New YearAt the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve, as you sip bubbly, twirl your noisemaker and whimsically toss brightly colored confetti, will you usher in the year still buried in the expectations of others? Or, will you stand up, like Effie White in “Dreamgirls,” and ask: “What about what I want?” Whether you dream of becoming more confident, more colorful, more daring, or just yearn for a simpler and healthier 2008, we’ve added a curly twist to your New Year’s resolutions. So, forget the shoulda-woulda-couldas and read on. We double dare ya!

If your resolution is to…

BE DARING. As you jump into risk-taking mode, start with a sizzling new look. If you always settle for just a trim, try a cut above the rest. Pull out magazines, tear out the pages of your favorite styles and take your ideas to your stylist. Not happy with the same-old salon? Find a new one.

Take action: If your stylist is clueless, learn the 10 clues to finding a savvy stylist and track down the right one for you. Then, before sauntering into a salon to make an irreversible decision (like going short!”> you’ll want to read this. Finally, always remember to choose a hairstyle to match your face — and new fearless lifestyle!

BRIGHTEN YOUR LIFE. There’s nothing like a brand new hue to visually declare a new you. Whether it be subtle or bold, highlights or all-over color, try a shade you’ve always dreamt about, but never acted on. A splash of radiance may just inspire you to take on the new year in a refreshingly different way. Imagine the possibilities.Take action: Before you tint your textured tresses, first learn about the techniques for coloring curls. If you already know the basics, pick up a few bright ideas by reviewing the latest trends from curl-centric color experts.

GO NATURAL. After years of locking your curls and kinks in a straightjacket, a new year is the perfect time to transition from chemical relaxers to your natural hair. While the process may seem daunting at first, there are now more options and products and more overall appreciation for natural hair than ever before. Making the decision is the most difficult step in the process. Once committed, it does get easier to go with the flow.Take action: Learn about the transitioning process to know what to expect when you dive in. You can also discover author Linda “Mosetta” Jones, who has been helping people love their natural hair for years. Need even more inspiration? Find it through the eyes of three generations, or perhaps you’ll relate to one woman’s story. You can also find a role model in actress T’Keyah Crystal Keymah, who chronicled the journey to embrace her natural texture in “Natural Woman/Natural Hair.”

GET HEALTHY. From nourishing hair products to healthful foods, the goal is the same: live a happier and longer life, and look fabulous in the process. You can start by forgoing the flat iron to uncover the natural beauty of your textured tress. A great cut will clean up the damage, and then it’s time to hydrate your thirsty curls.Take action: Deep conditioners are one way to bring back the healthy bounce your curls need. Delving even deeper, you can learn about the specific ingredients that hydrate your hair back to health, such as shea butter, jojoba, avocado, meadow foam and macadamia nut oil. If getting healthy also means skipping those decadent desserts in the new year, check out how dessert products can tempt your tresses without adding an inch to your hips!

FIND A NEW JOB. When you climb the next rung in your career ladder, be sure to step up in confident style. Perfecting your curly look can be just as important as perfecting your interviewing skills. Be prepared and take your look to a new level.Take action: Make a lasting first impression by following expert tips to perfecting interview hair and learning how to keep your curls looking their professional best. Finally, once you’re hired, remember to embrace your curls with confidence.

SIMPLIFY YOUR LIFE. While cutting through the clutter to make time for the important people in your life and the things you love to do, consider shortening your primp time. But that doesn’t mean you have to skimp on style.Take action: Create glamourous curls in minutes with the help of accessories, extensions, or pick up a style book like “Strictly Curls”. Save even more precious moments with these time-saving tricks or sure-fire strategies for second-day curls.