Lady looking distressed with hands In curly hair

If you’ve been wearing your hair naturally for any amount of time, you’ve probably spent a lot of time researching and toying around with methods that work best for you. Great hair means that all of your hard work has paid off! Unfortunately, this may also mean that you’ve become so reliant on your hair care routine that the mere thought of doing without your hair gel or favorite moisturizer makes you break out in hives. Learning to work with your curls can make you feel more confident and in control. But are you really in charge of your curls, or does your curly hair care routine seem to be ruling you?

Curly Hair Routines

Let’s face it, curly girls can have some of the most serious hair care routines! Whether you’re into the pixie curl method, the curly girl methodhomemade concoctions, pre-poos, henna treatments or deep conditioning and steam treatments, there are lots of methods out there to care for your curls. I remember my most recent hair mask which involved vodka and eggs. Messy as it was (I was still scraping egg from my sink days later), it was just plain fun to experiment with that concoction!

Some curly girls spend hours doing a good deep conditioning treatment. For instance, Jamila at College Curlies (For the Fabulous and Frugal) leaves her deep conditioning treatment in anywhere between one and three hours. The time she spends is definitely time well spent since she has some amazing (and super cute!) natural curls.

The Take Over

It can take hours to do a single hair treatment from start to finish. These treatments require you to block out enough of your day for mixing up the ingredients, applying it carefully to discourage tangles and giving your curls ample time to soak it up. Routines involving these time-consuming treatments certainly require some commitment. Your choices in what to do in a day may start to revolve around whether or not you will have enough time to spend hours on your hair if you add anything to your schedule. Before you know it, you may become as bound to the wants and needs of your curls as a mother is to her newborn baby — staying up late or waking up several hours early just to keep your hair's schedule! If this sounds like you, it might be time to add some quick fixes to your schedule.

Taking Back Control

If you’re trying to take back the reins, start by testing out some hairstyles that will work on second-day hair. Second-day hair is what you get when you go to bed with one hairstyle and are able to get good results the next day without starting over from scratch.

If you find yourself dreading the hair care routine you’ve got on the agenda, consider whether every part of your routine is necessary. Try scaling back on the frequency with which you carry out your full hair care routine. Does your hair really benefit from having raw coconut oil smeared on it twice a week instead of just once a week?  If the thought of scaling back makes you anxious, then try scaling back on just one step, product or treatment at a time. Slowly but surely you will be able to find a good balance for you and your curls.

Have you ever felt like your hair care routine is taking over your life?