Search Results: Cristina Cleveland

From Heat Damaged to Long, Healthy Curls: Ashley’s Curly Hair Journey
From Heat Damaged to Long Healthy Curls Ashleys Curly Hair Journey

What was it like for you growing up with textured hair?

Growing up with curly hair was difficult, I have a lot of hair and it was very hard to detangle because it was so dry and not very well taken care of.

I was using products not meant for my hair and it was damaged from heat styling. I was constantly being told to “just brush it” when I would wear it natural, and whenever I would straighten it people would gush on how much better my hair looked. So, I created negative associations with my natural hair, and positive ones with my straight hair.

Also, back in 2009 when I first started transitioning, we had VERY limited options for curly hair education and products, I was kind of winging it and experimenting constantly. Now I think it’s incredible how many resources and product options are available, making wearing your hair natural so much more accessible.

From Heat Damaged to Long Healthy Curls Ashleys Curly Hair Journey

What made you decide to embrace your naturally curly hair?

I started growing my hair out and at the time and my curls looked more like waves from all the heat damage from straightening – but I was starting to really like the way my waves were looking, I was dabbling more in the natural hair section at Target, and would get compliments on the waves. It inspired me to stop straightening and look into how to take care of my hair.

I started growing my hair out and at the time and my curls looked more like waves from all the heat damage from straightening – but I was starting to really like the way my waves were looking

From Heat Damaged to Long Healthy Curls Ashleys Curly Hair Journey

What has been the most empowering moment of your natural hair journey so far?

The most amazing thing is getting messages and comments on instagram from people saying that they’ve been inspired to start their curly hair journey and wearing their hair natural, I think that’s just the coolest thing. It’s an amazing feeling to see progress after all the hard work you put into getting your hair healthy again.

From Heat Damaged to Long Healthy Curls Ashleys Curly Hair Journey

What is your curl pattern?

Type 3a

How do you protect your curls at night?

Satin Pillow Case, “Pineapple” and sometimes a bonnet

Who is your curl crush?

Ayesha Malik and Penny Tovar raised me. Recently, I’ve been obsessed with Mell from Manes by Mell, and Merian the founder of Bounce Curl.

From Heat Damaged to Long Healthy Curls Ashleys Curly Hair Journey

What’s your curly girl essential you can’t live without?

Gel and a really good detangling brush (Tangle Teezer or biggie brush from Crave Naturals”>

What is your current hair regimen? Any favorite products you’d like to share?


I wash my hair 2-3x per week.


I try to do a deep conditioner at least weekly – my favorites are the Bread Beauty Supply Deep Conditioner and the Miche Beauty Indugle Deep Conditioner.

I also try to do detox treatment to remove build up about 2-3x per month my favorite is the Bounce Curl Tumeric Detox Mask.


I start with a hydrating product either a leave in or styling cream, I love the Kinky Curly Leave in Conditioner, and the Bounce Curl Avocado and Rose Oil Defining Cream.

Then, I always usually use TWO gels – one being a softer hold usually protein free, and the second being a stronger hold protein rich gel. My favorite protein free gels are the Kinky Curly Curling Custard and the Jessicurl Spiralicious gel, and for the stronger hold gel my holy grail is the Not Your Mothers Curl Talk Gel – it’s so good if your hair likes protein!

From Heat Damaged to Long Healthy Curls Ashleys Curly Hair Journey

What has been the most challenging moment of your natural hair journey so far?

Learning what products to use! Now especially it can be overwhelming because there’s so many options, and it’s important to remember that someone else’s routine might not work for you, and that’s ok.

Are there any techniques or methods that have made a huge impact on your hair health?

I am pretty religious about deep conditioning/masking at LEAST once a week, sometimes more, and making sure I do a detox treatment at least once a month. I feel like it really helps with the quality of my hair and scalp.

From Heat Damaged to Long Healthy Curls Ashleys Curly Hair Journey

What’s your advice to women who are still struggling with loving their natural texture?

If you’re in the middle of transitioning it can difficult because there’s definitely an awkward stage were your hair might not be looking so hot – don’t give up! It takes time, for me it took several years to get it right, but once you do it’s so worth it!

You can follow along with Ashley’s journey at on Instagram. 

How to Style Hair That’s "Always Frizzy," According to Curl Experts
How to Style Hair Thats Always Frizzy According to Curl Experts
Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

If you’ve been in the curly world for a while then you are no stranger to the general curly hair advice for avoiding frizz: shampooing less often, moisturizing more, and avoiding damaging habits like heat styling our hair. But sometimes we have specific questions for persistent issues like frizz that just won’t quit, no matter what you do. We received this question from a NaturallyCurly reader and to help answer it we’re bringing in heavy-hitting curl experts to share their insights on possible frizz fixes. 


My 3c/4a hair is completely frizzy with no definition when wet, and always frizzy, why?

“I have 3c/ 4a hair and I have been CG [following the Curly Girl Method] for almost a year. I co-wash, deep condition with heat and style my hair once a week, faithfully. My hair is always, I mean always, frizzy. So frizzy that even after styling it with loads of gel to tame the frizz, the very next day it is frizzy all over again, as if I never used all that gel the day before and on top of all the gel I put on the previous day I have to load it with more gel every day until wash day. When I style I use the LCO method. Then when I wet my hair, it is so frizzy when wet. I see girls who wet their hair and their curls looks so defined but when my hair is wet there is barely any definition and massive frizz, when soaking wet :(. I don’t understand. I thought it might have been build up but I clarified my hair last week and same frizz. This is becoming very very frustrating and I hate having to use so much gel everyday. My hair is low porosity and I stick to shea moisture coconut and hibiscus line for my whole regimen. Can anyone please help me figure out the problem? 🙁 Also even after a protein treatment, same frizz. Any advice would be greatly appreciated…on day 1 my curls are nice and defined, every day after that frizz. my curl pattern is the same as Christina’s from” 


1. Make sure to remove buildup

Frizz can be the result of product buildup, and it is possible the clarifier you recently used did not contain surfactants powerful enough to do the job. According to Rhonda Marshall, a Chemist, Educator, and the Founder of Inahsi Naturals, even common clarifiers like apple cider vinegar can leave product buildup behind that contributes to frizz.

“Apple Cider Vinegar is a weak acid which will remove some product and close the cuticle which will reflect light, which in turn will give shine. But to remove conditioners, gels, mousse, and oils/butters which are positively charged designed to stick to the hair, you need a clarifying shampoo that contains anionic (negatively charged”> surfactant like Sodium C14-16 olefin sulfonate which is a key ingredient in our Soothing Mint Clarifying Shampoo.” As this reader co-washes, Marshall suggests she “alternate between the cowash and the gentle cleansing shampoo. Adding a gentle cleansing shampoo will provide better cleansing to remove oil, dirt, and product without stripping… Not using a clarifying shampoo to remove product buildup and hard water will definitely lead to frizz.”

2. Use more water when applying product

You described applying loads of gel on day one followed by even more gel on day two, but experts suggest water may be the key. “Frizz is can also be the result of improper application of product,” says Marshall, “When you are applying product particularly gels or custards, you want to make sure that your hair is saturated with water and that you emulsify the product in your hand then apply it from root to tip.” Even damp hair may not be saturated enough to prevent frizz, it should be soaking wet. 

Nubia Suarez is a Master stylist, curl expert, and the owner of the Rëzo Salon in NYC and the creator of the Rëzo Cut method of cutting curly hair. Suarez has coined the 80/20 Rule for applying products to curly hair (from cleansing to conditioning to styling”>: a ratio of 80% water to 20% product. So if your hair is starting to feel damp during the styling process try adding more water instead of piling on more product. She recommends using 20% of a styling gel like her Rëzo gel because it’s hydrating, and “if the curls still feel dry, go apply more water and work the product until the section feels like seaweed. Work it evenly from roots to ends, continue in sections (usually 4″> until you’re done!”

3. Style your hair in the shower

If all of this water sounds like it might create a mess in your bathroom, consider styling your hair in the shower instead. “Many people wash their hair in the shower,” says Marshall, “but you can also style there as well. Your hair is cleansed, conditioned and dripping wet, which are the best conditions for your styling products to work effectively and for you to achieve the best results.” 

4. Follow the Rake & Shake Method

Christina Patrice of the ManeObjective (who you referenced above as sharing your texture type”> wrote an article for NaturallyCurly titled “My Hair Looks So Good When It’s Wet”… Here’s How to Make That Last. In it she admitted that despite being a product junkie, what matters most is how you apply the product.

Marshall says “to get curls that will last for days make sure you apply your gel on clean dripping wet hair manually using various methods such as the praying hands method, shingling or a styling tool like a detangling brush.” Patrice’s personal favorite method is the Rake & Shake method, created by master curl stylist Ouidad. Although Patrice had seen this method used by Type 2 wavies and Type 3 curlies, she actually found great success when she experimented with it on her own Type 4 coils. She started with soaking wet hair, “remember, the best wash and go’s happen on WET hair! Capturing the curl while it’s still wet will guarantee you a longer lasting result.” Here is her process:

  1. Smooth and rake a generous amount of your curl definer from root to tip in a section, “Really work it in so it coats all the strands.” Then take hold of one small part of the section and move the rest of the hair out of the way.
  2. Starting at the root, “rake your fingers through your hair. Rake thoroughly 3 or 4 times, so that your hair is evenly clumped between your fingers.”
  3. On the 3rd or 4th rake, “stop just short of letting the hair go. Holding on to the ends, gently shake the hair up and down a few times to set the curl.” Ouidad recommends shaking at the wrist to help curl formation.

Continue this until you’ve coated all of the strands. It takes Christina Patrice 15 minutes to complete her whole head, then she air dries. Click play to watch her method here:

5. Spot treat frizz

Chuck Amos is a celebrity stylist who has styled everyone from Tracee Ellis Ross to Alicia Keys to Kerry Washington to the NaturallyCurly Texture On The Runway event. Amos says that if you’re noticing frizz in sections throughout the day or on day two or beyond, “don’t be afraid to rewet your curls and layer products on,” and at this point it’s no surprise, but he recommends using water. “If there are just certain curls that need your attention, I recommend applying the Ouidad Coil Infusion Give A Boost Styling + Shaping Gel Cream and the Coil Infusion Good Shape Defining Gel with your fingers, with an extra spritz of water on your fingers as well, and run the product from root to tip to ensure perfect frizz free defined curls during your touch up days.” He recommends reapplying the Coil Infusion Soft Stretch Priming Milk on day one to “elongate your curls and bring total definition into your curls, preventing frizz at the ‘curl priming’ stage” and layer your styling products on top of that. “As the days go on, you should reapply the gel cream and also use the Coil Infusion Good Shape Defining Gel for the unruly curls that get undefined and frizzy after a good night’s sleep. These three curl styling products together will really do the trick without leaving hair hard, crusty, or flaking!”

We hope that these expert insights will help you find new methods to experiment with in your frizz fighting routine!

InfinitiPro by Conair’s New Texture Styling System Will Change Your Life

Sponsored by Conair.

When I get out of the shower with wet hair, my curls are defined, beautiful S-shaped ringlets. But somewhere between wet and dry, my clumped curls can separate and become frizzy.

InfinitiPro by Conairs New Texture Styling System Will Change Your Life

I’ve discovered that the drying stage is the difference between defined curls and frizz. I’ve tried every tool on the market, including kitchen implements, and I’ve finally found the answer to my curly prayers: the InfinitiPro By Conair Texture Styling System. Here are all the reasons my new InfinitiPro By Conair Texture Styling System is better than other diffusers on the market.

Frizz-free curls

Whenever I leave the house with wet curls, there’s a perfect chance I’m going to experience frizz throughout the day. Heat, humidity, and cold wind don’t mix well with damp curls. That’s why it’s critical to me to dry my hair entirely within the comfort of my temperature-controlled home (preferably without having to wake up at 5 a.m.!”>. With a powerful professional motor and ionic and ceramic technology, it sets my curls quickly.

