You’re at peace with your natural hair—finally! You’ve got a few go-to styles and styling products that make your curls and coils swing and shine. But therein lies the problem: your curls AND coils. Though you’ve got a routine that works, you’re still not sure of how to handle the multiple textures and curl patterns you’ve got happening at any given moment atop your head. No worries. Here are five ideas to help marry your hair textures and make styling it less complicated.
Choose a Tool
Taming your hair’s split personality is as easy as choosing the proper tool. A Denman brush, when used properly, creates a smooth, uniform curl in areas that lack definition in the curl pattern, or with hair that has dueling textures. When using a Denman brush, thoroughly detangle the hair and use a conditioner with lots of slip. Brush sections of the hair instead of swiping through your hair in one pass in order to reduce breakage and prevent your newly perfect curls from looking like a shrunken helmet. Squeeze out excess water to avoid disturbing the curl. Another “tool” you can use to get a more uniform curl is your finger. Take small sections—about two inches or less in width—and twist the hair around your index finger to create a more seamless texture at the ends of your hair. Although it won’t be as uniform as using a Denman brush, this is a good option too
Parting your hair on your ‘best side’ is an easy solution for mismatched textures. A braided or twisted bang area is perfect for your bangs if they are more fine and straight and come off as droopy. And if you’re feeling vintage, victory rolls are perfect for when your problem area is above the ears. The secret here is to make sure you’ve got the basics with you when you’re on the go: a few hairpins, bobby pins, a ponytail holder and a small container filled with your favorite conditioner. Most if not all of these things can fit in an old breath mint tin.
Diffuse and Dry
Use your blow dryer with a diffuser to speed the drying time on areas that tend to droop. For areas on your head that tend to shrink, using the blow dryer with or without the diffuser to elongate hair at the root is a quick fix—especially if you’ve got differing hair textures on either side of your head. If you’re getting ready for a night out and have 15 minutes to spend under the a hooded dryer, do what I call a ‘soft braid out.’ Braid your hair while wet and sit under a hooded dryer for 15 minutes (or wrap in a T-shirt if you’re air drying while doing your makeup). Then, as a last step before leaving your house, undo the braids. Your hair will be damp, but the impression from the braids merges your textures together.
Mix and Match Styling Products
When dealing with multiple textures on one head, you’ve likely tried styling products that worked awesome on one area of your hair, yet were ‘meh’ when it came to the other parts. Pull out some of those product fails and try using the heavier ones on areas that are coiled tightly and that tend to shrink, while using the lighter products on areas that tend to droop or wave. If you’ve got a traditionally stubborn kitchen, try using a conditioning gel or edge control gel on those areas to keep them smooth and similarly textured.
The Tried and True Method
When in doubt, or if you just don’t have the patience to try something new on a Sunday night because you know you won’t have the energy (or the caffeine!) to deal with a mishap on Monday morning, go with a braid out or twist out using your favorite curling cream, setting lotion or frizz control product. You’ve heard this one over and over again. It’s always mentioned as a solution because it’s easy and it usually works well. If it ain’t broke, why fix it?