Curly Girl Method | Organic Products for the Curly Girl Method

Curly GIRL METHOD

What is the Curly Girl Method?

Have you heard of the Curly Girl Method? Do you know someone that is following the Curly Girl Method and you are keen to lean all about it?

If you have thought of giving the Curly Girl Method a try but unsure what it is all about, let us here at EverEscents Organic Hair Care help you with everything you need to become a Curly Girl.

The team here at EverEscents Organic Hair Care have been part of the Curly Girl movement since 2017, working closely with our Curly Girl clients to understand the needs of an everyday Curly Girl. As part of our research and development of our products, we also work very closely alongside professional curl specialist hairdressers servicing Curly Girl clients in hair salons across Australia.

We even have our very own curl specialist hairdresser in our salon team that has been trained by Lorraine Massey herself!

Lorraine Massey

The Curly Girl Method, also known as the CGM, is an approach to hair care designed specifically for naturally curly and naturally textured hair. The method is specific for hair that has not been chemically or heat straightened. In 2001 the Curly Girl Method was introduced to a wider audience by hairstylist Lorraine Massey, in her bestselling book, Curly Girl: The Handbook

As a professional hairstylist and curl specialist, Lorraine has travelled the world sharing her passion and knowledge for the natural beauty that is curly hair. Lorraine’s inspirational and liberating book has become a bible for curly haired women and men all over the globe and here at EverEscents Organic Hair Care we encourage everyone to buy a copy and read it twice before you embark on your Curly Girl journey.

Curly Girl: The Handbook is available from our friends at Curls Only.

The Curly Girl Method is a specific approach to the care and maintenance of all types of curly hair to enhance the natural beauty of the hair without the use of synthetic or cosmetic enhancements. Curly hair is a beautiful and natural human feature that deserves to be admired and embraced.

The Curly Girl Method has proven that many conventional approaches to hair care and hair styling are detrimental to the natural health of curly hair. Let’s discuss curly hair and the Curly Girl Method further.

Purelyou Hair – 07 4055 4789 Edmonton, QLD

Moisture is in the Hair

Curly hair is more prone to dryness and frizz caused by atmospheric conditions than straight hair. Therefore, the basic aim of the Curly Girl Method is to ensure that the curls are always adequately hydrated allowing the curls to be naturally healthy, shiny and bouncy. Hydrated curly hair will look fuller, cleaner, healthier and shinier without any unsightly frizz or fluffiness. So how do we keep curly hair hydrated?

Here at EverEscents Organic Hair Care we have broken the Curly Girl Method down for you and we have Curly Girl approved products to help you achieve your curly hair dreams.

The foundation of the Curly Girl Method is to treat curly hair with the utmost respect using specific techniques designed to work with the curl not against it. 

Helen Thompson – 0431 265 249 – Bon Beach, VIC

These techniques have been created to work with the hair gently, minimizing damage to the hair cuticle and keeping the hair sufficiently moisturised at all times.

We know that curly hair is more prone to dryness than straight hair.

We also know that adequate moisture obtained from water combined with the right curly hair products will accentuate rather than interfere with the hair’s natural curl pattern. Curly hair bliss really is achievable!

Go Sulfate Free

Modern day hair care products currently available on the market contain many ingredients that may be harsh to human hair and evidence shows that curly hair is easily disturbed by these seemingly simple ingredients. It is common for regular hair shampoo to contain detergents and cleaning agents, known as sulfates, in order to clean away the dirt, grease, sweat and skin cells from the scalp and hair.

Some of these sulfates are so strong they are found in industrial cleaning products and engine cleaners. When used to clean human hair, these harsh cleaning agents cause two major issues; firstly the harsh ingredients disrupt the natural state of the hair cuticle causing it to be rough which in turn causes frizz and dryness; secondly the use of harsh ingredients in hair care products like shampoo can strip away the natural oils produced by the body to moisturise the scalp and hair.

These two issues alone are the reason why conventional shampoo is not recommended for those curly hair people seeking to bring their curls to life. The avoidance of sulfates, along with any other harsh ingredients is an important part of the Curly Girl Method that should not be ignored.

The use of high quality hair care products that are sulfate free, like those found in the EverEscents Organic Hair Care range, is a step in the right direction when reducing the impact from harsh synthetic ingredients.

Go Silicone Free

Another common approach with mainstream hair care products currently available on the market is to include ingredients that are designed to give the hair an improved cosmetic appearance.

Most commonly it is hair conditioners, hair treatments and hair styling products that include cosmetic enhancements however, shampoo can also be included in this group. Some hair care brands add specific ingredients to the formula of hair care products with the sole purpose of dramatically improving the appearance of hair that is damaged and unhealthy.

