Choosing a Curly Hair Style: Styling Tips for Curly Hair

Learn How To Style Curly Hair and What Cut Looks Cute for Curly, Wavy Hair

Young woman with long curly hair

Choosing a haircut that suits both your hair type and your lifestyle can be a bit of a challenge. For those with curly hair, it can be especially difficult. Curly hair tends to have a mind of its own and often varies in texture and control from day to day, so choosing a workable style is especially important. 

  1. Get expert advice. Schedule a consultation with a stylist who specializes in curly hair styles. Curly hair has unique characteristics and finding a qualified stylist that is experienced with your type of hair will dramatically increase the chances that you will be happy with the result. A stylist with this type of experience will be able to instruct you better. Ask friends and family members for recommendations.
  2. Try before you buy. This is one of the favorite hair tips for any style. There are several computer programs that allow you to see what a hair style will look like on you before you undergo a single snip. You simply upload a photo of yourself and then click on assorted styles to find the one most flattering for you. You can even print the result and bring it with you to your salon appointment.
  3. Layers, layers, layers. Curly hair does not do well when cut into an all-one-length style; it usually provides too much bulk and in short styles, can result in a "mushroom" shape. Ask your stylist to cut layers into your hair so that the curls will fall nicely into place.
  4. Speak up. When talking to your stylist, be sure to communicate your concerns as well as your desired style. You know your hair better than anyone, so let your stylist know if you have problems with frizz, dryness or dandruff, and be sure to alert your stylist to just how much your hair "shrinks" when it dries. You must be open with the stylist in order to get the best result.
  5. The long and short of it. While a long tumble of healthy curls is beautiful, not everyone can grow such a mane. Keep you hair at a length that you find manageable.
  6. Daily routine matters. Consider how much time you have to dedicate to the daily care and hair styling of your hair and choose your style accordingly. If your mornings are already rushed, a wash-and-go style will be much better for you than one requiring a great deal of fuss.
  7. Go natural. Since curly hair tends to be dry, avoid using chemical treatments such as perms, straightening products or hair color, which can be damaging.
  8. Take a break. Try to choose a style that allows you to let your curly hair air dry, if possible. Heat styling is drying, which, over time, will increase frizz. This is one of the most important curly hair tips as it is always important to keep your hair healthy and in good condition. Curly hair gets frizzy very easily, as you well know.
  9. Face facts. Face shape plays an important role in choosing a flattering hairstyle. Once you have determined the shape of your face, consider the following:
    • Oval: Lucky you! Most any hairstyle will work for you.
    • Oblong (oval with a narrow chin or high forehead): A short to medium length will be more flattering than a long cut, which will further elongate your face. Try to add a little fullness around your face in the form of large, loose curls and avoid a center part.
    • Round (full face that is wide at the cheeks): Choose a style with a little volume at the top and no puffiness at the sides. This will help to give your face a more slender look.
    • Square: Curls can help to soften the look of a squarish face. Keep them soft and not overly long.
    • Heart-shaped (wide forehead and a small or pointy chin): Play up your cheekbones with a chin-length cut without any extra volume at the top. A side-parted, chin-length layered bob is especially flattering for those with heart-shaped faces.
  10. Be a regular. No matter what style you choose, schedule regular trims. Curls can get out of control quickly and require regular maintenance.


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