Got #curlyhairproblems? I’ve got answers! 4 tips I swear by for lovely, low-maintenance curls (REALLY.)

curly hair women

Editor’s note: Curly hair peeps! I know I’ve been ignoring you. Ever heard the phrase “write about what you know?” Well, I know nothing about curly hair. My hair couldn’t hold a curl to save its life. Luckily, we’ve got new contributor Jasmine Kabiling to share her super awesome tips. Take it away, Jasmine!

If you have thick, frizz-prone, naturally wavy/curly hair like myself, then you know it’s what bad hair days and the most volatile love-hate relationships are made of. My hair and I love each other right now (I’ll explain how this came to be in a bit), but believe me when I say that there are days when I long for straight, silky hair so I can simply get up and go in the mornings without having to deal with the Chewbacca-Medusa lovechild that decided to make its home atop my head overnight.

I can’t say that I don’t get a little jealous when I watch tutorial vids on achieving perfect Victoria’s Secret Angel hair or those gorgeous brushed-out waves, but only because it requires having somewhat straight hair to work with. My initial thought is always: “Ugh, I have to straighten my hair first? Sew. Much. Werk.” Yeah, lazy people with curly hair problems, I know. Sigh.

But listen, you CAN be lazy low-maintenance and still have beautiful hair with minimal effort.

RachelBeyonce Got #curlyhairproblems? Ive got answers! 4 tips I swear by for lovely, low maintenance curls (REALLY.)

One of the advantages of having natural waves and curls is that you already have them. It’s just a matter of taming and embracing those badboys and figuring out what products work for you. Here are a few tips that I’ve found have helped my love-hate relationship with my hair.

1. Condition, condition, condition!

I can’t stress enough how important conditioner is for curly hair. Curly hair tends to be drier than other hair types and needs a bit more TLC for this reason. When you’re showering, make sure to leave the conditioner in for at least three to five minutes and try to deep-condition your hair at least once a week.

ItsA10MiracleHairMask Got #curlyhairproblems? Ive got answers! 4 tips I swear by for lovely, low maintenance curls (REALLY.)

For everyday, I’m currently using Dove Damage Therapy Shine Boost Conditioner (I’m one of those whatever’s-in-the-shower type people, but you can buy it here for $7.49 with free shipping…) and for deep-conditioning It’s a 10 Miracle Hair Mask (above) is the bomb dot com.

2. Use an old cotton T-shirt to dry your hair… yes, a cotton T-shirt.
T Shirt 300x300 Got #curlyhairproblems? Ive got answers! 4 tips I swear by for lovely, low maintenance curls (REALLY.)

Using a towel to dry your hair after a shower = no bueno. A towel is the number one enemy of nice, smooth hair; the texture of a towel just creates more friction between your strands. I’ve recently discovered the wonders of using an old cotton t-shirt to dry my hair and I don’t see myself ever going back to using a towel. It makes a huge difference—the natural curls stay intact and there is less frizzage going on. Make sure to squeeze the excess water out of your hair after your shower and wrap your hair in the t-shirt to dry in the same way you would make a towel-turban. Just make sure you DON’T rub!

3. You know how Michelle talks about finding your Life Cut? Well, my curly-haired friends… you need to find your Life Product.

Personally, once I find a product that works on my hair and makes it look good day-in and day-out, I am fiercely loyal and will stick with it until the day it is—God forbid—discontinued. And this is why my hair and I are BFFs right now. I have found my Life Product of the moment in a bottle of John Frieda Frizz-Ease Dream Curls Curl Perfecting Spray. (Buy it here for $11.99 with, again, free shipping in Canada.)

FrizzEaseDreamCurls Got #curlyhairproblems? Ive got answers! 4 tips I swear by for lovely, low maintenance curls (REALLY.)

This stuff is amaze-in-a-bottle. After running Paul Mitchell’s Super Skinny Relaxing Balm through damp hair to get rid of the frizzies and spraying the Dream Curls all over, I leave it to air dry and ta-da… I’m ready to go. See the importance of finding a Life Product? It just makes life easier.

