I’m sure you’re probably wondering what on earth I’m talking about when I say ‘understanding’ your curls…but it really is a thing!
Curl texture, patterns and also behaviours are a thing that us Naturalists need to be aware of…in any case, examining your hair to get the answer to what type of texture or pattern you have, is an essential to getting the most out of your curls but also to get the best results from the products that you use.
P R O D U C T S
For a long time, I used a number of high-end natural hair products and thought that anything below a £10.00 pricing meant that the product wouldn’t be worth my while…wrong!
I learnt at the end of last year, that no matter how expensive the products you use are, if you aren’t using the ‘right’ ones for your hair type, you might as well throw them away…I know that might seem a little extreme, but have some empathy for ya girl after having purchased a number of £18-£20 products and still having a head full of frizz and no definition!!!
I haven’t completely
‘X’d out any expensive products from my regular hair routine, but I’ve now incorporated products within a much more reasonable price range which my curls respond well to!
P O R O S I T Y
Learning what porosity level your hair is, will ensure that you are getting the best results from your products.
I learnt recently that my hair has a high porosity, which essentially means that my hair absorbs moisture quite well but doesn’t retain it over a long period of time. I’m attempting to combat that by using natural oils, like coconut oil, after I’ve washed my hair and just before I put any other products in it for styling. If I miss out the step of using coconut oil, I find that no matter what products I use to style, it inevitably will become quite frizzy and dry.
T E X T U R E / T Y P E
A question that a Naturalist might hear a lot is “What type curls do you have?” This refers to the texture of your hair and the diagram below should help you to understand it a little better. As a general outline, my hair type is more in line with 3B, however some areas which have previously been more damaged are closer to 3A and those which haven’t had much exposure or damage are 3C.
Understanding your curl type is important, as some natural hair products for Curly hair may cater to a particular curl type. Generally products tend to be for the broader spectrum, but some might specify the actual curl type the product works best for; an example is Cantu’s Coil Calm Detangler, which works great for some of my friends who have 4C type hair, but wouldn’t work well for myself. Similarly, I’ve tried products that work amazingly for me, but a friend with more defined curls and coils may not have the same outcome.
D A M A G E
If your hair has experienced some sort of damage, it may require a different type of styling. An example of this is that I still have a little bit of heat damage, and as a result some of my curls at the centre of my scalp fall quite loosely in comparison to the rest of my curls. I find that when styling my hair, that particular area of my scalp requires products which provide more moisture and nourishment but also a product that gives the curls more definition. If you ignore this and assume that you can treat each area of your scalp the same, you’ll find that you have frizzier hair in the areas that haven’t been well taken care of and therefore those specific areas will be more prone to breakage.
It’s really important that you remember, to understand your hairs behaviours you need to take into account; Products, Porosity, Texture and Damage! Once you’ve gained a better understanding surrounding that, you’ll be able to get the most health and volume out of your curls. Always remember, what works well for one curly head, doesn’t necessarily work well for another…so take your time, examine your tresses and understand what your curls need to be at it’s healthiest form!