Ah, spring! The best time of here is upon us.
Has the winter taken a beating on your hair? Have you noticed increased shedding, breakage, and a lifeless look to your curls? Are you looking for a way to put the bounce back into your curls before the summertime?
It sounds like you need a thorough, detailed spring curly hair routine. By creating a spring curly hair routine (and actually sticking with it), you're setting yourself up for bouncy, healthy, and overall beautiful curls for the summer.
And who doesn't want that?
It may seem daunting to create a spring curly hair routine, especially when there are so many options out there, and you may not know where to start. Don't worry, sis. We got you.
Let’s get started.
There’s nothing quite like spring. Warm air starts to descend. Precipitation falls in the form of rain instead of snow. The winds start to warm and the buds on the trees start to bloom. Gone are the below freezing, frigid temperatures.
The idea of spring makes me get into Marie Kondo mode. I just want to get my whole life together.
But more importantly, all I want to do is transform my winter curly hair routine into a spring curly hair routine.
The warm weather means a few things for our curls. For one, the moisture from the air will transfer to our curls, increasing its moisture.
No longer will the cold air steal the moisture from our hair! Our wash ‘n go’s will finally prosper.
But alas. Just because winter is over (for now), doesn't mean that you can slack on your curly hair routine.
In fact, one would argue that this is the MOST important time to create your spring curly hair routine.
It’s time to spring clean our hair care, sis. You ready?
Here are the top ten things you need to incorporate into your spring curly hair routine:
Start with a Fresh Trim
The first thing you should do for your spring curly hair routine is to do some light dusting. And I’m not talking about your apartment.
It’s time to dust those ends!
No curly hair routine is successful without getting rid of dead ends. And the same goes for your spring curly hair routine!
Dead ends hold you back from achieving your length goals, simply because the split ends will just keep splitting.
They’ll split right up to the root if you don’t monitor it. This is especially true after a long, dry winter such as the one we just had.
Why not do your hair a favour and get a trim? Taking off half an inch to an inch will dramatically change both the look and feel of your hair, without impacting your length too much.
Getting regular trims is essential for proper natural hair maintenance. In doing so, you’re ensuring that your hair can achieve its length while remaining healthy. Your curls will bounce all the way through to summer.
Humour Some Humectants
Humectants, if you know how to use them properly, can amplify your spring curly hair routine.
If you’re wondering what humectants are, they are particular substances found in beauty products designed to draw moisture from the air and into your strands.
In the summer months, when the hair is full of moisture, humectants will draw the moisture from the air and put it in your hair.
But, in the winter they do the exact opposite. When the air is dry, the humectants in your products will allow for the removal of the moisture from your curls, into the air.
Basically, during the warmer months, humectants are your friend. In the colder months, they’re out to get you, sis.
Common humectants in your hair products include glycerin, fructose, honey, propylene glycol, among others.
Depending on the temperature (i.e. when it starts to warm up), consider including some humectant-based products into your spring curly hair routine.
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Clarify… Like, ASAP!
Over-shampooing is a big no-no in the natural hair community.
You know you’re shampooing your hair too much if its consistently dry, even after an intensive deep conditioning session.
But, this doesn’t mean that you can just ditch the shampoo though! Clarifying your hair via shampoo is a must for all naturals.
In fact, regardless of season, your wash day routine can make or break your natural hair journey. Moisture starts during your wash day routine, from adequately pre-pooing, to using the right shampoo, to deep conditioning appropriately.
And to be clear: the co-wash method, which means to only use conditioner to clarify your hair, is simply not enough to clarify your scalp.
And if your follicles are clogged, how do you expect long, healthy natural hair?
There is a place in your spring curly hair routine for co-washing. Naturals who exercise frequently, or who develop product buildup faster than others, may need to co-wash in between shampoo.
A general rule is that Type 2-3 naturals should shampoo every week, while Type 4 naturals should shampoo biweekly to keep the scalp clarified without sacrificing moisture.
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Drop the Heat Styler Like Its Hot!
Flat irons, much like relaxers, are the antithesis of natural hair.
Altering your natural curls using a straightener comes at a high price: if used frequently, your ends may become more frail, dryness will increase, and in some cases, you may lose your beautiful curl pattern.
Nothing is worth that!
You can still manipulate your hair creatively without a flat iron. For example, braid outs and twist outs are excellent ways of achieving voluminous, defined hair. These are healthier alternatives for when you want to switch up your hair.
Not to shame those who like to have straight hair, but if you decide to incorporate the use of flat irons into your spring curly hair routine, use them responsibility. That means deep conditioning and using a proper heat protectant prior to straightening.
Up Your Protein Treatment Game
Protein treatments are essential in any good natural hair routine. It’s even more important to add it into your spring curly hair routine.
Our curls are entirely made up of protein. Similar to why we need to drink water (we are 70% made up of the stuff), we need to replenish the protein in our hair that may have been lost due to the environment or general hair maintenance.
Depending on the level of damage to your hair, you may need a light, medium or intensive treatment.
Some examples of light protein treatments include the Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen and Restore Treatment Masque and the ORS (Organic Root Stimulator) Hair Mayonnaise.
Both are excellent protein deep conditioners that, after one use, put the bounce back in your curls by replenishing the protein bonds in your strands.
If you suffer from intense protein damage, or struggle with breakage and/or general hair breakage, you may be due for an intensive protein conditioner. The Aphogee Two Step Protein Treatment might be just what you need.
If you’re not pre-pooing, it's time to start!
Naturals swear that having a solid pre-poo routine is the single most important thing you can do to enhance your wash day routine.
Not only does it keep your hair feeling soft and supple (before AND after shampooing), it also cuts wash day in half.
And who wouldn’t like that?
A good pre-poo is one that is oil-based and, depending on your preference, has some slip to detangle.
Oils work differently for different people, so use one that works for you. Some of the best oils for natural hair are ones you can find at home!
Don’t Cheat on Deep Conditioning
Gel is a great way to lock in moisture and define curls.
But be sure to choose your gel products wisely. Some gels products are too “tacky”, thus being hard to apply. Some leave the dreaded white flakes behind. There has also been some links with certain brands of gel and cancer (hint - read the labels of your products very carefully).
But don’t count it out just yet. Here are some tried and true gels for you to try out:
Drink Your Water + Mind Your Business
Drinking water is a key to a healthy natural hair routine. We’re made up of 70% of the stuff, after all!
Boosting your water intake will result in dramatic changes in your body. Your hair, skin and nails will thank you!
And that’s only the tip of the iceberg. There are so many added benefits to drinking water beyond your physical appearance, such as your digestive and cardiac system.
The last, but definitely not least, tip for your spring curly hair routine is for you to get moving, girl!
Getting regular exercise, whether that’s on your lunch break, getting off a stop earlier than your stop to walk the rest of the way home, or even walking for 10 minutes on the treadmill, will do wonders for your natural hair.
Exercising naturals swear that this is the most significant reason why they're achieving their hair goals.
The Bottom Line
There is no better time to create a spring curly hair routine. If you are laying off the heat, getting regular trims, pre-pooing, deep conditioning and using protein adequately, plus incorporating a healthy lifestyle, you are sure to see healthy, flourishing curls this spring.
How do you plan on spring cleaning your hair routine? Any tips you would like to share? Let us know down below!