Whew. I don’t know about you, but I’m constantly looking for quick, inexpensive and easy ways to maintain my natural hair without it breaking off in the process. Thankfully, through a bit of trial and error, I’ve actually discovered some hacks that my hair, my schedule and wallet absolutely adore. And you know what? I’m thinking that if you give them a shot, you’ll find that styling your hair can become much easier than it used to be. Ready?

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Image Source: @jewejewebee

1. Wash your hair with twists in it.

If one of the reasons why you try to push wash day back as far as possible is because detangling your hair is nothing short of a nightmare, how about sectioning your hair and putting it in twists before you shampoo it? If you do that and then focus on washing your scalp as the suds flow down the rest of your hair, that will definitely keep any tangling and potential matting down to a minimum. Then, once you rinse your twists, before using your fingers or a detangling comb to work through your hair, spray a DIY detangling spray on your locks first. All you need to do is put a cup of water, a tablespoon of Aloe Vera gel, a teaspoon of sweet almond oil and a couple of drops of your favorite essential oil (to make it all smell good) into a spray bottle and spray your hair. It will make detangling a breeze while adding a bit of extra conditioner to your tresses too.

2. Add oil to your conditioners to get more “slip”.

Speaking of conditioners, if you happen to have one that doesn’t provide you with as much slip as you would like, a simple remedy to that is to add some grapeseed, jojoba or even olive oil to your bottle. 1-2 teaspoons are more than enough. Oh, and if you are currently at the bottom of your conditioner bottle and it’s hard to get the conditioner out, cut through it so that you can use whatever is left. In times like these, every economical hack is needed.

3. “Press” conditioner into curls.

Does it seem like, after conditioning your hair, your strands still don’t feel as soft and moisturized as you’d like them to? That could be because you are conditioning your hair the wrong way. What I mean by that is, since our hair is curly, it’s important that our tresses are covered in conditioner from root to tip. Not only that, but we need to allow the cuticles to be fully penetrated. You can do this by not simply putting conditioner on your hair and letting it sit. Instead, when you apply it, make sure to put a lot of focus on the midshaft of your hair, all the way to the ends. Once it’s on, then gently “press” (or squeeze) the conditioner into your hair. Then slowly detangle your locks in a downward motion. That way, you can be sure that all of your hair has conditioner on it. Not only that, but this technique can help to smooth down your hair’s cuticles as well.

4. Apply product when your hair is almost dry.

While women with straighter or finer textures can seem to apply product to their hair while it is soaking wet with no problem, that’s not so much the case for us curly-haired girls. Just like it’s best to blow dry our hair once it’s about 60 percent dry (so we can avoid sizzling our mane), it’s also a good idea to apply products once our hair is almost dry too. It helps the product to last longer while giving our hair more definition in the process.

5. Try mousse, Aloe vera and/or beeswax on your edges.

Who doesn’t want laid edges? If you are nodding your head in total agreement, a YouTuber who goes by happycurlhappygirl has a video on edge control products that tickled me. Check it out here (we’ve also written some articles on the topic like “How to Lay Your Coily Edges” and “How to Lay Your Edges to Protect Your Hairline”). As far as hacks go, if you want your edges to last all day with as little dryness and flaking as possible, start by applying mousse or Aloe vera to them; it will condition your edges. Then add a bit of beeswax and finally, your favorite edge control. Then use a spoolie (which you can get at virtually any drugstore) to create a more natural hairline (definitely more than an old toothbrush would). Your baby hairs will be so much softer (and softer looking) which will result in less breakage. And yes, you’ll get crazy hold for hours and hours as a bonus.

6. Use an old seasoning bottle for your bobby pins and ponytail holders.

I can’t remember where I first heard this hack but it’s a great one. OK, so those seasoning bottles that you have in your kitchen cabinet? When you run out of the contents, soak the bottle (to get the label off) and then rinse the inside of it out. What you’ll then have is a home for your bobby pins on the inside, plus you can scroll up your ponytail holders on the outside of it. That way, none of either will end up getting lost. Another cool ponytail hack is to put a couple of them on your keychain. You never know when you’re gonna need to pull your hair back. This way, you always can.

7. Use old pantyhose as ponytail holders.

One more. If you can never seem to keep up with your ponytail holders (because you didn’t know about the hack that I just mentioned) or your hair is so think that you can’t seem to find ones that can hold all of your hair in place, look no further than your old ripped-up pantyhose. The band that is on them are super stretchy and have no threat of snagging your hair. Plus, you can wrap them around your locks as many times as you like. They are some of the cheapest and “safest” ponytail holders around. You’ll absolutely love ‘em, so enjoy!

Have a tip of your own to share? Drop it in the comments!