Natural hair is delicate, soft, and should be treated well for it to grow well. No matter what kind of curl pattern you have, there are certain things you should never do to your hair. Consider this the list of non-negotiables when it comes to loving yourself and your locks.

1. Never go to sleep without a silk or satin pillow.

The friction between your hair and a normal cotton pillow can leave your hair dry and brittle. Using a silk or satin pillow is like an extra smooth layer that lets your hair maintain its moisture. Be careful not to use too much oil on your hair or your pillowcases may stain.

2. Don’t take down your styles until they are completely dry, even if that means overnight drying.

I get it, you’ve spent 2 hours doing your hair and you want to take it down and enjoy your hairstyle. Before you do that make sure it is completely dry or you will have to say hello to frizz. Natural hair tends to hold water at its root so making sure they are dry is key.

3. Do not use heat more than once a month, including blow drying and flat ironing.

If you really have to, you can use heat on your hair. If not, refrain from heat as much as you possibly can. Heat damage can cause your curls to be super limp and lackluster, sometimes even straight.

4. Do not compare your curls to anyone else’s!

The temptation to have your hair look like your favorite vlogger is very strong. Resist and find your own groove. Give yourself time to learn what products work best for you and how to style your favorite looks. You’ll find your pace at your own time.

5. Do not wash your hair everyday.

Washing your hair everyday dries out its natural oils. While adding additional moisture is great, let your hair create its own conditioner for a few days before you wash it all away.

6. Be careful not to constantly have your hair in a ponytail or pulled up.

Life can be stressful but your edges don’t have to be. Constant pulling back of your hair can put a lot of strain on the delicate edge hairs. Try hairstyles that are low stress to keep the front of your hair healthy.

7. Don’t give up when one style doesn’t work out.

Your styles will fail a lot but part of the beauty of natural hair comes from creating new styles when the one you tried doesn’t look like the Youtube video. Keep learning how your hair responds to being manipulated and give yourself time.

8. Never start wash day without a pre-poo.

A pre-poo is when you use conditioner to pre-moisturize the hair before you wash it. It’s the hair routine we all followed, except backwards. The conditioner before shampoo is great for combing through any tangles you may have to work out.

9. Don’t buy super expensive products because they promise perfect hair.

There is no perfect fix or one size fits all for hair. If you’re constantly experimenting, it may get a little costly. Try to mix and match the products you use to save your budget some room. Sometimes the most unexpected products work the best.

10. Moisturize your hair.

Moisture solves so many problems. Finding which oil works best for what you want to achieve will be your breakthrough. Keeping your hair moisturized is key!

Here’s more tips for curlies who are just transitioning. If you’ve past that stage and you’re looking for different products, check out the Naturally Curly store.