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What is the Curly Girl Method? + Curly Hair Routine

Updated: Mar 17

The Curly Girl Method is a way of caring for curly and wavy hair, Created by Lorraine Massey.

In 2001, Lorraine Massey wrote a book called The Curly Girl Handbook and this started what is now known as the Curly Girl Method (CG, CGM).

Essentially, the Curly Girl Method involves removing certain ingredients from your curly or wavy hair care routine. This includes harsh sulfates, silicones, drying alcohols, and waxes.

It also includes stopping any kind of heat styling such as blow drying on high heat or straightening with a hot iron.

Whilst we think that Lorraine Massey and the Curly Girl Method are amazing, we are no longer 100% curly girl method approved.

The reason for this, is that in recent years, the rules around CGM have become more strict. When I first started looking after my curly hair, it was seemingly okay to use foaming curl cleansers & curly hair shampoos, as long as they didn't have sulfates or silicones. It is now said that you can't use any kind of shampoo if it foams at all. This works for some people, however, for people that don't have the time, the hand strength or the desire to co-wash (using a botanical conditioner to wash your hair and scalp) it can cause some issues. To co-wash correctly and thoroughly, it takes a long time and a lot of manual friction. Sometimes a good, foamy but gentle, shampoo is just easier!

Your curly hair products can be as complicated, or as simple as you'd like it to be. You can use lots of curly hair products layered, or stick to a few favourites. For beginners I highly recommend keeping it very simple. Focus on techniques over products while you get to know you hair better.

BE PREPARED to undergo a "transition period" where your hair has a bit of a hissy fit. You may feel extra fluffy, more dry and brittle, and your scalp could become oilier for a little while. Don't panic - it's normal and just your hair and scalp adjusting.

Not everyone needs to follow the curly girl method, but the curly hair styling techniques can be really helpful when you're starting out. These techniques are a great base for most types of curly hair.

So whilst we don't recommend sticking 100% to the curly girl method (if it doesn't work for you) we do recommend getting to know it. For now though - here's some basic steps. For a more comprehensive, step by step routine, check out our beginners guide here

Annnnnd now we type in plain text so the google bots can read it! Check out the links if you're not sure where to start with products xx CLEANSE For dry hair - use a cream cleanser suc as EverEscents Lemon & Sandalwood or Rosemary & Mint Co-wash. Shampoo AT LEAST 1x per month with shampoo of choice For Finer Hair - a gentle, foaming shampoo like Innersense Pure Harmony or EverEscents Bergamot is a great start CONDITION

Apply your conditioner of choice, focusing on your mids and ends. Splash on some water and work through then add more conditioner if necessary. Finger detangle or use a wet brush. For thick/dry hair - rinse from the scalp and leave in the ends For finer hair - rinse more thoroughly STYLE

Different hair type require different stylers. For Thick/dry hair - a curl cream and gel are often best. Apply to sopping wet hair for more frizz control. For Finer, wavier hair - lotions, foams and gels work well. Remove a small amount of water by squeezing gently with hands or a TLC Curl Towel

HOT TIP - Apply your stylers in the shower for less mess then wrap in a curl towel. DRY Air dry or use a diffuser on a low-medium heat. Your hair will likely form a hard, crunchy "cast" THIS IS A GOOD THING. Once 100% dry simply scrunch your hair to reveal soft, touchable curls. EXTRA INFO

~To protect curls over night, try a "pineapple", a silk or satin bonnet or a curl sock.

~Regular Deep Treatments are very helpful. Finer curlies can apply before shampooing to save feeling too heavy.

~Hair Fluffy & undefined - consider a protein treatment for curly hair

~Hair Dry, brittle and tangly - opt for a more moisturising treatment for curly hair

~Check out Curly Girl Method Facebook Groups such as Curly Girl Method Australia & NZ (all Genders welcome), Curly Kindness Society etc. You tube and Instagram also have a wealth of knowledge.

Looking for a great, beginners Curly Hair Bundle? Look no further 👇

This Little Curl is proud to be the curl store of choice for over 7000 Australian & NZ Curly hair folk❤️

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