SPARK Product Review: Curly Hair Care

This one’s for all the luscious curly q’s in your life, or maybe that lush is YOU. Do you (or someone you know) have thick, unruly, wild and puffy, curly hair? Then you’re in luck! I have some fun new product reviews to share with you.

I’ve struggled with containing my mane since as far back as I can remember. The older I got, the wider my fro went, and the less I knew about what to do with it. The middle school years were the worse, can you remember the kind of peer pressure you endured? Imagine adding a frizzy mop of thick ass hair to your stress level, … it was rough dudes.

YES, I have curly hair.

NO, I don’t wish it was straight.

The sad part is, I wasted a lot of my life just utterly hating my hair. Like, a deep, loathing kind of hatred. I remember feeling punished, like why would I be given this terrible uncontrollable, not to mention THICK, head of hair that I have to upkeep, while all my friends had beautiful straight perfect hair every day. It really did suck. And it makes me incredibly sad to think back on all that negatively low self esteem and how it was all just due to a huge misunderstanding. I didn’t know my hair yet, and unfortunately I had no one else to teach me either.

I used to do anything in my power to just not deal with it. Pull it back in a ponytail. Have my mom help me blow dry it straight. Cut it off. Fill it with so much gel even the wind can’t blow through it .. you name it. It really wasn’t until my mid 20’s that I started to build a strong positive relationship with my hair (and my self esteem about my hair). It’s one of those situations where you wish you could go back in time and tell your younger self what you know now, tell her it will be okay, and tell her to just fully EMBRACE that wild mane for all that it is. #WildWoman

But it all eventually comes back full circle. After college I fell in love with my hair, my staple to my whole appearance, my signature flavor, ME. I fell in love with all big hair, friends, foes, strangers, everyone. The struggle then was just that I still couldn’t find a good stylist to help me work through it or that would know how to cut my hair. Everyone ‘standardizes’ with straight hair typically. And who wants to spend 3+ hours at the salon while your inexperienced hair lady tries to work through (wreck) your luscious locks? Not me friends.

But recently, my gorgeous beautiful curly haired latina friends told me about a place in Woodbury with an actual Curly Hair Specialist. I was skeptical for awhile, (and resilient to change), but finally decided to check it out this Spring. I went in for a trimming, and left full of a whole new empowering hair care routine (and attitude). She taught me all about new processes, techniques and products to use. She worked with me to help me understand what is best for my specific curl, and she gained a lifelong customer in the process. Basically she’s a curly hair badass and if you live anywhere near Woodbury, MN and have any kind of curly hair (or even straight hair), you should probably go see her STAT. Here is her info.

Let me break down some of the products I’ve learned about:

Life is too short to have boring hair.

1. Ouidad

“CURLS HAVE A LANGUAGE OF THEIR OWN.”

Ouidad is unique because it caters to a wide range of what you would consider to be ‘curly’ hair. They break down their product line into the following categories: loose, kinky, classic, and tight. Sounds dirty doesn’t it? #JustTheWayILikeIt

(So far) I use their Classic Curls gel and the Finishing Mist setting spray.

The gel is very slippery, it literally feels like a runny lube and I’m not even kidding. BUT it drys with a good hold and it gives definition to my moisture seeking curls. The gel doesn’t leave your hair feeling crunchy, and at the same time it works to help keep your frizzy wild mess under control.

The setting spray is like a way-better-for-your-hair version of hair spray. I was taught to apply some both before I use the diffuser and afterwords. It doesn’t leave my hair crunchy like ‘normal’ hair spray, but yet at the same time it ‘keeps your shit together’.

Yes, these cost more than I’d like to spend, but at least when you buy them from Ulta you get points. Plus every ONCE in awhile they go on sale. PLUS, it’s worth it, and YOU ARE worth it. #Justified

2. Deva Curl

I use the gels regularly, and I’ve used the conditioner and shampoo a few times. I got free samples of the conditioner and shampoo from my hair lady and haven’t bought more yet, but I am very interested in getting more of the conditioner. It’s super moisturizing and you can leave some of it in your hair and it won’t leave your scalp feeling itchy and uncomfortable. Leaving the conditioner in makes my frizz nearly non-existent (combined with technique of course). It’s next on my list of self care splurges.

