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Curly Hair 101: Things You Shouldn’t Do to Curls

December 12, 2021


Verna Meachum

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 We treat our blog with a curious, open-minded, and customer-focused attitude. We ask lots of questions about everything.

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Above all, we value your trust above anything else. We're so glad you’re here!

Hi,I'm Verna

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Last Updated on August 25, 2022 by Verna Meachum

What a day for a curl! You just woke up and you’re feeling that good ol’ natural spring in your step. The sun is shining, the birds are singing, and it’s time to get ready for work. But wait… there’s one problem: your hair won’t cooperate.

No matter what you do or how much product you use, your curly locks turn into an unmanageable frizzy mess before 10 AM every morning.

Sound familiar? Well, fear not, because we’ve got some insider tips on how to handle those crazy curls without having to spend all night getting them looking presentable again! In todays article, we talk about things you shouldn’t do to curls.

Not using the proper tools

Get the right tools: Sometimes the issue with unmanageable curly hair is simply that we’re trying to use the wrong tools.

If your hair is like a lion’s mane after you’ve let it air dry and then tried to tame it with a brush or comb, the first thing that needs changing is what tool you’re using.

To brush curly hair wet or dry

The truth is that no matter what texture your hair is, ensuring that it is properly detangled is a must. It is acceptable to brush curly hair.

Curls, like all other types of hair, can be brushed, however, it’s better to do so when the curls are wet. But, be super gentle and take your time so you won’t damage the hair.

Here are some great detangling brushes below;

Proper tools for curly hair - Classic Denman brush that a curly haired should use
Classic Denman Brush
Proper tools for curly hair - Detangling brush for curly hair
Tangle Teezer
Proper tools for curly hair - Detangling brush good for detangling curly hair
Felecia Leatherwood Detangling Brush
Proper tools for curly hair - A great detangling and styling brush for curly hair
Wet Detangler – This is my absolute favorite brush for brushing my curls after applying products.

Start at the bottom and work your way up, using a wide-tooth comb or detangling brush. If you have a lot of tangles, spray the hair with a leave-in conditioner or detangler to make things easier.

Brushing curly hair when it is dry may not only ruin the curl pattern but can also cause breakage, especially with tighter textures. Fortunately, there are detangling brushes for tighter textures which will make brushing easier. I love this brush and use it to detangle my hair while wet.

Proper tools for curly hair - detangling brush for curly hair
EZ Detangler Brush – This is my favorite brush for detangling my hair quickly and easily

Wet curly hair every day

Determining the appropriate amount of moisture for curly hair can be a tricky business. Some people say that you should wet your curls every day, while others insist that it’s okay. So, what’s the right answer? Since the answer is already written, click here take to a look at the science behind wetting your curls!

“The truth is that while we need moisture in our hair in order for it to be healthy, water can also be very damaging to your hair. In fact, the more damaged your hair is, the more damaging water is to it.”

Tonya McKay Becker, Polymer Scientist and Cosmetic Chemist 

Too much conditioner

Conditioner is an essential part of any hair care routine, but can you use too much conditioner in your hair? The answer may surprise you! Yes, it is possible to use too much conditioner! Over-conditioning your hair might backfire and cause it to be greasy, limp, and unmanageable. Believe it or not, but using too much conditioner over time can also cause build-up in your hair.

When you over-condition your hair, each cuticle is heavily coated and contributes more moisture than required. Other hair treatments cannot get through your cuticle and function correctly because of this. Furthermore, your hair can become mushy and lose volume.

Sleep on a cotton pillowcase

Sleeping on a cotton pillowcase, using a cotton bath towel is bad for curly hair for many reasons. Cotton is a fabric that absorbs moisture, which can lead to frizzy and dry hair. It can also cause your hair to become matted, tangled, and break.

Silk or satin pillowcases are a better option for those with curly hair, as they help to keep your hair moisturized and reduce frizz. Invest in a silk or satin pillowcase. Trust me, it’s worth it.

