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ex-curly girl method reflections

Is curly hair complicated?

Is there any simplicity within wavy/curly hair?

In this article we talk about curly girl method myths, truths and general thoughts. 

As a kid your hair is wildly wavy, or curly, and more than likely you and your mom don't know what the heck to do with it. The journey from this point forward is unique to everyone however there is so much common ground.  

I am no master curly girl know-it-all, but I have learned so much in my journey with wavy/curly hair and I think there's some simplicity within it all that is understated.  

I've lived in seasons of exclusive blowouts, exclusive curls and currently a mixture of the two.  In an effort to keep this simple and straight up, what are my biggest takeaways and what are things that I happily leave behind?

My priorities:  healthy hair, reliable results, detangled hair, a manageable routine that doesn't take hours.

Do ingredients matter?  I think hair products are a lot like food.  Ideally we eat locally grown, unprocessed, organic food.  Hair products ideally should be similar as far as quality.  Salon grade products are truly better.  But just like food, if it's not in your budget then do your best with what you have access to.

What about curly girl method ingredients dos and don'ts?  This may be controversial, but I don't overthink it.  My two favorite brands are Oribe and Innersense.  The brands are very different and their ingredients vary.  Their common ground is quality.  I don't avoid quality silicones, glycerin or any other specific ingredient.  Because these are high quality brands I trust, I let them do the research and formulating.  If you really like getting nerdy with ingredients and testing things on yourself to find your perfect scenario, then you should totally do that.  That's just not a priority for me.

What techniques do I love?  I love utilizing a mask.  Moisture is always appreciated by your hair.  However I don't overdo it and I always fully rinse it.  I love upright styling because being upside down hurts my back after a while.  Even product distribution is KEY.  I like diffusing over air drying, but not pixie diffusing.  

What techniques have you left in the past?  Pixie diffusing, smasters, squish to condish, sometimes I plop, sometimes I don't, the bowl method, finger coiling your entire head (it can be ok in the bangs, if you must) root clipping (I'm not hating on this technique but it's a little extra for me) probably many other techniques i've tried over the years. 

Keep in mind the techniques that aren't my favorite might be your go-tos.  Because our curl patterns, texture and density vary, our fav techniques will vary too.  

Major takeaways:  The main things I've learned thus far are... It matters how wet your hair is when you begin to style.  It does not have to be dripping wet but wet is good.  If your hair is alwayssss frizzy, maybe apply your products to wetter hair.  Even product distribution is non-negotiable.  It's like when you put lotion on your legs, you can feel the areas that have lotion and the areas that still need some.  Your hair is the same.  All your hair needs product for predictable, even results.  Diffusing helps with volume and avoiding that wet hair on your bac for hours feeling. (Don't let curly girl method scare you, your hair can handle a little heat.  Especially something gentle, like a diffuser)

Repeat after me, It's not illegal to blowout your hair or use quality silicones. You wont die and neither will your hair. (I'll leave details about what is important when blowing out your hair for another day.)

Ok friends, for now, that's all.  I hope these general suggestions help and encourage you!  If you would like to see my specific wash day routines in video form, check out Craft & Mane Academy.  It is such a great resource for learning how to style your hair curly and blown out smooth!  

Love yall, mean it.

-Nikki Kepley


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