There are two different kinds of a gel I’ve used, one being on the lighter hold side of things (but not the lightest option overall), and another being the ‘Arc Angel’ of all holds. The gel isn’t sticky, and smells really good! It will leave a light crunch in my hair if I use enough, but I also like to combine it through my locks with the Ouidad gel too. They seem to work nicely together to get the right balance and ratio of hold and definition.

Gel 1 – Ultra Defining Gel

Gel 2 – Arc Angel Gel

It’s been months now without any hairspray keeping my locks together and I don’t even miss it one bit!

I like to buy the 32 ounce bottles of the Arc Angel gel from Amazon, it’s fairly cheaper than it is at Ulta (and I still get Prime rewards).

3. Microfiber Towel

Alright I guess this one makes sense. Obviously you want less friction on your curls to prevent them from frizzing out all over the place. I bought one immediately from Amazon and started using it every time I wash my hair. I truly do think it helps keep the locks together in smooth connections. A good hair day is directly affiliated to how much I man-handled my mane (or not) while getting ready. The microfiber towel definitely helps!

Here is the towel I purchased off Amazon > Deva Curl microfiber towel.

4. Silk Pillow Case

Okay I know this sounds silly, but I really got curious on this one. “Get yourself just a silk pillowcase, nothing else silk, just your pillow case.” Yeah, sure … I’ll get right to it .. Then I get curious one day and take a look and see the price tag for one of those bad boys and say NO THANK YOU. They are not cheap! Buuuut, I did found a cheap one on Amazon and just decided to go with it. It seems great, and says it’s a good thread count and helps with skincare, etc. It feels nice and cool on my face at night and I’m not going to lie, I’ve slept GREAT since I started using it, (but that could be for any number of reasons, HA).

Silk pillow cases are also good for anti-aging, anti-wrinkles, they prevent your hair from becoming knotted (I get some SERIOUS knots), are good for your skin, are hypoallergenic, and won’t cause skin irritations.

These range from very expensive to inexpensive … I decided to talk myself out of the $90 Sephora one, and just bought this one off Amazon for less than $25 > silk pillowcase.

5. Wet Brush

Total. Game. Changer. DUDES. I don’t know how I even have lived through my 20’s without knowing about this GENIUS technique. I typically spend far too many minutes trying to brush my way through my knotted mane after I wash my hair and usually lose a lot of hair casualties in the process. BUT now when I’m in the shower, and I’m ready for conditioner, I lather it through and then use my wet brush to smooth out my hair and make it nice and silky for the conditioner to then lock in moisture. This is everything! Saves me SO MUCH TIME, (and hair), and then I don’t have to do any brushing after the shower so it’s less touching of my hair to potentially cause unwanted frizz. GENIUS!

I bought my wet brush directly from my new hair lady, but you can get them from cheap from just about anywhere. Here is a link that shows the exact brush I have > wet brush.

Sorry, I can’t hear you over the volume of my hair.

Having curly hair can be quite the challenge some days (ALL days), and I’m always down for new techniques and products to help navigate through the wild snarls. It’s amazing how much awesome information is out there, and it’s also terribly tragic that I didn’t know then what I do know now, all those years ago when I was growing up. But the good news is my mane keeps getting better and better with age, and I couldn’t be more proud of my hair these days. It’s my signature item, and I like to keep it looking and feeling it’s best. I’ve grown to love my curly hair and I honestly can’t imagine the person I would be without it. My hair 100% compliments my personality (and my attitude), and I want to be sure to treat it right.

~~~~~~~~~~~

For more product reviews, and exciting content, check out my Instagram at @SparkFireSwan.

xoxo

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