Articles By Shari Harbinger

Dear Shari: Why is my hair greasy??? I take showers every day and I get grease if I go under the front part of my hair (if that makes any sense). I don't know why—I use sulfate-free shampoo and Suave Naturals coconut conditioner.

A: Without knowing the history of your hair and your diet, it is difficult to offer a solid answer. However, there may be synthetic ingredients in the products you are using that are weighing down your hair and causing a reaction. Is your facial skin oily as well? With limited information, I would like to suggest that you only use the conditioner on your ends and not on your scalp. Also, when you are cleansing the scalp area, make sure you scrub well and rinse well. Lastly, if you are using any stylers on your hair when it is dry, this, too, may be causing the greasy effect.

DevaCurl No Poo

Dear Shari: I have 3b (50:50 chemically treated, natural-in-the-process-of-growing-out) curls, and I've been using Deva No Poo for almost close to a year now. I have found myself on an extended vacation in Grenada (Caribbean), and it's probably the weather and frequent ocean swims that have lead me to wash my hair more often than usual (from twice a week to three times a week). And I've run out!!! Any suggestions? I have at least another 3 weeks with no access to any line of sulfate free shampoo....what do I do? My scalp is drying me crazy. Also what's the deal with sea water...good or bad?

A: Sea water contains salt—BAD for the hair. It is dehydrating. I suggest that you use conditioner as both the cleanser and the conditioner and leave some in when rinsing for extra moisture. Make sure the conditioner does not contain silicone as it will clog the hair and prevent moisture from penetrating.

Dear Shari: I've been shampoo free for about 2 weeks now, and my hair is already feeling great, but I'm having a situation with my root hair. It's super oily/over-conditioned, I don't know, it's impossibly soft. Perhaps it's only the change, going from a sulfate shampoo to co-washing... So I thought I'd better use a low sulfate shampoo every two weeks or so. I don't know what to do.

A: There is nothing wrong with only using DevaCurl Low-Poo which has less moisture than DevaCurl No-Poo. In addition, do not use the conditioner on your scalp at this time. It seems not to need it.

Dear Shari: I did a shampoo free method from April-August because I found out I was pregnant and the texture of my hair changed and wasn't getting the results I wanted so I just stuck with a low-sulfate shampoo and conditioner. Now I decided to go back to the shampoo free method since it worked so well for me the first time, but when my hair dries its TOO soft and therefore creates frizz. Does this mean I'm over conditioning? I'm using the same amount and same kind as before but didn't have this problem. Could it be that because I'm still pregnant my hormones changed and now my hair is more sensitive to conditioner?

A: It could be a number of things and yes, hormones have much to do with the current state of your hair and scalp. Try using DevaCurl No-Poo on the scalp and DevaCurl One Condition on the ends with a little bit of DevaCurl MirrorCurls added to the ends. However, it seems highly doubtful that if your hair is over-conditioned, that is what is causing frizz. Perhaps you need a gel to define your curls? Perhaps you are touching it too much when it is wet and when it is dry which causes frizz?

Dear Shari: Three months after my pregnancy, I began to notice heavy hair loss. I have thick hair, so I'm no stranger to the daily 100 in the shower. However, this hair loss was different. One day I looked at myself in the mirror while I was pulling my hair back and noticed I had developed a widow's peak! My hair is also tangling something fierce with all the hair I'm losing.

My hair is past my shoulders and while I don't really want to, I'm considering getting it cut short again to avoid dealing with all the tangling and to get some hair in my face to cover the peaks.

From reading the forums, I realize this hair loss is normal, but I'm curious as to how others have handled it? While I am not a doctor, I do know that hair loss after pregnancy is normal. It usually takes 6-12 months for hair to return to a somewhat balanced state.

A: Why not trim it for now and see what happens? You can always cut more in time. It also sounds as if the texture may have changed causing the tangling. be gentle with it during this time and use a little extra moisture on the ends and the nape.

Dear Shari: I am starting the shampoo free routine, but have a question. I have dandruff and need to use a shampoo that will control it. What do you suggest I use that would still be sulfate-free?

