While all kinds of hair types are beautiful, there are definite dos and do nots when it comes to taking care of different thicknesses and textures. This is especially true for curls. Whether you've got ringlets or waves, it's important to be well-versed in how to dry curly hair, lest you could be damaging your precious strands during your beauty routine.
To share the why I got in touch with two hair styling experts to share their top tips on correctly drying curly hair. Kahh Spence, celebrity hair stylist and Carol's Daughter Style Squad member, and Damian Santiago, co-founder and curly hair expert at Mizu New York Salon, both had lots to say on the subject.
In addition to their definite dos, both had some solid tips on what not to do. "One of the main no no's when it comes to drying curly hair is brushing your hair," says Spence. "Curly hair is already prone to breakage, so brushing the hair will cause more breakage."
Santiago agrees on skipping the brush altogether, and additionally warns curly-haired folks to be careful with their towel selection. "Any fabric that is used roughly and disturbs the cuticle of curly hair is not good," he advises. "Pat dry and move on to product application."
Now, onto the things you should be doing when it comes to your curly hair routine. Check out Spence's and Santiago's top five recommendations here.
1. Without A Doubt, Definitely Use A Diffuser
"Every curly-haired individual should definitely have a diffuser, especially for drying their hair," says Spence. "The purpose of the diffuser is to dry the hair without manipulating the curl pattern. It also spreads the heat to help your curls dry evenly, which is what you want."
The Segbeauty hair dryer diffuser is one of the highest rated options because it uses ionic nano titanium technology to keep hair free of frizz, it has a lightweight and portable design, and it fits tons of models of blow dryers.
2. Use A Dryer With Low Heat Settings To Avoid Damage
Santiago agrees that a diffuser is a must have, and "perfect for all curly hair types." The dryer you use with it, however, is another matter. "Hairdryer models vary, although a low heat setting is preferred for gently drying curls in place," says Santiago. The RUSK Engineering W8less professional dryer has unbelievably high ratings (and tons of them) because it's super lightweight, uses ceramic tourmaline and far-infrared rays to minimize damage and styling time, and has a whopping seven heat and speed settings to personalize your routine, so you can gently dry your curls.
3. Pat Your Hair Dry With T-Shirt Material — Not A Towel
According to Spence, "The best type of fabrics that are less likely to cause frizz aren't towels; they're cotton t-shirts. You're probably thinking 'Seriously?,' but cotton t-shirts leave moisture in the hair and don't cause frizz."
The Ultimate T-Shirt hair towel is specifically designed to feel and work like a t-shirt, but with the convenience of a hair towel. It's made from soft, lightweight cotton, and has an elastic band in place to twist your hair out of the way while it absorbs excess water. It also comes in two different sizes and colors.
4. For Thin Curly Hair, Try A Texturizing Spray
According to Santiago, a great spray can also help to control frizzy curls when you're air drying. "I love the selection of texturizing sprays that are available now. Death Valley by R&Co [is one of] my faves." It's a great option for thinner curls that tend to feel weighed down by oils because it uses rice protein to lift and give extra volume while still allowing hair to look defined and healthy. Best of all, reviewers say that it smells amazing — like coconuts and beach vacations.
5. Use Avocado Oil When Air Drying Medium To Thick Curls
"For folks with medium to thick curly hair, oil based products are key. The Carols Daughter Hair Milk Nourishing & Conditioning Styling Pudding works well for air drying the hair. This product helps with defining and shaping the curls, along with locking in moisture," says Spence. The secret ingredient? "Avocado oil — this ingredient will leave the hair feeling soft and strong. One key factor is the styling pudding is lightweight and doesn't weigh the hair down."
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