Natural redheads’ hair strands are typically dryer and more delicate than other hair types. And if you have a wave/curl to your ginger locks too, then those strands are likely to be all the more fragile. Embracing your natural wave or curls is becoming more and more popular, and more accessible than ever before, thanks to the Curly Girl Method.
Created by Lorraine Massey, and detailed in her book Curly Girl: The Handbook, the Curly Girl Method is a set of guidelines to help you to encourage those kinks like never before. You may never have thought it possible to have curly hair, but the Curly Girl Method can unlock that for you.
WHAT IS THE CURLY GIRL METHOD (CGM)?
The Curly Girl Method has a few core principles: conditioner is your life now. Shampoo is, largely, a no-no (but we’ll elaborate on that). And anything containing sulfates, silicones, or anything nasty should never been used again.
What’s ‘nasty’? Thankfully, there’s a handy online ‘CurlsBot’ tool that can analyse your hair product ingredients list so you know whether or not it’s CG-friendly. As the website says: “We look for silicones, oils, and waxes that can build up, as well as harsh sulfates.”
WHY SHOULD CURLY REDHEADS FOLLOW THE CURLY GIRL METHOD?
As we know, redheads should turn their back on sulfates and silicones due to the damage they can do to your delicate ginger strands. And by shunning all the bad ingredients, in turn it encourages your hair strands to become less frizzy, reflect more light, be shinier and brighter. This is the same for curly hair, too.
But what is the ‘method’? To give an example of a format for following CGM (because, there are lots of techniques):
Totally soak hair with medium-warm water, then massage your CGM-approved conditioner into your roots, just like you would with shampoo. This is called co-washing. You may need quite a lot of conditioner here, but it’s important to make sure your whole scalp has been washed with it.
Rinse, then apply conditioner again, from root to tip this time. Gently use your fingers to distribute through your hair and release any knots (you can use a wide-tooth comb if you wish), then leave on your hair for a few minutes.
Rinse through, making sure the conditioner is out from your scalp.
While your hair is still soaking wet, grab some more conditioner (yes, more, but not as much as last time) and apply again through the lengths of your hair (no need to cover your roots this time).
Now it’s time to ‘squish to condish’, which fuses the water with the conditioner into the shaft of your hair strands and helps to form curl formation. To do this, flip your head upside down, then use your hands to lift your hair up from the tips and scrunch your hair towards your scalp. This will make delightful ‘squishing’ noises between the conditioner and water.
Do this squishing method again using a mousse product to help style your curl formation further.
(Or, instead of mousse, or as well as, you can use a gel to give your curls more hold – make sure every piece of hair is covered and then squish to form the curls, as above directions)
Time to ‘plop’! You can use a long-sleeved t-shirt or microfibre towel to wrap up your hair and secure on top of your head. Check out this tutorial
You can plop for as long as you want, but air drying after around half an hour of plopping is a good compromise for time. If you feel the need you can finish off drying with a hair dryer with a diffuser on medium heat and low wind setting.
If using gel, you can then ‘scrunch out the crunch’ once your hair is completely dry. This is just scrunching your hair from underneath to release any of the gel-ified clumps of curls.
Believe it or not, there are even more ways you can follow CGM, but it’s all about finding what works best for you.
IT’S A BIT RESTRICTIVE, ISN’T IT?
There are some parts of CGM that may seem a bit restrictive, and that’s where shampoo can come in. If you’re following CGM by the letter, shampoo is a no-go, but many people find shampoo is the only way they can experience a ‘real clean’, and helps much better to relieve product build-up, which may happen from time to time. It’s true that your hair doesn’t actually need shampoo to be cleaned, but there are plenty of friendlier shampoos you can use instead as a compromise. These must be sulfate-free and silicone-free, and are what are referred to as ‘low poo’ in CGM.
Our Henna & Rose shampoo for redheads is sulfate-free and silicone-free, so is ideal to use for those with curly hair looking to take care of those beautiful kinks. And not only that, the small amount of henna will help to enhance the vibrancy and shine of your red hair shade. To complement this, our Henna & Rose conditioner for redheads is fully curly-girl friendly.
Through adopting some of CGM’s methods and guidelines, whether strictly or loosely, you’ll be able to find a routine that suits your waves and curls, which will become more defined, more hydrated and healthier over time.