Photo Courtesy of Natalie Live
Although more women with curly hair are straightening their hair less often, weaning off of heat styling tools is not easy. Cherokee_from Curly Q&A  is a curly girl in need of help on embracing her curls now that she’s ditched the flat iron. 


As a child I was convinced that my 3C hair was ugly. My mom didn't really know how to style my hair because my grandmother never taught her how to manage her hair. As a result my mom always straightened her hair. I always wanted my hair to look like my mom’s because the other kids in school would laugh at the funny looking ponytails and braids she would give me. So I never really learned how to do anything to my hair besides straighten it. All the straightening has really taken a toll on my hair and it's fried and frizzy so eventually I decided to go cold turkey from my flat iron. So for the first time ever I attempted to wear my natural hair which is now 3B. While it was wet it was curly and soft but when it dried it just turned into a wreck. So I attempted again a few days later, this time I added some product, but still my hair became a mess when it dried. So I wore a scarf over my hair for an entire 2 weeks until my hair appointment to get box braids. The braids have been in my hair for 6-7 weeks now and I'm procrastinating at taking them out. I just don't know how to manage my hair once I take these braids out and I'm terrified that all my classmates will laugh at me again like everyone did back when I was in elementary school. I just am completely lost. Honestly, I'd just shave all my hair off if I thought I could pull off the look.


Never leave a protective style in longer than recommended, as it will cause damage through breakage or your hair may even start locking. Box braids should never be left in longer than two months, so get ready to take them down. Here are some styles that may work once you take out your braids.

Heatless stretching

Not sure what your daily routine has been since you swore off the flat iron, but there are other ways to achieve stretched hair without heat. You can use Curlformers or the banding method to help elongate your hair. Once fully dry, you can wrap it to further lengthen and smooth the hair. SistaWith RealHair has an excellent tutorial on how she straightens her hair with satin material.

Mastering the wash and go

While this style is a staple for many curly girls, some women have trouble mastering it. Usually product application is the problem even though products tend to get the blame. An excellent wash and go starts on with a great wash day and that means cleansing, deep conditioning, styling, and air-drying. There are several variations, especially when it comes to the products used, but sealing in the moisture is vital to keeping hair hydrated and frizz-free once dry. You can check out my personal routine here, but here’s a video from ElleCKay that shows her wash and go routine right in the shower and may be quite helpful.

Ashley Bloomfield uses a brush to define her texture and achieve fullness at her crown on her low density hair. For added volume, she uses her trusty Afro pick to hit those roots and her finished look is marvelous!

There are numerous styles you can play with from Bantu knots to afro puffs that look amazing and pretty popular now. Stress less and have fun with your curls.