Photo by m-imagephotography -- Getty Images
This is a question we regularly receive in Curly Q&A. Oftentimes what people are observing as a change in curl pattern is usually a reveal of their true, healthy texture after being more conscious of caring for their hair. What was presumed as wavy hair is now a realization of a heat damage. Joshua_ wants to know more about his evolving curls.

Question

How can I get my curly hair back?

As a child, I would always get up in the morning wash my hair in the shower, towel dry, put Pink hair oil in it and comb it out with a narrow tooth comb everyday. My curls used to be the size of sidewalk chalk, they would look like a sideways slinky but now it in the shape of an upright spring that would be found in a pen. This summer coming up, I was thinking about cutting it all of and starting over.

Answer

That is a drastic texture change. I would not recommend you continue or revert to the hair practices mentioned, as there are better options for maintaining the health of your hair.

Haircuts are always a great option

When you have noticed that your hair has changed in how much it retains moisture and length that could be a sign that you need a trim or haircut. The best way to see your true curls is to remove the damage.

Proper hair tools

Detangling with a narrow or small tooth comb daily is too much tension for anyone’s texture. Those combs are designed for styling purposes and not detangling. Consider using a detangling comb or detangling brush for reduced tension and breakage.

Moisturizing products

The main ingredients in Luster’s Pink Original Oil Moisturizer are mineral oil, lanolin, beeswax, and petrolatum. These are great for slip and imparting shine but they provide little nourishing benefits for your hair like penetrating oils (i.e. avocado oil, olive oil, and coconut oil), fatty alcohols (e.g. cetyl alcohol, cetearyl alcohol, stearyl alcohol), and humectants (e.g. glycerin, honey, and aloe vera).

Daily washing

Everyone’s hair responds differently to daily washing but there are two things to be cautious of: hygral fatigue and mildew. Your stands undergo hygral fatigue when the hair shaft expands too often, which occurs when your curls are wet. After washing your hair it is important that it dries fully before you go to bed, especially when you have curly and coily hair. When hair holds moisture for too long it becomes a breeding ground for mildew, so always make sure your hair is dry from ends to roots before going to sleep, especially if you sleep with a satin scarf or satin bonnet.

Health concerns

A change in curl pattern could be the result of a systemic condition, according to tricholgist Dr. Kari Williams: 

“Ultimately, anytime someone is experiencing a systemic condition, especially an endocrine dysfunction, it will interrupt the growth cycle. Because the growth was affected, there is nothing that can be corrected externally. Similar to women who go through chemotherapy, this may just be the new texture of her hair. Another thing she can do is try to get a hair mineral analysis, which will determine the mineral and nutrients level in the blood and that may play a role in how her hair is growing. The change in the system is due to the systemic interruption. There is no guarantee that the original curl pattern will come back. It will depend on the balance of her system.”