Volume and Definition

I always thought that I had to sacrifice some definition and accept a bit of frizz to achieve volume. Especially with my looser texture, the volume can be elusive. When I air dry my hair, I find that the weight of the wet hair pulls my waves down and causes them to dry flat at the root, and I personally find clipping my roots to be too cumbersome most mornings when I’m in a rush.

That’s why I was excited to discover that this InfinitiPro by Conair Texture Styling System gives me both volume AND definition. My curls are big, bouncy, frizz-free, and lifted at the roots. Keep reading to see just how I create that lift.

Enhances curls

I have a mix of Type 2c and Type 3a waves and curls, and it can really vary from loose and fluffy

to bouncy and defined depending on the products and methods I use. I personally have found that when I air dry, then my hair is closer to Type 2c and even Type 2b, and my waves are less defined. Most frustratingly, they are not uniform, some areas are very loose, and others are curlier.

Most standard diffusers blow out your curls because the airflow blows up and out, causing frizz. The InfinitiPro By Conair Texture Styling System circulates the airflow gently and around my hair, giving me a more uniform curl pattern. I love the way this diffuser cups my curls in the bowl, which I’ve noticed makes my curls tighter, which gives me the 3a/3b curls I love.


When I wake up in the morning, I can count on my curls to be stretched out and standing in all directions. But all I have to do is spritz them with water to reactivate them, use a tiny amount of styler to spot treat any frizz, and lock in the style with a diffuser. This is honestly easier than trying to pull it up into any sort of half updo or updo.

Faster Drying

The InfinitiPro By Conair Texture Styling System has cut my drying time in half. With a powerful, professional motor and ionic and ceramic technology, it sets my curls quickly and gently so I can walk out the door in the morning with my best frizz-free curls. That means I can stay in bed an extra half hour, a big plus on cold, Brooklyn winter mornings!

InfinitiPro by Conairs New Texture Styling System Will Change Your Life

Here are My Top Diffusing Techniques

InfinitiPro by Conairs New Texture Styling System Will Change Your Life

Step 1

You’ll want to apply a gel or a cream gel to the hair when soaking wet. Hair clumps together to form curls when wet, so it’s important to lock that definition in by evenly applying a styling product to all of the curls. I typically start a few inches away from the roots to prevent the roots from getting greasy and flat.

Scrunching the curls from the roots towards the ends encourages my waves to clump into spirals.

InfinitiPro by Conairs New Texture Styling System Will Change Your Life

Step 2

I like to flip my hair upside down. (Yes, upside down!”> This lifts the hair up and away from my head as I diffuse it, creating volume and bounciness.

InfinitiPro by Conairs New Texture Styling System Will Change Your Life

Step 3

I follow the pixie curl method to diffuse, which means I cup a section of curls into the bowl of the InfinitiPro By Conair Texture Styling System. Then I switch the dryer on for 30 seconds or longer. Then I switch the dryer off and move on to the next section. It may seem insignificant, but it’s very important to switch the dryer off before moving between sections because it can really cut down on my frizz.

If I’m in a rush, I use heat, and if I have extra time, I diffuse without heat. InfinitiPro By Conair Texture Styling System has three heat settings and 2-speed settings so I can customize the temperature and airflow. There’s also a cold shot button, which locks in my curls.

InfinitiPro by Conairs New Texture Styling System Will Change Your Life

Step 4

Since my ends tend to dry faster than the hair closer to my roots, my stylist taught me the importance of diffusing the sources by holding the InfinitiPro By Conair Texture Styling System directly over them. In addition to preventing frizz, this technique also creates more height. With other diffusers, the airflow can blow the hair around as you’re styling. Because of the InfinitiPro By Conair Texture Styling System‘s unique airflow, it circulates the air gently and evenly around the hair, so this is never an issue anymore. 

InfinitiPro by Conairs New Texture Styling System Will Change Your Life

Step 5

If you’re looking for a bigger, slightly messy look, fluff your hair at the roots when the hair is dry. For even more volume, flip your hair over, putting it all into your M.O. then stop here. I personally prefer a bigger, slightly undone look, so when my hair is completely dry I fluff it at the roots to create even more volume., flip your hair upside down, resting it in the bowl of the InfinitiPro By ConairTexture Styling System on the cool setting.

Voila! From soaking wet to dry and defined in just 15 minutes.

And I’m able to return my strainer to where it belongs: in my kitchen cabinet.

InfinitiPro by Conairs New Texture Styling System Will Change Your Life
Curly Hair Guide: What’s YOUR Curl Pattern?

So you bought hair products with the word “curl” on the bottles and watched a few tutorials by a YouTuber who has your dream curls, but for some reason your hair still isn’t coming out the way you want it to. Let’s take a step back: Do you have the same curl pattern as the person whose curls you’re envying? If not, you may be setting your curls up to fail.

If you are new to the world of natural curls, getting to know your curl pattern can help you discover styling techniques and products that will work for you. You’ll also be able to more easily find the videos that’ll be most relevant to you.

Related: What’s Your Hair Type? Take The Quiz

What’s a curl pattern?

At NaturallyCurly, we find it useful to divide curl patterns into three main groups: wavy, curly, and coily. We know “curly” means a lot of things to a lot of people, and we wince when we see comments on social media saying “Those aren’t real curls; those are just waves!” We have no tolerance for comments that insinuate that one curl pattern is better or worse than another. It goes without saying, but we’ll say it anyway: We want women of all curl patterns to love and embrace their hair. This texture-typing system is not meant to be divisive, but to provide guidance that will help you care for, style, and LOVE your mane.

Where to start

The best time to identify your curl pattern is when your hair is at its healthiest state; this means moisturized and free of damage. If you have been straightening your hair for the past few years or even months, you may have heat damage. To get a clear idea of your natural curl pattern, it’s best to look at it once you have stopped using heat tools — including blow dryers, flat irons, and curling wands — for at least three months. If the roots are curlier than the ends of your hair, then this is a clear indicator of heat damage, and figuring out your curl pattern may be a struggle until your natural curls grow in and the damaged ends have been cut off.

If you have curl patterns that are drastically different from each other, you may want to treat those sections of your hair differently

Remember, most people are a mix of a couple of curl patterns. As you can see in the graphic above, we included examples of someone who could be considered Type 2c/3a, and someone who fits in between Types 3c and 4a. If you feel you fit multiple curl patterns, that is totally normal. If you have curl patterns that are drastically different from each other, you may want to treat those sections of your hair differently (for example, using heavier products in one section”> or some use perm rods to create a uniform curl pattern. Finding an experienced stylist who knows how to work with curls can also help customize your haircut to accommodate your multiple curl patterns (so one section doesn’t look longer than another”>.

Below, find descriptions for the three most common types of curly hair. Within each of the categories, there are more subtle distinctions; read on to determine which one fits you best.

type 2 wavy hair

Wavy Hair

Wavy hair is characterized by S-shaped waves (rather than coils”>. Women with wavy hair typically use mousses, leave-in serums, and heat protectants rather than creams or gels, and are generally most concerned with reducing their frizz and finding products that will give their waves light hold without weighing them down. Those with wavy hair are less likely to avoid certain ingredients like silicones and sulfates, and more likely to use heat-styling tools like flat irons or curling wands. Think Taylor Swift (back before she straightened her hair”> and Lorde.

If your hair is close to straight but has a loose, gentle bend, you likely have Type 2a waves. If your hair is mostly straight at the roots and more defined waves form below your eye level, your waves are Type 2b. If your waves start right at the roots and you have very defined waves mixed with actual ringlets, then you are Type 2c.

type 3 curly hair

Curly Hair

Type 3 hair has more defined, springy curls that form spirals or ringlets. Those with Type 3 hair are mostly concerned with reducing frizz and adding definition. They use creams and gels to give their curls definition, and they’re more likely to avoid drying ingredients in their shampoos.

If your curls are similar in size to the large sidewalk chalk you used as a kid, then you’re Type 3a. If your curls have the circumference of a Sharpie, then you’re Type 3b. And if your curls have the circumference of a pencil or a straw, then you’re Type 3c. Many people believe (and we tend to agree”> that Type 3c curls are almost their own category, because they are much tighter corkscrews and generally have much more volume than 3a and 3b curls, yet they are still very different from Type 4. YouTubers with Type 3c hair include heygorjess and Shinestruck.

type 4 coily hair

Coily Hair

Type 4 hair can appear much shorter than it is (a phenomenon known as shrinkage“>. For those with Type 4 locks, it’s all about moisture and preventing tangles. Conditioners with lots of slip and moisturizers are must-haves in a coily girl’s product lineup.  Slip refers to how the product lubricates your hair and describes products (i.e., daily conditioner, deep conditioner, or leave-in conditioner”> that are usually applied during washing and detangling.

If you look closely at a strand of hair and it looks like small, tight corkscrews the size of a crochet needle, you’re seeing Type 4a coils. Type 4b coils are tighter than 4a and more closely resemble the spring of a pen. If you have Type 4c hair, then your coils will be similar to the 4b curl pattern but you may have higher density (more hair strands per square inch”> and coarser strands (each individual strand is wider”>, which creates greater shrinkage and less curl definition.

Two women with the same curl pattern can have hair that looks completely different

Curl pattern is only one part of your hair type

You may have realized by now that two women with the same curl pattern can have hair that looks completely different. That is because curl pattern is only one part of the hair type equation. Other important factors are porosity, length, width, and density. In other words, whether your hair long or short, fine or coarse, thick or thin — these will all drastically affect the way your hair looks and how it reacts to products.

Does it matter?

There are many hair-typing systems out there, and many people also argue that curl pattern doesn’t matter. We think it matters because the way one woman pineapples her Type 3c curls at night may not work for another’s Type 3a hair. And while it seems like everyone can’t get enough of coconut oil, not all hair types should use it in the same way. For example, Type 2 wavies might find more success using coconut oil as a pre-shampoo treatment  while someone with a tighter texture might use it to seal her ends with a moisturizer.

With so much information out there, focusing on tips and reviews from those who share your curl pattern will likely be more beneficial than advice from people in a different category, and will prevent hair fails that make you want to reach for the flat iron. As with all things, it takes trial and error, but knowing your curl pattern can help cut down on the errors.

