Taking Care of My Curls: A Journey and How-to-Guide


Beginning a few months ago, I introduced the curly hair routine to my wavy-haired friend in desperate need of a scrunch and plop situation. Since then, I have made a pretty impressive outreach to several other people including my friend’s mom. 

While this is enough to make anyone feel powerful, I started to think about the reason having curly/wavy hair was beginning to be much more sought after. 

Even though it feels quite cliche to say now, I often marvelled at straight hair when I was younger and hoped the slight waves I was developing would make their disappearance as quickly as they had appeared.

While I did not have to deal with curly hair until my late middle school years, that also meant I was not adept to dealing with curls or waves at all. The only other person with curls was my mom, but I was not sure if I wanted to be as identifiable by my hair as she was. My hair had not reached the place it is at now, a more voluminous consistent pattern of looser curls, but was rather a frizzy, over-gelled wavy/ringlet mess. I had yet to learn about my hair type, what a curl pattern was, or anything having to do with hair porosity. 

I am not sure if this was due to insecurities I had with my hair or because of the standard of beauty pressed onto me as a child, but nevertheless I was afraid to actually take care of my hair because that would mean that I had to embrace the hair I had and enhance the curls I was starting to develop. The hours I spent in front of my mirror examining and cursing my hair never seemed to end as everyone around me had beautiful straight hair that only needed a mere brushing to look good.

One night my mom saw the struggle I was going through and gave me some hair products to try out that sisn;t seem too daunting. I realized that I always admired my mom’s curl regime and that she got to use all kinds of products on her hair while I only used shampoo and conditioner. It was through this excitement of using different products where my journey to appreciation began. After that moment, I went through what seemed like every hair product in the DevaCurl line until I felt content with where my hair was at. The days of straightening my hair were over as I made a vow to never straighten my hair more than once a year (I haven’t straightened it since). 

While the journey to accepting and appreciating my hair was slow, I now love my curly hair. However, the gain in popularity of having some sort of pattern in your hair is something I never thought would occur. 

However, this new trend of having curly or different hair has definitely assisted the process of learning to embrace my hair. While I did not get many compliments on my hair growing up, that has quickly shifted as people now admire the hair I have. 

That being said, the constant product-changing and regimine altering process over the past several years taught me the pride that I can feel for my hair. After spending several years attempting to perfect my curl routine, I have become more proud of my hair than I thought I could be.

While some of this pride has come from the fact that natural hair is much more accepted now, I have also just taken pride in the time and energy I spent into my hair and the love that I seemed to constantly pour into it. 

This pride may also come generationally as my mom always took pride in her hair and taught me that in order to feel that sense of pride you need to look after and figure out what works for your hair. Receiving the one gel and moisturizing hair cream from my mom was momentous in that it was the start of a journey towards acceptance then pride. Finding new hair products and methods with my mom has definitely been a bonding experience and part of the reason I love my hair so much.

While my mom was the one who first taught me how to take care of my hair, the ability to pass on my knowledge to some of my friends brought a new sense of pride. 

Over the years as my self-care has slowly diminished amidst the demands of school and my extracurriculars, I have found that my hair routine, which can sometimes take upward of 30 minutes in and of itself,  is the only consistent self-care that I have done for the past few years. It may not seem like much, but the act of solely focusing on your hair, adding products, scrunching, plopping, while listening to music is practically therapeutic. 

My hair has become not only a place of pride, but also the way I have learned to take care of and find time for myself throughout high school.

And so to that, anyone with frizzy, or remotely wavy hair, I introduce to you: The Curly Hair Method:

  1. Use shampoo and conditioner products that are targeted towards curly hair (shea moisture is an amazing brand!) and make sure to check that they do not have any sulfates in them as they strip your hair of its natural oils (which are necessary for all hair types).
  2. Once you put in your conditioner after shampooing, use a wide tooth comb or your fingers to brush through your hair so that you can detangle your hair.
  3. Leave the conditioner in your hair while you wash your body, face etc. The longer the better!
  4. Once you are finished with your shower, grab a 100% cotton t-shirt or a microfiber towel (although the t-shirt is a much easier option) and scrunch your hair so that it is no longer dripping wet but still damp.
  5. After scrunching your hair you’ll want to grab any curl cream that you have (my recommended ones are below) and spread it over your hair from root to tip, you can also get a brush at this point and brush through your hair with the product to ensure even distribution.
  6. Now that you are done with the curl cream, you will want to get a gel made for holding curls (if you are more wavy than curly hair, you should use light hold gel) and scrunch the gel into your hair after squeezing a small amount onto your hands 
  7. Now that you have out gel in your hair you are ready for the plop. While I can’t effectively explain how to do this without being in person, I have attached a video that shows how to do it. 
  8. You can leave the plop in anywhere from 10 min to all night, depending on the time you have. I usually take showers in the morning, so I usually leave the plop in for around 15-30 min. 
  9. After plopping for however long you want, you can take it out and either let your hair air dry or blow dry it (my preferred method for extra volume), but make sure to use a diffuser if you are going to blow dry your hair (I recommend putting the settings to low heat and low air) 
  10. And you’re done! Just mess around with your curls to fix them a bit, but they should be much more defined than usual. This is a process and one worth perfecting as you try different products that work for your hair, but consistency is key


Recommended curl creams (for wavy/slightly curly hair):

Miss Jessie’s Multicultural Curl Cream
           Mixed Chicks Leave-in Conditioner












Devacurl Wave Maker
Aunt Jackie’s Curl La La












Recommended Gels:


DevaCurl Light Defining Gel


Aunt Jackie’s Don’t Shrink Gel
Miss Jessie’s Multicultural Clear Gel
DevaCurl Ultra Defining Gel (curlier hair)