Lorraine Massey

It’s official: "Curly Girl: The Handbook" (Workman), the updated and much expanded version of the original book written ten years ago, was released into the world on Monday night—or at least the world of beauty and lifestyle editors from national magazines, websites and top morning, daytime and evening TV shows along with bloggers and freelance writers.

The book is out at the end of January so Monday night allowed these editors to take a sneak peek at it, and most importantly, witness curly hair transformations right in front of their eyes. The party took place at one of the Devachan Salons that Lorraine co-owns in New York City’s trendy Soho neighborhood. In front of the salon was a Bentley with the words “Just Deva-ed” written in whipped cream on the trunk, with a trail of empty bottles of DevaCurl No-Poo and One Condition tied to it. Not only was it a fun night, but many curly girls came out of the closet! (Some who didn’t even know they were in the closet and other religious blow dryers who never dreamed they’d go curly.)

Lorraine knew that we had to show not just tell the more than fifty members of the media how much better you hair looks when you reveal its natural texture and how easy it is to get gorgeous-looking curls and waves. So all party guests had the option of getting a curly makeover. More than half said yes so their hair was washed and styled with DevaCurl products by Lorraine and the salon’s other top stylists. As they waited for their hair to dry, many editors seemed skeptical, but once their hair was dry, they were stunned at the ringlets, curls and waves that had emerged.


The Deva Bently

It was funny to see how some editors would hesitate to get a curl makeover, with the usual excuses used by curly girls to straighten their hair, “I don’t have nice curls” or “I have frizz, not curls” or “I don’t really have curly hair” and then once their strands got a little of Lorraine’s Curly Girl TLC, they realized how pretty their natural texture was.

Luckily, a photographer for the event took before and after photos because some of the transformations were utterly amazing. One woman looked about fifteen years younger when the dry, frizzy, blown-out hair she came in with turned into soft, elegant waves. (She was stunned and emailed me after the party to say so was her husband!) Another was shocked that what she called her “bad curls” were actually beautiful because they were given the right hydration and care. There were many stories like that- and many happy late night emails. The other thing I found exciting was that, after seeing the gorgeous ringlets around them, some of the naturally straight editors were so green with envy that they had their hair curled using gel and clips!

In addition to the curl makeovers and a heartfelt speech from Lorraine, there was yummy food (with curly cucumber and carrot garnishes), curl-tinis (a sangria type drink created by Lorraine), a guess-the-number-of-curls-in-the-jar activity and raffle. The night ended with a stream of newly curled and waved girls leaving the party with goody bags filled with DevaCurl products, a galley of the book, Curly Whirly candies and M&M’s that said “Curly Girl: The Handbook.” Curly or straight, a good time was had by all!