How do you feel about hair typing systems?
[0]; if((!”>.tagName!=’INPUT'”>{c.checked=(c.type==’radio’?true:!c.checked”>};var i=this.parentNode.parentNode.parentNode.getElementsByTagName(‘INPUT'”>;for(var k=0;k!=i.length;k=k+1″>{i[k].parentNode.parentNode.setAttribute(‘sel’,i[k].checked?1:0″>}”> I use the Texture Typing system (ie Type 3B, Type 3C, Type 4A”>
[0]; if((!”>.tagName!=’INPUT'”>{c.checked=(c.type==’radio’?true:!c.checked”>};var i=this.parentNode.parentNode.parentNode.getElementsByTagName(‘INPUT'”>;for(var k=0;k!=i.length;k=k+1″>{i[k].parentNode.parentNode.setAttribute(‘sel’,i[k].checked?1:0″>}”> I use the LOIS system (ie L = bend, O = curl, I = straight, S = wave”>
[0]; if((!”>.tagName!=’INPUT'”>{c.checked=(c.type==’radio’?true:!c.checked”>};var i=this.parentNode.parentNode.parentNode.getElementsByTagName(‘INPUT'”>;for(var k=0;k!=i.length;k=k+1″>{i[k].parentNode.parentNode.setAttribute(‘sel’,i[k].checked?1:0″>}”> I use the Deva system (ie S’wavy, Botticeli, Corkscrew”>
[0]; if((!”>.tagName!=’INPUT'”>{c.checked=(c.type==’radio’?true:!c.checked”>};var i=this.parentNode.parentNode.parentNode.getElementsByTagName(‘INPUT'”>;for(var k=0;k!=i.length;k=k+1″>{i[k].parentNode.parentNode.setAttribute(‘sel’,i[k].checked?1:0″>}”> I use another hair typing system
[0]; if((!”>.tagName!=’INPUT'”>{c.checked=(c.type==’radio’?true:!c.checked”>};var i=this.parentNode.parentNode.parentNode.getElementsByTagName(‘INPUT'”>;for(var k=0;k!=i.length;k=k+1″>{i[k].parentNode.parentNode.setAttribute(‘sel’,i[k].checked?1:0″>}”> I don’t believe in hair typing systems, all hair is unique
[0]; if((!”>.tagName!=’INPUT'”>{c.checked=(c.type==’radio’?true:!c.checked”>};var i=this.parentNode.parentNode.parentNode.getElementsByTagName(‘INPUT'”>;for(var k=0;k!=i.length;k=k+1″>{i[k].parentNode.parentNode.setAttribute(‘sel’,i[k].checked?1:0″>}”> I think hair typing systems are divisive
[0]; if((!”>.tagName!=’INPUT'”>{c.checked=(c.type==’radio’?true:!c.checked”>};var i=this.parentNode.parentNode.parentNode.getElementsByTagName(‘INPUT'”>;for(var k=0;k!=i.length;k=k+1″>{i[k].parentNode.parentNode.setAttribute(‘sel’,i[k].checked?1:0″>}”> I’ve tried to use a hair typing system, but I still don’t know my hair type
[0]; if((!”>.tagName!=’INPUT'”>{c.checked=(c.type==’radio’?true:!c.checked”>};var i=this.parentNode.parentNode.parentNode.getElementsByTagName(‘INPUT'”>;for(var k=0;k!=i.length;k=k+1″>{i[k].parentNode.parentNode.setAttribute(‘sel’,i[k].checked?1:0″>}”> I think other characteristics are more important than curl pattern (like porosity and width”>

My IQ Test

This article was originally published in 2015 and has been updated for clarity and to incorporate reader feedback.

Essential Oils? Cute. An Oily Scalp? Not So Much.

Your scalp says a lot about the overall health of your hair. While hair oils are often a great remedy for a dry scalp, if your scalp produces excess sebum, you may be hesitant to add more oil to the mix. However, there is evidence that putting oils in your hair can actually prevent the appearance of a greasy scalp. Lots of curlies ask, if I have an oily scalp should I avoid hair oils? Let’s take a closer look at this question.

woman with glowing skin

Photo Courtesy of Cecilia Gorgon’s Instagram: @ceciliagorgon

If I have an oily scalp should I avoid hair oils?

There is no rule that you have to avoid anything, oils included. In fact, there are many hair oils that will leave your scalp healthier and producing less natural sebum than before. Although, it should be noted that certain store bought hair oils might not be best for your already oily scalp. This is because many hair oils also aim to add gloss to hair and the way they achieve this is with silicones that coat the hair. These silicones can actually be worse for those with an overproduction of natural oil because it can make it harder to properly shampoo. So, make sure you check for silicones when choosing pre-made, store bought hair oils as opposed to all-natural oils. You also want to make sure you do not overdo it on oils which can lead to greasy hair and a scalp that is weighed down with excess oil production.

What else should I know about using oils?

If you already have an oily scalp, you’ll want to use pure essential oils or natural oils instead of store bought options. If you do choose a store-bought oil, make sure it isn’t too heavy because that will make it harder to rinse out of your hair completely. Often times an oily scalp is also associated with flakes and dandruff, as well as too much bacteria. This can be a result the over production of oil is a result of too much bacteria. Choose essential oils that have antibacterial properties to help balance out the scalp. You also want to choose oils that are lighter. For example, opt for coconut oil over olive oil or rosemary over coconut for an even lighter option. You can also try diluted essential oils to get a better balance. When first starting with oils, it is better to use too little and work your way up than to overload your already overloaded scalp with more oil. Try adding oils to your routine once every few weeks and if that goes well, try it every week. The key is to find the balance that works for you as an individual.

What oils are best for an oily scalp?

You’ll want antibacterial oils to help restore moisture balance, so choose options such as rosemary, lavender, and lemon oil. There are others, but these three are a good starting point since they are easy to find for most people.

When adding anything new to your routine, it is best to take it slow. Add these oils in and experiment to find the best combination for your hair!

This is How Ayesha Styles Her Long Wavy Hair

In my curly hair journey I’ve learned that the shorter my hair is, the easier it is to style my curls. My curls are more defined, they feel healthier, and they just pop more when they’re shorter. As they grow long I find frizz to be increasingly more challenging, washing and conditioning more tiring, and my wash and go loses its shape after a couple of days. All this to say, when I saw Ayesha while scrolling through StyleNook I was amazed by the definition she manages to achieve with such long hair, and what her secret to healthy, long curls is. 

This is How Ayesha Styles Her Long Wavy Hair This is How Ayesha Styles Her Long Wavy Hair

Are there any tricks or tips that you’ve figured out along the way that have made a big difference in the way your hair looks?

Water quality is important. I’ve been blessed with the tap water out in Anchorage, Alaska. I’ve been washing my hair with pristine glacier water from the Chugach Mountains since I was a kid. When I moved out to Spokane, Washington for college, my hair went into shock. The hard water was so harsh that I had to do “the big chop.” It was a very emotional day for me. My hair went from my hips to my shoulders. I started buying gallons of filtered water jugs and bringing them to the shower with me. That was tough. I couldn’t deal with the hour long washing process, so I invested in a water filtration system in my home. It cost a lot of money, but it made a difference.

What are your Holy Grail products?

I’ve been solely using DevaCurl products since 2014. It has helped tremendously, but I cannot live without coconut oil and castor oil. The reason why my hair looks so shiny is because of the moisture in coconut oil. And the reason why my hair is thick and long is because of castor oil. I apply castor oil on my roots and drench my ends with coconut oil twice a week. These natural products are essentially food. If your curls are dry, it means they are hungry! Go feed them!

This is How Ayesha Styles Her Long Wavy Hair This is How Ayesha Styles Her Long Wavy Hair

What’s your styling routine?

This is How Ayesha Styles Her Long Wavy Hair

Do you have any special advice for caring or styling for long hair?

The longer your hair gets, the less volume you get at the roots. My heavy hair weighs down the little natural volume I have, so my special trick has been to diffuse my hair upside down. Every close friend and family member that has witnessed my drying technique has always given me weird looks. Some are even concerned about future back problems. It’s hard to explain, but what I do is I waterfall my hair onto a microfiber towel. I then take DevaCurl’s hand diffuser and hug my scalp. I’m in this awkward position for 20-30 minutes. It may hurt your back, but no pain, no gain! Beauty always comes with a price.

What made you decide to start your healthy hair journey?

Unapologetically bold black women who embraced their natural hair. I cannot thank them enough. I do not know many Pakistani or South Asian women who embrace their waves/curls. Many girls from my community straighten their hair. So I would go online and see these empowering photos of African American women on Instagram and think wow, I want to embrace my inner goddess too!

What piece of advice would you give to a wavy who’s just starting out in their curly hair journey and feels frustrated?

PATIENCE. My hair did not look like this overnight. It took almost a decade to reach this length and bounce. I’ve had friends who would go out and buy DevaCurl’s entire line, get excited, and then give up after a month of trying. It doesn’t work like that. It’s like fitness – you don’t expect to reach your body goals after one session at the gym. It takes time and dedication.

This article was updated in 2018 to reflect Ayesha’s current Holy Grail products. She told us “my curls have transitioned into more 3a now but those tips and styling methods still apply!”

How to Make Wavy Hair Curl Evenly

The NaturallyCurly Texture Typing System can be super helpful when it comes to caring for your curls, but oftentimes I think people get tripped up in thinking that they must fall into just ONE of the types. The truth is, most people have several curl patterns on their one head of hair. It’s natural and completely normal. I personally have a mix of Type 2b, 2c and 3a curls and waves. The great challenge of having several curl patterns is that some sections are much looser than other curlier sections, but luckily I’ve discovered a few techniques to help make wavy hair curl evenly.

Pin curls

When I have loose waves that don’t want to curl, I like to wet those waves with a splash of water from the sink and then take a drop of styler between my fingertips. I wrap the curl around my finger all the way up to my root, and then place a bobby pin to hold it there. I repeat this on all of the loose waves that need help curling. Then I finish brushing my teeth, doing my makeup, getting ready for the day, and by the time I’m about to head out the door my pin curls have dried. When I remove the bobby pin I have nice, bouncy ringlets that will drop into S-shaped curls that match the rest of my hair.

You can watch me doing these pin curls in my 2nd day curly hair routine here.


When I’m on second, third or fourth day hair my waves tend to get looser and stringier in some areas while other sections have kept their curl. On days like this, I encourage the looser waves to curl up by wetting them either in the sink or with a spray bottle, like the Curly Hair Solutions H20 bottle. When I really want my hair to curl up the best way to do this is with a diffuser. I use a diffuser attachment for my hair dryer, but I’ve also used a strainer before which worked surprisingly well.

Curling wand

I don’t do this anymore, but I used to use a skinny (half inch”> curling wand on just a couple face-framing curls. I would only do a curl here and there, and it would create the illusion that all of my hair was uniformly curled. If you’re going to do this, then always do it on completely dry hair, always use a heat protectant, and always use the lowest amount of heat that you can. The problem with this method is that, if you have curls that don’t want to curl then using heat is only going to make that worse. Heat damage will cause your curls to become looser, so I would encourage you to use this very, very sparingly.

Braid out

I personally do not use this method, but I know other wavies and curlies have had success with braidouts. You simply braid your hair into several braids while the hair is wet or damp, and allow the hair to dry completely. Then remove the braids and shake them up so that they’re not too defined. The great thing about this method is that you can control how loose or tight the waves are through how many braids you do.

You can watch my full curly hair routine here for all of the techniques and products I use.

Have you found a technique that works for you? Share yours in the comments!

Unexpected Curly Cocktails to Style Every Curl Pattern

curly cocktail

Have you ever walked into a salon that was completely full of curly haired women, run by stylists who are experts in cutting and coloring curls? It’s a transformative experience that every curly girl should have at least once in their life (but preferably every few months!”>. I experienced this on The Curl Revolution Book Tour, when we stopped in San Francisco’s MaduSalon. Madu is a mecca for curlies all over California, and chatting with their stylists it’s easy to see why.

In one conversation, Madu colorist Devon Ramirez was sharing how she likes to use deep conditioner as a styler, and I had to take notes! Our readers tend to be nonconformists, using products and kitchen items in new and innovative ways, never limiting themselves to the instructions on the label, so I asked Devon if she’d be willing to share her favorite ways to mix products. Personally, I thought it was unexpected to use a conditioner as a styler, but I’d also love to hear if you’ve been trying this. Here are Devon’s tried and true cocktails for curly, coily and wavy hair.

For Type 2 Wavy Hair

Use leave-in conditioner as a styler

For looser wavy hair I️ really love DevaCurl B’Leave-in because it’s really lightweight but it gives the waves an extra boost and lots of volume.

Apply product with water for definition

When applying product to curls, it’s important to make sure the hair is still very, very wet. This way the products will mix with the water and absorb into the hair. This keeps the moisture and hold without weighing the hair down. At Madu we’ll often sprinkle a little extra water when working the product through to keep the hair moist. Marie [founder of MaduSalon] calls it “baptizing the curls.”

Refresh by applying product to hands

For refreshing both waves and curls I️ really love Set it Free. Although I️ like to spray it in my hand and scrunch it into the curls. It’s kind of thick and doesn’t always spray well.

