My quest for perfect air dried waves (as someone with hair that hardly waves)

Hello friends! I’ve discussed the curly girl method with enough people on instagram that I know I’m not the only person with a slight wave in their hair who tried it out in search of ways to do less heat styling this summer. The curly girl method (if you haven’t tried yet!) is the idea that a lot of hair care advice is really not great for people with waves/curls, and that with better care you can coax more waves out of your hair. Some of the advice really worked for me–other stuff didn’t work cuz my hair texture is fine and my hair is a delicate flower (eye roll)–so today I thought I would talk about it, if this is your hair too!

Ok so here’s the method if you haven’t looked into it yet. The basic advice is that curls need more moisture and less stripping (so remove shampoos and conditioners with sulfates, and in some cases use shampoo less frequently). The next step is NOT brushing your hair when you exit the shower and instead (usually) putting in a gel product and scrunching to promote your curl pattern. And then you air dry and do not touch your hair at all.

This is my air dried hair! And I used to think my hair was completely straight! My mind is blown.

The most difficult part of trying to get back to your curls is definitely finding the right products. I have sooo many half abandoned products in my bathroom now and it makes me sad, but I did find a cheap shampoo and conditioner that work well for me, and, randomly, the best curl promoting product I tried is not for curls at all. If you have fine hair and have found that the product advice of curly girl method doesn’t work for you, my take on this is that most gel is too heavy, so it brings my waves down.

Here’s my air dry routine now:

Shampoo and condition (this is at Target for like $5)–for more pronounced curl patterns you’re supposed to skip some shampoos but I can’t do that or my hair gets so greasy

-Rinse out conditioner and comb in the shower

-Scrunch out water and apply a dime-sized amount of this

-Braid the front pieces (in front of my ears)

The last step really matters if you have the same problem as me, which is that my bottom layers wave nicely and the top falls flat. The braids have been a game changer–I make a 1-inch braid out of the front pieces and pin it back . Then, when my hair is about 80% dry, I remove the hair ties and let the braids come undone naturally (too tight of a braid pattern doesn’t match my natural waves well).

Last, I spray this UV protectant on for some shine and armor against summer when my hair is completely dry. I like that it’s a spray so I don’t have to touch my waves and mess them up!

On day 2, I put just a little curl cream on my hands and rake my fingers through my hair for a touch up.

I’m definitely embracing my waves now that I’ve found the right products. And not using a hair dryer in August is basically priceless.

Have you tried the curly girl method? Or any new styling tricks for your hair?

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