Lately, I've been on a mission to coax my flat, frizzy curls back into cute coils. No easy feat. So to help me on my way, I decided to hit up some of the very best curly-haired experts around to find out how they treat their own manes. These people have a wealth of knowledge about what works and what doesn't; here's what they've discovered along the way through trial-and-error with their own hair.
On choosing a hairdresser
"When looking for a stylist, it's best to find someone who specializes in curls or afro hair. The way you cut and style curls is completely different from how you cut straight hair, and you need someone who will be able to really recognize and cut to your curl pattern." - IGK Co-Founder, Franck Izquierdo
"I rarely wear my hair straight, but when I do, I make sure it has been thoroughly cleansed and conditioned. I'll then use heat protector and only run the plates through once or twice max on each section. It sounds simple, but the best advice would be to be extremely present when straightening and not to rush through it. I used to go over the same section around 10 times!" - Dizziak founder, Loretta De FeoContinue reading below ↓
"Always sleep on a silk pillow case. Cotton pillows create friction between the fabric and hair, causing it to pull and roughening the hair cuticle. This can lead to split ends, breakage and frizziness.
"Silk pillow cases on the other hand, have a softer texture and don't cause the same destructive friction as their cotton counterparts. Oh, and because silk pillow cases are also less absorbent than cotton ones, they don't soak up the natural oils from your hair." - Briogeo founder, Nancy Twine.
On applying products
"Always target the problem areas. When it comes to product application, I concentrate the product on where I need it the most. For some of our products, a little goes a long way and for others it can depend on the hair type. I always recommend starting out with a little over a quarter size amount and adding more as needed." - Briogeo founder, Nancy TwineContinue reading below ↓
On chemical treatments
"The biggest mistake I've made with my hair was chemically relaxing it for many, many years. Aside from looking dry and lifeless, it would break off and never grow past my shoulders. My hair clearly hated it.
"I didn't have any idea on how to look after my natural hair then, and I was scared of managing it with a busy schedule; straightening just seemed easier. I don't blame myself, I wasn't catered for product-wise and I definitely felt a lack of curly and afro hair representation in the media. I'm glad to say that's changed and my hair has never looked and felt better." - Dizziak founder, Loretta De Feo
On curl patterns
"Knowing and labelling your curl pattern i.e 3a, 4c can be helpful, but it is not the key to looking after your curls. People can have similar curl patterns but have different textures, densities and porosity."Learning the particular needs of your hair will unlock fabulous curls—you need to asses it from all angles: How much moisture do your curls need? Do your curls lose moisture quickly? Is it difficult to form and hold curls? Etc…" - Bouclème founder, Michelle Scott-LynchContinue reading below ↓
This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com/uk. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.