A: Dandruff is considered a virus and you would need to consult with a physician to determine if this is really the case. Make sure you actually have dandruff and not just dry scalp or product build-up from styling aids that are not Deva. (Deva will never build up on the hair or scalp because it is a water-soluble product line). If you do have the dandruff virus, unfortunately your doctor will want to prescribe a medicated shampoo for the scalp. If you feel you must this medicated product, then I suggest following immediately with DevaCurl No-Poo. DevaCurl No-Poo will replenish lost moisture that dandruff shampoos remove.

Dear Shari: I am writing because recently (for about 7 months) I have noticed my curly hair (full of ringlets) has started to straighten out. I cut my hair, thinking it was just to heavy, but I am still having this problem, except for it mainly is the bottom layer that is straightening out. My normal hair would look identical to Lorraine Massey, but now it seems like the top layers are the same, but the bottom layers are almost just wavy (more like the Sarah Jessica Parker kind) What should I do to fix this? I have no clue what to use in my hair. I just want my old hair back!

A: If you have never used DevaCurl before, now is the time. Sometimes trauma or stress, pregnancy and menopause can cause this to happen. One way to see if you can get your curls to spring fourth again is to follow the Deva 3-Step approach:
1. Cleanse with DevaCurl No-Poo cleanser
2. Condition with One Condition.
3. Style with any Deva styler for maximum hydration such as Set It Free or AnGEL. Watch our 3-step video on and learn how to scrunch and style your curls. The key is moisturize, moisturize and moisturize!

Dear Shari: I have naturally wavy hair. Though I think of it as tight waves. I've been straightening them for some years now but I want to rock out my natural waves.
The thing is that I've tried to classify my hair according to the hair types suggested but my hair doesn't seem to fit any.

I was also advised in the salon not to straighten my hair any more because it has become quite brittle. If I want to have it straightened I have to get a rebond and not just a simple relax.

What specific haircut could you suggest that would be best for my weird hair type? Something that is low maintenance.

A: I am glad that you realized that straightening is not the answer. The best cut for you is angling the sides without too much layering at the base, but rather, more elevating on the top so that the hair doesn't hang so heavy. An authentic Deva cut will do the trick. We cut the hair dry, in its natural form, curl by curl. Then you must infuse as much botanically derived moisture as possible to nourish thirsty curls, which will then reduce frizz and dehydration. While the curls are drying, take a clip and anchor the bottom of the curl to weigh it down. This will give you a more elongated and looser curl without having to resort to a chemical to do the job. And voila, there you have it! Low maintenance , beautiful, shiny and frizz free curls!

Dear Shari: I have had wavy hair most of my life. But after losing my hair twice in two years due to cancer and chemotherapy, I now have curly hair! I don't have the energy to spend much time on it! I have been blow drying my bangs straight on my forehead and mostly air-drying the rest. It is still short, but kind of just looks frizzy with curls. I just run a brush through it and wear a baseball cap . . . every day! Any products that could help me with a no-fuss style so I can stop wearing a hat everywhere? Since my hair is now growing so slowly, I haven't found the trust in anyone to cut it! I have had a friend do a small trim a few times. My hair is now thinner than it used to be, more so on one side than the other! Funds are limited, too, as I am no longer able to work.

A: The beauty of the DevaCurl philosophy is that we teach our clients to be self-sufficient. Low maintenance is possible with just a few easy steps.
1. I suggest you do not cut your hair for at least six months. Just let it be.
2. Stop using a brush—it sounds as if you are giving your hair two personalities—if you want to be low maintenance, stop the brushing madness!
3. Try using just conditioner on the scalp and ends for a month. I promise your curls will begin to coil and the frizz will disappear.
4. Use Set It Free as a styler to continue to nourish thirsty curls and keep the frizz at bay.

Q: I'm a swimmer all year 'round and my hair feels like straw....I use lots of conditioner and try my best to make it work, but it doesn't. Are there any products to help stop the breaking and restore my lovely locks? Also, my hair falls out a lot in the shower and I think its because of the pool. Any suggestions?

