People:”Omg, your hair is so wavy!” Me: “What about the curls?” People “Nah! You don’t have curls!” Me: “Ugh!” For years, I could never get anyone to see my hair for what it truly is. It was too wavy to be just wavy and not curly enough to be curly. This presents a problem when it comes to hair products and hair styles as it seems that there is no categories for those of us with “in between” hair. Furthermore, looking for tutorials on how to style this kind of hair usually leads to straightening it first…why? I’ve learned to love and embrace my hair, but it wasn’t easy. Dealing with the frizz and not understanding my hair type lead to so much frustration. Until now!
I will present to you what I do on a day-to-day basis to style my hair and keep it in check. I use very affordable products and only use 3-4 products at a time (I used to use up to 6 and still not get my hair how I wanted it). There will be two different options depending on whether I have time to diffuse my hair or not but you can try both and see what works for you. Ready? Let’s get started!
Day 1, Step 1-I wash and condition my hair (I do this every other day, btw). Currently, I am using Bath and Body Works’ Cherry Blossom volumizing shampoo and moisturizing conditioner (moisturizing shampoo was not available at the time of purchase but this combo works well and smells amazing!).
I try not to roughen up my hair too much in the shampoo process, so as not to create more frizz, and I detangle my hair, while saturated with conditioner, with a wide tooth comb. When I am done detangling, I rinse my hair and squeeze out the excess moisture with my hands. Once I exit the shower, I pick up my hair in a towel to drain some more moisture but try not to vigorously towel dry my hair, again to reduce frizz. ( using an old T-shirt works better ). You could also rinse out your conditioner in cold water to close the hair cuticle but cold water and I get along as well as water and oil do, so I usually opt for a warm rinse 🙂
Step 2- I let my hair out of the towel and proceed to apply a leave-in conditioner. I am currently using Suave’s Moroccan Infusion (yes, I know, this is not a “leave-in conditioner” but its what I use and is working for me):
I divide my hair in half and, using the “raking method”, I distribute the conditioner through my hair on both halves:
Step 3- Now I must decide if I am going to diffuse my hair or let it air dry.
If I am diffusing, I like to use Paul Mitchell’s Extra Body Thicken Up. Not that I need the extra body, however, for diffusing more-than-waste-long wavy/curly hair, I find that it gives my hair that extra “umph”. I apply it to my hair also using the raking method.
Now before you get all crazy and accuse me of lying about not using higher end products, I was able to find some Paul Mitchell products at a local pharmacy for $14 which, in the struggle to manage this hair, I considered reasonable.
If I am opting to let my hair air dry I use Paul Mitchell’s Express Style Round Trip. Again, using the raking method.
Note, the packaging explains to use 2-4 pumps of product…well…I use 2-4 pumps PER HALF of my hair PLUS 2 more pumps when I invert my head and scrunch the ends of my hair and the very top that goes around my forehead (to fight the frizz). This is regardless of wether or not I am diffusing.
I use a Remington Ion Diffuser that has multiple heat and speed setting. Having this variety of dryer allows me to skip a “Heat Protectant” as I dry my hair on a cooler setting that is not hot enough to damage my hair. (To test the temperature of your hair dryer, turn on the dryer and aim it at the back of your hand, if it is too hot for your hand, then it is too hot for your hair)
I then just use a clip to pick up the top half of my hair and that pretty much concludes the styling for Day 1.
At night, I braid my hair to go to bed. The more braids, the better, as it allows the curls/waves to retain their shape.
Day2- Step 1-I let my hair out of the braids and apply water to my hair, especially the area that frames my face as it is the area that frizzes the most. You can use a spray bottle but I just use my hands as I don’t like to fully saturate my hair.
Step 2- I reapply the conditioner, using just enough to add moisture to my hair but not make it greasy or heavy (about a quarter sized amount).
Step 3- I smooth the top of my hair with my fingers, and, if I must, the sides of a hair brush (just enough to smooth the hair a bit but not actually brush through the hair).
Step 4- I can use any of the Paul Mitchell products mentioned here to add some hold to my hair and fight the frizz but I usually opt for Organic, pure, Aloe Vera gel.
The reason for this, is that aloe vera contains plant fibers that help coat and protect the hair (much like it does on the skin when used for sunburns and rashes). Using just a quarter-half dollar sized amount, I rub between both my hands and smooth it over the top of my head. Any remaining amount on my hands is scrunched into the ends of my hair.
Below are some pictures of my hair after its all said and done. Keep in mind that, at the time of these pictures, it had been about 6 months since my last trim so the ends are starting to dry out. Also, all the pictures were taken on my phone and not some fancy, HD camera (I do apologize for this but the quality will improve as I acquire better blogging skills).
The above photo is what my hair looks like with the products freshly applied without diffusing.
The above photo is what my hair looks like after diffusing
The above photo is what my hair looks like once mostly air dried
Finally, the above photo is what my hair looks like the way I usually style it, just with a clip picking up half of my hair. This upper portion is what I apply the aloe vera gel to on the second day. This is also with my hair wet and ready for air drying-no diffusing.
I hope this blog has provided some of you with some new techniques for styling hair similar to mine. I did take an online hair quiz that classified my hair as being in between 2b-2c (somewhere in between a wave and curl), which was very validating for me to know that my hair type actually exists on other people’s heads and is identifiable under some sort of category. If you guys have any questions about the products, please leave them below.
I have used other products in the past including coconut oil, shea moisture products and others. Its not that those products don’t work, its that I have to use a lot more of them which leaves my hair very greasy and heavy. Please note that the above products and opinions are my own. I am not being compensated in any way, shape or form. These are just a regular’s jo’s thoughts on what works for her hair.
Have a great day everyone!