Now, I know that all hair is not created equal and there are different types of curls. My hair is more wavy-curly (I’m a 3A/B if you know the hair classification system), so this product may not necessarily work for you. However, there are a few products that I haven’t tried myself, but have heard rave reviews about.

Obviously, anything Moroccanoil.

Moroccanoil Got #curlyhairproblems? Ive got answers! 4 tips I swear by for lovely, low maintenance curls (REALLY.)

Yes, I am aware I may be one of the few people with curly hair that has yet to try anything from this line, but I will eventually. Like I said… once I find a Life Product, that’s it.

Shea Moisture Curl Soufflé (not pictured below) and Curl & Style Milk.
SheaMoisture Got #curlyhairproblems? Ive got answers! 4 tips I swear by for lovely, low maintenance curls (REALLY.)

These will probably work better if you have kinkier hair—type 4, if we’re getting technical—but I believe this is only available in the US. I’ve watched a few video reviews on it and it’s definitely on my “to-try” list.

4. Air is your friend.

If you have the time, let your hair air-dry as much as possible. If you must (or if your hair doesn’t have as much volume as you’d like), then you could use a diffuser, but otherwise, I am very pro-air-drying.

Sky Ferreira Got #curlyhairproblems? Ive got answers! 4 tips I swear by for lovely, low maintenance curls (REALLY.)

Also, can I just say how much I love Sky Ferreira’s hair in this photo? It’s just wild curl perfection. That is all.

Jasmine Kabiling is a Toronto-based journalism student. Follow her on Twitter: @orjasmic_.


What do you love/hate about your hair?
What are some of YOUR Life Products? (This goes for all hair types!)
Do you have any other tips for fellow curly-heads?


Wednesday, January 25/2012 at 1:43 pm

Awesome article Jasmine! I have similar hair to yours but have been blowdrying it into submission for the past few months to avoid the frustration of winter frizz. I’d love to see a followup article on haircuts that embrace curls!


Thursday, January 26/2012 at 9:45 pm

Thanks! I’ll definitely look into haircuts that work with curls for you!


Nicoletta Daskalakis
Wednesday, January 25/2012 at 1:55 pm

Hi Jasmine and welcome to the blog! I love your article and like you I have crazy curly hair! I am forever trying to pull it straight by blow-drying it to death and using a straightener. However one of my 2012 new years res is so embrace my curls! I want to be able to go running or to gym and wash and go. So a new trick I have started to go, is letting my hair dry and once it’s dry I will take a curling tong and just go around my hair to the areas I feel look frizzy (mostly on top) and curl them. Takes about 4 minutes and I am left feeling happy! I use the awesome sultra bombshell! I always tell my clients to embrace what they have, so I need to too ;) Oh and I just leave heaps of leave-in conditioner. I love love love all the oils but heat should never be applied to the hair with oil in. Thank you again and looking forward to more curly hair articles from you xx


Thursday, January 26/2012 at 9:53 pm

Hey Nicoletta, thanks for reading…I love the love on this blog! Ahh and yes, I love my curling tong as well — it has to be one of the best things that has come into my beauty life (although I must admit, sometimes I DO go through the trouble of straightening my hair and then using it *blushes*). Once you do start embracing your curls though and stop straightening it so often, you’ll probably find that they become more prominent and pretty on their own!


Wednesday, January 25/2012 at 3:17 pm

Some of the greatest wavy/curly haired tips I’ve acquired. Thanks Jasmine! Dream Curls is a great product and the cotton tee trick is fantastic!


Thursday, January 26/2012 at 10:16 pm

Anytime :) Dream Curls is my life. That is all.


Wednesday, January 25/2012 at 3:20 pm

Excellent suggestions! Further to Moroccanoil though, that stuff is awesome! Thanks for this Jasmine!


Thursday, January 26/2012 at 10:17 pm

You’re welcome Alexis! I have seriously got to get on that Moroccanoil though.