For Type 3 Curly Hair

Use deep conditioner as a styler

For type 3 curls I️ really love using the Heaven in Hair as a styler. It’s really moisturizing and has a great amount of hold on its own.

Cocktail DC with gel to fight frizz

If you want extra hold then I️ add Ultra Defining Gel.

For Type 4 Coily Hair

Cocktail gel with pomade

For type 4 coily hair, my coworker Shannon came up with the best combo that we all use now. Miss Jessie’s Jelly Soft Curls with a small amount of Beautiful Mess. You mix the 2 in your hands, apply all over and detangle with your hands. The hold of the 2 helps to keeps the curls slightly elongated so you and really see the length of the coils.

For extra moisture

In order to keep curls moisturized, you want to make sure you incorporate a deep conditioner into your routine, at least twice a month. Sulfate free shampoos are a must, sulfates can over strip the hair moisture. Also, stay away from oils and most serums. Oil molecules are actually too big to actually penetrate the hair shaft and end up laying as a layer of build up on the hair while repelling actually moisture. If you do choose to use a serum, make sure it’s water soluble and free of silicones.

Pretty much all of these product combos can be used for a wash and go. You can air dry, hood dry or diffuse. Whichever is more convenient. At Madu we try not to recommend anything that would require you to need a hood dryer because that’s obviously unrealistic.

Now I’d love to hear from you NaturallyCurly World: How do you cocktail your products to suit your needs? Which mixes work best for you?

You can follow Devon at @hairbydev, and you can find her, along with a whole team of curl experts, at MaduSalon.

How Elaine Gets Her Naturally Wavy Hair to Look Like This

As a Type 2c wavy myself who’s been on the “should I get bangs” fence for a couple of months, Elaine is exactly the naturally wavy hair inspiration I’ve been looking for. Elaine is a Scottish curly girl who has been wearing her hair curly for over 12 years, and as you’ll soon see her hair has undergone an amazing transformation during that time. Her hair may have started out looking loosely wavy when she first started rocking her natural texture, but now her fine hair is a mix of 2c and 3a waves and curls, and a few tighter 3b ringlets here and there.

Are there any tricks or tips that you’ve figured out along the way that have made a big difference in the way your hair looks?

This answer is easy as they had such a noticeable effect! The trick that has made the biggest difference is protecting my curls overnight with a silk scarf, as my hair has always been too fine for pineappling. Then I hydrate daily by spritzing my hair every morning with a mix of water and leave-in conditioner. Can you believe I actually used to avoid conditioning as I thought it weighed my curls down? But only because I had been using generic cosmetic conditioners that were laden with heavy silicones. Lush curls need hydration!

Another fave is nightly scalp massages. This has massively improved the health of my scalp, my issues with protein sensitive itching, hair growth, achieving 2nd, 3rd and 4th day curls and the benefits go on. I will never not do this now.

What piece of advice would you give to a curly who’s just starting out in their journey?

My advice to those starting their journey, or restarting for the umpteenth time, would be to not get too caught up in others’ routines, products and methods. It is so inspiring to follow other curly girls, and there is no doubt that you will gain valuable support and help from the amazing curl community, but everyone’s curls are so unique and what works for others wont necessarily work for you! There are no wonder products to reverse damage, so take the time to nourish and care for your curls until they are healthy, learn what feels good, and what doesn’t, pay attention to what ingredients feature in your fave products to help determine what to look for in others. Oh and take lots of selfies… any time you’re having a bad hair day, or feeling frustrated, remind yourself just how far you have come, and I guarantee that pic from 3 months ago will help you realize that your curls are improving every day. Even on your worst curl day, there will be another girl 6 months behind you who dreams of getting to where you are now!

My advice to those starting their journey, or restarting for the umpteenth time, would be to not get too caught up in others’ routines

What’s your styling routine?

The routine that gives me the best results is my wash’n’go.

  • Cleanse – I use a sulphate-free shampoo rather than co-washing because which works better for my low porosity curls,
  • Condition – I followed that with a botanical silicone-free conditioner. I usually leave about 50% of my conditioner in my hair rather than rinsing all of it out.
  • Style – I then add a gel to soaking wet hair being careful not to rake the product through, this may sound strange but my curls are delicate and fine, so raking disrupts the pattern and I lose definition. I graze the product over the canopy of my hair and flip my head over and do the same underneath… I then scrunch for my life lol.
  • Scrunch – I scrunch for at least 5 minutes, then scrunch again using the Boucleme curl towel which is very similar to a t-shirt rather than a microfiber towel.
  • Diffuse – Being from Scotland, air drying is not an option so I diffuse my hair dry.
  • Scrunch – When it’s 100% dry I love to scrunch out the crunch and fluff my hair for volume.

What are your Holy Grail products?

For me a Holy Grail product is defined by how often I recommend it to others, and how stressed I get if it’s about to run out. By that rationale they would have to be Giovanni Direct Leave-in, it’s clean, affordable, and works for everyone whether you’re Type 2b or 4c. My next one would be SheaMoisture Frizz Defense Gel/cream with Cupuacu, it is an incredible gel that manages to lock in all your moisture, and give full, bouncy, hydrated curls with zero crunch! My favorite complete line would be Boucleme, a British brand that creates incredible quality products full of amazing natural ingredients with no nasties… I always get great results when using their stuff.

Tell us about your curly hair journey. Have you always worn your hair curly, or did you start embracing it recently? If so, what caused you to start embracing it?

When I was young I had long, thick, wavy hair that flowed down my back, but I hated having it brushed daily by my mum, so when I was 14, I took all my pocket money to the local hairdresser and asked for a pixie cut! This resulted in months of tears, from both me and my mum! As it grew in, it became harder and harder to control. It felt frizzy and dry, and this is when I started to realize it was curly. The next 10 years was filled with trial and error, and there was no blogging, Instagram or YouTube to educate me. I didn’t know a single other curly haired person. I figured out that gel worked better than mousse, I found a diffuser, and I knew not to brush, but that was about the extent of my knowledge. I wore my curly hair as I felt it was part of what made me me, but it was dry, frizzy and lank. Everything changed when  I stumbled across the Curly Girl Handbook and my relationship with my hair changed forever. By following the method and cutting out sulfates, silicones and parabens my hair started to come alive. I then discovered Instagram, and began to learn even more. I learnt I had low porosity hair and that I was protein sensitive, and since then my curls have been improving with every week. There is still a lot for me to learn but I love being on this journey, and the best part is the curl friends I’ve made along the way.

Which curly women do you look to for inspiration or advice?

There are so many curly girls who inspire me. @curl_obsessions because she is just beautiful and was my first curlfriend on Instagram. @dr_vasquez_md is my constant supporter, we share our good days and bad and discuss our uncontrollable product buying addiction. @vmuse919 is the one who educates me, I love how she breaks down the more complicated and confusing subjects surrounding natural hair e.g. porosity, when to use protein and when to use moisture, hydral fatigue etc. @reallifecurlyworld for her funny and down to earth YouTube videos that always inspire me to try something new and @curlsandbeautydiary for being so helpful and understanding what its like not to be able to access US products when you live in another country… but the list is never ending.

What has your biggest hair mistake been? What did you learn from it?

My biggest mistake has been falling for advertising and marketing, and believing that just because a product is labelled for curly hair,  doesn’t necessarily mean that it is good for natural curls. I used the same ‘curl’ brand for over 10 years and I shudder at the thought of using it again now.  Oh and crimpers back in the 80’s!!

You can see more from Elaine by following her on Instagram @curlysue291

Do Prenatal Vitamins Really Make Your Hair Grow?

Pregnant women experience longer, fuller hair during pregnancy. It’s a well-known perk of the process. Most women today also start taking prenatal vitamins during pregnancy in order to get all of the vitamins and minerals needed to grow a healthy baby and prevent developmental problems. Prenatal vitamins contain many of the nutrients that people associate with healthy hair growth, such as Biotin, Vitamin B, calcium and iron, so they must be the reason pregnant women have thicker, faster-growing hair – right?


Prenatal vitamins have a popular reputation for helping women grow stronger and longer hair and nails, but this is a case of correlation does not imply causation. There’s a scientific reason for the change in pregnant women’s hair, but it’s not the prenatal vitamins.

Why does hair grow during pregnancy?

Every strand of hair goes through three different growth stages:

1. Anagen (growing”> 2. Catagen (resting”> 3. Telogen (falling out”>

Right now you have hairs and hair follicles in all of these various growth stages on your head. During pregnancy the elevated hormone levels prevent the hair from reaching the final phase of fall out, as obstetrician-gynecologist Kameelah Phillips, M.D., explains: “During pregnancy the cycle of hair loss is arrested resulting in fewer lost strands while their hair continues to grow. This is largely a hormonal effect and not related to the prenatal vitamin.”

What do prenatal vitamins do?

Pregnant women, and women who are planning to conceive, require increased amounts of certain vitamins and minerals, such as folic acid, iron, and calcium to help their babies develop, and to prevent defects and pre-term delivery. They also provide the mother with the nutrients she needs to support this growth. For example, Wendie A. Howland, MN RN-BC CRRN CCM CNLCP LNCC, a certified nurse in life care planning, told NaturallyCurly, “When you grow extra blood volume to support pregnancy, you need extra iron to make the hemoglobin molecules in red blood cells.” That is why the recommended daily intake of iron for pregnant women is 27 milligrams, while women who aren’t pregnant only need 8-18 mg a day, depending on your age. Similarly, pregnant women have a recommended daily intake of 600 micrograms of folate or folic acid, while women who aren’t pregnant only need 400 mcg a day. According to Dr. Phillips, “Too much of a vitamin or nutrient can be a bad thing, depending on your health, and whether the body can easily get rid of excess.” Many vitamins are water-soluble, and your body can get rid of what it doesn’t need, but Andrew Weil, M.D. points out that “…iron is one of the few minerals we cannot eliminate (except through blood loss”>, and accumulations in the body can quickly rise to toxic levels. Iron is an oxidizing agent that can increase the risk of cancer and heart disease.” Because of this, he recommends that you “…never take iron supplements unless advised to do so by a physician after tests have revealed iron deficiency anemia.”

Can you take prenatals if you’re not pregnant?

It is best to always consult your doctor first, but Dr. Phillips says “as long as a woman stays within the allotted daily requirements for nutrients then there is minimal risk.” She does warn against taking them along with other supplements as there may be overlapping ingredients. Technically, as long as you are not taking an excess of your daily recommended intake of vitamins and minerals, you can take prenatals – but what will they do for you?

Will prenatal vitamins make your hair grow?

There is no scientific evidence that suggests prenatal vitamins can make your hair grow. Dr. Phillips says, “Women should not expect magical growth from a prenatal vitamin.  This comes with proper hair care and patience.  I don’t recommend spending a lot of money on these supplements expecting a miracle – you may be disappointed.” Nurse Wendie A. Howland adds, “If somebody is clinically malnourished, s/he will lose hair, and vitamins might help, but it takes a lot to be clinically malnourished enough for them to work. If people think taking prenatal vitamins will be responsible for waking up those slumbering follicles, they’re going to be disappointed.”

If you aren’t pregnant, or aren’t planning to be pregnant, and are considering taking a prenatal vitamin for cosmetic reasons, don’t. There are plenty of other ways that you can contribute to your hair health, like eating a healthy, balanced diet and having a consistent hair care regimen. Dr. Phillips says, “People should be aware that supplements or vitamins should not be used as a substitute for a healthy, balanced diet. Also, there is no vitamin or supplement that will repair the effects of chronic poor hair practices, i.e. tension, excessive heat, chemicals etc. It is important to remember the basics of healthy hair care.”

Always consult a medical practitioner before incorporating a supplement into your diet!

What’s next?

