Curly Hair Chronicles: Pre-Wash, Wash, and Condition (& some surprisingly calm Supernatural thoughts)

All Three Products

So, I’ve got curly hair.

Proof. Curls.
Proof. Curls.

I’m a ‘mixed’ girl: between my mom and dad’s families, there’s loose curls, tight curls, and pin-straight hair. I ended up with a happy medium, with mid-sized curls. In terms of pattern, I’m a 3B in the curl world.

This past spring, I was browsing the beauty book section in my local bookstore when I stumbled across Lorraine Massey’s Curly Girl: The Handbook. I read that thing cover to cover – I love this kind of thing, so for me, it was a super interesting read.

The weirdest and most intriguing tip in this book is central to the Curly Girl Method, the method that Massey recommends to get healthy, frizzless curls: ditch shampoo.

The premise is that most styling products contain silicones for smoothing. To get the silicones out of your hair, shampoos contain sulfates. Sulfates also strip hair of its moisture, and when dry hair reaches out for moisture in the air, that creates frizz. Curly hair is the driest hair type around, so that combined with stripping sulfates just creates a vicious, frizzy cycle.

If you ditch silicone-y products, you can ditch sulfate-y shampoo. Then you can either use a sulfate-free shampoo that lathers, or a cream conditioner. This method requires lots of scalp massaging to get your scalp clean, but in the end, it’s worth it.

It requires quite the initial investment in terms of products that are sulfate and silicone-free. I must say, I haven’t completely given up my silicones; I’ve made exceptions for products that are very low on silicone.

Anyhoo, this is my pre-wash, wash, and conditioning routine, with a focus on one product for each step.

Step One: Detangle and moisturize like crazy!
Step One: Detangle and moisturize like crazy!

Before I wash, I sit down and part my hair into four sections. I then take a scoop of coconut oil, warm it up in my hands so that it melts, and smooth it over my hair. I then use my fingers – never a comb or brush, because those tend to disturb the curl pattern – to detangle and work through any knots.

Any oil will do in theory. I’ve used coconut and avocado oils and found that the avocado oil was richer and heavier, so if you have very fine hair, coconut might be a better bet. This step just returns some moisture to the hair and makes detangling before styling much easier. The oil gives some slip so that I’m not ripping at my strands in frustration (which I have done. Not wise, friends, not wise.).

Hehehe, "poo".
Step Two: Hehehe, “poo”.

DevaCurl was founded by Lorraine Massey, and the fact that I read her book probably influenced my decision to try her products. I use DevaCurl Low-Poo and One Condition for the next two steps in my cleansing routine.

In the shower, I wash and condition. To cleanse I use DevaCurl Low-Poo, which is a sulfate-free moisturizing cleanser with a light lather. I’ve used this and the DevaCurl No-Poo, which is a creamy cleanser that doesn’t lather at all, and I think I like the No-Poo better. It’s more hydrating. However, Low-Poo is a nice in-between step for those who are transitioning to a creamy, sulfate-free, latherless cleanser.

Step Three: Condition!
Step Three: Condition!

Next, I follow up with some DevaCurl One Condition. It’s a really nice conditioner that leaves my hair nice and moisturized and happy (because hair can have emotions apparently). The only downside of this conditioner is it smells slightly of public bathroom – a clean public bathroom, if that helps at all. That surprised me initially and I wasn’t crazy about it, but the product works well enough that I’m willing to overlook it.

Any other curlies have suggestions for great hair oils or cleansing/conditioning products?

In other news, I’m all caught up on Supernatural.

SPOILERS AHEAD!

I was putting off watching the past two weeks’ because I was scared Charlie would get trapped in Oz and she’s my absolute favourite. But knowing that she chose it…I’m okay with it. And I totally ship her and Dorothy.

The dog episode was hilarious. I love that whole monster-of-the-week setup, it’s really reminiscent of season 1. Makes me all nostalgifuzzy.

These were both pretty light, non-soul-crushing episodes, although Sam is obvi gonna get wise to the Zeke situation soon. I still cannot believe Dean has managed to keep it from him this long. I’m like 90% sure it’s just a plot-device they’re going to keep to crush us all in the mid-season finale.

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