A: For starters, get off of conventional shampoo and clarifying products. They dehydrate the hair, causing breakage and split ends with a straw-like feel. Start using 100% sulfate-free DevaCurl No-Poo cleanser. The botanically infused ingredients, along with its balanced pH, will keep your hydration level in check. First, I suggest wetting your hair in the locker room shower. Then, add DevaCurl One Condition to towel-dried hair before putting on the cap. I suggest a lycra cap followed by a latex cap to protect any chlorinated water from penetrating your hair. Deva is water soluble and there is never any need to clarify!

Q: I started a shampoo free routine 2 weeks ago. My problem is that by day two my head itches really bad and starts flaking. Is that normal?

A: You may not be rinsing thoroughly. Make sure when you use DevaCurl No-Poo, you follow with One Condition and only Deva stylers. If you are using synthetically derived products other than Deva on your hair, this may be casuing a reaction. Vigorously scrub and agitate the scalp with your fingertips in a circular massaging motion while cleansing with DevaCurl No-Poo. Friction is what cleans the hair and moves dirt particles.

Q: Does mousse dry out curly hair really bad? Because I use it every day!

A: Mousse is extremely dehydrating and is detrimental to curly hair, which needs moisture. Stop using it immediately. Most mousses contain plastics, which further dehydrate and suffocate the hair. It sounds as if you desire curl volume. Try B’Leave-In , curl volumizer or Set Up & Above. They are moisturizing and plastic-free!

Q: I'm a teenage girl. I had very curly hair — it almost looked like a afroish, and now it's getting straighter and straighter. What do I do? I have to put a lot of mousse and gel to get it curly. I don't want straight hair.

A: Your curl’s “spring factor” is a direct response to moisture! Mousse removes moisture from the hair and can sometimes give it a limp, sedated appearance. I suggest using cleansing and moisturizing using DevaCurl No-Poo followed by Heaven In Hair deep treatment to restore the moisture. Use once or twice weekly on towel dried hair under a plastic cap, with or without heat. When rinsing, leave some conditioner in the hair. These products are water soluble and have zero build-up. You will be amazed at how the curls begin to bounce again! Then, finish with Set It Free moisture lock and watch your curls come back to life!

Shari Harbinger

Shari Harbinger

Q: I have a question about hair cuts that are good for curly hair. I have very long curly hair and am craving something different and short. But I also want something low maintenance that will only need a quick brush and mouse or gel in it, and off I go. As a mom of four kids, I don't have hours or even 30 minutes to style my hair. I have natural curl that turns to ringlets mostly when not frizzing or dry. The lighter it is the more curlier it gets. I also have pretty thick hair as well. What hair cut would you suggest?

Harbinger: There are many ways to change your style without a drastic cut, especially since you desire to be low maintenance. Anytime you opt for a specific style, a haircut will require some maintenance. So instead, you might consider elevating and cutting the curls on the heavier top crown area of your head while leaving some length. This way, you will get that lighter, less "weighty" feel on top. But you still have the option to wear your hair back or in an updo. This type of cut will also minimize that thick feeling as more hair is removed from the top layer, which means faster styling time in the morning.

Q: I have always been able to just scrunch my hair while using a diffuser to accentuate all my natural curls. I never needed a comb or anything. Just my fingers. I have a new hairdresser, and it seems as though she cut the natural curl right out. Now when I scrunch it, it just sticks straight out. Is there any advise I could get to tell my hairstylist that needs to be done to bring my natural curls back?

Harbinger: It sounds as if your hair was not cut for curly hair, but rather, wet and more generically. The best cut for "curlies" is a dry cut, curl by curl, and without a comb. This method allows the stylist to see the natural movement of the curls without stretching them with a comb, which makes it impossible to anticipate the behavior of the curls once dry. I suggest letting it grow out a bit and using a styling gel such as Deva Arc AnGell with extra moisture and hold to recapture the curls. You should scrunch and encourage the curl, but try not touching the curls as they are drying as touching or manipulating the hair when wet, which could cause them to straighten out and, in some cases, cause some frizz.

