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Curly Hair Facts, Myths and Physics

by: Better Not Younger September 06, 2021 7 min read

Middle age curly hair doctor woman wearing coat and stethoscope over blue background smiling and looking at the camera pointing with two hands and fingers to the Better Not Younger lettering.

Whether you’re new to the curly hair-care journey or you’re just looking for the latest 411 on your curly hair growth, let’s get a few things out of the way. There’s simply too much misinformation out there about “the best curly hair products” and how they play into “hair physics.” The truth is, your friends and family with curly hair are still trying to figure it all out, no matter their age.

 

And while every curly girl loves to receive compliments on her hair, don’t be mistaken if all you receive in response is a quick “thanks” bordering on indifference. The truth is, she probably worked super hard on her hair, even pleaded with it to stay neat and frizz freebut she’s not going to take any credit for the end results.

 

You see, curly hair does as curly hair wants, regardless of how we try to will it into shape. So if we have an awesome hair day, great! But it’s only because our curls decided to cooperate that daywe didn’t get a say in the matter.

 

That being said, let’s jump into some of the biggest curly hair facts, myths and misinformation.

Myth #1: Curly Girls Love Their Curly Hair!

The Fact of the Matter: Let’s call a spade a spade, shall we? It’s a love-hate relationship and we all know it. But that doesn’t mean we don’t want to love our curly hair. Keeping your naturally curly hair refreshed and styled doesn’t have to be an uphill battle if you’re willing to learn more about your curls and keep the right products close at hand.

 

On average, curly girls might have close to 100,000 curly strands of hair on their head at any given time. And it can feel overwhelming when you consider that you're likely to find so many different types, lengths and coils on a single head—each strand with a mind of its own!

Myth #2: Naturally Curly Hair Is Naturally Soft and Lush

The Fact of the Matter: Curly hair actually falls short at retaining moisture, and anyone you see with amazing, moisturized curly hair works hard to maintain that. We sleep with our curls tucked into silk wraps on silk pillows and search for the deepest moisturizing products. The rate at which your hair loses moisture depends on your hair’s porosity, another way in which every curly girl is different.

 

High porosity hair sucks in oils and styling products like nobody’s businessoften weighing your hair down if you don’t use lightweight styling products. Low porosity curls, on the other hand, need heavier products that penetrate your curl strands such as deep conditioning treatments. Then there’s medium porosity hair, which thrives under gentle moisturizers like creams rather than gels.

Myth #3: Curly Girls Shouldn’t Use Oils or Serums on Their Hair

The Fact of the Matter: Your hair needs a certain level of oils in order to stay healthy. Curly hair especially tends to appear duller than straight hair because the natural oils produced at your follicles take longer to distribute to the ends of your hair.

 

When it comes to curly hair, the key is to choose oils that are lightweight and silicone-free in order to allow the most moisture possible to seep into your hair follicles and down your curly strands. On the other hand, our Superpower Fortifying Hair & Scalp Serum is meant to work its magic at your scalp to rebalance scalp oils and condition skin and hair at the roots for healthier hair growth for your curls.

Myth #4: One Styling Product Alone Can Give You Perfect Curls

The Fact of the Matter: No two curly hair products or styling methods work exactly the same for everyone. Whether you have thin curly hair, thick coils or any curl shape in between, there are a number of factors that apply to your hair’s ability to absorb product and remain styled, including porosity, curl type and environmental conditions. This being the case, finding one product that can keep everyone’s hair frizz-free and looking its best all day, every day, in all climates is truly mission impossible.

What does work? A holistic hair-care and styling approach that focuses on gentle cleansing, hydration, detangling, strengthening and curl definition and reactivation. Finding the right recipe of products that work best with your curls takes time and patience as well as trial and error—and that’s where we come in with our 3-step curly hair regimen.

We developed our curl-boosting regimen exclusively for women over 40 with dry, thinning, aging hair, so it tackles all the concerns you care about most. Used together, our Bounce Back Super Moisturizing Shampoo and Conditioner and License to Curl Revival Boost Spray cleanse, repair and reactivate curls for up to 24 hours of definition and frizz control.

 

Myth #5: Humidity Helps Hydrate Your Curls

The Fact of the Matter: Humidity is the arch-nemesis of any hair type. When we’re talking about curly hair, however, the conversation quickly becomes complicated. While it may feel obvious that having moisture from the air would be great for your hair since your hair needs moisture, that couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, if your hair doesn’t have enough natural moisture and the right kind of product in it, it will become attracted to the moisture in the air, creating frizz.

There is one silver lining to consider: Those with thin, curly hair may actually celebrate the hottest of summer days when humidity often becomes a blessing, giving your hair an added volume boost all day long.

Myth #6: Curly Strands Should Be Washed Just as Often as Straight Hair

The Fact of the Matter: Curly hair actually should be washed less. It is naturally weaker than other hair types and its texture doesn’t allow your natural oils to travel as easily to the ends—therefore strands lose moisture faster.

 

How often you wash your curly hair will depend on your texture, activity levels and environment. And it may change from season to season. The important thing here is not to overwash it, as that can lead to breakage.

Myth #7: Never Ever Brush Curly Hair

The Fact of the Matter: It is perfectly safe to brush curly hair when it is wet and has a healthy amount of conditioner or detangler in it. That being said, it’s important to detangle gently, and maybe start with finger detangling to get the larger knots out.

 

Despite the fact that wet hair tends to be weaker than dry hair, wet hair is also more elastic. On the flip side, you do not want to brush dry curly hair. Why? Hop over to Google Images or any social media site and search “brush dry curly hair.” When brushed dry, you’re actually breaking up the natural structure of your curls, creating a mountain of “volume” and the stereotypical fluffy triangle shape. And for some curl types, the only way to reform your curls would be to hop back in the shower, rewash and restyle your curly strands. Plus, it’s much more damaging to your curly strands than if you’d brushed it when wet with enough slip.

Myth #8: Curly Hair Just Doesn’t Grow Long

The Fact of the Matter: Curly hair is just as capable of growing length as any other hair type. It just might not look how you imagined once it reaches your desired length. This is because the longer your hair grows, the heavier it is, and therefore the straighter or wavier your hair dries. However, that might apply to your whole head, or it might only apply to the hair closest to your scalp.

 

Curly hair is unpredictable, and no two types are alike, so you won’t really know what your hair would look like at a certain length until you try it! Ever wonder why they say you should get curly hair cut dry? That’s because curly hair can shrink up to 30 percent when dry, with coily hair shrinking as much as 75 percent!

 

Send us a message on Facebook and Instagram if you have any questions about our new curly hair products, how they can help care for your thin curly hair, speed up your curly hair growth, or if you’re looking for more curly hair facts, tips and styling techniques to bring your curly hair back to life. Better Not Younger has everything you need for your curly hair care. Make sure to check out our blog for more hair-care information as well!

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