If you get curls in your hair, you might already be aware of the difficulty of maintaining them for a few days. The nature of such curls makes them prone to becoming loose as time passes, with some hair types (like fine hair) being much quicker to lose them.
It is, however, possible to make your curls last longer if you take a few necessary steps in advance as well as during the process of curling. Apart from these steps, maintaining your hair on a regular basis is also extremely important.
To learn a bit more about how to make curls last longer, go through the steps and methods highlighted below and start incorporating them into your curling and hair care routine for better results.
Maintain Hair Health
As a general rule, you should maintain your hair health on a regular basis so that you face minimal issues while curling your hair. This will also make it easier for you to retain other kinds of hairstyles.
Some ways in which you can maintain your hair health include:
- Using the right shampoo and conditioner with healthy ingredients
- Shampooing 2-3 times a week instead of on a daily or rare basis
- Using the right hair products that are deemed safe to use and avoiding those that have chemicals in them
- Getting regular trims for your hair to prevent split ends
- Providing hydration to your hair through oils and masks while also drinking enough water
- Maintaining a healthy diet to absorb antioxidants, vitamins and minerals
Shampoo in Advance
An important thing to note here is the time of shampooing. Typically, styling your hair requires you to shampoo your hair on the same day as the styling process.
However, if you want your curls to last longer, a good idea is to shampoo a couple of days in advance so that you can curl your hair while it is a bit firm, but not too dry or oily. This will make it much easier for your hair to hold the curls without the risk of them slipping off.
Don’t Apply Conditioner
Ideally, you should not apply conditioner to your hair right after you shampoo. This might seem counterintuitive to what you might have been hearing about your hair’s health and general styling procedure.
However, for more durability, consider skipping out on the conditioner just this one time to prevent your hair from becoming too smooth and soft. If this does not feel comfortable for you, you can also use a milder conditioner instead of none at all.
Extremely fine and soft hair is hard to work with when it comes to making curls since it becomes much easier for the curls to straighten back up here. To deal with this issue, use a texturizing hair product that can assist your hair in holding the curls in place.
A mousse is a great option to use here as long as you buy it from a reliable source. You can also spray a curling or holding product for additional support.
Use Blow Dryer
Once you apply the mousse and spray to your hair, grab a round brush and a blow dryer to provide a bit of volume and additional structure to your hair. Work in segments and keep the dryer 15 cm away so that you can maintain safety and increase coverage.
If your hair is already naturally wavy or curly, attach a diffuser to the blow dryer to prevent frizz and quicken the process. You can also use this attachment for straight hair to enhance the look.
Protect Your Hair
Before you actually move on to curling your hair, apply a product such as a heat protectant that will prevent your hair from becoming too stiff or brittle during and after the curling process. This is particularly important for the sake of your hair’s health in the long run.
In fact, no matter which heating tool you use for your hair at any given point, a heat protectant is a must to avoid any kind of damage. Make sure you buy one of good quality.
Section Your Hair
Once all the preparation is out of the way, start off by sectioning and separating your hair into multiple groups of equal strands. This will help you work on one section at a time without the rest of your hair constantly getting in the way.
Use pins or clips to hold each section up and unpin each section only when you want to curl it. Working on everything at once might make your curls a bit messier and looser than you would like, which is why this step is also important for your curls’ durability.
Choose a Curling Tool
There are two main types of curling tools that you can consider using—curling irons and curling wands. Curling irons are more useful for tighter curls (these tend to last longer) while also benefiting thicker and coarser hair. Curling wands are suitable for looser curls or waves that you want to introduce to straight or fine hair.
Curling wands also have a more versatile shape, allowing your curls to look more natural while irons have a straighter shape. Technically, both can work for various types of hair, but sticking to what they are more suited for is a good idea.
Make sure you choose a curling tool of an appropriate size, with smaller sizes resulting in more distinct curls that hold their shape for a longer time.
If you do not want to use these heating tools at all, you can also consider using some heat-free options for curling your hair, although these are bound to be much more time consuming. For instance, you can use a pintail comb to curl your hair and then affix each curl to your head using pins or clips.
You can also use rod curlers or make knots or small buns throughout your hair.
If you use these methods, you will need to keep them for a few hours before you unpin or remove them from your hair.
Once you have the curling iron or wand in place, you can start curling your hair section by section. Take a look at the processes for each tool below.
To use a curling iron, make your way through the following steps.
- Unpin the section that you want to curl first. It is a good idea to begin closer to your roots since your hair here is a bit stronger than the rest.
- Once you have your curling iron plugged in, let it heat up a bit before wrapping the hair around the rod.
- Use the clamp on the curling irons to adjust your movements or hold. This will also make it easier for you to wrap the hair around the iron.
- Hold the section for 5-10 seconds and let go of the section as gently as possible.
- Repeat the process on each segment one after the other.
Here are the steps involved while using a curling wand.
- Plug the wand in and let it heat up for a few seconds.
- Wear gloves to protect your hands since a wand does not include a clamp.
- Start with the segment near the roots (you can also start from the ends in this case) and use your fingers to wrap the strands around the wand.
- Hold the sections for 5-10 seconds and unwrap the strands carefully and gently.
- Repeat with each segment that you want to curl.
Pin the Curls
Once you curl each segment of your hair, a highly crucial step in the process is to pin your curls to your head so that they can cool down naturally. This step is important to let the curls set, with the cooling process allowing your cuticles to lock the curls in place.
Make sure you retain the curl’s shape before pinning so that they do not loosen up on the head. Do this for all the curls and let them rest for up to 15 minutes before unpinning them.
Establish the Curls
Once you remove each pin from the curls, take a look at how your curls look to you. If they have ringlets in place and you want your curls to look a bit more natural, you will need to use a light comb or brush to remove the ringlets and unfurl the curls to the slightest extent possible.
A clever idea here is to apply some hairspray to the brush or comb before you pass it through your hair.
Be careful not to overbrush your hair as this could loosen the curls too much, making them last for a much shorter time.
Avoid Touching The Curls
Another way to keep your curls firm and tight is to use your fingers to remove the ringlets. Although this might give you more control than a brush or comb, it might end up loosening up the curls way more than those tools if you go too far with your hands.
Moreover, if you have a habit of touching your hair, do your best to avoid this even after your curls have set, otherwise they might come apart.
Apply Texture Again
Apply a bit of hairspray or texture spray to your curls after you establish them as you want. This will act as a holding product to keep your curls tight and in place for a long time.
Take Care Overnight
If you need to sleep with your curls, a good idea is to use a large band or scrunchie to tie them loosely or make them into a messy bun. You can also sleep in a steady position without moving around too much.
A silk or satin pillow cover is also necessary here to minimize friction.
If you want your curls to last in your hair for a few days, make it a point to follow each of the aforementioned steps carefully so that the curling process goes well. You will also need to maintain caution before and after the curling process so that you obtain and retain the right kind of curls.
If this does not seem to work for you or you are not confident undertaking the process on your own, visit your hairdresser or stylist to help you out.