Grow healthy hair from the inside out with this Hair Growth Diet.

NaturallyCurly Editor Devri Velazquez took two different beauty supplements, read her review in “Why I’m So Over the Beauty Vitamin Hype.”

For more informative articles like this, sign up for our newsletter!

This article was originally published in 2016 and has been updated.
How I Went Completely Gray (And Loved It)

Our community has a pretty good handle on embracing naturally curly hair. We know all too well the denigrating buzzwords that the mainstream media throws around when describing our hair and the ways in which companies are always trying to “tame” us. The natural hair movement has made giant strides, and the industry and media are starting to get on board. But in some ways I feel we haven’t quite caught up when it comes to embracing naturally graying hair. Gray hair is still widely looked down upon as something to avoid, something to cover up, and something to fight off for as long as possible. I think gray hair is beautiful, natural, and does not make you invisible, and NaturallyCurly community member Jeepcurlygurl is proof! Her curls and positivity have been inspiring our CurlTalk forum community for years, and I think she put it best when she said “if people are happy dyeing their hair, that’s great!  But if you want to let your gray hair grow out, do it!” Here’s how she did it.

” alt=”How I Went Completely Gray (And Loved It”>” src=”×300.jpg”>
2005 and 2006

When did you start going gray, and why did you decide to embrace your grays from the beginning?

I started going gray in my late 40s (much later than most members of my family”>. There were three reasons I decided to accept my gray hair and not dye it:

– I come from a family with some beautiful gray hair. My maternal grandmother had dark hair with a gorgeous white streak in the front, my mother had thick wavy salt and pepper hair, and my dad, in his 80s, still has a good head of white hair. – I wanted my hair to stay healthy. – I didn’t want to waste the time and money dyeing my hair.

What was the transition process to gray like?

It wasn’t easy, there’s no denying it. The change is drastic and more difficult for those of us with dark hair, but I doubt it’s easy for anyone. At first I didn’t like the color, I felt invisible, washed out. But as it came in I learned to love it.

When I started to go gray I cut my hair into a chin length curly bob and kept trimming it up as the gray grew in. Once the gray reached the ends, I let it grow and now have mid-back-length salt and pepper hair with some solid streaks of gray/white. It was so worth the year of having the “skunk stripe.” Hey, skunks are cute!

” alt=”How I Went Completely Gray (And Loved It”>” src=””>
2007 and 2008

Can you tell us about how your hair has changed?

Some of the grays are wiry, some are straighter (3A instead of my usual 3B”>, sometimes it feels a bit dryer, but all in all, it is still pretty much the same.

How has your routine changed since going gray?

My routine is nearly the same. The only thing I’ve added is occasionally using coconut oil on my hair overnight. It is a nice conditioning treatment and also helps with detangling.

” alt=”How I Went Completely Gray (And Loved It”>” src=”×356.jpg”>
2009 and 2010

What have been your biggest challenges in caring for gray hair, and how have you dealt with them?

I spend time in the sun and wind, at the beach, on motorcycles and boats, etc., so my hair does tend to get yellow. I buy red/gold corrector and add some to a bottle of conditioner and use this as a co-wash once a week or so to help negate the yellow.  But even if it’s a bit yellow I don’t fuss about it too much.

What are your favorite products? Do you follow the CG Method?

I have been following the Curly Girl Method for about 12 years. But even before that, back in my teens, my mother told me to quit using shampoo every day as it would dry out and damage my hair. That was 40+ years ago so she was kind of ahead of the times! I still used shampoo (the original Herbal Essence Shampoo was my favorite. Oh, that scent.”> but not every day.

I like a simple routine, with inexpensive, easy to find products. My long time favorites are Suave Coconut Conditioner, VO5 Kiwi Lime conditioner, LA Looks Sport Gel. I also do vinegar rinses, honey rinses, deep treatments with oils mixed with conditioner.

Gray hair doesn’t make you old. Being old makes you old.
” alt=”How I Went Completely Gray (And Loved It”>” src=”×373.jpg”>
2011 and 2012

How do you achieve your curl definition?

I co-wash, rinse, add gel to very wet hair, plop in a turban towel for 15-20 minutes, scrunch, air dry for 15-20 minutes or so and then use a pancake diffuser for a few minutes with my hair over my head, scrunch, and done!

How do you feel about the way gray hair is portrayed in the media?

I think the media does a terrible disservice to people by convincing them that youth is everything, that we become invisible and unimportant as we age, that we need to spend hours of our time and tons of money to make ourselves look young. Gray hair, wrinkles, sags and bags, anything age related is looked upon and portrayed in such a negative manner. Aging is a natural process and we should accept it as such. You don’t have to be young to be youthful. I will be 60 in a few months and I don’t consider myself old in the least.

” alt=”How I Went Completely Gray (And Loved It”>” src=”×334.jpg”>
2013 and 2014

Anything else you’d like to share with our readers?

Gray hair doesn’t make you old. Being old makes you old. And there’s no stopping it. If people are happy dyeing their hair, that’s great!  But if you want to let your gray hair grow out, do it! Don’t let family, friends, partners, or the media convince you to do otherwise. Take care of yourself, live your life, and stop worrying about aging. Get a new hair style, cut it short, grow it long, buy a new lipstick, buy some new clothes in bold colors, stay healthy, stay active, work your brain, do things that make you happy.

And one more bonus to having healthy, happy, curly, gray hair – I have never gotten more compliments on my hair in my life! I get compliments from young people, old people, women, men, girls, boys. Not a bad thing at all.

” alt=”How I Went Completely Gray (And Loved It”>” src=”×562.jpg”>
2015 and 2016


We recently asked JeepCurlyGurl for an update. She’s still wearing her hair gray, and she’s still loving it!

I have noticed that the hair world is changing in a positive way. Gray hair is in style with the younger set, which brings in into the forefront on the catwalk, in commercials, in magazines. I see more women of all ages embracing their gray. I belong to a very active Facebook group for women with curly gray hair and there are many more groups out there. There will always be someone who says “Gray hair makes you look old,” but I think it is becoming more accepted as people realize that statement is false. I haven’t been to a hair salon in 45 years but people tell me that even hairstylists are becoming more agreeable when a client wants to let their hair go gray (I can’t imagine ever letting anyone tell me I can’t go gray anyway!”>.

As for products for gray hair, there is so much more to choose from now. I still spend time in the sun and wind and in smoky bars so my hair can get yellowish. I’ve tried most everything out there and just within the last year found a conditioner from Overtone that works great for me. I use it just once a week or so and my hair is never yellow.

I still have women stop me in the street asking for advice on how to let go of the dye, how to deal with their curls, etc. And I still get compliments, so many many compliments. I’m still in love with my curly gray hair!

” alt=”How I Went Completely Gray (And Loved It”>” src=””>
2017 and 2018

Have YOU started (or are you considering”> embracing your grays?

How do you manage your grays?
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[0]; if((!”>.tagName!=’INPUT'”>{c.checked=(c.type==’radio’?true:!c.checked”>};var i=this.parentNode.parentNode.parentNode.getElementsByTagName(‘INPUT'”>;for(var k=0;k!=i.length;k=k+1″>{i[k].parentNode.parentNode.setAttribute(‘sel’,i[k].checked?1:0″>}”> Embrace them
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My IQ Test

25 Best Gentle Shampoos for Curly Hair

Shampoos are an infamous product category in the curly community. They are typically accompanied by the words “drying” and “stripping” when discussed by curlies, and many have removed them entirely from their regimens. But there are many who use cleansers to remove product residue, oil or dirt from their scalps and strands, and when they do they need it to be gentle yet effective.

Every single one of the cleansers on this list has won an Editors’ Choice award, voted on by the NaturallyCurly editors, or a Best of the Best award, voted on by thousands of NaturallyCurly community members.

While the majority of these cleansers are shampoos, I have also included award-winning cleansing conditioners as gentle alternatives to the traditional shampoo, and clarifying shampoos which can be used on an as-needed basis.

All of these cleansers have been categorized by curly, coily, and wavy favorites, but many of these products are loved by curlies across the spectrum.

Coily Favorites

SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen, Grow & Restore Shampoo

Editors’ Choice best shampoo for curly-coily (Type 3c”> and coily (Type 4″> 2015

“Loved this Shampoo, the smell is great, a lot like vanilla/brown sugar and through out the day the smell keeps coming. I can really feel how it cleans and moisturizes my hair, it feels so much softer afterwards, Love it! Really recommend it!” – daniesg

Motions Naturally You Moisturizing Cleanser

Editors’ Choice best curly-coily cleansing conditioner, 2014

“I fell deeply, madly, and unequivocally in love with the Cleanser! This product will definitely be included in my hair product rotation. As I placed the cleanser in my hair, the shampoo began to lather, and to my surprise, my curls immediately started to clump! At no time during shampooing and after did my hair feel striped. This product did exactly as described. It cleansed & rehydrated my hair at the same time- Definitely a keeper!” – KinkyCurlyCoilyMe

Alikay Naturals Moisturizing Black Soap Shampoo

Editors’ Choice best coily clarifying shampoo, 2016

“I like this nozzle. You don’t want to put shampoo all on your hair, you want to put it on the dirty parts – your scalp. I feel like this is a superior way to clean. I can easily detangle without using a conditioner, just shampoo, and I can run my fingers through my hair. That does not happen.” – Nikki

Jessicurl Gentle Lather Shampoo

Editors’ Choice best coily shampoo, 2016

“Looks like I’m the first 4a (actually 3c/4a combo”> to review. This poo is marketed for looser, finer haired curlies, but it performed quite admirably in my hair as well. I’m a heavy shea butter user and I noticed that all the excess oil was washed away WITH OUT the squeeky clean stripped feeling. It left my scalp clean and fresh and my hair pretty soft. It’s still a poo, so I only use it about once maybe twice a month. But it does what it says it will do. A nice gentle lather without over drying your hair.” – AimWard

Jakeala Marshmallow Root Shampoo Bar

Editors’ Choice best curly-coily and coily shampoo bar, 2016

This has to be one of the best shampoo bars I’ve tried. I could actually detangle my hair while using it as a shampoo and it SUDS UP A LOT. That’s a PLUS as some I have tried do not have much lather. Smells yummy. As with all natural soaps keep away from water to last longer. I normally followup an vinegar hair rinse due to hard water in my area. – deana80

SheaMoisture Raw Shea Butter Moisture Retention Shampoo

NaturallyCurly Community’s Best of the Best favorite shampoo 2012, 2013, 2014

“Definitely hands down my favorite shampoo. It is very moisturizing and helps to stretch my 4c hair which is great since I have a lot of shrinkage. Also it gets my hair sooo soft where I’m able to just run my fingers through my hair in the shower. Lovely smell and love that its all natural.” – love2323

As I Am Coconut Cleansing Co-Wash Conditioner

NaturallyCurly Community’s Best of the Best cleansing conditioner 2012, 2013, 2016

“I truely love this product! I have 4a hair and it detangles my hair perfectly. It smells great too and doesn’t linger. Also it helps clump my curls which makes wash & gos super easy to achieve. My only con is my hair is very dry so I must add some sort of moisture (I use my homemade moisturizer”> but I think someone with not so dry hair will find the product moisturing by itself. I recommend trying this product at least once to see for yourself ;”> I love it!” – kristian9

Kinky-Curly Come Clean

Editors’ Choice best coily clarifying shampoo 2014, Editors’ Choice best curly shampoo 2013

“I love this shampoo for many reasons. I only need to wash my hair once, no matter how dirty it might be, and I only need a DIME SIZE AMOUNT!! It makes suds but it really does cleans your hair… It doesn’t make pointless suds. I never thought I would spend $12 on a bottle of shampoo, but I’m here to tell you that it is worth EVERY PENNY!!!!” – Mattier555