Wednesday, January 25/2012 at 3:56 pm

Now I don’t have curly hair, but I do have thick hair. Like, so thick when I get it cut there’s enough cut out to make a cushion. And I also don’t use a towel to wrap my hair in, mostly because standard towels don’t soak enough moisture out, and then it takes ages to dry (even with the help of electricity!). I use a microfibre towel, like you can get from outdoor or sporting stores for travel and outdoor activities. They are very soft and gentle, and dont cause the same friction issues as a normal towel. Might be worth a look in too if the t shirt isn’t able to soak enough out of your hair.


Thursday, January 26/2012 at 9:57 pm

Ooh, yes that sounds really useful! Trying to wrap your hair in a t-shirt turban does get kind of tricky…


Wednesday, January 25/2012 at 4:02 pm

So thankful for this post! I have thick, somewhat-coarse, wavy (sometimes more curly) hair and I never know how to make it look good naturally – my hair always ends up looking like an after-thought even if I have tried to make it look good. I am excited to try the t-shirt trick and these products, just one question – sometimes my hair is a little tangley after getting out of the shower and I feel like I HAVE to brush it through before it starts to dry. Is this a huge no-no for good waves/curl?


Thursday, January 26/2012 at 10:09 pm

Drop the brush!!! It is a huuuge no-no for good waves and curl.. If you brush it, it separates the waves/curls and will cause more frizz instead. I actually don’t even remember the last time I combed my hair (other than when I straighten it, but even then I barely do so). Once you’re out of the shower, just spray or run the product you find works for you through your hair, shake it out gently and leave to air dry. I also do this thing where I’ll comb my fingers through the end my hair and kind of shake it side-to-side to get the product in and to get more curl out of it. Not sure if that last part made sense but hopefully the rest helped :)


Wednesday, January 25/2012 at 5:14 pm

Don’t forget that a good old school way to hold curls of thick hair is with Rollers!


Thursday, January 26/2012 at 10:19 pm

I am actually the worse at putting in curlers myself.. I tried once a very long time ago and failed miserably. I am totally willing to try them out though if someone is willing to help put them in my hair ha ha.


Wednesday, January 25/2012 at 7:00 pm

Jasmine! So glad to see your post on my fave beauty blog :)


Thursday, January 26/2012 at 10:15 pm

Thanks Caysie F. Baby!


Wednesday, January 25/2012 at 8:04 pm

I am so trying the cotton t shirt trick! Had heard that ages ago but forgot…it makes sense! Moroccan Oil works until it builds up so much silicone that you need to clarify, as will the Frizz Ease. ICON Mesh is the best curl cream evah – no build up. Same with Sebastian Texturizer Gel. I use Terax Crema in the shower and as a leave-in. I’m a 2C to a 3A depending on the humidity levels.


Thursday, January 26/2012 at 10:12 pm

The cotton t-shirt trick is seriously one of the best tips I’ve ever gotten! Will definitely look into those products though, perhaps one of them will become my new life product? ;)


Thursday, January 26/2012 at 12:37 am

Excellent article! I have super curly hair like you described and I can’t stress enough how much I hate using a blow dryer. Air drying definitely helps decrease frizz and maintain the natural curls. Also, straightening your hair EVERY time before styling is such a downer.
You should definitely do a post on casual hairstyles for curly hair, that would be so helpful! It sucks to have minimal options when it comes to styling.
I hope you get to write more articles here…love your writing style :)


Thursday, January 26/2012 at 10:13 pm

Thank you Anum :) Don’t think of them as minimal options!! Having curly hair makes for the best messy buns, no?


Thursday, January 26/2012 at 4:27 am

The t-shirt trick is amazing!! I usually air-dry my hair :D


Thursday, January 26/2012 at 10:14 pm

Right?? And yay for air-drying… it’s free, doesn’t waste energy and takes no effort at all :)


Laura Eliza
Friday, January 27/2012 at 3:57 pm

I am very excited to see this! While I can manage my ringlets well 90% of the time, I love to see what other people are doing. It’s also exciting to see a post geared toward curls! Thank you!


Tuesday, April 17/2012 at 9:40 pm

Hi Jasmine!

