-Conditioner the same way you did the conditioner.
This will keep your curls hydrated until next time you wash it and keep it free from tangles and frizz.
A leave in conditioner is used for providing moisture whereas a curl cream helps define the curls and helps them last longer. We can discuss how these roles can interchange in products in another post but for now just remember this:
You can use just a leave in Conditioner or just a curl cream or both. Try out all 3 ways & find what result you like better!
Just make sure you comb your hair after both of them or use these other styling techniques to get the best results.
7. Deep Condition your Hair
This is one of THE MOST important tips & I strongly recommend you do this at least once a week.
This is especially important when you’ve just started your curly hair journey since your curls need maximum hydration. It is also very important if you are focusing on growing curly hair faster.
How does this help in growing curls longer? Healthy hair needs to be trimmed less, hence length is retained!
You can use either a store bought mask or make at home.
You have to read more on how and when to deep condition in this post: Deep Conditioning Curly Hair – What, When, How
8. Protect your Curls at Night
You toss & turn at night and wake up next morning to find it’s made your curls messy, frizzy & they’ve lost definition.
You’ve put in so much effort to get beautiful curls after washing and styling them. If you want to keep it that way, you need to protect your curls at night.
So start doing this – Make a ‘pineapple’ or a loose bun and cover it with a satin cap. Watch exactly how I do it in the video below.
9. Protect your Dry Ends with Oil & Prevent Split ends
The hair at the end of your length is the weakest and driest. Besides deep conditioning them and trimming it yourself every few months, start coating them with a few drops of oil. This will ‘seal’ the moisture you added in with the leave in conditioner & styling products.
This is essential if you are trying to grow your hair longer, faster!
10. AVOID HEAT as Much as Possible- (Straightener, Blow Dryer)
I can’t stress this hard enough!
You’re complaining about dry hair but you’re okay frying them with heat every other day?
Heat isn’t great for hair to begin with but for curly hair it can be disastrous. I’m not saying never straighten or blow dry it straight ever again.
I understand some girls love straightening their hair once in a while despite being super happy and proud of curly hair. Policing someone’s hair decisions is not okay with me.
But, yes, as heat damages our hair, it is better to keep it to a minimum. The more you avoid, the better it is for your curl’s health.
If you do have to use your hair dryer, do it with a diffuser on cold air mode. This will reduce frizz. You can learn how to do this and what a diffuser is, in this post: The Secret to My Big Curly Hair
Also, when you do straighten, use a heat protecting serum/cream and don’t use high heat. Basically, take necessary precautions and do damage recovery (deep condition) when you’re ready to wash your hair next.
11. Drink Lot’s of Water
How is your hair going to stay hydrated when your body ain’t getting enough water to start with? 😀
Drink up, son! I use this handy app to remind myself to keep hydrated.
12. Be CONSISTENT
If you come to me after following the tips and complain that it isn’t working, I will ask you how long you’ve been doing this for.
See, think to yourself – how many YEARS have you been treating your hair the wrong way? Do you think following these tips twice or thrice will undo all that damage in one go?
You’re going to obviously see a huge difference the first time you comb your curls after conditioner and a leave in conditioner. After that, being consistent with your routine, especially deep conditioning will reduce frizz and increase the health of your curls !
My advice to you is that you don’t lose hope so fast. If you want some motivation, check out some of the testimonials of my readers on my Instagram highlights or hop on to Youtube and watch some curly hair transformations. 🙂
Done! I hope these tips help. If you want personal advice, join my Facebook group called Ask Jalebi & drop your questions. You can also shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or DM me on Instagram.
Don’t forget to subscribe to my Youtube channel that has helpful video tutorials on curly hair care & if you want to be updated, old style, subscribe to my newsletter below.