The Curly Girl Method: The Basics

The Curly Girl Method was developed by Lorraine Massey. She shared it with the world in her book, Curly Girl: The Handbook. She acknowledges our problems, and provides a lot of helpful advice about how to care for our hair. 

The basic idea(s):

1. Curly hair, because of its construction, is drier and more prone to breakage/frizz than any other hair type.

2. SULFATES: Typical shampoo contains harsh chemicals, sulfates, which strip hair of its natural oils and moisture. (Yes, even popular brands like Pantene and Herbal Essences contain them!)

3. These sulfates aren’t really good for ANY hair type, but they’re especially bad for curly hair, due to its delicate nature.

4. SILICONES: As most shampoos contain sulfates, most conditioners, and various other styling products (ex. serums, gels), contain various silicones. They are used to make your hair shiny-looking. The only way to remove (most) silicones is with sulfates. Since, with the method, you won’t use any sulfates, it is important to avoid heavy silicones. If you continue to use silicones, they will build up on your hair (ew). 

How am I supposed to wash my hair, then?

5. CO-WASHING/NO-POO: Although you can buy sulfate-free shampoos, they still tend to be too harsh to use on your curls every day. So, you can wash your hair with conditioner. 

What? No shampoo? Gross!

6. It really isn’t gross when you think about it. Ensure that you massage your scalp with the conditioner, to loosen all of the dirt, and you’ll be okay. You know what’s gross, though? Having all of those harmful sulfates in your hair. :(

Okay, anything else?

7. Yes! When purchasing styling products, you may notice that nearly all of them contain silicones. But, not to worry. There are certain types of silicones that won’t build up on your hair and make it gross. I’ll link you to a list. :)

I’ve been doing the Curly Girl Method for a few weeks, and nothing’s happening. What’s the problem?

8. The first thing that you should do is check all of the products that you’re using to ensure that they do not contain sulfates and silicones. If they do, that’s the problem. If they don’t, just wait it out for a few more weeks. You’ve probably been using harmful products on your hair for all of your life, and it needs some time to adjust. Some people even say that their hair looks worse at first.

I need more information; can you give me more detail?

I shall provide you with some helpful links.

How to follow/which silicones and sulfates to avoid:

http://www.wikihow.com/Follow-the-Curly-Girl-Method-for-Curly-Hair

Other people’s results with the CG method:

http://www.naturallycurly.com/curltalk/general-discussion-about-curly-hair/47609-post-your-before-after-cg-pics.html

A generally helpful website:

http://www.naturallycurly.com/

Read other people’s questions (to me) about CG:

http://thecurlyhairproblems.tumblr.com/tagged/cg