Have you ever heard the phrase “curly girl method” and wondered what it meant? You’re not alone, that was me not too long ago. I had so many questions – what was this method, how does it work and would it work on my wavy hair?
Lorraine Massey, the founder of DivaCurl, created the curly girl method. The goal of the curly girl method is to eliminate frizz and maintain the perfect curls. While this method only has a few rules, they can be challenging to follow and get used to:
- Rule 1: No Sulfates
- Rule 2: No Shampoo (i.e. – No Poo, Low Poo + Co-Washing)
- Rule 3: No Silicones
- Rule 4: No Heat
What are Silicones and Sulfates +
Why Should You Eliminate These Ingredients From Your Hair Products?
What Are Sulfates?
Sulfates are a common ingredient in a lot of hair products and are considered safe to use. They are added to help products sud/foam, but these ingredients strip away natural oils from your hair. Sulfates help to eliminate grease from your hair but can cause damage by drying it out and causing frizz.
If your hair is color treated, sulfates can also strip away some of the color deposits. My recommendation is to switch to a sulfate-free shampoo. The shampoo will not lather as much, but it will clean your hair and cause less damage. (Keep in mind, your hair will get clean by just massaging water into your scalp.)
List of Common Sulfates in Hair Products
- Alkylbenzene sulfonates
- Alkyl Benzene Sulfonate
- Ammonium laureth sulfate
- Ammonium lauryl sulfate
- Ammonium Xylenesulfonate
- Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate
- Sodium cocoyl sarcosinate
- Sodium laureth sulfate
- Sodium lauryl sulfate
- Sodium lauryl sulfoacetate
- Sodium myreth sulfate
- Sodium Xylenesulfonate
- Ethyl PEG-15 cocamine sulfate
- Dioctyl sodium sulfosuccinate
What Are Silicones?
Silicones are not water-soluble and are used as a sealant against water. Silicones will add shine and smooth hair, but over time can build up on your hair, causing it to look lifeless and dull. For curly hair, this can be a big problem as curly hair tends to be on the dryer side. The buildup from silicones will weigh down curls.
List of Common Silicones in Hair Products
- Bis-aminopropyl dimethicone
- Cetearyl methicone
- Cetyl Dimethicone
- Stearoxy Dimethicone
- Stearyl Dimethicone
- Behenoxy Dimethicone
- Phenyl trimethicone
What does Low-Poo, No-Poo and Co-Washing Mean?
All of these terms are different hair washing methods.
The Low-Poo Method allows you to wash your hair with a sulfate-free shampoo every few days with a small amount of shampoo. (This is great for those who are not yet ready to give up their shampoo routine.)
The No-poo Method removes shampoo from your hair washing routine. Instead, this method encourages you to use a baking soda to clean your hair and apple cider vinegar (ACV) to moisturize before adding conditioner. If you don’t want to use baking soda or ACV, you can use water to rinse your hair. Here are links to instructions on how to use baking soda and ACV in your hair:
The Co-Washing Method uses conditioner instead of shampoo to wash your hair. How do you do this? You use a conditioner the same way you would use shampoo in your hair. The conditioner adds moisture and reduces frizz. It is recommended to co-wash your hair one to two times per week.
Like many routines, results will vary by person. Have you tried the curly girl method? If so, let me know in the comments below! In my next blog post, I will share my results with the curly girl method!