Have you ever watched the Friends episode, “The One in Barbados” where Monica gets off the plane and the humidity immediately turns her hair into a massive frizzy mess? Continue reading to find out what causes curly frizzy hair, how to prevent it with proper care, and how to enhance your natural curly hair without frizz.
So what causes curly frizzy hair?
Every hair is covered in overlapping scales called the hair cuticle, which helps to strengthen and protect the hair cortex and medulla. These scales point downwards, away from your roots. When the hair cuticle has raised, it allows moisture from the air to enter the hair shaft, making it swell, leaving you with curly frizzy hair. When the cuticle is lying flat, on the other hand, your hair will look smoother and shinier.
What causes the hair cuticle to raise?
When your hair is dry, the cuticle raises to absorb moisture from the air. When the hair has absorbed moisture, the cuticles lift and swell, causing the curly hair to look frizzy.
Damaged hair caused by heat styling, colour treatments, tight hairstyles etc. causes the cuticle to become rough and dull, lifting the scales and even totally stripping them away. When the hair is damaged it also becomes more porous, exposing the fragile inner cortex causing it to attract moisture.
The weather obviously plays a huge role in whether our hair will behave or not (ask Monica). The more moisture there is in the air, the more likely your hair is to become unruly, frizzy and puffy leading to a loss of shine and softness.
Unfortunately for our curly girls and guys, frizz comes naturally. Curly hair is often drier by default as the oils cannot travel easily down the hair shaft, and the cuticles also tend to be rougher due to the curl pattern. But we’re here to help you turn your frizzy curls to soft waves. Keep reading for our best tips!
Now we know what causes curly hair frizz, but how do we prevent it?
While a little bit of frizz is inevitable, there are some simple steps we can take to keep it to a minimum.
Step 1: Sulfate-free shampoo
We know you’ve heard it a million times, but sulfate-free shampoo (such as our Honey Infused Hair Wash) is the way to go to avoid stripping your hair of its natural oils and drying it out even more. Sulfates are not necessarily harmful, however, they can strip the hair and scalp of natural oils, as well as lift the hair cuticle, making your curly or wavy hair more likely to frizz.
Step 2: Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize!
If your curly hair is hydrated from within, the cuticle does not need to raise so much to absorb moisture from the surrounding air. Add hair products like our Honey Infused Hair Mask into your routine, to deeply nourish and hydrate your hair once or twice a week. A level up from conditioner, hair masks tend to contain more concentrated ingredients to moisturize your locks and repair damage to the cuticle.
As they are left on for a longer period than conditioner, a mask can fully absorb into the hair. When used regularly, nutrient-rich hair masks can help rehydrate and nourish your curly hair, helping to restore it over time.
After rinsing out your mask, be sure to follow up with the Honey Infused Conditioner. This will help to lock in the moisture and nourishment from your mask by closing the cuticle. Try to leave your conditioner on for 3 to 5 minutes before rinsing.
Step 3: Keep cool
When washing, try keeping the temperature down. Hot water will strip your hair of natural oils, and lift the cuticle, making frizzy curly hair far more likely. Try rinsing your hair with lukewarm to cool water.
Step 4: Detangle curly hair in the shower
Especially good for curly hair, try to detangle your hair using a wide-toothed comb after conditioning. This will help prevent friction and maintain your natural curl pattern.
Step 5: Dry gently
Avoid rubbing your hair when drying with a cotton towel. This will rough up the cuticle and cause frizz, tangles and even breakage. Instead, we would advise air drying or squeezing the hair dry using a microfiber towel or cotton t-shirt.
Step 6: Heatless styling & heat protection
We know it is tempting to heat style your hair regularly especially if you are trying to tame frizzy curly hair, however, this could be aggravating the situation by drying the hair out and causing damage. If you really need to use heat tools, try using them on the lowest setting possible. Use styling tools with different temperature settings, such as our Curling Tool which has 10 temperature settings.
Always use a good heat protection spray to avoid damage. Our Propolis Infused Heat Protection Spray protects the hair up to 230ᵒC/446ᵒF and contains a UV-filter to prevent sun damage.
You could also opt for heatless styling using our Propolis Infused Polishing Primer. This product prevents and diminishes frizz, reduces drying time and ensures optimal workable hold. Apply a pea-sized amount of the product to damp hair, and then follow up with your preferred heatless styling method. Read more about our favourite heatless curling techniques.
Step 7: Lock in that moisture!
After your washing routine, it is very important to lock in the moisture. We would recommend applying the Honey Infused Leave-In Conditioner as a lightweight treatment to keep your curly hair hydrated all day.
Before going outside, it is also a good idea to use the Honey Infused Hair Oil. This will help lock in moisture and prevent the cuticle from lifting when it is exposed to humidity.
Step 8: Keep it trimmed!
Sadly, there are no products that can seal split ends, once the hair is split - that’s it. Make sure you get regular trims to get rid of split ends and keep your hair looking and feeling healthy and frizz-free.
We all know how frustrating it can be when you’ve spent time styling your hair only to go outside and immediately develop a frizz halo. If you live in a humid or rainy climate, it’s just a fact of life, but if you follow the hair care steps above, you’ll turn your curly frizzy hair into soft curly hair in no time.
- By Mana, Gisou Beauty Advisor