Obia Naturals Coconut Shea Shampoo Bar

NaturallyCurly Community’s Best of the Best favorite shampoo bar, 2016

“What’s there not to love about the Coconut Shea Shampoo Bar? I was WILD about it back in the day, and I’m wild about it now! It’s cost-effective, super moisturizing, has tons of slip, and gets the job done cleaning-wise! Plus, thanks to the natural oils, my hair is super soft and shiny Every. Single. TIME!“ – the mane objective

Curly Favorites

DevaCurl No-Poo Decadence Zero Lather Ultra Moisturizing Milk Cleanser

Editors’ Choice best curly-coily cleansing conditioner, 2016

“I really like this product! Especially when combined with the Decadence One Condition. I can tell my hair is being cleaned and this product smells great! I don’t have to use a whole lot for it to “feel like its working” My hair feels stronger since i have been using this.”  – Michelle.Lop

Ouidad Superfruit Renewal Clarifying Cream Shampoo

Editors’ Choice best curly clarifying shampoo, 2015

“I used to use good ole Apple Cider Vinegar mixed with water to clarify. But oh how that has changed! I bought this while it was on sale and gave it a try. Normally I pre-poo with my green tea spray and coconut oil, but this time I just got in the shower and washed my hair. First, the smell is glorious! I love this smell. It’s fruity and fresh without being too overpowering. Second,I like that it’s a CREAMY clarifying shampoo. And third, it’s also moisturizing. I could do some slight detangling while having this shampoo in my hair. Fourth, a little bit goes a long way. I originally purchase this back in September and he bottle is still pretty full. Fifth, there’s practically no need for me to follow up with a sulfate-free shampoo. Considering that I only clarify my hair once a month or when I have tons of product build up, this was another great purchase. This is now a HG product and I highly recommend that you try it.” – Anonymous

L`Oreal Paris EverCurl Hydracharge Cleansing Conditioner

Editors’ Choice best curly cleansing conditioner, 2014

“I love this stuff! It leaves my hair feeling clean and hydrated, without build-up. I love the scent and alot of people comment on good my hair smells. I liked the Evercreme cleansing conditioner, but I could not get past the heavy and musky smell. This is my HG cleanser and I am currently on my 2nd bottle. My only complaint is that the bottle is small and I go through it really fast.“ – Purplecurls17

SheaMoisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Shine Shampoo

Editors’ Choice best curly shampoo, 2014

“Unlike other shampoos this one doesn’t strip my hair of all my natural oil. It cleanses but still moisturizes and leaves my hair very soft. I think it even defines my tight coils a little. I only wash my hair with shampoo about once a month (all the other times I use a co-wash”> and this bottle has lasted me a while. I’ve used it maybe 5 or 6 times now and I’ve only used a fraction of the bottle. You don’t need to use a lot of this shampoo at once, it bubble up real nice.” – K_Frat55

MopTop Clarifying Rescue Treatment

Editors’ Choice best curly clarifying shampoo, 2014

“I really liked this product. I was a little skeptical because $10 for two ounces is spendy. I didn’t need to use a lot of this product, and I have pretty thick hair. It also created a nice lather, and did not leave my hair dry. My deep conditioning and styling products seems to work better after using this product.” – Anonymous

Briogeo Rosarco Reparative Shampoo

Editors’ Choice best curly shampoo, 2016

“I loved this because it’s gentle, it smells good and my hair feels clean but it’s not stripped. The mix of oils – Argan, coconut, rosehip – played well with my curls” – Michelle

Jessicurl Hair Cleansing Cream

NaturallyCurly Community’s Best of the Best cleanser 2009, 2010, Editors’ Choice best curly-coily shampoo 2016

“SO SLIPPERY!! Love it. It’s more on the shampoo side than the conditioner side, as far as “cleansing creams” go. As in it lathers. But it’s so so so slippery that i understand why this is a cleansing cream. It’s magic. I stopped using liquid cleansers because they were also so drying and I switched to shampoo bars which have some slip to them. This gave me hope! lol I don’t even understand how it works but it works!! Will continue using.” – atx_eve

Soultanicals “Honey, I Shrunk the Frizz!” Strand-Poo Bar

Editors’ Choice best curly & coily shampoo bar, 2016

“I used a shampoo bar once, years ago, and my hair felt so dry that I assumed all shampoo bars were like this and swore them off. I’m so glad I ordered this to try during a recent sale. Very cleansing without being drying and so mild I even used it to wash my 2 year old’s hair tonight with no worries of it turning into a matted mess. I sliced my bar into several slivers to make it easier to use an anticipate this bar lasting a good while. Great value. Thank you!” – Anastasia

EDEN Bodyworks Peppermint Tea Tree Shampoo

Editors’ Choice best curly-coily (Type 3c”> clarifying shampoo 2015, and best curly-coily shampoo 2014

“This is one of my FAVORITE shampoos! I love the smell and the little tingle. It really get my hair clean without stripping it. I have 3c hair and it gets dirty pretty quickly because I workout a lot, so I love to use a cleanser that is gentle but actually gets the job done. This one is it. The ingredients are pretty great too.” – Anonymous

 Wavy Favorites

Honey Baby Naturals Honeychild Moisture & Scalp Balance

Editors’ Choice best wavy shampoo, 2016

“I swim everyday and wash my hair everyday. I am always looking for moisturizing shampoos. This shampoo is the best! It really gets my hair clean without drying out my curls. It has a great lather and smells amazing. I use all of the products in the line and I love them!!!” – gisele22

*Editor’s note: this is a children’s product, but our editors and community members love using it on curls of all ages

NYC Curls The Curl Cleanser

Editors’ Choice best wavy cleansing conditioner, 2015, 2016

“This cleanser is amazing! No suds, but its easy to scrub my scalp and it doesn’t leave my hair feeling super dry after a cleanse (which is common for me”>. This is a cleanser I wouldn’t mind using over and over.” – susonnahg

Briogeo Be Gentle, Be Kind Shampoo

Editors’ Choice best wavy clarifying shampoo, 2015

“Gentle and kind cleansing shampoo I co-wash on an everyday basis, but once a month I like to rid my hair of all build up in order to start anew with completely clean tresses. This shampoo is amazing for this purpose! It cleans my hair thoroughly without damaging it and without adding any moisturizing agents. This makes the perfect clean canvas for the Don’t Despair, Repair hair mask, which is also from Briogeo. Since I only use it once a month it also last a long time. I am thoroughly satisfied.” – Anonymous

Elucence Moisture Benefits Shampoo

Editors’ Choice best wavy shampoo, 2015

“I actually own this shampoo in liter size. Now, when it comes to shampoos, most of them that i have tried don’t impress me at all (and this includes both sukfate free and non sulfate free shampoos”>., Plus, with alot of them, you don’t know if their ph balanced ornot. With this shampoo, the ph of it is provided on the bottle, and because it has a very concentrated formula, a little bit of this stuff goes a long way. After i use it, it doesn’t leave my hair tangled and dried out ever. Normally, i am not a huge fan of peach scented products. This shampoo has a mild peach scent to it, that almost borders upon some type of peach drink. Overall, this is definitely one shampoo that i will continue to purchase over and over again for sure!” – reservechic

U R Curly Soya Shampoo

Editors’ Choice best wavy shampoo, 2014

“I totally loved this shampoo. My scalp felt amazing when I left it on. Loved the tingle, and I could easily run my fingers through to detangle a little bit while I left the shampoo on. It felt clean and fresh afterwards. Add in the conditioner, and I was totally hooked.” – KamiRushell

Ouidad Cleansing Oil

Editors’ Choice best wavy cleansing conditioner 2014

“Hands down this is one of the best conditioners I’ve ever used in my life! Talk about an amazing shampoo that really and truly does not leave your hair stripped! My hair and scalp felt clean yet not dry and tangled as it always is with other shampoos! It has a very lovely light fragrance too which is just amazing! I got my sister hooked on this shampoo too. Trust me, you will not regret trying it! The ingredients list is pretty spectacular too and a little goes a looonnggg way! So it will last a long time. It lathers beautifully and makes my hair feel like I just left a salon/spa. I love ouidad and their luxurious products never disappoint!” – nknaturals

Elucence Volume Clarifying Shampoo

Editors’ Choice best wavy clarifying shampoo 2015

“I love this shampoo! I have fine, frizzy, 2c hair, and it feels so clean and bouncy after I use this product. You’re supposed to leave it on for a few minutes, and you can actually feel your hair plumping up as it sits there. Also, can’t beat the price!” – Anonymous

Did your favorite make the list? Share your Holy Grail cleanser down below!

Can This New Liquid Lipstick Last a Day in My Life? We Put it to the Test
*This post is sponsored by [Maybelline](”>.* Can This New Liquid Lipstick Last a Day in My Life We Put it to the Test I recently moved from Austin to New York City, and that’s meant trading in the climate-controlled comfort of air conditioned everything for the heat and humidity of city sidewalks and subway stations. My morning beauty routine now centers on making sure I don’t lose all my makeup and curl definition by 9:00 a.m. It’s been a process of finding curl products with enough hold to last the day, but enough flexibility to still achieve big volume. Long-lasting foundation that still looks like my skin. Lipstick that can survive through lunch without drying and flaking away. I’m still working on the first two, but I finally found the last one. I’ve been testing Maybelline’s new [SuperStay Matte Ink City Edition](″> line, which comes in 10 warm-toned shades inspired by the defining bricks of New York City and are formulated to last 16 hours. Think rusted reds, burnt siennas, and even a deep blue (you know I love a blue lip”>! Was it specifically made for me to celebrate and help me with my move? I think yes.* **This collection was not really formulated just for me. And this article is sponsored but my opinions are as real as the cupcake I’m eating here.* Can This New Liquid Lipstick Last a Day in My Life We Put it to the Test ### My criteria – How quickly can I apply it? – How many meals can I eat without reapplying? – How long can I feel confident that my lipstick is still on my lips? ### My methodology – Applying it in three minutes or less on the subway – Eating high impact foods like tacos and sandwiches – Wearing it in sweaty conditions, like my 8:00 class Can This New Liquid Lipstick Last a Day in My Life We Put it to the Test ###### Crystal is applying the shade Artist Can This New Liquid Lipstick Last a Day in My Life We Put it to the Test ###### I’m applying Globetrotter #### How quickly can I apply it? Have you ever had a liquid lipstick that’s so liquidy you have to dry it out for a few minutes before you could safely apply it? Or one that’s so dry you have to put it on as if on fast forward? Me too, so I’m happy to report that this goes on smooth and opaque with just a few strokes. The arrow applicator makes it easy to evenly fill in my lips and then create a clean line at the edges. With the navy I like a precise line, but with the more natural colors I like to blur the edges out with the side of the brush. The finish is matte and not glossy or sticky, but not so matte that it looks like all the moisture has been sucked out of you. I actually wasn’t sure that it had dried completely when I first applied it because it didn’t look as dry as the liquid lip products I’m used to, but I rubbed my fingers in it to be sure and it didn’t budge. Can This New Liquid Lipstick Last a Day in My Life We Put it to the Test Can This New Liquid Lipstick Last a Day in My Life We Put it to the Test #### How many meals can I eat without reapplying? Everyone who knows me knows I’m an enthusiastic eater. I don’t let my hair, makeup, or my clothes hold me back when it comes to eating, so let me pull out my hair tie and wear only unrestrictive waistbands while I eat this pizza! Yesterday, I applied the Globetrotter shade to my lips in the morning, then I had a breakfast smoothie, tacos for lunch, an apple with peanut butter for my afternoon snack, spaghetti for dinner, and toast with yogurt for my evening snack. Yes, I have an evening snack. And yes, the lipstick survived. After lunch the color was still vibrant and had not moved, after dinner it was just starting to fade evenly, and after my evening snack (around 9:00 p.m.”> it had started to fade in the center of my bottom lip. If you follow me on [Instagram](”>, you will have seen this progression and have probably been wondering why I wear lipstick to yoga. Can This New Liquid Lipstick Last a Day in My Life We Put it to the Test Can This New Liquid Lipstick Last a Day in My Life We Put it to the Test #### How long can I feel confident that my lipstick is still on my lips? This is important because I’ve been meeting so many new people for work and going on friend dates with new potential friends (like Crystal here, who I met at a NaturallyCurly event”>. Meeting new people can be awkward and stressful enough as it is — I don’t need the added worry of wondering whether I have lipstick flakes in my teeth. Not only did the SuperStay Matte Ink stay put, it also didn’t dry my lips into a permanent pucker the way other matte lip products have made me do. Can This New Liquid Lipstick Last a Day in My Life We Put it to the Test Can This New Liquid Lipstick Last a Day in My Life We Put it to the Test Overall, I’ve been impressed that a lip product could stand up to my 5 meals a day. Yes, this is sponsored by Maybelline, but even after this publishes I’m going to keep wearing these lipsticks – just not to yoga. The 10 shades of SuperStay Matte Ink City Edition will be available nationwide in January 2019 for less than $10. If you were at or near our Texture On the Runway event during New York Fashion Week, you would have gotten your own SuperStay Matte Ink from our street team who was handing them out for free!
@ohwendyoh Shares Her Most Inspiring Moments of Texture On The Runway 2018
ohwendyoh Shares Her Most Inspiring Moments of Texture On The Runway 2018