Q: I had the most wonderful curly ringlets, which went half way down my back! A few years ago (about six) my hairdresser said it looked better straight and cut it to my shoulders. Since then I have been straightening it with a flat iron. I am now trying to get my hair back to its natural state. The products I am using don't hold the curl like they used to. I am wetting my hair down every day and applying more products. I have spent a fortune on products and none of them work. My hair is now a 3a/b. I just want my hair to go back to its beautiful natural curls. Is there anything you can suggest?

Harbinger: Congratulations! You are on the right track to regaining your "curl power"! The first step in this rescue and recovery process is to stop straightening your hair and start reintroducing a more natural approach.

  • Step One: MOISTURE MOISTURE MOISTURE. The more naturally derived the moisture treatment, the better! You should apply a deep moisture treatment once or twice weekly for a month, and leave it on the hair for 15 -30 minutes. In addition, stop using stylers with silicones and plastics as they will only continue to dry out your precious locks.

  • Step Two: begin styling with a moisturizing gel and start scrunching your curls in an upward motion towards the scalp to encourage and remind your curls what they are meant to do. This change won't happen overnight so be patient. Afterall, you've been straightening your hair for a couple of years now!

  • Step Three: Get a decent haircut for curly hair. Have it cut dry so that your stylist can see where the older damaged hair is and how it is different from the newer healthier curls. Start with a trim until all the ends are cut away. Or you can drastically take it off in one cut and just start over! Be patient and be kind to yourself and your curls during this process. You are on your way!

Q: I have some questions about the no-poo method. Isn't it necessary to wash the hair with shampoo sometimes? And how often should I condition wash?

Harbinger: Thankfully, Deva No-Poo cleanser is water soluble so you never have to use conventional shampoo since it will never build up. I have been using No-Poo for nine years now and I have never felt the need to shampoo. You can feel free to co-wash with One Condition, but my suggestion is to use No-Poo on the scalp and ends and then One Condition on the ends only. Remember, No-Poo is botanically derived so there is never build up since botanicals work from the inside out as opposed to topical synthetic conditioners, which simply coat the surface of the hair and will indeed build-up. Be mindful of how much product you are using. When the hair is dehydrated, be generous with the product. When the hair and scalp have reached their maximum moisture, it is not necessary to use as much product, so pull back on quantity.

Q: I keep reading not to co-wash everyday because you'll overcondition. So what should I do? Do you rinse with water and continue with the rest of your routine? Do you just avoid doing anything other than spritzing it with something?

Harbinger: I endorse extra conditioning and wetting the hair everyday only when the hair and scalp need it, meaning, it is severely dehydrated. You are the best judge of what the needs of your hair and scalp are. Analyze and treat them both separately. Once your scalp and ends are hydrated, use No Poo at the scalp and One Condition or Heaven In Hair on the ends for maximum moisture. Typically, the ends are more dehydrated than the scalp. If your curls are already moisturized, you may want to consider using just No-Poo from scalp to ends. Remember, No-Poo is a conditioning cleanser, and for some curl types, that is all you will need! Experiment and remember that it takes time to find the best routine for your individual needs.

Q: I have great volume on the sides of my face Trust me, I have A LOT of hair. But the top of my head goes flat from the weight of the curls and I'm at a loss for how to get more volume and still stay CG. Any help is greatly appreciated!!

Harbinger: I have the same challenge with my curls as you do! Have your stylist cut the curls shorter on the top crown area to remove some of the weight that causes loss of curl and volume. I have a technically disconnected but visually connected haircut which looks great and gives me a truly overall curly look. In addition, I use the Deva Clips at the crown area on the scalp. Try clipping individual curl families at the root to relieve the curls of their own weight during the drying process.To encourage maximum curl, never separate the curl families by combing through them (even with your fingers or wide tooth comb). Apply product by an upward scrunching motion. Then apply Set Up And Above to your wet curls at the top of the crown wet h once you have removed the excess water and scrunch. This will add lift, hold and curl definition. Login to or and view : Do the Deva Three Step video. There, you will be guided on how to clip your curls for extra volume.

