How to style Curly Hair for Men without Dramas

Many curly haired men find styling their curls to be quite a drama. Read below for your how-to guide to styling your curly hair as a male without emasculating yourself in the process.


I know the feeling very well. One day your curls look great, the next your mane looks like you touched one of those funky electric balls you see in science museums. Thing is, you have no idea as to how you got your locks looking “luscious” that day and you are oblivious as to why your hair is now looking like crap.

It wasn’t until I made the decision to start on a “manly” journey to curly hair stardom that I started making detailed hair observations to satisfy my hunger for hair knowledge. That was quite some years ago and not only did I observe my hair but I also got the chance to observe the curls of others. I was at university and because I had a part-time job in the fitness center as a gym instructor, all the dudes at university saw me as the guy to reach for hair advice without sounding girly.

The above gave me the opportunity to see how my hair care knowledge worked on others.┬áTruthfully, curly hair is a beast on its own and whether you are a Type I or a Type V, curly hair tends to behave as it wants unless you know what you are doing. I know as well as you do that feeling of waking up and seeing the mess flourishing on your head and thinking “what if I just shave my head?”.


Rogelio with his curly hair as a guy and with a cool mane

Styling curly hair for men should not be complex nor a drama. We have better things to do than waste our day on hair


Worry not, at Manly Curls I have done the dirty job already so that you can benefit from the stuff that will work on your luscious locks. Forget about chilling out in the hair salon with a group of females around you talking about the latest celebrity gossip as they drink tea, at Manly Curls we are men and we do manly things (geesh, that didn’t sound quite right…). So get the bottle of whisky out (I prefer Black Label, thank you) and let’s talk curly hair styling.


How to style your Curly Hair as a Guy, step by step:

1) Wet your hair

Whether it is freshly out of the shower or as a quick thing after you brushed your teeth, you must always style curly hair when damp (that is, you must wet it first). Make sure the hair is damp and not dripping water. Shake your head to remove the excess water or towel-dry it until it reaches this damp state. Your curls should be hanging loose if medium/long length or untouched if they are short, do not part them to the side or pull them back in this first step.

2) Apply your selected styling hair product

It can be a leave-in conditioner, hair gel or styling cream. You must apply the product on your fingers and apply it gently on all the curls. Do not apply it on the segment of the hair closest to the scalp, think of applying the product on the tips of the hair. You apply the product by running your hair-product coated fingers through the hair, from midway through the hair strand to the tip (upward motion). You only need to run your fingers ONCE on a given area.

3) Make sure you have coated your curly hair

Are your curls coated in the chosen hair product and you did so as explained in Point 2? Great, you now have the foundation to styling that mane. If not coated completely, continue running your fingers until all your curls are coated. You will get good at it the more you practise and it will take you less than a minute once you get good at it, even with long hair.

4) Style your curls in the desired hairstyle

Now that your curls are coated in the hair product, you will use either your own fingers or a wide tooth comb to place your curls in the manner of the intended curly hairstyle you have in mind. There are many hairstyles to chose from for us curly haired men, read around Manly Curls as I have written and continue to write on specific hairstyles for us curly dudes. Some great hairstyles for curly guys include the Caesar Cut, the Metro Mullet, the Jim Morrison, the Afro or the Faux Hawk.

5) Finishing touches

Once your curly mane is styled as you intended it to, you can use a blowdrier to speed up the drying of your curls or you can use hair spray to fix the hairstyle in position. If you are going to use a blowdrier, use a diffuser and the coldest temperature that the blowdrier allows. Blowdriers are not girly and many guys use them secretly (as in, steal it from their girlfriends), it is up to you how vocal you want to be about your blowdrier use though, but rest assured that it is a great styling tool. Read more on blowdriers here.

If you choose to use hair spray, keep that stuff off your face and eyes, spray it from a distance of about 1 foot and don’t overdo it unless you want to have carton-like hair (spray for a count of 3-5 seconds).


Rogelio with his curly hair and the jewfro hairstyle

This is what happens when you wake up hangover and stayed partying till 7AM the previous night. Oh, the curly hair dramas


Styling curly hair for us men is trickier than how it goes for our straight-haired peeps. It is not complex or involves sacrificing your testosterone levels in the name of “luscious locks”, at least if you do it the Manly Curls way. Your curly hair will take a bit of personal trial and error to nail your mane to a T so don’t give up. Follow these steps to how to style your curly hair for men and you will be on your way to curly hair stardom too.

Keep the whisky flowing, camarade.

All the best.


