Do you know how to look after your curly hair? If the answer is no, then read ahead for some epic curly hair care tips. If the answer is yes, then still read ahead as you will very likely learn something new about your curls!
Curly Hair Care: Or How Guys Should Start Taking Care of Their Manes
Over the years, one thing that I noticed every time that I got into a conversation with a curly dude was the absolute lack of knowledge on curly hair care. You see, most curly men would rather get a buzz cut, straighten their hair (oh, hi there, Neymar) or wear a boring hairstyle than actually put in some effort to look after their curls. I have heard all kinds of excuses, yet all those excuses are founded on Micky Mouse nonsense.
A typical knowledgeable Manly Curls reader
Some of the stuff that I’ve heard guys say:
- Looking after my curls takes half my morning, dude!
- Like, I have to buy so many, like, products. Like, it is so like expensive to have, like, any curls that I can, like, like. Bro.
- Hey Rogelio, I feel like a Cosmopolitan reader every time I think of taking care of my curls. I fear my testosterone levels will drop and be replaced with estrogen if I dare look after a single curl of mine.
I’ve heard it all. The thing is, all these excuses are based on the premise that looking after your curls as a male is time consuming, hard, expensive and girly. Oh, fellow curly dudes believing this brainwashed nonsense, you could not be any more wrong!
Curly Hair Care Tips
Some 3 yeas ago, I decided that I had had enough of all this baloney floating around when it came to men’s hair, and I started this very blog that you’re reading. I also started writing my book, The Curly Hair Book: Or How Men Can Now Rock Their Waves, Coils and Kinks (aka The Curly Hair Book). In fact, I wrote 248 pages on everything about curly hair and peppered the book with some magic Manly Curls juice (ugh, that sounded a bit awkward…). The point is that I made it my goal to finish with all the nonsense that abounds in the men’s hair field and inject some sense into the heads of my curly brethren (well, I also made it my goal to bring some hair-related sense into all men regardless of hair type with my second book, The Men’s Hair Book, but that’s another story).
This is the cover for The Curly Hair Book. Click on it to read more about the book.
So, considering that I have some free time right now and that a hair care article is always welcomed here at Manly Curls, I am going to give you some curly hair care tips below that you will be wise to follow for some awesome curls. Not “nice”, not “fine”, not “average”; I’m talking “awesome”. So awesome that no woman will ever dare put you again in the feared friend zone (and here is where I end the hyperbole).
Just before I proceed with the curly hair care tips, however, let me tell you that you will find a lot more tips in The Curly Hair Book itself. So, if you dig these tips that you’re about to read and want to own an awesome mane like the thousands of curly fellas who too have bought the book and followed the system and methods, then either run at the speed of light to your nearest bookstore or simply click on this link to the book on Amazon to buy it and get it shipped ASAP to your house.
Anyway, back on track.
What was I talking about? Oh, yes, the tips.
Drop your shampoo frequency
Yes, I know what your mom used to tell you when you were a kid; that thing about the shampoo monster coming to get ya if you didn’t shampoo your hair every day (wait… what? Am I the only one who was told this as a kid?). Fear not, my friend, not shampooing daily will very likely only bring benefits to your hair, not the opposite. Not to mention that experience has shown me that the “shampoo monster” is very likely a hoax and not real.
This guy ain’t got chit on the shampoo monster (or so they used to say)
Your scalp secretes an awesome endogenous hair product called “sebum”. In The Curly Hair Book, I go through all the purposes of sebum and how to manage it together with finding the right shampooing frequency for you. As a matter of fact, I came up with an actual method which I coined the No Shampoo method and which gives you the methodology to customizing the daily and long-term grooming needs of your curls. Since I wrote a whole chapter on that alone, let me summarize the main tidbits of the No Shampoo method in the next three paragraphs.
To follow my No Shampoo method, simply start by dropping a shampooing day from your current weekly schedule (i.e. you were shampooing daily and now you only shampoo 6 days out of 7 possible). You maintain the “6 days out of 7 days” frequency for two weeks. After the first two weeks are gone, you then drop an additional shampooing day for a frequency of 5 days of out 7 days and maintain said frequency for another two weeks. You will then continue dropping a shampooing day every two weeks until you notice your hair looking, feeling and styling better.
At one point as you continue dropping shampooing days, your gained hair benefits will begin to regress as you keep dropping shampooing days, so, right before you notice said regression of the gained benefits, it will be then that you will have found out your optimal shampooing frequency. Make sure to maintain the type of shampoo you use throughout the period of time that it takes you to find out your optimal shampooing frequency.