Shari Harbinger

Shari Harbinger

Q: So I have nice curls for the last 5 inches, but above that it is frizzy waves. Any suggestions on what to do?

Harbinger: You should consider first gliding the conditioner through your hair so that you can smooth down the cuticle. Then, apply the AnGell and glide that through the hair as well in a downward motion. Then, gently scrunch the curls just a little bit to encourage them, without overdoing it. Leave more moisture in the hair (rather than less) as this curl type dries from a much better place when wet. When drying, try not to touch the curls as any motion or agitation will cause frizz.

For more information about buying DevaCurl products, visit CurlMart.

Q: I haven't touched a comb or brush in over four months, and since then I have noticed a significant reduction in my hair loss and my tangles have been under control for about two months. But there's one problem. When I finger comb in the shower, I can see little hairs that are not knots or tangles but are not uniform with the rest of my hair either. I think they are the reason I look frizzy when I shouldn't be. Should I comb? Should I brush?

Harbinger: No, never use a comb or brush. Take your time and add a bit of extra conditioner (Heaven In Hair) to those "love me knots." Be patient, and gently work through them. Then, take time to glide the conditioner in a downward motion to smooth the cuticle and to help prevent them from frizzing and knotting again.

Q: I have wavy hair. When it is wet, it is curly, but when it dries, it is wavy with some curl on the top and a lot of curl underneath. I wonder if and how I can come to appreciate my wavy/curly hair. Right now, I fight it every day by blow drying it straight. How do I get started?

Harbinger: Every day that you "blowfry," you are stretching your waves and losing natural elasticity of the curl, which makes it more challenging for them to spring back on the days you attempt to wear them curly. Try encouraging your curl when your head is in an upside down position. Scrunch upward and make sure you use a lot of curl defining gel with hold. ArcAngell and Set Me Up! together do wonders! Watch the DevaCurl video on YouTube for a visual tutorial on how to scrunch your hair.

Q: I am attempting to grow out my hair! I feel a bit lost, though. I have layers now, and the longest layer is right between my shoulder blades. I also have short bangs which I am trying to grow out. I am pretty new to the concept of curly hair though. I was given my first hot pink CHI iron when I was 16, and have straightened since (I'm almost 22 now)! I haven't straightened it at all since the very end of January (which was my last visit to the stylist), and I have been letting it air dry everyday. I pretty much wear it up all the time with cloth hair ties. Does it sound like I am on the right track to grow it out?

Harbinger: Bravo! You GO CURL! Throw away that iron and embrace your curls. It sounds like your surface layers are not short enough. I suggest an authentic Deva haircut with more surface layering to keep you on the right track. Shorter layers will give you more lift at the crown. I am happy to hear you are growing out the bangs! You are a curly girl waiting to happen!

Q: I've been flat ironing my hair for about a year and a half. It has finally rebelled against me; if I straighten it, it's straw-like. If I leave it curly, it's frizzy and dry. I have a ton of split ends and will probably need to cut a good inch off of my hair soon. Anyway, I started the CG routine today and my hair already feels better. However, next weekend I'm going to be going home and am in desperate need of a haircut. I know salons tend to use shampoo when they wash your hair before the cut. Will this one wash undo all the effects of the CG routine?

Harbinger: You must never ever use conventional shampoo in your hair again. Bring your own product with you to the salon and insist on having them cleanse your hair with it. It's time for the Deva 3 step! Cleanse, hydrate and style your way to get perfect curls! Start with No-Poo, Deva's non-lathering conditioning cleanser with botanicals.Next, use One Condition and follow with AnGell. Also, use Heaven In Hair once or twice weekly until your desired moisture level is achieved. Congratulations! You are a true Curly Girl!

