Sometimes, taking care of curly hair can feel like a chore. There is an endless list of dos and don'ts in the curly girl handbook, an some fringes of the community can make you feel that if you commit even one little hair sin, your curls will never be healthy.
Well, it's time for it to stop! We've asked our community to share the deepest, worst 'curl sins' they have committed on their hair, and we're here to debunk them and show you how you can repair the damage. Ready to hear these curlfessions?
Sin n.1: Bleaching curly hair
It happens to the best of us, the temptation to have fun with colour is too strong 🙈 No need to panic though! Resist the urge to go over it with more colour and arm yourself with patience: apply regular Bond Curl treatments every 2-3 washes and schedule a hair trim every 6 weeks. Your curls will be back!
Sin n.2: Never using a conditioner
Conditioner is really important to keep your strands moisturised. Curly hair is dry by nature, as its natural scalp oils struggle to travel down the hair lengths due to the twist and turns of the strands. If you don't use a conditioner, you're more likely to experience dryness, frizz and breakage. If you feel like it makes your hair greasy, use a lighter formula like our Calming Conditioner and apply it only on your lengths, avoiding the root area.
Sin n.3: Brushing your curls when dry
We don't judge - our curlfriend Gena Marie does that too! While we generally don't recommend it, as conditioner on wet hair is the best way to provide slip and reduce tangles, it might not be the end of the world if you have looser type 2 or type 3 hair. Just make sure you still use some type of lubricant, like an hair oil!
Sin n.4: Box dying curly hair
This is one claim we have never heard before! Normally box dying can cause the opposite - loosen your curl pattern as it breaks the bonds into the hair shaft. However, if you religiously use our Bond Curl every time you box dye, that may be the responsible for your tighter and bouncier pattern 👀
Sin n.5: Never trimming hair
When you don't trim your hair for too long, you're setting the scene for it to become damaged. Strands get drier with time and they can break or turn into split ends. Even if your goal is to grow it longer, trimming it regularly is the best way to get there. If you can't spend the money at the salon every 3-4 months right now, check out Manes by Mell DIY tutorials!
Sin n.6: Deep conditioning overnight
That's a pretty bad habit - although pretty common in the community. Keeping the hair wet for so long swells the cuticles and can cause hygral fatigue and moisture overload. Not to mention that deep conditioners are designed as rinse-off products, so keeping them on for longer than advised is not beneficial for your curls. Use an overnight oil on dry hair instead, like our Intense Treatment Serum or our Bonding Oil.
Sin n.7: Not washing your hair enough
This one is pretty common, particularly with our type 4 girls. But like our friends at @iamblackgirlcurls would say... wash your damn hair!! How often you wash your hair is key for your mane's health. Leaving the scalp dirty that long could lead to build-up, follicle clogging, or worse even affect hair growth. Wash your hair at least weekly to keep the scalp healthy and clean.
Sin n.8: Never brushing your hair
We know the Curly Girl Method is against all sorts of brushes, but who really has the time to finger detangle a whole head of curls every wash day?? Sometime life gets in the way, but we are here to help. If your hair is matted, take it slowly. Use your slippiest conditioner (our Shine Conditioner is the best) on wet hair and start slowly from the ends. Choose a brush with flexible bristles to remove all knots with minimal breakage.
Sin n.9: Ripping out tangles
You need the right brush to melt away knots, not all of them are the same. Many people talk about wide tooth combs, but we don't find them to be the best option. Nothing's better than a brush with flexible bristles, like Tangle Teezer, to gently detangle your curls. And make sure you use it only on wet hair with plenty of conditioner to soften the knots!
Sin n.10: Sleeping with wet hair
Leaving hair wet that long is very damaging for your scalp microbiome. It can lead to damage and fungus growth (i.e. dandruff), which make your scalp itchy and flaky. What would our resident trichologist Afope Atoyebi say 🙈 Always make sure the hair is dry before going to sleep!
Sin n.11: Using a regular towel
You don't have to splash $$$ to get the benefits of a microfiber towel! We'll let you in on a secret: an old t-shirt works just as well 😉 Just make sure you're not using rough terrycloth towels, as they can create static and make your hair more frizzy.
Sin n.12: Never protecting curls while sleeping
We get it, using a bonnet is not the most glamorous bedroom attire 😂 but there are easier ways to protect your curls! Just use a satin or silk pillowcase and put your hair up in a loose ponytail, you will already see a tremendous difference.
Sin n.13: Using sulfates and silicones
There's nothing wrong with sulfates and silicones per se - if they work for your hair! Just make sure you use a clarifying shampoo every 4-5 washes, and keep track of your hair to make sure it doesn't get too dry. If it does, switch to a sulfate free option for a while and see how that goes!
How to repair any type of damage
As you can see, there's no such thing as an irreversible hair sin. Your hair health is so much more than just following a list of hard rules. The key is listening to your curls, see how they change and adapt your routine to fit with their new needs. If you feel you've gone a bit overboard and your hair is in need of some serious repair, check out our Strength Recipes to replenish its protein needs and make it stronger, elastic and bouncy!