As girls with curly hair, we are used to lists upon lists of do’s and don’ts: we’re told about things to avoid and things to try, but what about the bad habits we might already have? We don’t mean leaving a trail of your earrings in the apartment, or sitting on your kitchen counter with crackers and hummus while surfing Instagram. We as curlies have some not so great habits that we need to be aware of and fix! Here are a few to consider:
Touching our hair too much
We might be able to deny any of the rest of the habits I discuss, but no one can deny this one! Memo: Stop touching your hair! Besides the fact that it messes with the curl pattern you worked relentlessly to style, it creates tangles and invites frizz to come and ruin your masterpiece. We know it’s difficult because when your curls are a Beyoncé type of flawless, who wouldn’t want to be all up in their perfection? But seriously- stop touching your curls.
Another secret curly girl behavior that might not be as obvious to others, but we know that you do anyways and need to stop… quit comparing your curls to other people’s hair! Yes, there are Instagram stars who are caked in makeup and use airbrush filters and have seemingly perfect curls, but yours are just as gorgeous! Don’t sell yourself or your curls short: no one’s kinks or curls are the same, so instead of comparing and stressing out about your hair and what it lacks, embrace what you have and be fabulous!
There isn’t one of us who isn’t guilty of “angry detangling.” Usually it starts out as you are running behind so you start to get more aggressive with your hair. Once that doesn’t work, we fly into a “I don’t have time for this, I hate my hair right now, why is it more knotted than usual, this is taking forever, seriously Urrrrrrrghhhhh!!!” type of detangling, and we start using the brush like a hatchet and yanking t our curls. Our tip? Back away from the comb. Inhale…exhale- okay, let’s try this again. Slowly detangle, and try not to pull your own hair out in a rage! Detangle gently!
Skipping a Trim
Let’s be real, the idea of a trim at any point in time is enough to make us shudder. Some of us have a phobia of hair salons, perhaps as a result of a bad trim that we’ve had. The reality is, it’s not an every six weeks sort of thing, but once our ends start to look and feel straw-like and straggly, it’s time to trim. Don’t skip it! Communicate very clearly to your stylist how much you want trimmed off. If they aren’t familiar with curly hair, you may want to run like the wind. But if your stylist is familiar with cutting curly hair, perhaps just lightly mention that once the hair dries, there’s shrinkage, so the less hair that comes off, the better you and your curls will feel.
Yes, I said it. There is such thing as over-conditioning for you conditioning junkies out there. How do I know? Well if it already takes your hair 9 hours to dry because you didn’t rinse out all of the conditioner after shampooing, even though it’s a rinse out conditioner, and then you add a leave in conditioner on top of that…? That’s over-conditioning. Too much of anything is never good, so if you use a rinse out conditioner in the shower, RINSE IT OUT. Don’t half it: those conditioners aren’t meant to be left in, otherwise it would be labelled a “leave in” conditioner. Not to mention, over-conditioning leads to hair getting dirtier faster, and kiss volume goodbye if your hair is over conditioned!
Sorry if we’ve burst your bubble or exposed you and your habits, but the reality is, these habits are more harmful to our waves, kinks, and curls than we realize. If we want to do what’s best for our hair and be able to grow and maintain remarkable curls, we will recognize these bad habits and put better ones into place!