How to Maintain Your Curls For Longer

Hollie Shirley / Hair & Skincare Editor

Want to know how you can make your curls last for longer? Read our top ten tips.

 Pre shampoo treatments

Pre shampoo treatments, or pre-poo, are typically formulated with butters or oils and are intended to be applied to your hair prior to washing. They add an extra level of moisture to your hair and limit damage buy saturating the hair before the water gets in, which will stop the cuticle from swelling when wet which can cause frizz and leave hair feeling excessively dry and prone to breakage, as shampoo will strip all the oils produced by your hair off. Natural pre-poo treatments include argan oil, olive oil, shea butter and coconut oil.


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Deep condition regularly

Hair that is deep conditioned regularly will be much less prone to breakage and damage. Alternating between a treatment that is rich in protein with ones that are moisture-rich will ensure your hair gets all the nourishment it needs to protect the bends and kinks in your hair pattern from snapping. Keep your conditioner to the lengths and ends of your hair and work your way up from the ends, as these are the areas that will need the most attention. Look for products that are high in Keratin, Cetearyl and amino acids, as well as humectants like glycerin and aloe vera.


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Don’t over shampoo your hair

Curly hair doesn’t need to be washed as often as straight hair, as its main need is moisture. Frequent shampooing will stretch and stress out fragile strands and will remove all the oils that your hair craves which will leave it dry and brittle. Try and reduce shampooing once a week. In between, co-wash if you really need to clean your hair (such as after the gym) by using a cleansing conditioner.


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Sleep on silk

Once you have done all the hard work on conditioning and preparing your curls, ensure you are adequately protecting your hair overnight by sleeping in a silk hair wrap to ensure your curls are not smashed and crushed while you sleep. (Pro-tip – tip your hair upside down and pull your Luna over your curls in a pineapple-esque fashion so that they sit at the top of your head)


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“Rake” products through wet hair

When your hair is wet, it has more ability to stretch, as such you are able to get more product into and on your hair. Once you have washed your hair, blot away some of the excess water and then use a wide-toothed comb or a curl specific brush to disperse products – ideally use your fingers. Then leave your hair alone. Under no circumstances should you aggressively brush your hair when it is wet. Detangle and separate your curls when they are wet.


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Use a microfibre towel

Instead of using your traditional towel, opt for a microfiber towel to absorb water without ripping or tugging at your hair, which can lead to breakage over time. Microfibre towels can absorb extra water quickly which means a faster air-drying time, as well as any excess product that can weigh down your curls. Following the plopping method can allow for a better lift at the roots and enhance your curl pattern.


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Limit heat styling

Curling wands, blow dries, straighteners will all lead to damage. Air dry your hair as much as possible as this will give your hair a chance to fall into its curl pattern naturally. If you must blow-dry, always us a thermal protector and diffuser. They will minimise the damage by evenly distributing heat and are much more gentle than a traditional blow drying nozzle that directs heat down onto your hair. Look for tools containing ionic properties, made with tourmaline or ceramic. Limit using straighteners and curling wands to once a week if you absolutely must use them.



Use oils

Applying oils such as argan oil while your hair is still wet will help seal in moisture and keep your curls looking their best. After you have washed your hair, apply oils to the bottom third on your hair working your way up to your scalp, and apply a leave-in conditioner after this to ensure your hair can absorb all its moisturising properties. Oils can also be used on dry hair to tame any flyaways and smooth your curls.


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Refresh curls between washes

This is the secret to keeping your curls looking their best for longer. There are plenty of water/no water curl refresh routines you can follow.   Spritz your hair with water to reactive gels in your hair and twist and curls with your fingers that need some extra bounce. A leave-in conditioner spray can also help especially when you have been out in the sun. You can also use styling creams and gels.


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Use curl friendly hair products

The products that should be in your cabinet should be non-drying, non-alcohol based products. So things such as hairspray and mousse are to be left alone. Products such as gels, creams, custards and oils are better suited to curly hair as they will contain humectants to keep frizz at bay whilst keeping moisture sealed into the hair.


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Hollie Shirley
Hair & Skincare Editor

Hollie Shirley is SILKUP’s hair and skincare editor. She’s obsessed with all things hair care and results-driven skincare, that is kind to the environment and your wallet. She has a weakness for limited edition eyeshadows and is always testing out the newest and greatest deep conditioners. Hollie has a passion for hair and is studying Trichology, working towards becoming a Member of the Association of Registered Trichologists.