Even though Texture On the Runway has ended, we’re still on a high from all the love and support we received from each and every one of you who showed up and showed out. From the amazing attendees to the fierce brands who truly showcased what it means to present, this was definitely our biggest event yet. In case you missed the show, we tapped Wendy to find out what her most magical moments were from TOTR, keep reading to find out. 

### What was your favorite part of Texture On the Runway? I had a lot of favorite parts honestly, but one thing that stood out to me was definitely Lisa Price rapping for Carol’s Daughter. I’ve met her so many times and I’ve never seen that side of her. I loved how all of the owners were so involved with the whole entire project. You could tell because they came out on the stage and they were in the show as well. It was awesome to see great pride. Also I really enjoyed SheaMoisture’s live reggae artist; I literally took my jacket off because I was dancing so hard. I would say my favorite part overall was Mielle Organics. Her team was wild and the models were like different powerful animals like jaguars and lions and they were fighting for the crown. I paid special attention to the end when she gave them all crowns — there’s enough to go around, we all can be queens and we have more power and opportunities when we work together. I loved the overall message of the entire show. And of course the goody bags were just off the hook. I’m always in for a good goody bag. ### Are there any products that you’re excited to try from the goody bag? My sister and best friend were there and they’ve been telling me how much they’re loving the Camille Rose Oud Rich Infusion Moisture Treatment that came in the bag. My sister actually called me because she has issues with her edges and keeping moisture and she’s literally raving about it, so I’ll have to try that. ### Were there any looks that you saw on the runway that stood out to you? I did like when SheaMoisture brought someone I follow who has dreadlocks on stage, and I really appreciate the diversity of their products. Her hairstyle was really cool. It was a mohawk, and her dreads are down to her tailbone and they were able to create a mohawk with it. That was awesome to see. ### How did you feel watching the show? One word: inspired. First of all, you get to meet people you probably stalk online, which is cool. You get to have conversations one on one and see that they’re real people; they’re the same as you. They’re just a person who has decided to follow this path, be consistent, and you can see that in yourself and see that you can do whatever you want to do, too. Attending the show two years in a row has shown that to me. Not only do you get to speak to other influencers and people in the industry, but you get to meet the founders of these amazing lines. Meeting the co-founder of NaturallyCurly was really inspiring to see how down to earth she is. It’s a community feel that NaturallyCurly creates with Texture On the Runway because no one’s separated, no one’s on a higher plain, we’re all here together supporting and loving each other. That’s what the show is to me. I always leave inspired. ### Can you describe what it’s like to be an attendee? I actually forgot that I was an influencer when I was there because I was going up to so many people there and feeling excited to meet them, so it was a surprise when people were doing the same to me! ### As an influencer you probably go to other events. Is there anything you feel sets Texture On the Runway apart? Definitely the size of the event. It’s one of the biggest events in the hair realm that isn’t an expo or a convention. It’s an event to appreciate curls – or any kind of hair, honestly – and it’s very inclusive. Pairing it with fashion is something you really don’t see. he grandness of the show is incredible, too It was way bigger this year than it was last year, and you can really see the effort in every aspect of the show from making sure people have things to drink (a lot of people don’t think about that!”> making sure there’s enough room, and ensuring we weren’t hot or overheated. You could just see that every part of the event was carefully thought of and everyone was treated well. It’s one of the biggest events I go to throughout the year, and everybody is there, for real. Everybody is there — I got to meet so many awesome people. It’s really hard to compare to any other event because there’s really no event like Texture On the Runway that I’ve gone to. ### Anything else you want to add that stands out in your memory of the show? Next year I hope there’s another after-party like there was this year! I really, really enjoyed the after-show. Everyone was dancing and hanging out. That was the best finale because you had just watched an awesome show and got to meet all of your friends. Just the fact that we get to stick around and talk to everybody and not rush out was great. I saw all of the NaturallyCurly staff dancing and getting down, toasting to the achievement. I thought it was so cool to see how excited everyone was after the show because sometimes people are just stressed and worrying about things that they think might have gone wrong but the team was celebrating and it was cool to see the community.
These are Our Monthly Favorites of September

We’re constantly testing products, reviewing shows, and sharing our self care practices with each other in the NaturallyCurly headquarters, and we thought we’d share our findings with you! In exchange, we want to hear your favorites down below.

Kiana, Social Media Manager

These are Our Monthly Favorites of September

Paula’s Choice customized skincare

Last month I started a dedicated skincare regimen of 7 products from Paula’s Choice by using their skincare routine finder. My results determined that I needed a light daily cleanser, a moisturizing toner, a bha exfoliant, their niacinamide booster for small spots, an eye cream, an spf moisturizer, and a night moisturizing creme. I know this sounds like a lot, but my skin has never been more even, smooth, clear, and radiant. I’m obsessed.

You can call me lazy all you want, but after a long day at work who really wants to drive through traffic to go to the grocery store and then wait in a long line with other disgruntled shoppers and still make dinner when you finally get home? NOT ME. Since I already have amazon prime, I’ve started getting free 2-hour delivery from whole foods for my weekly groceries. You can order it ahead of tie and choose when you want your items to be delivered based on when you will be home. I essentially order the same things each week and spend less money because I don’t have the chance to impulse buy while walking through the aisles. 

Room 25 by Noname

 This is Noname’s second album but the first album of hers I have listened to all the way through. I loved her feature on Chance the Rappers album Coloring Book, and was excited to hear she had dropped a solo album in September. As a poet and rapper, her sound is really unique and reminiscent of spoken word poetry. While her lyrics are definitely my favorite part of the album, they are perfectly matched with a jazzy, neo-soul sound that works to supplement her words and not distract from them. Room 25 is the perfect album to help propel you through the work week!

Alexandra, Content Editor

These are Our Monthly Favorites of September

Sashapure Perfectly Defining Curl Cream

Lately, I’ve been using mousses and gels to give me the ultimate definition to combat frizz during these humid months. I recently started using the Sashapure collection and I’m obsessed with the entire line! The curl cream is a new favorite because not only is it a light-weight cream that smells amazing, but it works as a cream and gel that instantly moisturizes and defines my curls. 

Raeka Beauty Turmeric Orange Peel Off Mask

 I live for a good glow and this peel-off mask is an essential for glowing skin! Not only does this Turmeric Orange mask make my skin soft, hydrated and glowing, it unclogs my pores and dries out any pimples so I don’t pick them. I use this peel off mask twice a week and the results have been incredible and I’m so glad I added this to my skin care routine.

Passing Through Podcast by Nneka J

I have been listening to more podcasts lately and this is a new favorite! It’s a podcast about Nneka J, a photographer and storyteller,  who shares her revelations and wisdom collected through travel, conversation, and self-education. She’s an amazing storyteller where it feels like you’re right there alongside her experiencing every moment with her. It’s the perfect podcast to listen to to unwind and sip on your favorite wine. 

Gretchen, Editor

These are Our Monthly Favorites of September

Better Call Saul

Loving “Better Call Saul.” My husband and I were the last people in America to watch “Breaking Bad,” which we finally finished about six months ago. We gave ourselves a short ABQ break and then dove in to the Saul series. Love it. 

OPI Russian Navy 

Got my toes autumn-ized with OPI Russian Navy. Love the deep purple after summer’s fun blue hue. 

Copper Colored Curls 

Will soon be heading to the salon to add some coppery tones to my curls after a summer of caramel highlights. After being stuck on one color for, like, decades, I’m having fun experimenting with new tones. 

Cara, Graphic Designer These are Our Monthly Favorites of September

Sunday Riley Blue Moon Tranquility Cleansing Balm

I don’t really understand all the steps to a big skincare regimen, but I do know that this balm makes my face feel nice. It can be used to take off makeup—I use it mostly to clean and moisturize my face before bed. The packaging is beautiful and the jar just feels nice. 

Nyakio Quinoa Depuffing & Firming Eye Cream

This eye cream is a perfect little tube so I can travel with it easily. I put it under my eyes in the morning and am good to go. Bonus points because it does not remind me of what my grandmother was using twenty years ago, which a lot eye creams do. 

Kimono: Artists’ Colouring Book from Pepin Press

The idea of adult coloring books is kind of fun, kind of cheesy, but most of the books I’ve seen I don’t like the designs. My local art store had several—art deco, Turkish designs, etc—that were beautiful though. They are detailed and fine-lined. I’m painting one right now with water colors. It’s the fancy artwork version of the coloring book trend.

Cristina, Managing Editor

These are Our Monthly Favorites of September

The Curated Closet

Before recently moving to New York, I had to downsize my closet and ended up donating the majority of my clothes. This process, and my new environment and lifestyle, have caused me to rethink what I have in my closet and assess what clothes are best going to suit my life. The book The Curated Closet has been extremely helpful in giving me exercises to be thoughtful about what I really need. I think investing in this now could definitely help save money on unnecessary clothing purchases later!

Paula’s Choice skincare

I have been struggling with acne for 20 years so it’s safe to say I’ve tried pretty much every product and prescription on the market. Recently I started using a skincare regimen from Paula’s Choice and while there are many steps in my routine (about 5-8 steps every morning and night”> I’m loving the way my skin feels. My skin is typically very dry AND very oily. Rather than drying my skin out until it’s flaking and then trying to add moisture and bring it back to life, like most acne products I’ve tried, I like that this regimen just keeps me balanced. I’m not dry, and I’m not a complete oil slick. I still have pimples now and then – I’m not sure that will ever stop – but overall I just like the texture and the way my skin feels now.

Curly World Sham-Free Hair & Scalp Cleanser

I’ve been using Lorraine Massey’s new line Curly World since it launched and my favorite product so far is the Sham-Free shampoo. It has a wonderful (natural”> botanical scent and it leaves me feeling cleansed but not stripped. This has been especially important for hot or humid weeks where I feel like washing my hair several times in a week.

We want to know, what are you currently loving? Whether it’s a new TV show, hair product or album, let us know in the comments below.

Get Ready for Texture On the Runway with @coolcalmcurly
Get Ready for Texture On the Runway with coolcalmcurly

New York Fashion Week is just days away and that means our annual Texture On the Runway is practically here! Don’t ask us what we’re wearing; we don’t know yet! But since it’s coming up fast, I spoke with AnnMarie of @coolcalmcurly who always looks amazing.

