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The Dos and Don’ts of Cutting, Washing and Styling Curly Hair in the Salon

by charlottegw / last updated October 25, 2018

cutting curly hair salon rusk Katie mulachy

From how to master cutting curly hair to which product you should always avoid using, here are some dos and don’ts to abide by when you have clients with curly hair in the salon. After all, if you treat a client’s curls with respect and you will have a client for life.

DON’T use products containing silicone
“Companies often use silicone because it gives a ‘healthy’ shine to hair. Shine is a light reflection from a flat surface, so you won’t get that shine on curls. Tell your clients that hair is a fibre, so just like you won’t get shine from a wool jumper in the same way you would from a silk scarf, you aren’t going to get the same shine on curly hair as you would as straight hair.”
Matthew James, owner of Spring is in The Hair

DO advise your clients to get regular trims
“I always advise my clients (and particularly my customers with type 4 curls) to have regular trims. Curls are prone to split ends and looking dry and dull. If a client is transforming from having relaxed hair to naturally textured hair, regular trims are even more important as the chemically treated hair needs to be cut away, ridding it of any frayed ends.”
Junior Green, owner of Junior Green

DON’T use cotton towels
“As curly hair is extremely fragile when wet, traditional cotton towels tend to be too abrasive and can damage individual stands. The fibres in micro fibre towels are gentler and absorb water more quickly, which reduces drying time.”
Natasha John Lewis, co-owner of My Hair Bar

DO blow-dry strategically
“A diffuser is your best friend when drying curls. It will disperse the airflow, so curls dry evenly and remain intact. To minimise frizz, keep the heat on a minimum to low setting and blast with cold air at the end to seal the cuticle and add shine.”
Cos Sakkas, international artistic director at Toni & Guy

DO think about how to apply styling products
“Apply products after hair is turned upside down to create more volume. Don’t be afraid to layer different combinations on top of one another – oils for moisture and shine, creams to add weight to curls prone to frizz and gels for sculpting curls.”
Vanessa Essack, senior stylist at Hari’s

DO section hair when detangling
“Divide hair into four sections as this will make it easier for you to manage the amount of hair you are detangling at one time. Use a wide tooth comb, begin at the bottom of the hair gradually working your way up to the shaft. Use a detangling spray, water or leave-in conditioner to soften any knots and maintain moisture.”
Ade Oyebola, Denman curl expert at Mikemakeme Salon

DO assess the hair in its natural form before you cut
“Everyone’s curls work differently, so in our salon we take on board the natural form of the hair first and generally cut the first section of the service dry. We will wash the hair and cut the rest wet.”
Karine Jackson, owner of Karine Jackson Hair & Beauty

DON’T use dry shampoos
“Avoid dry shampoos and products that are dust-like or powdery in texture. These will dry out the curls and can lead to matting rather than defined, silky curls. Use products that are moisturising or oil-based.”
Sam Ashcroft, senior stylist at Brooks & Brooks

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