Did a rainy or humid day make your curls into a huge puffball? Curly hair reacts somewhat differently to humidity, typically resulting in a hot mess of frizziness. And us curlies don’t want that, but how do we escape it? Humidity, in simple terms, refers to moisture in the air; the more water is present, the more humid it becomes. Frizziness resulting from humidity occurs when the curls absorb moisture in the atmosphere.
It seems somewhat conflicting that moisture-loving curls would become a hot mess by absorbing moisture from the air. What happens is that the hair cuticle is a protective layer for the hair, responsible for keeping your curls healthy and hydrated. This cuticle allows in moisture, and once all the moisture content needed is let in. It closes up.
However, the cuticle layer surrounding the hair may be broken and lifted if your curls are damaged, dry, or have high porosity. The hair feels dry and straw-like because the cuticle absorbs moisture quickly and releases it just as quickly. The hair shaft swells when exposed to high humidity because it absorbs extra moisture from the air resulting in the frizz-fest we all dread when individual strands separate from their clumps.
Best Method to Making your Curly Hair Humidity Proof
The exciting thing is if your curls are well hydrated, the cuticle won’t find a need to absorb more moisture. Keeping your curly hair frizz-free in humid weather alludes to these three phases; how you prep your hair, style, and finishing.
Phase 1: How to Prep your Hair
To keep your curls humidity-proof? Make it a point to check the weather forecast. It lets you know just how much you need to prepare and what to avoid during your wash day and styling process. Your hair needs to be prepped with careful consideration for the rainy or humid weather conditions, and the goal should be to keep it well moisturized.
The Cleansing Process
A good hair day starts with your shampoo. Suppose your shampoo from the get-go is too dry. In that case, that will result in more frizziness as your hair would be stripped of natural oils and thus would absorb moisture in humid conditions, use a sulfate-free moisturizing shampoo or a cleansing conditioner instead.
If you have oily or greasy scalp and need a thorough wash, put in oils on the length of your hair before using shampoo, this would serve as a protective shield to the curl preventing hygral fatigue and hair dryness.
Hygral fatigue happens when too much moisture enters your hair’s cortex from the outer layer. It simply signifies that the protein moisture ratio content has been disturbed, and your hair is overly saturated with moisture.
Be sure to avoid overwashing your hair as this inevitably leads to dryness.
Never Skip the Conditioner!
Putting in a conditioner is probably the most critical process. Conditioners repair the hair and help keep it hydrated, preventing it from vulnerability to humidity because the required moisture content has been supplied.
Using your fingers or wide tooth comb, delicately detangle conditioned hair and give a thorough rinse. I’d recommend regularly using a deep conditioner, especially for high porosity hair types, to keep the curls moisturized and not gravitate to outside elements for moisture.
Add in a Leave in conditioner
Now that the hair has been washed and conditioned. Add in a leave-in conditioner; a leave-in conditioner doesn’t require rinsing and can hydrate and maintain the health of your hair all day.
However, you must use one that is right for your hair type. For thick, dry, and porous curly hair, you might want to use a heavier-weight hydrating leave-in conditioner and if your hair weighs down so easily, use a lighter-weight leave-in conditioner.
Remember that if you get it right during the washing process, you won’t need to restyle or refresh it the following day or throughout the day. Additionally, using the right product in the right amount is essential.
Phase 2: Styling
That’s all for the prepping! The next phase would be styling; as you style your curls refrain from over-manipulating them and instead work with them. If at this point you have any thoughts of a blowout, do think again, and It’s Important you don’t rely solely on one styling product.
Layer and Style in Sections
After gently detangling curly hair in sections, add a gel or mousse; this would help keep the curl’s definition and form; this also gives your hair a little crunch while you proceed with styling. Focus the gel on areas where you’re most likely to experience frizziness and smooth the curls. You could also do a bit of finger coiling.
Phase 3: Finishing
Before going outside, your hair must be dry. If using a diffuser is necessary to achieve this, do so. To avoid damaging your hair, use a heat protectant.
Hover a diffuser over the styled hair; a diffuser is a blow dryer attachment that disperses air evenly around your curls, stimulating natural air drying resulting in less frizz and more extensive volume and reserves the curl’s natural pattern.
Avoid cupping the curls into the diffuser or any form of physical manipulation. You should avoid the use of hands at all costs! Grab a pick or comb to lift the roots while diffusing downwards for more volume. After diffusing, feel if your hair is totally dry; apply and finish with a hair serum; this makes a lasting difference, especially if you have curl clumps to break up and to eliminate the crunch – a crispy feeling left by the gel cast.
The bottom line is that if you have healthy and hydrated curls, you wouldn’t have to worry about staying frizz-free; if your curls don’t come out as expected, don’t overthink it. Rock those curls with a sleek back bun or ponytail, so you don’t have to fuss over your curls so much, or you could opt for protective hairstyles.