How to look after curly and wavy hair to tame that fluffy mane

In a bid to tame my wild hair, I've been doing some research into tricks and tips for curly manes. If you too want to turn your fluffy barnet into a sleek, wavy style that looks deliberate rather than 'just got out of bed', I've got some expert advice to get you started...

Some items in this blog post have been gifted

In a bid to tame my wild hair, I’ve been doing some research into tricks and tips for curly manes. If you too want to turn your fluffy barnet into a sleek, wavy style that looks deliberate rather than ‘just got out of bed’, I’ve got some expert advice to get you started…

Here’s hair expert Anabel Kingsley’s tips for looking after curly hair:

  • Curly hair should be treated like dry skin so look out for products that moisturise and condition without weighing the hair down.
  • Some people forgo shampooing believing that natural oils that build-up between shampoos will moisturise the hair. However, this is not the case. Hair’s pliability and elasticity is due to water, not oil content. Oils simply sit on top of the hair and if left for too long they can become rancid and irritate the scalp.
  • To keep your scalp healthy and your hair in good condition, try to shampoo at least every other day – leaving no more than 3 days between washes. To provide your hair with extra moisture, use a pre-shampoo conditioning treatment once to twice a week.
  • Applying conditioner to your roots can make hair heavy and limp. Only apply conditioner to your mid-lengths and ends where the hair is older and needs it the most.  
  • Due to twists along the hair shafts, curly hair is prone to tangling. Never start detangling from the top, as this can result in breakage.
  • Big curly hair is often more fragile than it looks so it is worth trying a protective leave in product.

I’ve been using Philip Kingsley’s Pomegranate & Cassis Elasticizer for a couple of months and have applied it at least once a week before washing my hair. I give it a good 20+ minutes to absorb into my hair like a mask before washing it off. I shared a little review of the product when I started using it, and I have to say that I’m still enjoying the way that my hair feels after using it.

In terms of improving the texture of my wavy, curly (fluffy!) hair I wondered if changing my regular shampoo and conditioner would make a difference. I currently use quite a thick coconut oil formula, which feels very luxurious but is probably weighing down my hair. I gave Philip Kingsley’s Re-Moisturising Shampoo and Conditioner a try to see if simply changing products would help.

The shampoo promises to transform coarse hair from dry and frizzy to soft, smooth and shiny. I have to say, I wasn’t keen on the scent of these products but that’s just because they reminded me of boiled sweets I used to eat when I was a child – an unfortunate memory because it was during a time when we all had chicken pox, so I’m just not a fan of that particular scent. I can’t pinpoint what the scent is, so have a sniff for yourself and see if you like it!

Seeing as I’m trying to make the most of the natural curls in my hair I tried using Philip Kingsley’s Curl Activator after shampooing and conditioning, but before drying my hair. It’s a light, non-sticky formula that is supposed to provide curl retention, hold and shine whilst “dramatically enhancing, smoothing and separating curls”. I certainly hoped that this would be the case for me!

I distributed the Curl Activator through my wet hair and followed Anabel’s advice to start detangling from the tips, not the roots. I gave it a scrunch and then dried it with the diffuser attachment on my hairdryer, on a low heat. I was very surprised at how much more curly my hair looked than usual after drying. I even had some volume near the roots, which never happens – all my curls are usually around my shoulders.

The curls were much more defined but not ‘crunchy’ like they are when I’ve used a mousse in the past. I could still run my hands through my hair and mess it up a bit – the curls were looking a little too defined for my liking haha! I even brushed it out a bit to see what effect this would have, and the curls transformed into waves, with SO much volume. It looked like I had 50% more hair.

Amazingly enough, my husband even noticed the difference, saying (umprompted!) that my hair looked good and felt very soft. High praise indeed. When I woke up the following morning, I still had a lot of volume in my hair after brushing it out. I reactivated the waves by scrunching a little water into my hair. This created beachy waves that looked smooth rather than fluffy, so perhaps I’ll be able to give the curling iron and rollers a miss when I want to get neat waves in the future.

I’m going to try towel drying next time and just leave my hair to dry naturally to see how looks without the diffuser. I still need more advice for taming my wavy, fluffy hair so please let me know what you do to make the most of your curls in the comments below? Have you use a product that you particularly like? How do you get neat curls without using heat? I’d love to hear your tricks and tips 🙂

Some items in this blog post have been gifted to me and the pink links indicate a gifted product, affiliate link or information source. All thoughts and opinions in this post are based on my own experience and I am not responsible for your experience 🙂

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Cassie Fairy
Cassie is a freelance writer with a Masters degree in lifestyle promotion studies. She loves to 'get the look for less' so regularly shares thrifty fashion posts, DIY interior design ideas and low-cost recipes on her blog.

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