Pro Advice: Curl Stylist Lashawn Drops Knowledge
Whether a veteran or newbie to the natural hair game, we've all got questions about the do's and don'ts of maintaining healthy curls. To provide some professional feedback, we've got a treat for you from a licensed Curl Stylist, ready to share some tips!
My name is Lashawn (ShawnCutMaster). I’m a Curl Stylist from Philadelphia. I’ve been a hairstylist for 19 years. For the last 12 years, I’ve worked exclusively with textured hair after seeing a void of Curl Stylists in my area. There aren’t many salons that focus exclusively on curls and/or how to care for them so along with my business partner, we opened Curls, Kinks and Coils Curl Studio to cater to women with textured hair. Although tight curls are my specialty, I service all textures of curly hair. I have made it my mission as a stylist to make sure my guests receive the best salon experience, superior products, and the most up to date education I can provide for them. I wholeheartedly believe that, “Curly hair is not just a hairstyle but a lifestyle!”
In my years as a Curl Stylist, the biggest concern from clients seems to be, “How do I get and maintain curl definition,” particularly with tight curlies. The truth is, curl definition starts at the shampoo bowl. Before I ask, “What styling products are you using,” I find out what my guests are cleansing and conditioning with. Often times I find they pre-poo with oil, “detox” with bentonite clay, and/or use harsh sulfate-laced shampoos, just to name a few. Once I get to the styling products, it’s even worse! Truth is, curls need water! They need lots of it, and require it very often in order to stay hydrated - much like our human bodies. Oil and filmy products leave buildup on the hair, causing curls to become dehydrated, dry, and frizzy. When hair is properly hydrated and free of buildup, curls will begin to elongate and naturally clump together. At that point, using water-soluble styling products helps curls to stay defined.
I recommend clients refrain from using oil on their hair and scalp (on a regular basis) in order to maintain optimal curl definition at home. I know this is a hard pill to swallow because oiling our hair has been used to combat dryness for generations; however, many misuse it to tackle hair that's actually dehydrated, rather than dry. Oil coats the hair, acting as a barrier that repels water away, which makes it difficult for products to penetrate the hair (ex. like a daily moisturizer). If you're not sure what products work best or when to use oil in your routine, consult a Curl Stylist for guidance.
If you are new to Wash 'n Gos, I suggest finding a Curl Stylist in your area to help you along your journey. Your stylist will prescribe a cleansing and styling regimen exclusively for your curl texture. The curly hair journey can be challenging in the beginning but I promise it’s totally worth it!
Got questions? Leave them in the comments below!
See you next time!