Woman with crazy wavy hair

Plopping is a great way for wavies to get defined, bouncy curls! However, it does take some time to do. Fortunately, there are ways to speed up the process while getting the same results!

Did You Say...Plopping?

If you stumbled upon this article with no clue what plopping is, yet somehow you feel like you MUST know about this, keep reading.

Plopping (aka “plunking”) is a method of wrapping wet hair in such a way that it scrunches your wavy locks on top of your head (while at the same time drying them) so that as they dry, they’re being scrunched. This would be used in lieu of scrunching and pumping.

How to Plop

Probably the most important thing to know when plopping is that you do NOT use a terry cloth towel. The little woven fibers in a terry towel lead to frizz for wavies, so definitely avoid them. Many girls who plop prefer to use a t-shirt.

  1. Lay the t-shirt out over a counter or toilet. If you’re laying it on a toilet, just let the ends hang over the side. Bend over, pull all of your hair on top of your head and pile it in the middle of the t-shirt.
  2. In the middle, pull the leftover part of the shirt over the back of your head. Twist one of the sleeves (assuming you’re using a long-sleeve shirt) on the side and continue until the twist has reached your head (your hair should be tucked into this).
  3. Repeat for the other side, then secure the shirt to your head by wrapping the sleeves around your head and tying them. Tuck in any part of the shirt that’s sticking out as well as any hairs that may try to escape.

That’s it! That’s all there is to plopping. Such a simple routine produces fantastic results. The amount of time you leave the plop on your head is up to you.

If you’re in a rush, you can just leave it for 10 to 20 minutes. If you have more time (say, while you drink a cup of coffee, put on your makeup, get dressed and watch the news), leave it on the whole time! When you take it off, gently undo it and shake the waves down, then diffuse your hair into s-curls or let it air dry.

Plopping Tips

While plopping is a simple process, there are some tips you can follow to ensure you get the best results possible.

  • Multitask! Don’t just sit around watching the clock while you wait for your plop time to pass – get busy! Throw some laundry in, do some dishes, read to the kids, make a phone call or catch up on email. If you want to do it in the morning before leaving the house, shower first, plop second and do everything else next. Then take down your plop a few minutes before you’re ready to walk out the door.
  • Prep your hair. To save time on adding product to your hair after you plop, coat your wet hair with nearly everything you’d need. This includes any leave-ins, gels, and anything else you usually use. This is a major timesaver if you’re plopping in the morning before school or work and don’t have a whole lot of time to fuss with your hair after removing the hair wrap.
  • Long sleeve t-shirts work best. If you use a short-sleeved one, you’ll probably need to turn it to the side so that you have something to twist up. You’ll then need to secure the two sides together with a hair tie instead of being able to just tie the long sleeves together.
  • Spritz a small amount of spray gel onto your hair after removing the plop. This will give your hair better hold and keep any potential fly-a-ways (which cause both Fly-away Frizz and Spider Web frizz) at bay.