Shari Harbinger

Shari Harbinger

Q: I have very long (waist-length) curly red hair. I have not used a brush or comb on it in 30 years. I run my fingers through it to detangle after putting on a conditioner. My question: I wear it up in a ponytail (with a scrunchy) at night to keep it out of my way. But the ponytail is so long (past the nape of my neck) that it gets little knots on the ends by morning. I have even tried a breathable cap, but nothing works. How can I keep away the knots and keep my curls?

Harbinger: Hair at this length (whether it is curly or worn straight) is difficult to maintain. Some knots are going to happen no matter what. However, my suggestion is to invest in a satin pillowcase and make sure your pony tail is high on the top of your head, not at the nape when you go to sleep. In addition, perhaps you can leave some conditioner in your hair on the ends to help keep them moist and prevent them from tangling during the night.

Q: With hair that's already been styled and dried, how do you solve flat head? My hair gets SUPER flat at the roots. Hints? Advice?

Harbinger: Try reactivating your curls with e Mist-er Right, and then re-clipping the curls at the root. Apply some e Angell styling gel on the clips before inserting them on the scalp. You can also keep the clips in your hair until you get to where you need to go, or just keep them in and hide them well when clipping! They will keep the roots lifted.

Q: I wanted to know how to clip my hair to get volume. What type of clips should I use and what is the correct technique?

Harbinger: There is no one correct way to clip, but the clips should be placed parallel to the scalp and directly on the scalp to release the hair of its own weight and give height. Trust your eye when clipping and refer to our DeVa D, which is available on for visual instructions. I suggest double-pronged pin-curl clips, or try the DevaClips. They come in three different colors — red, brown and blond.

Q: A few years ago, before I went CG, I relaxed regularly and used chemical dyes. I also would use lots of heat so my usually thick hair thinned some at the top. I have lots of halo baby hairs. I have been CG since 2005, and am wondering if I should still have broken hairs coming in? It still feels a little thinner on top than I remember, so I'm guessing it is still thickening up.

Harbinger: You must make sure you only using a no-sulfate cleanser like Deva No-Poo with added botanically derived conditioning benefits. More important, you should be conditioning the scalp every day until maximum hydration is accomplished. Never use a comb on your hair and never use a blowfryer or flat iron again! The key ingredient for you is a little patience, moisture and a gentle approach to your curls. Treat them like you would treat your cashmere sweater!

Q: For the past few years, my curls have been amazing — pretty much my signature. All I ever did was shampoo and condition with any products lying around, throw in some gel, diffuse, and go. But I've ruined my hair now! I have naturally very black hair, and decided to get it dyed brown, with bleach-blond highlights put in. There were complications, causing lots of toner to be put in to get it to the desired color. This was two months ago, in which my hair fell out, is now damaged, and my scalp itches and burns all of the time. I feel terrible because I've lost a lot of my curls, my hair is just wavy and slightly curly now (more 2c, i used to be 3A). I need to go through so much effort to get my hair curly now. My doctor gave me a shampoo for scalp irritation and dandruff, which kind of works but i hate shampoo as I feel like it never comes out of my hair! I was wondering if going shampoo-free will help with the scalp irritation?

Harbinger: Let me understand. First you bleached your curls (which compromised the moisture and the integrity of it). Then you dyed your hair again to try and fix the color ( a second dose of chemicals which further compromised the moisture and integrity of your curls). To make matters worse, you used a poor shampoo and conventional gel? What were you thinking? First, stop using the doctor-prescribed shampoo or any shampoo that has sulfates, as it is only worsening the scenario, further dehydrating and drying your hair and scalp. Only condition your hair for the next two months! Use botanically drenched Deva Heaven In Hair deep moisture remedy. With a little bit of patience, your hair will begin to recover and your scalp will stop itching. Your dandruff, in my opinion is not dandruff but simply a dehydrated scalp begging for moisture!

Q: I have extremely fine 2c/3a hair and am on the beginning of my fourth week of CG. My problem is that my curls look GREAT right when they are styled and dry after the shower. But by the end of the day, they fall and straighten. Would this be a build-up issue?

