I have been getting a lot of questions about what I’m doing with my curls because they have been living their best life (yes, even with consistently straightening my hair) over the last couple of years. And I am really proud of that! My hair journey has been a long one, but I finally feel really happy with the health and condition of my hair. It’s usually easy to detangle, it grows quickly and is overall pretty easy to manage, which has not always been the case.
There were two shifts that happened over the last few years that I believe may have contributed to the condition of my curly hair. One, I got serious about drinking my Glowing Green Smoothies 3-4 days/week. Two, I learned I had low-porosity hair and had been taking care of my hair all wrong. So, I put a full stop on co-washing (I had mad buildup) and using coconut oil or heavy oils on my hair. I noticed my hair was finally receiving all of the awesomeness from the products I was using because it was finally squeaky clean. And my curls took off from there! So, here are the current products that are my ride or dies, and a few that have been around for years. It’s not a long list, as I keep it pretty simple, and don’t follow any type of curly girl rules. I just do and use what works for me.
Redken Extreme Shampoo – I started using this shampoo because TheGlamTwinz recommended it on their YouTube channel years ago, and I love it. It doesn’t strip my curls, has a pleasant berry smell; and I can use this shampoo when my hair is natural, and when it’s straight. The whole Extreme line is pretty great. Plus, you can usually find this salon brand on sale somewhere.
Ouai Curl Shampoo – I was using this for a long time when I ran out of my Pravana shampoo. I first received this free from work, and I was pleasantly surprised. It is super moisturizing, but also does a great job of cleansing. It’s paraben free, sulfate free, and includes their signature scent, Mercer Street. I love it. I also keep travel sizes of this line as It’s my go-to when I’m on holiday for more than a week.
Pravana Nevo Moisture Rich Sulfate-Free Shampoo – I have been a fan of this shampoo for many years. Back in my co-washing days, I actually used to alternate between this and co-washing. It has a lovely scent, it’s free of damn near every harmful or questionable ingredient, and it has minimal ingredients to boot.
Keracare Curlessence Moisturizing Leave-in Conditioner – Finding the perfect leave-in has always been a struggle for me. For the longest time, I was using Pantene, because I needed lots of slip and lots of product. And it was doing a decent job at a minimal cost. I have tried so many different leave-ins from natural hair care brands, and they just weren’t cutting it. Then one day I decided to try Keracare’s new line called Curlessence. Shout out to my girl Jessica of MahoganyCurls for recommending it. The price point was right so I figured, what can I lose? I tried the leave-in conditioner and fell in love. My hair never looked or felt better in so many ways. And I can get a solid 5-6 days with my curls still shiny, moisturized, defined and flexible. I plan to try the curling jelly next!
SHOP MY PRODUCTS!
Briogeo Don’t Despair, Repair! Deep Conditioning Mask – This is such a great deep conditioner. It’s not super heavy and glides through the hair. I noticed it does restore moisture whether my hair is straight or curly and I have fewer tangles on wash day. It is expensive but worth it.
Aussie 3-Minute Miracle Moist Deep Conditioner – If you are tight on cash or simply do not want to spend that much money on a deep conditioner, this one is a solid option and can be purchased just about anywhere on-the-go. It’s definitely one of my go-tos, since I like to alternate between a few deep conditioners.
Ouidad Climate Control Heat and Humidity Gel – What can I say? This is my holy grail. And a gel I’ve gone back to repeatedly over the years. This gel has a weightless/watery feel and provides awesome hold without the stiffness. Plus, it keeps frizz at bay. It’s that simple. Pricey but worth it.
Madam C.J. Walker Humidity Block Curl Gel – If I hadn’t discovered this at work, I probably would have never known it existed. It is amazing. The only gel I’ve found thus far to rival Ouidad. My only gripe is that it doesn’t always pair well with different leave-ins as well as Ouidad does. Also, it’s a little bit hard to find, which is why I usually circle back to my holy grail. This brand is owned by Sundial Brands which is the parent company of Shea Moisture, so maybe there’s a similar gel in one of the many Shea Moisture lines.
Detanglers in the shower
Giovanni Direct Leave-in or 50/50 Conditioner – Giovanni makes very good natural products, and I have found their conditioners to be perfect for detangling in the shower. They are also not too expensive and I’ve been using them for years.
Dove Absolute Curls Conditioner – This one is not always easy to find in the drug store or at Target, but if you find it, grab it. I’ve featured it before on the blog – it has AMAZING slip! The only drawback is the scent. It is super, super strong, but it detangles and combs through like a dream.
UPDATE: Sadly, The Dove Absolute Curls Conditioner is discontinued. I will find another alternative and update the post.
So, there you have it! That’s how I achieve my shiny, healthy, long curls with minimal steps.
Are there any products out there you think I should try for low porosity hair? Shout it out in the comments!