These ingredients give the illusion that the hair looks healthy when in fact it is masking the hair with a coating. This process is causing long-term problems for a short-term gain. These masking and film forming ingredients are most commonly silicones. There are many forms of silicone found in hair care products and this short list below shows some of the most common types.

At EverEscents Organic Hair Care we are proud to state that all our products are silicone free.

 The following list of silicones are not Curly Girl approved and should be avoided in hair care products:

  • Dimethicone
  • Cyclomethicone
  • Amodimethicone
  • Pheryl Trimethicone
  • Ceteraryl Methicone
  • Dimethiconol
  • Stearyl Dimethicone
  • Along with any ingredient ending with “cone”

When silicones are used in hair care products, they form a coating on the hair that needs to be removed the next time the hair is washed.

To be removed from the hair, silicones require harsh detergents like sulfates and this harsh washing action causes damage to the hair.

It becomes a vicious cycle of washing the hair to remove the silicones yet to have more silicone deposited in the hair by the conditioner which then needs to be washed out yet again.

The cycle goes on and the condition of the hair deteriorates rather than improves. Curly hair is particularly affected by this process.

Naturally Vintage – 0433 996 042 – Scarborough, QLD

Oil and Water Don’t Mix

There are other masking and film forming ingredients that may be found in hair care products which cause the same effect as silicones. These ingredients include wax, oil and butters that may be of natural or synthetic origin.

Like silicone, these ingredients form a coating on the hair shaft and repel water therefore not allowing the necessary moisture to penetrate and hydrate the hair.

The Curly Girl Method advocates for the removal of all ingredients that form a film or barrier on the hair such as the silicones and other ingredients such as oils and waxes. When using hair care products without these ingredients the hair is not suffocated and there is no need for strong detergents or sulfates to wash the hair each time.

To ensure that the hair is cared for in line with the Curly Girl Method all ingredients used in the products must be natural, mild and easily washed away with water. All products in the EverEscents Organic Hair Care range are natural, organic and water based to comply with the Curly Girl Method.

Drying Alcohols

The Curly Girl Method also incorporates key guidelines to help achieve the ideal level of hydration by removing anything that may cause the hair to dry out prematurely. This includes the removal of ingredients known as drying alcohols from the hair care products.

These ingredients are generally included in the formulations of hair care products because they help the product spread evenly through the hair and they evaporate quickly once applied.

This can be helpful in some cases, but this action is quite drying to curly hair and works against the principles of the Curly Girl Method.

 

Perth Curls – 0427 448 413 – Subiaco, WA

The following list of alcohols are drying alcohols and are not Curly Girl approved and should be avoided in hair care products:

  • Ethanol alcohol
  • Ethyl alcohol
  • Propanol alcohol
  • Alcohol denat.
  • Isopropyl alcohol
  • Isopropanol alcohol
  • Benzyl alcohol 

Fatty Alcohols 

Not all alcohols found in hair care products are bad, there are some alcohols that are considered good for curly hair. The good alcohols are known as fatty alcohols, or moisturising alcohols, and work in a different way to the drying alcohols we want to avoid.

These fatty alcohols work particularly well in hair care products that are designed for curly hair and are approved for the Curly Girl Method.

The function of the fatty alcohols is to draw more water into the hair and smooth the surface of the hair cuticle. EverEscents Organic Hair Care products are free from drying alcohols and feature the inclusion of selected fatty alcohols to improve the health of the hair and comply with the Curly Girl Method.

 The following list of fatty alcohols are great for improving the health of curly hair and are Curly Girl approved for the use in hair care products:

  • Cetyl alcohol
  • Cetearyl alcohol
  • Stearyl alcohol
  • Lauryl alcohol

Heat Damage 

 Curly Hair is easily damaged by excessive heat from hair styling tools such as blow dryers, curling wands and straightening irons. For many years the fashion trends have focussed a shining light on perfectly straight hair with many celebrities being famous for their curl-free hair.

A sad fact is that many everyday curly haired women felt the pressure to straighten their natural curls with the use of these heat styling tools in an effort to fit in and be seen as ‘normal’.

The detrimental effect of repeated use of heat styling tools is significant and can take many years for the hair to repair. The Curly Girl Method advocates for very slow and gentle drying of the hair, preferably in a natural fashion without the aid of added heat.

When heat is required to speed up the process it should only be with a hair dryer that has a low heat setting and a good quality diffuser attached. The Curly Girl Method includes a very popular technique known as ‘plopping’ which involves a soft jersey cotton t-shirt being used to cover the hair while it dries naturally.

Care for Curly Hair 

There are other masking and film forming ingredients that may be found in hair care products which cause the same effect as silicones. These ingredients include wax, oil and butters that may be of natural or synthetic origin.

