There comes a time where you have to step up and learn about something because one day your daughter will want to know.
Those who know me, know how many problems I have with my curly hair. I HATE my curls. They’re frizzy, gross and I just can’t do anything with them. They spend much of their life tied back in a ponytail. I used to straighten occasionally but I’ve given that up now as well. Straightening with a toddler? Yeah, ok. That sounds like a laugh…
I am quite good to my hair. I deep condition etc etc but truth be told, until recently I knew nothing about my curls. Growing up it had all been about straightening them, which didn’t help and lead to some interesting school photos. My mum didn’t know what to do with curls and consequently neither did I. So, for twenty nine years they have been cut short, straightened, treated chemically or just pulled back. My poor neglected curls are very unloved. I have treated my curls like “hair”, not like the special snowflakes that they are.
As Eden’s hair is growing (SLOWLY!) I am noticing more and more beautiful curls, waves and the start of ringlets. It looks like she is going to have absolutely gorgeous hair. So, I embarked on learning about curls and what the hell we should do with them. I never want to tell her to straighten them or just tie them back and ignore her curls. How can I instill confidence in her, if I tell her to ignore a fundamental part of herself? That’s when I discovered the “Curly Girl” method.
Curly Girl was thought up by Lorraine Massey and is discussed in her book “Curly Girl: The Handbook”. It’s about embracing your curls and helping them to reach their full potential. I joined a Facebook group about “Curly Girl Co-Washing”, which is essentially when you only wash your curls with conditioner. It goes back on a lot of things that have very much become routing for me. No harsh products, no pulling back in tight ponytails and NO BRUSHING! If you have curly hair like me and arent educated in the ways of the curl, you’d find the “no brushing” as horrifying as I did! I’m on day two now and it is working out, but it’s only day two.
So, first thing I did in “operation Curl Rescue” was headed out to buy some products. There’s a huge list on the Curly Girl Facebook page of recommended products. The recommendation is no silicones, no alcohols and no harsh chemicals that can be drying. I was delighted to find that a lot of the products were not expensive, as sometimes it can take a while to find the right one and I’m not about experimenting with expensive products that I will only use once.
So, what did I get?
Superdrug Extracts Raspberry and Macadamia Nut conditioner (£2.29) (Buy one get one free at the moment!)
Boots curl cream (£1.99)
Superdrug coconut oil (£1)
Honestly, that’s it. That’s all I bought for my new hair adventure. A grand total of £5.28 spent.
When you first start the Curly Girl regime, you do a “final wash” to strip your hair of silicone based nasties. I used Eden’s baby shampoo for this. Then I conditioned, rinsed and left to air dry.
This is where it all went a bit wrong for me, because I’m a noob. I washed late at night, so had to put my hair in a “pineapple” for bed. Needless to say, sleeping on my curls didn’t end well and I woke up to one side of fuzz. So, it’s been a fuss free ponytail for me the last couple of days. But no brushing. None. Not even a little bit. Just a bit of finger combing, coconut oil and curl cream. I can already see the difference in how my curls look and feel.
Obviously, at two days in I am still learning. Tomorrow morning, I’m going to give it a co-wash (wash using only conditioner) again and allow to air dry without going to bed in the middle. Apparently the Curly Girl method can be different for everyone, so it’s about finding your groove and what works for your curls. I’ll report back. I’ve literally never worn my hair down curly, so my aim is to be able to wear it down with confidence by December. If it would look the same dry as it does wet, that would make me happy!
2017 is the year that we embrace the curls! Come on curls! You can do this!