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Curly hair help?

Jessica Conant-Park

After years of straightening my hair, my neighbor (who has long, perfectly curled and stunningly beautiful hair) convinced me to wear mine curly. Now, while I love the fact that I have to do virtually nothing to it, I still need some help finding products that really do the job. She started me off with her Curls Rock curl enhancing cream and Back to Basics gel. Those definitely worked, but sort left my hair more gelled and product-laden than I really want. I tend to get lots of good curls underneath, but the top layer of my hair definitely tends to frizz. I hate paying $15 for each product since I go through them so quickly. Any suggestions for drugstore-brand products that might help keep the curls in and frizz away without giving me the over-gelled look? Thanks!
Aug 02, 2007 @ 07:44 am

4 Replies


Lots of trial and error....LONG POST!

As someone with curly hair, I can attest to the fact that is takes lot of trials to find the perfect products.

The most important products you'll need is a good shampoo, a good mousse, and a diffuser to attach to your blow dryer. I prefer the kind with long fingers. You need a very slow/low heat. Blow too hard and the hair wont get good curls or volume. oh, and flip your head upside down when you dry. Thats how I blow dry.

For me, my hair is fairly thick and my curls are ringlets, not too kinky, and more curly than wavy. And yes, I get frizz, too. I cannot use any kind of moisturizing shampoo - I always reach for a thickening shampoo. Even though they say you need to hydrate your curls, all I get is soft hair that wont hold my curls. So I usually put down any product that says "moisturizing" on the label...whether its a shampoo, cream, gel, etc...A lot of curl products tout their moisturizing ability, so that rules out a lot of products for me.

I do not use conditioner for this reason. I used to comb my hair in the shower when I have shampoo on, which helped with tangles instead of fighting them when I got out.

I do buy a lot from the salon, but sometimes from the drugstore. I'm thinking of what you can find at the drugstore..... I think the Garnier Fructis line is pretty good (shampoo, mousse). I did not like Physique mousse - an hour later my hair was so flat I couldn't believe it. I like my hair to have VOLUME. I think I liked the "Thicker Fuller Hair" shampoo. I always use a thickening spray (from the salon - Rusk brand), then follow with a curl cream (I like Bouncy Creme by ISO, again from salon). I use redken stuff too. Right now, though, I use Matrix Curl shampoo (light green bottle, cant remember the name...but did get it from the drugstore, they sometimes carry some salon products).

With mousse, there is such variety, and its hard to find a perfect one. Some are too crunchy, some actually hinder curls, some are downright crap (even the $20 salon versions)....Look for one that says volumizing, but see if it says control on the label too. Though it's no guarantee. Herbal essences curl mousse is ok, but I think it might be a little firm. If you can find a spray shine enhancer (like an anti-frizz serum to use after the hair is dry) that might help. I think i have one from either redken or matrix. don't remember. Can't think off-hand which gel is best...I think the l'oreal curl gel (it's in a small, wavy bottle) is one to try.

I can't really say which are my favorites, because I do shop around and try new things alot. If you need more info or anything, please let me know!

Aug 03, 2007 @ 01:22 pm
Jessica Conant-Park

Thank you!

This is great information! I never would have thought to try any of the volumizing/thickening products since I have such thick hair already, but that actually makes sense because I definitely don't want the gelled-to-my-head look. I want that curly volume (think early Julia Roberts!)I love the Matrix products so I might start with that brand (or even the Suave knockoffs which work well, too) and see what that takes me. Thank you so much for you great help here!
Aug 03, 2007 @ 03:01 pm

You're welcome!

I'm glad I could give you some ideas. I've tried lots of salon brands, but only a few do what I want them to do, and that seems to be Matrix and Redken most often. I don't like the Tigi Bed Head line (all gimicky packaging, with junk inside. lol), or Sebastian. I did use Paul Mitchell mousse in the past, pretty good. KMS is hit or miss for me (I currently use their curling balm/cream). I sometimes use a thickening shampoo for hair loss....I can't think of the name of the brand at the moment. I find it at the salon. Probably tailored for men, but I like that it doesn't moisturize too much.

oh, there is also this product called Aerocurl. I really like it. It's an aerosol styling spray. I find that products like this and the Rusk Thick spray work well because of the alcohol content. You get more volume this way. And definition.

Well, I hope you find some good products out there!

Aug 06, 2007 @ 12:16 am
Jessica Conant-Park

Making a list...

I'm making of list of products to stock up on! Thanks so much!

I also just found this funny book today when I was checking out at Barnes and Noble. It's called CURLY GIRL: The Handbook and has tips and tricks for styling hair, plus lots of generally cute advice about having and loving curly hair. I think I'll be happier with mine when it grows longer. And I really need a good cut for curly hair, too!

Off to finish that list now...
Aug 07, 2007 @ 07:50 pm

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