It seems I’m way behind on the curly-boat here (I just found this blog yesterday!), but I’ve been a practitioner of no brushes and the cotton tee-shirt for years (my dad gave me a funny look when I asked for an old shirt of his!)

I have to say, I’m very surprised that John Freida’s Dream Curls worked for you! I tried it, admittedly a few years ago, and it just made my hair feel crunchy. Maybe I wasn’t applying it properly?

In any case, I currently use Shea Moisture Curl & Style Milk (I’m from the US), and it’s just ‘meh.’ I have 3a curls, and I think you’re right in that it might be suited better to type 4 curls. It leaves my hair incredibly moisturized and so touchably soft (and it smells so good) that I’m willing to overlook the downfalls, but, and I’ve noticed that other people have said the same thing elsewhere, my curls are kind of flat and limp by the end of the day. I think the moisturizing is too heavy for my hair (which is why it’s better for tighter curls/kinkier hair) and just weighs it down. I don’t know if the Souffle or Smoothie are any different, but this isn’t my “Life Product,” (though I may be a loyal buyer of their masques, which I haven’t tried yet.)


Saturday, January 19/2013 at 5:39 pm

It’s taken me 14 years to figure out how to tame my curly mane. I can finally say that I have #curlyhairproblems no more. DevaCurl is like liquified Jesus in a bottle. I swear by it. Just three easy steps and the curls come out to play. After applying the serum, don’t worry about it being crunchy. Don’t touch your hair when it’s still wet. Wait until your whole head is completely dry and scrunch out the crunch. This article is great! I wish that there were more of them out there like this for curly haired girls like us!


Anna Cardinale
Saturday, July 13/2013 at 1:31 pm

Thanks so much for this, This is my first time visiting this page. Reading this makes me want to look deeper into this page, I have not been able to find a page like this with steps to take to take my natural hair and work with it. My hair has always been extremely frizzy and tangled, Even if its brushed, I’ve tried other things but these are new things that look like great products for my hair!! Thanks so much for the advice!!


Taylor B
Wednesday, August 21/2013 at 12:33 am

Hi. Just found your article thanks to Pinterest and I have insanely curly hair so I took it in like water in the desert. I love the old cotton tee shirt thing because I have been having a problem with my hair falling a little flat like you described with the towel use. My life product has been found finally. Yay! I use Marc Anthony curl cream in the tube and it has changed my hair. It is soft and stays manageable all day even with my playing with it and I love it. I hate that my hair doesn’t curl as well at the top when it gets longer (finally) but the new length makes up for it. I love your chewbacca medusa analogy cuz that’s exactly how my hair is in the morning. Love reading your post. <3


Saturday, February 8/2014 at 5:51 am

Hello Jasmine! I’m a person who has CURLY and slightly FRIZZY hair! and i’m not sure what products to buy…because different websites suggest different things. But i do know that i don’t want something that is too oily/sticky…and not too difficult to use..since i have to use it the morning before school everyday! Would you have any products to recommend?

And also, i don’t get your method of drying with a cotton shirt. Do you just towel-turban ONLY? and not use the cotton shirt to literally dry the sections of hair like you would with a normal towel? What exactly do you mean by “do not rub” ?

Thank you!


Saturday, April 26/2014 at 10:58 pm

I’ve just recently started to embrace my curls but the tshirt trick is one of the most common ones I’m finding. It’s called plopping too so you could youtube that or I found about it on Pinterest. You get out of the shower and while hair is still dripping, you lean over a tshirt and scrunch your curls vs rubbing to dry. Scrunch them to get the dripping water out and then you just wrap it up. It’s AMAZING the difference in my hair the last 2 days because of the tshirt trick and NOT brushing my hair. I finger comb and the curls are the best I’ve ever seen them!! Hope this helps!


Monday, April 28/2014 at 9:37 am

Just bought the Shea Moisture coconut and hibiscus shampoo, conditioner and hair milk. AMAZING!! I have 3c hair and it’s so soft and I can’t stop touching it (I know, I know) because it’s gone from dry and yucky to soft and perfect!


Friday, August 22/2014 at 4:28 am

YAY curly hair people unite!! I am determined to try everything on this page!!


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