Your optimal shampooing frequency is unique and can only be found out by following the method described above (although there is much more on the method in The Curly Hair Book). On average, though, a curly male will benefit from shampooing every other day (i.e. one day “on”, one day “off”) all the way to once a week. Do bear in mind that, just because you are not shampooing daily, that does not mean that you ain’t cleaning your hair daily!
Use a hair conditioner
A conditioner is the kind of hair product that will only get you blank stares when you ask any guy about it; yet, conditioners are too awesome to not be aware of what they are and do. Simply put, hair conditioners allow you to enhance the feel, look and styling of your curls; similar to how your own sebum works actually.
To use a conditioner, simply wet your hair and then coat the hair with the conditioner. Leave the conditioner coating your hair for about two minutes and then rinse the conditioner. Ideally do this while in the shower and use the conditioner right after shampooing if your optimal shampoo frequency calls for a shampooing day.
- Get this conditioner here for a high-quality conditioner that will give you great results.
Only style your curly hair with your fingers or a wide-tooth comb
Every time a curly dude complains to me of frizzy curls and how he seems to have a ball of tumbleweed atop his head (or “dead rat” as I affectionately call it in The Curly Hair Book), I always ask him if he uses a regular comb to style his hair. And, 99% of the times, the answer will be a resounding “Yes”. It boggles my mind how so many curly dudes will be happy to pull, twist and tear apart their fragile curvy locks in the name of ignorance. I have lost count of how many articles I have written talking of how you, curly dude, should avoid regular combs like Justin Bieber avoids the squat rack (unless he is doing bro curls inside the rack, how not).
Case in point, either use your fingers to style your curls or use a high-quality wide-tooth comb to style your mane. Ideally, use the wide-tooth comb to simply set the curls on your head, and then use your fingers to do all the shaping and styling.
- Get this wide-tooth comb and be done with your frizzy problems for ever and ever.
Avoid pulling your hair
This one should not be a big issue, yet it is so for curly haired men. In their quest to have hair “like the dapper guys in the ads and magazines”, curly men will style their hair by pulling it and flattening it (with a regular comb, no less) so that hairstyles like those of new-age hipsters can be achieved. Fortunately for you, fellow curly reader, your curls are not made to lay boringly flat and be like “the rest of ’em” pretty boys: your curls are rebellious, big and will make you stand out like a boss in full-on boss mode, anywhere and anytime. Learn to appreciate your curls, and your curls will work for you and not against you. I give you my word for this.
Boss-man mode achieved: Justin Timberlake and his former curls
Now, I class the issue of pulling one’s hair as a big issue because mechanical hair loss from pulling hair is a relatively-common issue with curly individuals. The hair loss inflicted by pulling one’s hair (whether intentionally or unintentionally) is called traction alopecia. This type of alopecia can be irreversible if the pulling of hair happens over a long-enough period of time, and I have seen some horrible cases of traction alopecia in both men and women. Traction alopecia mostly occurs at the hairline (both men and women) and at the vertex (the latter only in men).
To avoid pulling your hair, follow the previous tip and only style your hair with your fingers or with a wide tooth comb. Likewise, make sure that you are lubricating your hair with a conditioner if you are going to be undoing any hair knots or tangles in the shower. Furthermore, if you are tying your hair with a hair elastic or using a headband, make sure that you are releasing some tension from the tied hair or pulled-back hair by pulling slightly in the opposite direction of the tension. Lastly, avoid any hairstyles where the hair is forced to lay down and flat such as side swept hairstyles or classic slicked back hairstyles, unless you are solely styling these flat hairstyles with your fingers.
I always say that your hair has an expiration date. You will lose your hair sooner or later; that’s a given (unless, of course, you die before male-influenced hair loss kicks in). Because of your hair’s expiration date, it’s in your interest to make some effort to learn about your hair so that you can maximize your time on this planet with your luscious curls. I can guarantee you right now that putting some effort into looking after your hair will not waste your time, consume your time, be expensive or make you read 1990s romantic novels starring Fabio while you make time for your cake to finish cooking in the oven.
Gentlemen, curly hair care can certainly be easy, cheap, convenient and manly; that’s how I have been doing it for over a decade and that’s how you too should be doing it. Now go and start taking care of those to-be unbelievably luscious curls!
All the best
P.S: Questions? Need advice? Then post it below in the comments section. I suggest that your also read the many other hair care articles here at Manly Curls as I have taken the time to publish plenty of relevant articles that will be very useful to you. Likewise, I suggest you get The Curly Hair Book (click link to see it and/or buy it on Amazon) as doing so will skyrocket your knowledge of your hair and will have you putting your hair care and styling on auto pilot while rocking an epic head of curls!