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Rogelio is the go-to guy when it comes to men's hair. Having embraced his natural curly hair for over a decade while living in 5 countries, Rogelio has learnt a thing or two along the way. Rogelio is the author of the two bestselling men's books "The Curly Hair Book" and "The Men's Hair Book", and his motto when it comes to hair is, "Gentlemen, having a good head of hair should not cost us our testosterone".

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12 comments for “How to style Curly Hair for Men without Dramas

  1. Anonymous
    February 3, 2015 at 4:21 am

    Do you happen to know any tips on how to make straight hair into curly hair without using curlers, curling irons, or any other equipment? If so, could you post a video on YouTube about making straight hair into curly hair for men (this also applies for men with short hair as well or just all hair lengths on men) Thanks.

  2. Cody
    August 22, 2014 at 10:33 pm

    Hi Rogelio,
    I think I have a type lll curly hair and i have no idea what kind of shampoo or even conditioner I’m supposed to use to make my hair look good. My hair is extremely dry and frizzy. Also if you could tell me what hairstyle would look good on me. I’m 16. (I would prefer a hairstyle that looks good with a SnapBack hat, but anything else is good to). Thanks.

  3. Andrew
    June 14, 2013 at 4:47 am

    hi Rogelio,
    my name is Andrew I’ve seen that your called the god of curly hair but i have a problem I have unbelievably curly hair all my life I’m getting to the point where I don’t even know what to do with my hair anymore and it’s to much stress I cannot take it do you think you can give me some tips on what kind of hair styles I could use? please I beg of you

    • Rogelio
      June 15, 2013 at 8:24 pm

      Hi Andrew,

      Thanks for the compliment but I am far from a god; I’m just a dude in search for answers, and, when I search, I do really search and always get what I put my mind to, including curly hair!

      The problem you have is way too wide, your curly hair dramas could be caused by a variety of factors, too many to mention but some could be your shampooing frequency, what sort of hairstyling products you use, what is your general hair car like, what’s your nutrition, what’s your curl type etc I’d need to know this and much more to be able to nail down you problem and give you the best answer.

      While it is true that you are better off simply buying my book and calling it a day (240 pages on curly hair, you’ll find your answers there), you could also spend an hour or so reading my articles here at Manly Curls and also on my other site Men’s Hair Blog. Allow me to recommend you to read the following articles to kickstart your curly hair care:

      How to work out your shampooing (i.e. my popular No Shampoo method)

      How to wash and go (for fast curls)

      How to grow curly hair long (tips are applicable to medium length curly hair)

      My Curly Hair Type Guide which will allow you to pinpoint your curl type (it also comes with relevant hairstyles and articles)

      Some good curly hair reading and how to be realistic about what can be done

      Have a read through those articles and put some of the knowledge to practise, then come back and ask me specifics.I’m more than happy to give you advice, but first do the essential reading and then pinpoint your troubles.


  4. Chase Greene
    May 1, 2013 at 9:23 pm

    I wouldnt say not to use any products. I do go more naturally now that I am older. My hair will curl after it dries from showering.
    I use gel or mousse lightly sometimes.

  5. Gavin
    April 24, 2012 at 8:34 pm

    Hey Rogelio, just passing by to say that I am glad someone like you is out there not only giving great advice but also being the face of it. You curls look great and you have managed to have good hair while doing other stuff. I’ve met a few guys who sure, had good hair, but only because they spent “half their morning” on it.

    I’m learning from you and your attitude to life and this blog has been a favorite of mine for a long time now, ever since I read your transformation story. I’m 16, if it matters, so I have a whole life ahead of me and your blog is one of a selection I read frequently to get myself learning/inspired.

    Thanks for taking a part of your time to keep putting up great content on and on.



    • Rogelio
      April 24, 2012 at 11:17 pm

      Hi Gavin,

      Thank you for the kind words. It is my honour to be of inspiration to you. Indeed, you have a whole life ahead and at such a young age, taking the right steps will pave your way to a great life, I can assure you that. It doesn’t matter whether it is hair related, keeping in shape or studying, just make yourself a wholesome better man little by little and you will be rewarded.

      Keep in touch buddy, if you have questions on anything or need support, shoot me an email, I’m here.

      All the best.

  6. JJ
    April 22, 2012 at 4:42 pm

    Great advice Roigelio, I like the simplicity. What do you have to say for those who prefer not to use hair products? how do we style it? Thanks

    • Rogelio
      April 24, 2012 at 11:01 pm

      Hi JJ,

      My advice is to skip the product coating point and style the hair as it is damp. No muss, no fuss!

      All the best.

  7. Nick Benson
    April 20, 2012 at 7:15 pm

    Great guide, which hairstyle do you recommend for someone with type II curls?

  8. Callum
    April 20, 2012 at 5:00 pm

    This is what I needed after reading the hair type guide, cheers Rogelio!

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