Texture On the Runway, powered by Sally Beauty, is the place to see and be seen in the curly hair community, so you want to make sure you look and feel your best (and so do your curls”>. AnnMarie was part of our Texture On the Runway influencer squad last year and will be again this year, so I knew she’d have expert insights on how best to prepare.

You’ve been part of the TOTR influencer squad before. What stood out to you about this event?

It was above and beyond most of the typical Fashion Week shows that you see. Everyone was a bit futuristic with the hairstyles, and with the fashion itself — it just didn’t seem like your average show. What stood out about the crowd was that everyone came runway-ready. You would think that just the models would have their hair and their clothes styled for the runway, but the attendees themselves came to show out. It wasn’t just the people on the runway who had the Fashion Week vibe; everyone came out as if they were walking on the runway themselves.

Do you know what you want to wear yet?

I’m still trying to clue in on an outfit, but as far as hair I definitely wanna channel my inner SZA, especially for Fashion Week. I feel like I’m gonna do that big, lioness hair with big, tousled curls. Nothing too neat or uniform. I want it out there, messy, and wild.

What are your go-to products to get that look?

I’ll use Mielle and Camille Rose Naturals for my prepping, cleansing and conditioning. Then I’ll definitely be using my Jane Carter Solution — that gets me by on a lot of styles so I’ll be incorporating those because I have so many. I like to start out with their leave-in and then I’ll probably pull from their Curls to Go line for the styler. Their Coiling All Curls is an amazing gel that gives me really good hold.

I always like to keep my makeup more on the natural side, so I don’t think I’m going to be going for super glam. If anything, I want something that’s still gonna look natural, just enhance my natural features as is. I’m definitely going to be making sure I have my highlight on point and making sure my foundation is set for all lights, but I’m going for a more natural subtle glam this year.

What must-have items or products do you bring in your purse the night of? 

I’ll probably have a travel-size Jamaican black castor oil, and of course a hair pick and a few bobby pins. I also like to keep a lip gloss, white liner to touch up throughout the night, and my mascara.

I’ve never thought to bring white liner with me before but that’s a good idea.

That lower water line fades so easily, and I like to use the white to make your eyes pop when you’re taking pictures. So I like to keep some waterliner with me so I can make sure my eyes are looking big and bright all night.

Do you have any advice for first-time TOTR attendees?

I have two main pieces of advice. The first is to show up and show out. Like I said it’s not just the people on the runway who come in these amazing outfits with amazing hair — everyone comes in their Sunday best. So even if you are just attending, still come in your best dressed as if you were gonna be on that runway walking in front of everyone. My second piece of advice is that even though I think you should show up and show out, you should definitely be comfortable. It’s not one of those events where everyone’s sitting down looking pretty; it’s an interactive event and a very social event. So come in your best dressed but be comfortable because you’ll be on your feet, walking around, talking to other people, and checking out the vendors and products at the booths. You’ll be making your way around the event socializing with all the other beautiful women there so be ready to be on your feet.

What’s your favorite part of the event?

I’m most excited to see the ideas and looks that the brands bring to life. A lot of us prepare for fashion week all year, so I’m definitely excited to see everyone’s ideas and creativity come to life. That’s what makes Texture On the Runway what it is. It’s not basic hairstyles you see every day, or outfits that you see every day. I’m looking forward to seeing everyone’s creativity and vision come to life and to see some Black Girl Magic grace that runway.

I’m super excited for every single Texture On the Runway; it’s always an event to remember, so I’m just excited to be a part of it again this year.

Tune in tomorrow on our Facebook and Instagram to see the show live!

Get Ready With @Naturallyshesdope for Texture On the Runway
Get Ready With Naturallyshesdope for Texture On the Runway

If you’ve ever been on the hunt for natural hair inspo on Instagram, there’s a good chance you’ve come across the amazing feed of @naturallyshesdope. I recently spoke with the LaToya, the founder of @naturallyshesdope, about the styles that are inspiring her right now and the look she might be trying as we get ready for this year’s Texture On the Runway. 

Texture On the Runway, powered by Sally Beauty, is the place to see and be seen in the curly hair community, so you want to make sure you look and feel your best (and so do your curls”>. This will be LaToya’s third time attending our annual show at Fashion Week, and as she is a repeat member of our influencer squad I knew she’d have expert insights on how best to prepare.

You’ve been part of the TOTR influencer squad before; what stood out to you about this event?

Last year to me, it was like next level. Everyone came with their A game. The show could have been in competition with any show at Fashion Week. From the atmosphere to the hairstyles, the brands thought outside of the box; they incorporated the dancing and performers. I think this year people will probably take it to the next level and I’m excited to see that. 

Do you have any advice for first-time TOTR attendees?

That’s funny — I was just talking to my friend about this. I told her to just come fly, make sure you have your camera, make sure you have your portable charger because you’ll be wanting to take pictures and post on Insta stories so much that your phone will be dead. Make sure you mingle! There are so many different people at Texture On the Runway; it’s not like your usual hair event where you’re used to seeing the same people. There are all types of influencers there; you have people from Sally’s, people from NaturallyCurly, photographers, stylists, brand representatives. You’ll be meeting so many people so I always say “bring your business cards.” Make sure you just network and be open to people. I think sometimes people are intimidated by things that are different or outside their comfort zone, but I feel like this is the perfect place to network. I’ve met so many people and I haven’t had any bad experiences. So come, and don’t be nervous to talk to anyone. If you see someone you’ve always wanted to meet and they’re right there in front of you, go say “hi.” Be prepared to network with everyone, and also enjoy yourself!

What hair and beauty trends have you been seeing and loving most this year?

People are getting more comfortable with big hair now, not just in one particular texture, but all textures. In the past I think people felt like “oh it’s too much” or “it’s too big” but now people are really stepping out and embracing that. I’m excited to see how people are using protective styles to create even bigger hair right now. I like what people are doing with long ponytail braids or buns. So this year I think we’ll see a lot of super big, super-funky styles that are just – dope!

Do you know what you want to do with your hair yet?

No, I’m not sure. I really wanna cut my hair – like, off. But we’ll see how that goes. I definitely want to do something different. I know the ladies are using to seeing me with a lot of protective styles. Because my birthday just passed I’m feeling like doing something different. I’m thinking a tapered cut, but don’t hold me to that!

Have you figured out what you want to wear? What’s inspiring your look right now?

I’m seeing a lot of thicker women wearing flowy pieces and I wasn’t really comfortable with that style but it’s something I want to try. I was actually just looking at something online, so I’m thinking something flowy, sexy, but not too much. Something that will look nice on all sizes. Maybe a two-piece, show a little stomach but not too much. I’m liking wide pants.

As far as makeup I would say I want to go colorful. It’s still summer so I can still do colorful eyes. 

Do you have a go-to hairstyle for special events?

I don’t like to wear my hair out for big events! I’m always trying to rush my makeup in the last minute. So protective styles are just easier for me and I don’t have to worry about them. I do want to try something new though, so if you see me and my twist out’s looking crazy you’ll know it was because I tried something different!

For inspiration I usually like to scroll my page and other natural hair pages to see what’s going on and the vibe that’s happening. But what I love about texture is that you can see so many different styles — there’s not just one thing trending. Whether it’s the hair or the clothes, there’s something for everybody and everybody’s different.

What are your go-to products that you use when you want to look and feel your best?

My favorite products to prep are by Camille Rose, and I love The Mane Choice Ancient Egyptian Shampoo. I know you’re not supposed to be mixing brands but I do. Then I use the Mielle Babassu Oil & Mint Deep Conditioner. I know those are at Sally’s too because I’m always there! As for makeup, I always go for the Ardell Wispies lashes, and they’re always sold out so there’s this one Sally’s by my old house and I drive all the way there because it’s the one Sally’s where the lashes don’t sell out. Everybody loves the Wispies. I take everything off the rack, they’re probably so mad, but it’s the only place I can get them! 

What must-have items or products do you bring in your purse the night of? 

Edge control. For sure. I use the Mielle Edge Control and I make sure I have that in my purse. And eyelash glue, just in case the wind is not in my favor that night. I also bring tweezers and lip gloss. Especially for pictures. 

What’s your favorite part of the event?

I get so excited because I know the brands are gonna go hard. I would like to say, since this will be my third time coming, that you guys are next level for real. I was recently telling a friend this too; everything last year was just perfect from beginning to end. Everything you guys do is amazing, so I know it’s gonna be a whole new level this year. I’m so excited, and thank you for inviting me.


Get Ready With MoKnowsHair for Texture On the Runway
Get Ready With MoKnowsHair for Texture On the Runway

NaturallyCurly’s annual Texture On the Runway is quickly approaching, and while the brands are busy planning their runway collections we’re busy figuring out what to wear and do with our own hair!

Texture On the Runway, powered by Sally Beauty, is the place to see and be seen in the curly hair community, so you want to make sure you look and feel your best (and so do your curls”>. I recently chatted with Monica, the founder of MoKnowsHair and this year’s lead influencer, to see how she’s prepping for the big night. As a licensed cosmetologist, a natural hair community icon, and last year’s co-emcee, I can’t think of anyone better to get the scoop from.

You’ve emceed Texture On the Runway before, what stood out to you about this event?

I think what makes TOTR different from other fashion week events is that it does feature style and hair on women of color, particularly African American women. We typically are not featured in the fashion space, so this is an opportunity for us to show our style. It’s an opportunity to show the versatility of textured hair – in all types of styles – and to share that influence with the world because a lot of cultures pull from our style and influence, and we aren’t always given the opportunity to be represented.

What’s your favorite part of the event?

I really like how the brands go all out on the stage show, we’ve had singers, we’ve had dancers, I mean it’s just so cool to see their level of creativity and how they mix in hairstyles with a theme and bring it all to life. I feel like they do such a great job on the costuming, everything. It’s really cool to see this side of the brands and Sally Beauty – you’re used to seeing products in stores, but here they get to showcase their personality.

Do you have any advice for first-time TOTR attendees?

Bring a portable phone charger! Because you will definitely be using your phone a lot, you’ll want to take lots of pictures because it’s such a beautiful sight. Make sure you have your phone charger so you don’t lose out and come ready to be inspired by all of the looks.

What other must-have items or products do you bring in your purse the night of? 

Before the event I’ll usually apply Ardell lashes for any beauty look, and the Ion Luxe Workable Shine Hairspray, and I like to bring Palladio Rice Paper Blotting Tissues and a hair pick with me.

What hair and beauty trends have you been seeing and loving most this year?

I love the artistic ways people are treating their hair as an accessory, rather than sticking to just a couple of styles. One of the cool trends I love seeing is the use of temporary color for adding pops of color to your look. It makes it more artistic without having to bleach the hair to achieve the color. I’m also seeing a whole lot of hair accessories with braiding – chords, beads, jewels – to give hair more of an artistic flair.

Overall I think it’s really cool how trends within the natural hair community have been evolving. In the beginning everything was a lot more focused on creating a “perfect” style. Now people are becoming more comfortable with their natural texture, “whatever it looks like is what it looks like and it’s beautiful.“ Right now there’s a big focus on taking care of your hair, not making it look like someone else’s.

Get Ready With MoKnowsHair for Texture On the Runway

Image: Texture On the Runway 2017, by Corey Reese Photography

Do you know what you’ll be wearing or what you want to do with your hair yet?

I actually don’t know what I’m wearing yet! I like to wait and see how I’m feeling closer to an event. Sometimes I might see a picture or something on TV that inspires me, it doesn’t have to be clothing related – a color, or a pattern to spark some interest – and then I’ll try to hunt down a piece and build around it.

We can’t wait to see what you come up with, and look forward to seeing you at TOTR!

I’m excited to see what Sally Beauty and the brands come up with this year, definitely. I don’t know how they’re gonna top last year, every year the stakes get higher!