1. TOO MUCH TOUCHING. Curly hair does not react well to touch. Actually the more you run your hands through the bouncy locks, the more the roughing up the cuticle layer, causing more frizz and collapsing the curl.
2. DRINK UP. Curls need moisture! LOTS of moisture. When searching for curly hair products look for brands featuring high quality ingredients with a variety of oils to leave curly hair feeling vibrant and luxurious.
3. THE MORE THE MERRIER. Layering products creates a great effect for curls. For example, start with a leave in conditioner to balance the hair's moisture and eliminate frizz then go to a defining product to add fullness and movement rather than cocktailing the two together each product serves a purpose!
4. NO WET DOG LOOK. The infamous scrunch look is not desired by many but ends up being the result. No one with natural curls should look like they were left out in the rain.
5. WATCH OUT FOR THE LENGTH. Curly hair can be deceiving because you won't notice the growth until your "once in a blue moon" blowout, but the dead ends are still there and need to come off. A regular trim will bring back shape and life to the style.
6. BE AWARE. Not all curls are equal! Growth patterns and texture are different all over the head but especially with curls. Using products that not only enhance curls where needed, but also tame frizz .
7. START FRESH. Product build up will cause curls to loosen or flatten out. This can happen with any hair type. But when you notice your curls just aren't springing up like normal, make sure to cleanse the hair thoroughly prior to styling and check for waxes and silicones on the ingredient list of your at home product regimen.
8. CONFIDENCE IS KEY. For clients going natural, they are looking for you to validate their decision. One just needs to embrace what is natural.
9. BRUSHES STAY BACK. Brushing curly hair is not always necessary. Opt for a microfiber towel instead to blot dry and then continue to apply product.
10. EDUCATION. 65% of women have curl or wave in their hair! It's important to stay up-to-date with the latest in texture education.
Unique textures call for unique cutting techniques.
Carve and Slice
Depending on the density of the hair, one slices—takes a little—or carves—takes a lot. The technique goes to the depth of the curl, following the curvature of the curl, allowing the curls to “puzzle” into each other.
The stylists prep for a curly cut by trusting their intuitive eye and their visual eye, says “Madame Claude” The owner and creative director of Claude Thomas Salon and Spa . “If the hair is wet, you’re not seeing it in its natural form, as you wear it.”
Lacing involves cutting into a wave formation and wave pattern in a freehand fashion. This loosens up the top of the hair without layering it. This technique starts with sectioning the hair on top of the head at either side of the part. The section is about two inches on each side of the part. No tension is applied to the hair as you cut in freehand to form a wave. Lacing begins cutting from the ends of the hair toward the roots. Each section is treated separately, and only blend visually.
Tunnel cut technique is designed for highly textured hair types. It is a controlled technique in which carefully selected pieces of the hair are removed from the bulkiest sections of the hair. This technique starts with playing with the hair to find out where it is most dense, looking for the natural part and the natural direction of hair growth. This information is vital so the tunnels will always remain invisible. Cutting the tunnels in the same place every time avoids the need for over cutting and over thinning. As the hair reaches the desired length, certain tunnels are no longer needed.
This technique will add more texture to hair, slicing into the hair toward the ends and point cutting straight down into the hair. The hair is held out at a 45-degree angle, letting it fall freely, slicing directly into the hair up to one to two inches from the ends.
Three more Techniques for cutting Curly Hair
• Bricking: In this bold technique, blunt (up to 1/4 inch) snips are made throughout a section to create space between the curls. This technique helps remove density by collapsing the shape.
• Stair Stepping: Vertical sections are cut short to long, one piece at a time, 1/4 inch deep, every 1 1/2 inches or so. “Use the tips of your shears and move along the section as in a walking up or down motion
• Whittling: Sections of hair are pinched or twisted, and the tips of the shears nip along the surface of the length of the section, without cutting all the way through. This technique doesn't remove length, it creates a thatch-like texture. It’s great for short and medium length curly hair.