A Hair Expert Told Us to Condition First, Then Shampoo
Fact Chances are, you use a cocktail of creams, oils, gels, and mousses to keep your curls in check. Over time, those products create buildup, which causes further stress on your already fragile strands and can lead to breakage, says cosmetic chemist Ni'Kita Wilson. Even if dryness is a concern, shampoo at least once a week using a moisturizing formula to remove residue without stripping. Bonus: When you eliminate buildup, your styling products may be more effective.
Myth: Curly hair grows more slowly than straight hair.
Fact: Hair grows at an average rate of about a half inch per month, regardless of your texture. But because curly hair bends and curves, that added length is less noticeable. Moreover, the more curls you have, the weaker your hair tends to be, says Wilson. So if you're not taking proper care of it—using a moisturizing shampoo, conditioner, mask, and leave-in treatment once or twice a week—your hair may be breaking at the same rate it's growing.
Color Commentary: When fighting frizzy curls, conditioner is your best friend, but don't overdo it if you want your color to last. Many women load up on masks and deep conditioning treatments to combat the damage caused by dyeing—but conditioning too frequently (more often than what's listed on the product's label) or for a longer period than recommended may leach the color molecules from your hair, causing your new shade to fade, says Kari Hill, L'Oréal Paris celebrity haircolorist.
Top, Ramy Brook. Earrings, Sarah Magid.