Are your curls looking dull, dry, and frizzy? You've changed your hair products to sulfate-free curl-friendly items, you sleep on a soft pillowcase, you've avoided tight hairstyles, so what gives?
Did you know that the way that you dry your hair matters? Drying curly hair isn't hard, but it's different than drying straight hair. But what's the best way to dry curly hair?
We're here to offer some advice that can help you get your locks looking bouncy and soft again. Keep reading for a few great ways to dry curly hair.
First: Ditch The Blow Dryer (Usually)
If you know that your hair looks like a frizzy mess every time you use your blow dryer, it's time to toss it away for good. Many older blow dryers are too hot and harsh for delicate curls. The heat can damage your hair!
If you're in a rush, you might not have a choice as to whether or not you use your blow dryer. This doesn't have to be a big deal as long as you know how to do it the right way (but it still isn't the best option).
You can do a few things to make the blow dryer safer for your curly locks.
First, even if you have an older blow dryer model, it will likely have a cold or cool air function. This is great for drying curly hair (though it isn't as fast as a standard dryer with hot air).
Heat damage is the primary factor in curly frizz. While you're unlikely to cause true damage during one drying session, if you use a hot blow dryer often, it will add up over time. The cool air may cause some frizz, but it won't cause damage.
You could also use a diffuser. Diffusers attach to the ends of blow dryers to disperse the air and let it wrap around your curls.
Air Drying: Good or Bad?
If you have plenty of time between your shower and your responsibilities, air drying isn't a bad option. It also works well in combination with other methods (more on that later).
If you have long and heavy hair, air drying might not be as effective. It will take longer and it may impact the shape of your curls depending on your hair texture. This is going to be a trial and error process for you.
With short to mid-length hair, air drying is great.
When you get out of the shower, pat your hair with a gentle microfiber towel to get rid of excess water. Add some gel or leave-in conditioner to your hair and scrunch it. After that, leave your hair alone to dry on its own.
If you want to make the process faster, try sitting outside on a warm and sunny day. If you're stuck inside, consider turning a fan on in your room to get more airflow.
If you want to make sure that you don't lose any volume, change the part of your hair every half hour or so. Flip your hair over to one side and then the other so it dries evenly and one side isn't flatter than the other.
Depending on the length and thickness of your hair, this can take anywhere between an hour to half of a day. Make sure that you have time.
Plopping: What Is It?
If you spend any time in curly hair forums, you've likely seen the word "plopping." What is plopping? It doesn't sound nice, right?
Plopping is a great way to dry curly hair. It's quicker than air drying and it's great for days where you have a decent amount of time to get ready. You can get dressed and put on your makeup while you're plopping your hair.
You're going to need a tee-shirt or a microfiber towel. The towel will work faster, but a tee-shirt is fine if you're short on supplies or traveling.
Before your shower, lay out your towel or shirt on your counter. If you use a tee-shirt, make sure that the neck end is at the front.
After your shower, after you put leave-in conditioner or gel in your hair, lay your head down (curls first) on the towel or shirt. If you're using a shirt, bring the bottom of the shirt over the back of your head and wrap the arms across your forehead to secure it.
If you're using a towel, simply wrap it around your hair (or use our Turbie Twist to make it easy)!
Types of Towels
So what's the deal with microfiber towels anyway? Why are they better for when you want to towel dry curly hair?
Standard bathroom towels are great for skin, but they're rough enough that they might damage your delicate curls. Rubbing your hair with a towel can cause frizz and breakage!
When you use a soft microfiber towel, it gently absorbs moisture from your hair without any friction. You can also place one on your pillow for quicker drying while you sleep (though this may not be great for your definition).
So What's The Best Way to Dry Curly Hair Overall?
So, now that you know your options, what's the best way to dry curly hair? Overall, we love using a combination of the above methods for perfect and dry curls.
If you're in a rush, stick to a cool blow dryer with a diffuser. If not, start by plopping your hair right after you get out of the shower. After excess moisture is gone, release your hair and start to air dry your curly hair.
This is the best way to get soft and bouncy curls!
Are you looking for the best products to keep your curls looking their best? Check out our Turbie Twist products and change the way you dry your hair!