Harbinger: It is a build-up issue if you are using conventional shampoos and gels as they seem to dehydrate and weigh down the hair. Or, you could be touching your hair throughout the day, which is also disturbing and loosening the curl. Use only sulfate-free Deva cleansers and try a firmer holding gel such as Deva Arc Angell for more hold and curl definition. I suggest clipping the hair at the roots while it is wet so that when it dries, it dries with more volume.

Shari Harbinger

Shari Harbinger

Q: I have naturally curly hair — nicely defined curls. But after a couple of day my hair turns frizzy and the curls begin to become undefined. I don't like to wash my hair too often. Do you have any advice on how I can maintain my curls on a daily basis? Any products or techniques in mind?

Shari: The cause of frizz is friction and dehydration. What's happening is on the days you're not washing, the motion of life is agitating your curls. On those days, spray a combination of Devacurl AnGell and DevaCurl Mist-er Right onto your curls. You should be able to defrizz it and get some curl definition back. Another option is to mix a conditioner like One Condition with water in a spritzer and spray that on your hair between cleansers. This will add moisture. The final option is to sleep with on a satin pillowcase with your hair in a loose scrunchie pulled into a ponytail on on top of your hair — "the unicorn."

Q: So I'm just starting CG and realizing I have no products that don't have cones them it for styling. Suggestions? Are all cones bad?

Shari: DevaConcepts is removing all the cones from our products. The quantity and type of cones affects the level of dehyration in the hair. It can also dull the hair. It's like a topical band-aid, giving you a quick fix but not a long-term remedy. The best remedy for shine is moisture from the inside out. And they can get that by using more botanically drenched products that better match the fabric of natural hair.

Q: Is hairspray a no-no for CG?

Shari: Anything where there is the presence of alcohol, plastic or sticky resins is a no-no for curly hair as it dehydrates and leaves a crunchy visual result. Most hairsprays contain these ingredients.

Q: I've been following the CG routine for about three weeks and I'm getting some great ringlets so far. However, my hair is short and I feel like it's clinging to my head. It's a really bad haircut, a Carol Brady-esque curly mullet from hell. How do I prevent shrinkage?

Shari: Always have your hair cut dry. What we see is what it is. And we can't see what it is when it's wet. In the meantime, you can anchor some pincurl clips at the bottom of the ringlets when they're wet so that when they're drying, the curls are being weighed down, producing a more wavy than curly result. That should significantly retard shrinkage.

Q: I have 3a/b hair and only recently happened upon CG, but I'm wondering how often I should co-wash for the routine to be successful; every day, every other day, once a week?

Shari: My assumption is that it's not about the curl type. It's about the dehydration level. As a new Curly Girl, you should wet your hair every day. If not cleansing the scalp, condition the ends for one to three months until hydration is accomplished. As far as cleansing the scalp, it's a personal preference. If your scalp needs circulation, use No-Poo. Feel free to cleanse with No-Poo everyday. Because it is free of sulfates, it doesn't damage the moisture level of the scalp.

Q: This is day 18 of being shampoo free for me. I have very coarse and thick wavy hair. So far, my shampoo free routine has been going great. It was pretty greasy for the first week, as to be expected. Then, right around day 12 (I've been keeping notes!), the greasiness went away and I had great hair. My waves were more defined and everything. Well, yesterday I started noticing some flaking when I parted my hair. Today when I woke up, it was BAD. I usually wear my hair half up/half down to work, but pulling it back revealed some serious snow flakes! I did a vinegar rinse and a co-wash, to no avail. Any ideas? Am I just one of those wavies who needs to poo every once in a while?

Shari: When we say sulfate free, we don't mean don't cleanse. We simply mean, don't use detergents on the scalp. Use Devacurl No-Poo in place of shampoo. To go 18 days is questionable and objectionable, in my opinion. Curly girls must circulate the scalp regularly — at least once a week!

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Volumize Fine, Low Density Hair the Charmsie Way

A step-by-step tutorial for how to creating more volume.
April 16, 2014 Read more »