How I Curl My Hair + Hair Care Faves – Everything I use on my hair, plus the method I use for getting big, loose curls that last all day.
A few things first:
I have a lot of very fine hair. I have a lot of hair but it’s very fine. I prefer it with some length to it, but this means it can look thinner than it is as the weight of it pulls it down.
It also has absolutely ZERO natural curl. I can air dry it, shake it out, etc. to try to get texture, but without a little product in it and some heat, it stays completely straight. Nothing I’ve tried in the past has kept curls in my hair all day.
I get balyage highlights every 2-3 months. I didn’t get my first highlights till I was 25, so I’m fairly late to the game, but I really love them. I get balyage highlights (sometimes called hair painting). They’re MUCH gentler on my hair and don’t dry out my hair like regular highlights did. The grow-out is amazing and much more natural (there are no harsh lines at the root).
I didn’t “learn” to do my hair until I was like 27. I wore my hair up almost all the way through my teens (I did lots of fancy up-dos). I didn’t like wearing it down because I couldn’t ever get it to curl, and it always just felt stringy and awkward to me. In my early 20s, straight hair was finally in, so I wore it down a lot more. It wasn’t till I heard about curling wands that I finally taught myself to curl my hair. If you’re a late bloomer like me, don’t even worry about it. You got this.
My Hair Care Routine:
1. Washing. This time of year, I wash my hair about every 3-4 days, usually Wednesdays and Sundays. In the summer, I never make it 4 days because it’s well over 100 degrees every day and I’m in a constant state of being too hot. I move to a 2-3 day schedule because otherwise things get (look, feel) gross.
2. Brushing. After a wash, I towel dry off some of the water and give it a brush with my wet brush. I swear by these. My stylist uses them, and I absolutely love them, especially for long hair or kids with sensitive heads. While my hair is still pretty damp, I use some of this Ahwapuhi Hair Whip. It smells AMAZING. I want a candle of it. It gives my hair some volume and shine without being greasy.
3. Blow Drying. I spray on a bit of volumizing spray or thickening spray, then blow dry. I usually start with my head upside down to get it mostly dry, then stand upright and use a round brush to finish. I don’t round brush my whole head since I have next to no skills with a round brush, but I use it near the end of the blow dry to create some lift at the roots.
How I Curl It.
Before curling, I add a bit of sea salt or texture spray. Then I shake it out with my fingers and pin up part of the top layer (what will fall right to the sides of my face). I’ve found I can get better curls by my face by working in layers like this.
Once I’m done curling everything, I touch up any spots that need it and then wait for all the curls to completely cool. (I usually do some of my eye makeup while waiting). Then I use my fingers to shake out the curls a bit, brush through the very ends to smooth them out, and spray everything with some hairspray. I do one last touch-up of any spots than need an extra curl, and I’m on my way!
- Wet Brush – This brush gets out the tangles without ripping your hair out. Great for sensitive heads and long hair.
- Hair Whip – This hair whip (volumizing, smoothing mousse) smells like heaven.
- Heat Protectant/Volume Spray – This one from Target or this one from Honest.
- Texture Spray – I love this Kristin Ess one (Target) or this sea salt one from Honest
- Round Brush – A nice, big round brush to get volume at the roots.
- Curling Wand – I prefer the 32mm (1 1/4-inch). Watch for sales!
- Hairspray – This one has fabulous hold but is nowhere near a natural product. My curls fall out with anything too lightweight, but I’d love to find something better for me!
- Dry Shampoo – I love this talc free baby powder or this dry shampoo