Like silicone, these ingredients form a coating on the hair shaft and repel water therefore not allowing the necessary moisture to penetrate and hydrate the hair.

The Curly Girl Method advocates for the removal of all ingredients that form a film or barrier on the hair such as the silicones and other ingredients such as oils and waxes. When using hair care products without these ingredients the hair is not suffocated and there is no need for strong detergents or sulfates to wash the hair each time.

To ensure that the hair is cared for in line with the Curly Girl Method all ingredients used in the products must be natural, mild and easily washed away with water. All products in the EverEscents Organic Hair Care range are natural, organic and water based to comply with the Curly Girl Method.

The Main Steps of The Curly Girl Method

Let’s look at the Curly Girl Method itself which can be broken down to 4 main steps. Each step of the Curly Girl Method comes with their own special techniques and some unusual terminology as mentioned earlier.

  1. Cleanse – to wash the scalp and hair
  2. Condition – to add moisture to the hair and smooth the hair cuticle
  3. Styling – to encourage the natural curl in the hair and set the curls in place
  4. Drying – to allow the hair to be completely dry and allow the curls to sit in their natural state

Curly Girl Method Terminology

No Poo Cleanse

The Curly Girl Method advocates for a gentle cleaning action of the hair and scalp. This can be done with a sulfate free botanical cleanser known as a ‘no poo’ product.

The unusual formulation of a Curly Girl no poo cleanser is designed feature to open the hair cuticle to allow cleaning, yet the entire action is carried out without a foaming action.

‘No poo’ means no lather (no bubbles or suds) and these products are neither a shampoo nor a conditioner.

Low Poo Cleanse

This is a gentle cleaning action of the hair and scalp can be done with a sulfate free botanical shampoo that only produces a small amount of lather.

This is known as ‘low poo’ which means low lather, and EverEscents has a range of Curly Girl approved low poo products available.

Roping – Deep Conditioning

Another technique designed to ensure maximum hydration is achieved by utilising a hand motion similar to milking a cow.

Working from roots to ends and back again the hair is worked in sections and the mixture of water and conditioner or treatment is applied.

This technique is usually undertaken in a salon environment by professional curl specialist hairdressers.

Cast – Styling

Once the curl gel has been applied to the hair and allowed to dry it will be crunchy and the hair will feel like crispy noodles.

The gel has set around the hair shaft like a cast on a broken arm. This is known as a cast because it feels strong and hard to the touch but can be easily removed.

Co-wash Cleanse

Another way to clean the hair and scalp within the Curly Girl Method is to ‘co-wash’ which means to conditioner wash.

This technique requires no shampoo or cleanser to be used at any time, and a Curly Girl approved conditioner is used in place of a shampoo.

The idea is that the gentle cleansing action of the fingertips combined with the nourishing properties of the conditioner will gently remove any dirt and grease from the hair and scalp without any lather, thus minimising the agitation of the hair and possible disruption of the curl.

The co-wash process can’t be undertaken with any variety of conditioner, the formula needs to be Curly Girl approved and capable of performing a light cleansing action whilst conditioning.

Squish to Condish – Conditioning

This is a technique that involves the gentle squeezing action of the hands when applying water and conditioner to the curls.

When the mixture of water and conditioner is squeezed into the hair it ensures that the hair is conditioned fully.

Praying Hands – Styling

The application of styling products such as curl cream and curl gel must be applied with gentle action.

The praying hands technique is where the styling product is distributed across the palms of the hands, and then applied to the hair between both hands when together in a praying motion.

Scrunch out the Crunch – Styling

Once the curl gel has dried and become a crunchy cast, it can be gently scrunched out of the hair with a squeezing action of the hands.

No brushes or combs are to be used. It is advisable to lightly wet the palms of the hands or apply a very light coating of Curly Girl approved curl cream to act as a gentle lubricant between the hands and the curls.

The gentle scrunching action will break the cast, remove any residual crunch and reveal the beautiful soft and bouncy curls.

This is the moment the curly girl has been working towards. Naturally beautiful curls that everyone will want to touch!

The EverEscents Organic Hair Care range offers products that are suitable for the Curly Girl method

you can see the ‘CG approved’ logo on each of our products through our products page. A full list of our EverEscents Curly Girl approved products is also shown below.

A Beautiful You Hair Studio – 07 5481 2763 – Gympie, QLD

Cleansing with Curly Girl Method

The following EverEscents products are suitable for the Curly Girl co-wash technique.

Bergamot Conditioner

Rose Conditioner

Lavender Conditioner

Fresh Mint Conditioner

Fragrance Free Conditioner

Conditoning and Deep Conditoning 

The following EverEscents products are suitable for Curly Girl Method conditioning and deep conditioning

Styling

The following EverEscents products are suitable to assist with Curly Girl Method styling