The Curly Girl Method also known as ‘No-poo Method’ is a way of caring for naturally curly hair based off the book ‘Curly Girl’ from Lorriane Massey and is believed to be a great method in fighting frizz and split ends, get softer more manageable curls and retain hair length in curly, coily and kinky hair.
This method of hair care simply advocates for the elimination of sulphates contained in shampoos, silicones and heat from hair routine and embracing the use of silicone free conditioners for both cleansing and moisturizing hair.
Why do you need to remove shampoos from your curly hair routine?
Research has shown that many shampoos not specifically targeted at curly hair contain detergent-like stripping qualities that dry out (already dry) curly hair which leads to a reduction in moisture and overall hair health. Read: Sulphates, Silicones and Alcohols to avoid in Hair Products.
Can Conditioner really cleanse hair?
The answer is yes. There are specially developed co-washers that act as both shampoo and conditioner. These products are usually a bit on the pricier side and can easily be replaced with regular conditioner.
If still skeptical about letting go of shampoos, try specially formulated sulphate free shampoos from brands like Kinky Curly, African Naturalistas, etc.
HOW TO FOLLOW THE CURLY GIRL METHOD.
1. Wash your scalp with conditioner (conditioner washing). Begin your routine by wetting your hair in the shower. Distribute conditioner on your entire scalp and massage your scalp with the tips of your fingers (not your fingernails). This rubbing action and the resulting friction will loosen dirt, product residue, and dandruff which can then be rinsed away. (Be sure to avoid silicone in your hair products.)
2. Thoroughly rinse your scalp afterwards, still massaging with your fingertips as you do so.(Depending on how dry your scalp is, you can conditioner wash, once a week, twice a week, or every day.)
The curly-haired can leave their hair hydrated with natural oils and clean their scalps quite well by rinsing only with hair conditioner once a week or less. Rubbing the scalp firmly with fingers is enough to loosen dirt.-Lorriane Massey
3. Distribute conditioner throughout all of your hair and untangle gently. Use your hands or a wide-toothed comb. Start by untangling bottom sections of your hair and then gradually move upwards. Let the conditioner sit in your hair for five minutes or so for extra moisture.
4. Do the final rinse of your hair with cool or cold water. This will decrease frizz and add shine. Leave some conditioner in your hair, especially in dry sections like the ends. It’s fine to run your fingers through your hair gently, but do not comb your hair after this point.
5. Apply products to your hair. Do this while your hair is soaking wet if you have curlier hair, but wait five minutes or so if you have medium to wavy curly hair. Put product in your hands and rub them together to emulsify. Then, smooth or rake the product into your hair by sections. A common method is to begin with a leave-in cream or conditioner to decrease frizz and then follow with a gel or mousse for hold and definition. (Using your normal conditioner as a leave-in is fine too.) Some prefer curl creams or just conditioner for softer curls, however these products will not help the hair last as well for second day hair. Use whatever type and order of products you like (as long as they are silicone free). View our top product picks.
6. Next, style the curls by scrunching them (cup your hair in the palms of your hands and scrunch in an upward motion), twisting or braiding to define them.
7. Allow hair to air dry. Try to avoid using heat as much as possible.
Moisture and Length retention. You will immediately notice less dryness. Less dryness means less breakage, less shrinkage and more length retention.
-Softer curls with less tangles.
-Great looking curls with less styling product usage.
-Product build up: some naturalistas complain of hair product build up which isn’t really removed by conditioner only cleansing leaving their hair dull and lifeless. To solve this problem, mix a tablespoon of baking soda with a cup of apple cider vinegar for a quick homemade fix.
-A lot of conditioner will be used in the cleansing process since shampoo is no longer used.
-It takes a little getting used to as it is different from traditional methods of hair management. It is not the way many of us were taught to manage our hair and if you like, traditional methods then this may not be the technique for you.
The Curly Girl Method is definitely one a lot of naturalistas and curly heads swear by, however, the choice to adopt this method of hair care is entirely up to you. Though this has worked for some who have professed pillow soft shiny curls, for others, it may just not be worth it. To know for certain if the no-poo method is for you or not, try it out for at least two weeks and observe how your hair reacts. You may be surprised.
Would you consider trying the CGM hair care method any time soon? Please share.