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Style SOS

Styling and Taming Naturally Curly Hair

Style SOS – Curly Hair Styling Tips.

Since naturally curly hair texture is everywhere now, and flat irons are taking a well-deserved vacation, there was no time like the present to get together with Master Stylist and Educator Tyson Daniel to chat all things curl. On our recent shoot with Tyson, we celebrated waves, twists, spirals and more. Read below to discover how he crafted each look, and how to style naturally curly hair.

How to Style Curly Hair

Tyson’s Notes: Getting Volume for Curly Hair

Charlotte, pictured above, has beautiful, tight ringlet curls. She has fine hair, and the density is just perfect to be able to let her curls bounce naturally. We chose this look for Charlotte because her elegant natural beauty deserved the complementing hair texture to go with it, and it’s a classic example of how to style curly hair. A clean and effortless look was really the order of the day. Lots of hydrated, high-volume curls.

After cleansing and conditioning—I recommend COLOR shampoo & conditioner for the boost of moisture – even if hair isn’t color treated—we sprayed a healthy amount of LEAVE-IN conditioner spray throughout Charlotte’s hair. Curls tend to be more porous and dryer than straight hair which means they love the hydration of LEAVE-IN, as well as the detangling. Spray it into damp or dry hair. I followed the LEAVE-IN conditioner with a good dollop of NUVO gel for weightless moisture, mixing it with a pump of DIAMOND serum to amp up the shine. We diffused the hair dry then wrapped individual curls with a three-quarter inch iron all over her hair to give the look extra polish.

SEVEN curly hair analysis:

Hair density: Thick
Hair diameter: Fine
Curl pattern: Ringlets
Product Prescription: COLOR shampoo & COLOR conditioner for moisture; LEAVE-IN conditioner spray in wet or dry hair for nourishment and detangling; NUVO gel on damp hair to define curls, add shine, and hydrate; DIAMOND serum for anti-frizz extra shine.

How to Style Wavy Hair 

Tyson’s Notes: How to Style Naturally Wavy Hair

If you are like Courtney, pictured above, you’ve probably wondered how to style wavy hair easily and beautifully. Because Courtney has really strong cheekbones and jawline structure as well as striking eyes, we wanted to be able to frame and accentuate all of these features. She is also a professional musician, so we wanted to showcase her artistic personality. That meant going for a finished look that was tousled and natural. Courtney’s hair has an amazing curl pattern, she has a lot of hair, and it’s pretty thick. The challenge in this wavy hair style was to create an intentional mess – controlled chaos.

To get there, I started by spritzing BOND reparative spray through dry hair. This calms the cuticle down, adding manageability and shine. Then I used Cubica® MOUSSE foam to elevate her waves and hold their natural shape. Using a twisting and scrunching movement I molded the shape and basically just let it air dry. I paid special attention to framing her eyes with the bangs and the rest of her facial features with the curls. To finish, we misted SWEPT texture spray throughout for volume and sexy texture.

Later in the day, when we wanted a more polished look, I brought out a 1” curling iron to direct some of the curls. I just picked out key curls to give the look a little more intention. And, of course, because curly hair is more susceptible to dryness and breakage, a thermal protection spray was essential. I prepped Courtney before the iron work with a spritz of HEAT DEFENSE spray.

SEVEN curly hair analysis:

Hair density: Thick
Hair diameter: Medium to Coarse
Curl pattern: Strong wave
Product Prescription: BOND shampoo, conditioner, and reparative leave-in spray to seal the cuticle and increase overall health of hair; MOUSSE foam on damp hair to form curls, add shine, and hydrate; SWEPT texture spray for sultry texture and volume. HEAT DEFENSE spray to defend against heat damage.

How to Style Wavy Hair and Straighten It Too

Tyson’s Notes: Curly and Straight Styling for Naturally Wavy Hair

Katya, pictured above, has that kind of natural beachy curl texture which is completely easy to shape into versatile looks. To turn her naturally wavy hair style into a full-on curl, we started with VOLUME shampoo and conditioner followed by a generous misting of SEAL spray throughout to detangle, seal the cuticle, and lock in moisture. I then combed Cubica® MOUSSE foam through from roots to ends to get glossy volume and bounce, and worked in NUVO gel for curl definition and hydration. To style, I wrapped 1 inch sections of her hair around my fingers alternating forward and backward, and scrunched the curls. We then gently diffused the curls, keeping volume and separation as the hair dried.

When we wanted to take her natural waves into a high-volume blowout, I used the same cocktail. MOUSSE foam plus NUVO gel throughout for volume and shine. I then prepped her dry hair with a light misting of HEAT DEFENSE spray and curled with a one and a quarter inch curling iron, alternating forward and backward in vertical sections. I finished with DRY SHAMPOO at the root for volume, and so the look would last for several days.

SEVEN curly hair analysis:

Hair density: Medium
Hair diameter: Medium
Curl pattern: Strong wave
Product Prescription: VOLUME shampoo & VOLUME conditioner for a gentle but thorough cleansing; SEAL spray to seal the cuticle, detangle, and lock in shine; NUVO gel for weightless, hydrated, defined curls; MOUSSE foam for a high volume blow dry and to give curls bounce.

How to Make Straight, Damaged Hair Curly Again

Tyson’s Notes: Amping Up Curly Hair for an Editorial Look

Aaliyah’s hair, pictured above, has a very unique texture. It’s got curl, but bleach has flattened it out significantly. This is something I see fairly often with clients who have curly hair. They have colored and chemically processed it so much that they have to spend time coaxing the curl back. For her look, we wanted to bring back the curl. Plus, Aaliyah has an avant-garde rockstar personality, so embracing her natural curl meant embracing editorial! We wanted to give her a bespoke style fitting her vibrant personality.

After years of bleaching, there is no getting around the fact that Aaliyah’s curly hair needed repair, so we started with ultra-healing BOND shampoo and conditioner followed by the BOND reparative spray. We went with a liberal amount of WAVE curl cream (the amount you will need is directly related to the porosity of your hair, and porosity is directly linked to damage). Then, to encourage back her curl, we wrapped large sections in coils, pinning them in little buns. Though you could diffuse, it is easier to dry them like this overnight or even to rock the little bun look for a day or two. We then took sections out starting at the bottom, lightly back-combing vertical subsections. We sprayed SWEPT texture spray throughout to give even more volume and used a comb to complete this curly hair style paying special attention to the details around her face.  

SEVEN curly hair analysis:

Hair density: Medium
Hair diameter: Fine
Damage level: High
Curl pattern: Natural curl flattened out by bleaching
Product Prescription: BOND shampoo & BOND hair mask to cleanse and treat damaged hair; BOND reparative spray to repair the damaged hair cuticle and restore shine; WAVE curl cream to define curls and transition flattened sections back to curly; SWEPT texture spray for sultry all-over volume with a touch of hold.

Want to know more about how to style curly hair?

We have way more to say about styling and managing curly hair. Our experts have built an entire library on it. The following links take you to additional resources on hardcore curl care:

How often should you wash your curly hair?

What are the best product ingredients for curly hair?

Curl cream vs. curl gel

Related products
WAVE curl cream - a sumptuous styling cream that provides definition and hydrated softness
CUBICA® WAVE curl cream
NUVO hair gel - moisturizing, alcohol-free styling gel for curly hair
MOUSSE foam - delivers hold, body, and volume for fine hair
SWEPT texture spray - gives an easy lived-in look with volume and bounce
CUBICA® SWEPT texture spray