Those of you who follow me on instagram (@cheylexii), or who have read my previous post, will know of the struggles I went through to save my hair after spending years straightening, curling and relaxing my hair. Only in the last few years did I come to really appreciate my curls, and made the decision to go 100% natural when it came to my hair. This was by no means an easy job. When I first started out, my curls were limp, more of a wave than a curl if anything, but still impossibly thick, with loads of split ends and breakage. I used to have waist length hair which I ended up having the big chop and turning it into a bob when I first began this journey. Now this isn’t necessary for everyone trying to save their curls, but with my length and thickness, I found it much more manageable at a short length.
Throughout the last 2 years I’ve tried almost every curly hair product I could get my hands on and was pleasantly surprised by some, and disappointing by others. Any curly girl will tell you there are products which are way too heavy, way too light, give you the dreaded crispy curl, or just cost way too much to keep buying. So by process of trial and error I finally found the best products for my hair, which make up my holy grail. Going natural doesn’t have to be super expensive like people say (but if your hair is thick like mine, you’ll go through products pretty quickly. Below you’ll find my favourite products, how I use them, and where to buy them to get your curl pattern back on track. P.S. I have curl pattern 3B at the moment, but many of the products I use are great for all curl types.
What? Where? How much?
First up we have the Maui Moisture Coconut Curl Cream. I saw this product in boots one day when looking through their curly hair product aisle to see what new overpriced products that usually don’t work in my hair they were offering when I stumbled across this godsend of a product. I was drawn in by the intoxicating rich smell of the product and decided to dab a bit with my finger and rub them between then (a must-do when choosing products to determine how thick and smooth a product is. If it makes your fingers feel sticky, it will make your curls too). I got the product on sale for around £5 but regular retail price is around £8 in most boots stores. This is the last product I use in my hair each time as it defines the curls and keeps of the frizz so I use it as the finishing product. Honestly one of the best purchases I’ve ever made as I hadn’t seen my curls looking so defined and smelling so luxuriously good in a long while. 9/10.
Next up we have African Pride Products. One of my favourite and least expensive brands to use in my hair. I used to use their shea butter leave in conditioner, which smells amazing and leaves your curls super moisturised, but recently switched to the African Pride Olive Oil Leave-in Moisturiser. This is a great everyday product which I use whether I’m leaving my hair out curly, or putting it up in a bun. It’s super moisturising and leaves your hair feeling soft and gets rid of the trashiness and dryness that can often come with curly hair. I usually either use this right after coming out of the shower, or as the base product when I’m moisturising my hair. I also use their Olive Oil or a drop or two of Argan oil mixed in, just for an added shine boost. You can find this at pretty much any black hair shop around. It usually retails for £3.99 for a big jar of it and it lasts ages so its definitely great value for money. I’d recommend the hair shops in Peckham Rye, or any Pak’s Supermarket (they have stores all over England) to get your hands on it, but you’ll find African Pride in most hair stores anywhere, including in stores in America for my US audience, you can find this product in Walmart also!
Beautiful Textures Moisture Butter, hair shops answers to the one product to rule them all. This product is definitely the most versatile I’ve come across. It’s heavy enough to really moisturise your hair properly, while leaving your curls feeling light, bouncy, and well defined. I discovered this product when going for a haircut and my stylist only used this product in my hair (I know, a hairdresser who actually knows how to cut and style curly hair?? What?? I’ll post up about my favourite, most trusted hairdressers later also because I don’t just trust anyone with my hair, I learnt the hard way). He used this product when styling my hair and I had my doubts. But half an hour later when my curls began to dry more and fully take their shape, I was amazed that only 1 product could do such a job at defining and moisturising my curls as I usually use around 3 in the mornings when doing my hair. Since then its been one of my favourite products, one I use on its own if I’m being lazy, or as part of a group of leave in moisturisers when doing my hair. It retails for around £3.99 also, so it doesn’t break the bank, and can also be found in most black hair stores which also stock the African Pride Products. Beautiful Textures do a lot of products though, so be sure to get the mositure BUTTER whipped curl cream and not the curling pudding they’re different products. (All this hair food talk is making me hungry). 10/10 would recommend.
I recently spoke about the Organix Curling Perfection cream in which I dedicated an entire post to it, and I stand by my review of how awesome it is, and is definitely my greatest addition to my holy grail products. Another product which I love to use is the Palmer’s Coconut Leave-in spray. I use this when I’ve just washed my hair, rich after I’ve towel dried my hair lightly (lightly squeeze/ scrunch or pat dry, don’t rub ladies, you’ll mess up your curl pattern). While it’s still damp, I spray some of this bad boy on to start off the process. It smells divine, and helps to eliminate the frizz that inevitably tends to happen after washing and drying your hair. I also use it in the mornings when I spritz my hair with a spritzing bottle, like the one pictured above to revive my curls, without the hassle of completely washing my hair again because we all know how much hassle that can be, and curly hair isn’t meant to be washed as often as other hair to avoid washing out all the natural oils which stop our hair, which is prone to dryness, from drying out and leaving us looking like alpacas. A little spritz of this after you’re done spritzing with some water, followed by your usual moisturising routine, let it dry a little while you finish getting ready, and you’re good to go! Retails at around £2.49 in most superdrug or boots stores or can be found in most black hair shops with all the other Palmer’s products too. You can also pick up a spritzing bottle from any Poundland, Boots or hair store for a pound or two also. Definitely an essential for reviving dry curls, the best hack I’ve learnt since going natural.
Finally, we come to our last products. L’oreal Invisihold Gel. I cannot tell you how hard I have searched for a gel that was heavy duty enough to slick down my curls when I wanted to do an updo or am just slicking my hair up for work, that didn’t make my hair go super hard, dry white, or feel super sticky. Until I came across this beauty. This product slicks my hair down beautifully for the whole day with no movement, whilst still leaving it feeling soft to the touch. Because it dries invisibly also, you don’t get those horrible white flakes after a day or two that you usually get with most gels which forces us to go through the whole long process of completely washing our hair again. It retails for about £2 and you can find it just about anywhere, from supermarkets, to pharmacies, to hair shops.
All together, my holy grail products come to under £30 and that will last you a good while as you won’t be using every product every day, and you can combine these with any other products you’re already using that work for you. Having and maintaining natural hair doesn’t have to be super expensive, as long as you know the right products. It can take years to find out which products are good or not, this is just a helping hand to get you started in the right direction. Of course I have an use other products also which will also be featured on my page (both the good, the bad and the ugly) to show you what you should be buying, and which to stay away from. I hope this article has been helpful to you curly girls trying to learn how to take care of and save your curls.
Love the CHB xx