How to make the most of your curls

Curly hair is having a moment, and it’s time we accentuate, rather than hide, those gorgeous waves.

We speak to Lauren Gunn (Kevin Murphy style master and director of Auckland salon Colleen) to get the lowdown on making those curls behave.
“For a frizz-free, natural wave, prep is really important,” says Gunn. “Giving your hair a good dry brush before you wash it will remove any moulting hairs that might cause tangles. But this should be the last time you use a brush or comb.
“Curls love moisture but hate weight. Shampoo and condition with a light hydrating shampoo and conditioner, or try ‘co-washing’ [conditioner-only washing] – which is hairspeak for cleansing conditioners that are less abrasive than shampoo to the cuticle of your hair and also deliver great hydration. Avoid heavy protein products as they add weight and can have a straightening effect.”
-Joico Curl Créme CO+Wash, $34
-(1) Lee Stafford Here Come the Curls Conditioner, $17.99
“Keep your styling product handy in the shower and style your hair while it’s still dripping wet,” says Gunn. “Choose products that are alcohol-free, as alcohol tends to create frizz in curly hair and dry a bit crunchy.
“Gently wring out your hair using your hands and apply a styling cream or serum from just below the roots to the ends in the direction that you’d like your hair to fall. Step out of the shower and blot dry your hair [with a towel], scrunching and squeezing upwards to create natural volume and separation in the curl.”
(2) John Frieda Frizz Ease® Dream Curls Air-Dry Waves, $19.90
(3) KMS California CURLUP Control Crème, $34
“Ideally, you’ll leave your hair to air dry,” says Gunn. “Don’t irritate it with unnecessary fiddling – think calm. If you do have to dry it, use a diffuser attachment on your hairdryer, and the same rules apply: don’t overstimulate it; let your hair fall into the diffuser and dry slowly.
“When your hair’s dry, touching up a few pieces with a waving wand can be a nice way to break up the curl, but keep heat styling to a minimum and the tool set to low as excess heat will eventually break down the structure of your hair and leave your curls limp.”
(4) Nutrimetics Nutri-Rich Hair Protect & Shine+ Serum, $30
(5) ghd curve® creative curl wand, $270
Words: Elise Wilson
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