How to Tame Kinky Curly Hair in 5 Easy Steps

Let’s be honest, girls with kinky curly hair face daily battles in styling their locks, but being able to wear kinks in their natural state is well worth the challenge.

I have been preparing coily kinky hair for photo shoots and fashion shows and teaching women and stylists how to tame natural hair for many years now. If you still find it hard to manage your afro without straighteners and heavy products, here are my tips that will help you embrace your beautiful tight curls.

Natural Kinky Hair Made Curly

Instagram / @tilly_penn_hair

Identify Your Kink

No curl is the same, and you may even have more than one curl pattern in your mane. Understanding your curl pattern is going to set the right direction for taming your hair correctly.

People associate kinky hair with being strong and thick, but kinky coily hair is actually the most fragile of all hair types. The gaps between each curl leave the cuticle more open and make the hair shaft prone to damage. The kinkier the hair, the more gaps in each strand, which makes it more fragile.

Curly Hair Types Chart

Instagram / @bloombeautyyco

Type 4 Hair Care

Moisture is a kinky curls’ best friend: not only does well-hydrated hair mean less frizz, but it also means easier brushing, more shine, and easier taming.

But moisture doesn’t mean using the thickest oil you can find. The hair can’t absorb products that are too heavy; thus, the excess product remains on the surface and makes your freshly washed hair hard to tame and greasy as hell.

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Treat your hair like you would treat your skin and do not hope that one product will fix all your problems. Instead, apply the well-selected products in stages to get the most benefit without overloading.

Here is what a hair regiment of women with kinky coily hair should include:

#1: Drink Much Water

Drink much water sounds crazy, I know, but the health benefits of staying hydrated are hard to overestimate, and nurturing your hair is one of them!

#2: Use a Professional Shampoo and Conditioner

High street products are filled with sulfates and parabens, which are well known to dry the hair out. So, read the ingredients carefully before trusting what the label says.

My favorite range to use is that of Ouidad. They are a curly-specific brand and have a range of different shampoos and conditioners to fit your curl pattern perfectly. Whatever brand you choose, trust me, investing in hair care makes a world of difference!

Products for Washing Kinky Hair

Instagram / @ouidad

#3: Cocktail Products

Cocktail treatments rather than use one thick product. For example, use a leave-in conditioner or detangling spray with oil or cream (depending on the thickness of your hair). Top tip – applying products while your hair is wet dilutes them, which means you can be more generous.

What do I recommend here? Ouai leave-in conditioner is the one to die for, and the Morrocanoil oils, creams, and other treatments for hair and scalp are simply amazing.

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Ouai Leave-in Conditioner for Kinky Coily Hair

Instagram / @theouai

#4: Use a Moisturising Mask

Use a moisturizing mask every 3-4 washes. Wrap your hair in a cap or a good old cling film. This creates heat, which will open the cuticle and help the product sink into your hair, a bit like steaming your face.

Moisturizing Mask for Natural Hair

Instagram / @nomads_flowers

#5: Exfoliate

Yes, the same way dead skin cells and products build up on your face, they accumulate on your scalp too. You can exfoliate your scalp every other wash or tie it to your mask routine.

Kerastase has great duos of exfoliating shampoos and masks to suit all hair types, and their products mix and match amazingly. My favorite duo is Fusio scrub + Aura botanica mask.

Scalp Exfoliation for Natural Hair

Instagram / @toni_kerastase

How to Style Kinky Hair

Twist, Twist, Twist

No matter what curl pattern you have, twisting the curls individually when wet will enhance the natural curl pattern and set your hair the way you like it. You don’t have to twist all of your hair; often, you will have to work only on the pieces that are losing their shape. Whether you leave the hair to dry naturally or use a hairdryer, twisting will be your new favorite technique to tame unruly kinks!

When blow drying your hair in its natural state, use a diffuser attachment. Direct airflow will blast away all those beautiful kinks and, even worse, create a frizzy mess! If you don’t have a diffuser, it will change your life, as it is the best investment for a kinky girl.

If you don’t have it yet, remove the nozzle from the hairdryer and blow dry in circular movements on medium heat and the low-speed setting, scrunching your hair from the ends up.

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Twists on Natural Kinky Hair

Instagram / @tilly_penn_hair

I always recommend drying natural hair to around 80%, then adding more serum and leaving the rest to air dry. This prevents frizz and is very good for winter hair care if you have enough time, of course.

Ace Big Hair for Day to Night Glam

So you’re going on a night out and want to feel more alluring? Kinky hair is sexier than ever and is not something everyone can boast of! The bigger, the better is a golden rule when it comes to natural curls, so ditch the two hours of straightening.

Three Models with Various Types of Naturally Curly Hair

Instagram / @tilly_penn_hair

Get yourself a chopstick wand, some volume spray, and an Afro pick. Picking up random pieces of hair and curling creates more defined pieces without making your hair look too done. Use the spray at the roots and dishevel the ends with an Afro pick for extra vava voom. You can also gently tease curls to lift hair while spraying to style an ultimate kinky girl look.

Bin Natural Hair Styled with an Afro Pick

Instagram / @tilly_penn_hair

Using a chopstick wand on kinky coily hair allows creating volume and achieving more defined curls for nighttime glam. Here’s a splendid example of lived in curls on natural hair that enhance the curl pattern.

Kinky Coily Hair Styled Using a Chopstick Wand

Instagram / @tilly_penn_hair

If in Doubt, Rinse It Out

Styling from wet is the easiest way to tame kinks; still, most kinky girls know that washing hair too often is bad for hair. Co-washing is a bit different story. Rinse and condition your hair daily to style coily kinky hair or use a water spray to dampen unruly areas and reuse your serum or cream to get those kinks back under control.

Protective Hairstyles and Accessories

Some days, you don’t have time to style your hair or things are just not working out: you look like or feel like you’ve woken on the wrong side of the bed. Don’t panic, there’s a backup plan: switch to some splendid and showy protective hairstyles for natural hair.

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For example, wrapping your kinky coily hair with a silk scarf is a great option. It prevents friction and is also an amazing fashion accessory.

To get the spotlight, give extra attention to your edges. Straight or kinky baby hairs can be your worst enemy, so be sure to set these little hairs and fly-aways in place.

Natural Hair Ponytail with Styled Edges

Instagram / @tilly_penn_hair

I hope you have found my tips for taming your kinky hair useful. Please follow me at @tilly_penn_hair for more useful hair hacks and message for help and advice with your hair care.

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