2011 has been a year of discovery. For so long my hair has been a slave to the flat iron. After 6 years of being natural, I still knew little about how to care for my natural curls so I continued to heat style it.
Heat Styling History
Because I knew so little about how to “tame” my natural hair, I thought my only recourse was to heat style it. I used ceramic tourmaline ionic (a lot of words to do a lot of nothing) flat irons, crimping irons and most recently the InStyler. Oh, and then there was the MaxiGlyde but that lasted less than a year before it malfunctioned.
When I wasn’t up to styling my own hair, I let the Dominicans have a go at it. They’d blow the hair with the hottest dryers on the planet. It’s a wonder I still have skin left on my scalp or any hair at all.
Thank God for The Internet
In April of this year I noticed that the hair at the crown of my head had broken almost down to the root! This was a shocking and alarming wake up call. I had to find a new way to style my hair that didn’t involve heat and I needed to find it fast.
My research began online (you know you can find virtually anything on the internet). I was led to websites like Youtube, CurlyNikki.com, and NaturallyCurly.com. While each of these sites have been helpful at getting me to understand my curly wavy hair, I still felt unfulfilled. I became a product junkie and repeatedly tried methods that resulted in fabulous results for others but just OK for me.
Still Hunting for The Magic Bullet to Revive My Curls
After repeatedly trying twist outs, braid outs, flexi rod sets and other methods to define my curls, I was still left with most straight hair. The closest method to reviving my curls was using Zizyphus. I’ll continue to use it because it makes the hair quite dense. Yet, having curly hair with little effor is what I’ve been in search of.
Fast forward to October of this year and I discovered a book, Curly Like Me: How to Grow Your Hair Healthy, Long, and Strong by Teri LaFlesh.
I’d read many hair books and articles but something in me just had to read this book by Teri. I think it was her long pretty curly hair. After reading the summary of Teri’s hair story, I figured the book would share the “magic bullet” to revive my curls.
Defining Your Curls With Plain ‘Ole Conditioner
Teri’s method of defining your curls is simple. So simple I figured there’s no way it would work for me. She’s half white so admittedly I wasn’t confident that this method would work for my hair. Still, I decided to try. What’s the worst that could happen?
To define your natural curl pattern, Teri recommends the following steps:
- After cleansing your scalp with a gentle shampoo, rinse your hair with an every day conditioner.
- Apply a heavy duty conditioner for dry damaged hair that contain a weight ingredient, slip ingredient and emollient ingredient – in that order
- LEAVE THE CONDITIONER IN YOUR HAIR and comb with a Denman brush section by section followed by smoothing the individual hairs. In the case of looser curls like mine, you can run your fingers through each section to define the curls. It’s a good thing too because it takes forever to define each individual curl.
This was such an epiphany to me. Leave the conditioner in my hair? Mish mosh! Oh but!
My first attempt was an epic fail. It took my hair over 12 hours to dry and my crown was still undefined. Yet, I refused to give up so I changed the conditioner as well as my technique and here are my dry hair results:
Surprise surprise. My hair is responding. My curl pattern is more wavy than curly so you don’t see big spirally curls. God did it but I’m satisfied :-) The best part is I didn’t need to do a twist out or braid out to achieve it.
Now I just need to perfect the technique and then let my hair do what it do. Here’s Day 2 hair still in tact (notice it’s getting curlier all by itself…I’m thrilled!):
I will continue to document my progress but I have high hopes for reviving my curls with minimal effort by simply leaving the conditioner in and defining each curl.
Have you tried this metod to define your curls? If not, do you think it’s worth trying?
For more informtion on the tightly curly method visit: How to Take Care of Our Hair: The Rules