Tight hairstyles

There’s a lot of debate on whether or not buns are bad for curly hair. Some people say that buns are the best way to keep your curls looking polished and sleek, while others believe that buns put too much stress on curly hair, leading to frizz and breakage.

So, what’s the truth? Are buns bad for curly hair? Let’s take a closer look.

There is nothing wrong with wearing your hair in a bun, however, if it’s pulled back too tightly, that’s where the problem can occur. Hair loss happens if you pull your hair tightly on a regular basis.

There’s an actual medical term for this type of hair loss, called traction alopecia. The constant tug can cause damage to the hair follicles, which can lead to permanent hair loss. So, loosen the bun or ponytail a bit to reduce the tension, especially around the hairline.

Not listening to your hair’s needs

There is nothing wrong with following someone else’s method or routine or trying the products and methods they use, but you must be mindful of the fact that their curl pattern, porosity, state of condition may be different from your own.

You have to learn to pay attention to your hair’s needs. It sounds easy, but it will take trial and error to figure out what your hair likes and doesn’t like, needs or, doesn’t need, so be patient.

There’s no reason to avoid certain ingredients unless you know you have a problem with them. For example, my hair may need extra protein and your hair doesn’t.

My hair is dyed and needs the extra protein, whereas your hair is not dyed and doesn’t need as much protein. Make sense?

Curly Hair Professional Stylist

Most hairstylists are not trained to cut or deal with curly hair. It is important to find a stylist who knows how to cut and style curly hair. Curly hair has a spring factor. 

When a curl is pulled down and stretched out, it may be up to several inches longer than when it’s at its relaxed state, and this is the very reason why curly hair is cut dry, in its natural form, and without tension or elevation.

If everything else fails and you still don’t know what to do with your curly locks, and you’re sick of all the trial-and-error, visit a curly hair professional who can help you find the right products and methods for your unique curly pattern.

Ask friends or the curly hair community for recommendations. Trust me, your locks will thank you.

What Curly Hair Should Avoid

It’s no secret that some curly hair types should avoid specific products and styles to look their best. But what are those things? And more importantly, how do you know if you have one of them? Keep reading to find out!

  • Heat styling, especially blow-drying on high heat and flat irons. This causes split ends and over time can lead to breakage
  • Using products that are not curly hair friendly. Many shampoos, conditioners, and stylers contain ingredients that can be drying or damaging to curls, such as harsh sulfates, formaldehyde, mineral oil, DEA/TEA, Benzene, Phthalates, lead acetate, etc.
  • Wearing your hair in a style that puts too much stress on the curls, such as a tight bun or ponytail. This can lead to hair loss and damage
  • Swimming in chlorinated water. The chlorine can strip the hair of its natural oils, leaving it feeling dry and brittle. However, there are ways to safely protect your hair while in the pool.
  • Using too much product. Curly hair doesn’t need a lot of product to look its best, and overloading the hair can lead to build-up and a dull appearance.
  • Not listening to your hair’s needs. As mentioned before, every curly head is unique, so every curly head has different care needs
  • Ignoring the signs of heat damage. Curls that are exposed to too much heat over time will become dull, dry, and brittle. If you’re not sure if your curls have been damaged by heat, take a look at the ends of your hair. Healthy curls will have a slight curl or wave, whereas damaged curls will be straight and lifeless.
  • Trying to force your curls into a style that they don’t want to be in. Curls have a mind of their own, and you just need to learn to love them for that.


Curly hair is a BEAUTIFUL thing. It can be hard to maintain and frustrating at times, but it’s worth the effort!

We hope this post has been helpful and informative. If you have any questions, let us know in the comments below or by contacting our team by sending us an email.

Curl care

 We treat our blog with a curious, open-minded, and customer-focused attitude. We ask lots of questions about everything.

We think that people should take what information they need and leave what they don't. We suggest things we enjoy and believe are worth your attention.

Above all, we value your trust above anything else. We're so glad you’re here!

Hi,I'm Verna

product reviews

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