Thursday, August 14, 2014

Guest Post || my baby sis

I asked my Sister, Katie, if she'd want to write a post for my blog.  She's traveled the world, slept in caves, married Steve's younger brother...and she's a fantastic writer.  When I asked her to write, she asked what she should write about...whatever you want...I told her.  She has the most amazing and beautiful curly hair, so that's what she wrote about.  It's always been amazing and beautiful, she just didn't know what to "do" with it for many years.  So...if you have curly or wavy hair, or know someone who does, here are some invaluable curly hair tips to brighten your day!!

Curly Girl

My sister asked me to write a blog entry for her blog and said I could write about anything I wanted... my mind went a bit wild.  I don’t work well without direction and then I was hanging out with some friends and one friend in particular mentioned that she used to have curly hair, but after she had kids it was easier for her to daily straighten her hair, rather than deal with the unpredictability of her curls.  Before I knew it I was passionately explaining all the ways she could treat her hair better and ultimately tame and love her curls.  Then it hit me! I am going to write about curls! Even if you have stick straight hair the lessons I have learned in my 27 short years on earth could save a friend or a family member A LOT of blood, sweat and tears of trying to learn how to love their curls... and they WILL thank you later.  
--> My sister Holly and I back when no one had a clue what to do with curly hair.

Growing up I can vividly remember days when mom had to work because that meant dad trying to help me control my fro. This involved small amounts of conditioner and way too much time brushing, the perfect duo to create what my sisters so lovingly called my rats nest. 
--> I grew up chopping all of my curls off because I never knew what to do with them when they grew out. Phew... glad these days are behind me.

In middle school my curls continued to be uncontrollable and a mystery to everyone... I remember the horror of finding out one of the girls spread rumors saying my hair was curly because I never washed it.  But I honestly didn't let that get to me, because I always liked having hair that was different and I decided after hearing "do you know how much I pay to get my hair to look like that?" and "you always want what you don't have, so you probably wish you had straight hair and I wish I had your curls." that I should love the head of hair I was born with, even if no one had a clue to tame it.  That's what rubber bands are for, right?

--> Sophomore yearbook picture... I finally was ok with my hair growing long, but it seemed to just want to grow out in every direction.

In high school things didn't get better... I earned the nickname mufasa, no explanation needed there, and I never knew what to expect my hair to do each day.  Seriously, my curls were about as predictable as the weather on Everest.  I was a walking barometer and the slightest changes in the atmospheric pressure would send my hair in all directions. When I used product my curls would look great throughout the lower half of my curls, but for some reason my hair would plaster down to my scalp, making my head too triangular shaped and awkward.  So of course I would scrunch and scrunch the product out and try to loosen my gelled curls away from my scalp resulting in a giant round head of unruly hair... never truly figuring out how to get my hair and product to get along. And my curls on the top layer of my head always seemed scraggly, frizzy and less curly and as you went through the layers my hair got increasingly healthier and curlier with the curls meeting the nape of my neck being perfect Shirley Temple ringlets.  I later learned this was because my hair on the top endured the most and was the least healthy and have since learned how to help all of my curls and even have ringlets throughout all of my hair today. 

--> Letting my roomie brush my curls to try to straighten them out.

Then it seemed my senior year of high school through college all my friends had "the greatest hair straightener of all time" or so they would try to convince me. Then they would continue to convince me that they could transform my crazy curls into beautiful, silky, straight hair.  So I would sit for at least 2 to 4 hours as they would brush out each curl and apply the highest amount of heat and handfuls of serums to ultimately look at me when all was said and done and say: "I think I like it better curly."

I go back in time and share this with you to tell you I have been there before.  I have had such a love-hate relationship with my head of hair, people would always tell me they loved and wanted my hair, so I knew I should love my hair, but the lack of control I had caused each day to be a guessing game of what my hair would be like and caused me to usually put it into a pony tail or messy bun so I wouldn't have to mess with it.  That all changed when my sister found Curly Girl, the handbook by Lorraine Massey and my life was seriously forever changed. 

Not only did the author completely understand me and my struggle to control my fro, she gave practical tips on how to care for and fall in love with your hair.  Whether you have wavy curls to ringlets, this book is a must-have, go-to book for any girl with the slightest amount of texture to her hair.  I will go over the life-changing basics that I took away from the book and immediately put into practice:

- Conditioner is your BEST FRIEND! Curly hair needs to be hydrated and conditioned as much as possible.  Most shampoos and conditioners have sulfate in them which will strip your curls of moisture causing more frizz and problems. Buy a sulfate-free conditioner and apply it to your hair at the beginning of your shower, comb the tangles out of your hair with the conditioner in your hair and then let it sit in your hair the rest of your shower.  I personally use DevaCurl's (that's Lorraine Massey's line of curly girl products) One Conditioner. 

-Shampoo once a week! Yep! You heard me. :) And never apply shampoo all the way to the ends of your curls, just use it to wash your scalp and then rinse it out.  The only part of your hair that gets grimy, oily or "dirty" is your scalp and roots anyway... unless you're at summer camp and planning to get into a mud fight your hair does not get dirty enough to need shampoo more than once a week. No poo shampoo by deva curl is sulfate free and works great... it doesn't suds or foam the way most shampoos do, so it's a little different to get used to, but trust me... it makes all the difference.

- The more you comb, run your fingers through your hair or touch your hair the frizzier it will be.  Don't touch it! Comb it in the shower with the conditioner in it and then part it the way you normally do in the shower and leave it alone.

- Use a microfiber towel, soft t-shirt or paper towels when you get out of the shower.  Towels are too rough and cause your curls to separate resulting in more frizz. Tilt your head and scrunch your hair to dry it with the towel until its not dripping wet anymore.

- Use clips (pictured below, you can get a big box for just a couple of bucks at sally's beauty supply) to lift your roots from your hair so that you don't have the triangle head problem I mentioned before.  You take 4-5 clips and put them along your natural part right at the base of your hair along your scalp to lift your curls from your scalp.  Leave them in your hair until your hair is mostly dry or until you leave the house...  I have forgotten about mine and gone out and about with mine still in my hair and it's not a good look. ;)

- Next apply your curly hair product gel, mousse or whatever works best for you.  I have found that alternating products has the best results for my hair.  When I use one product it seems to not be as effective over time. My trifecta of products are curly girls light defining gel, Paul Mitchell Sculpting Foam and Paul Mitchell's Twirl Around.  I don't use them all at the same time.  Just one of them, but alternate depending on how I am feeling. But this is obviously the part that will differentiate the most based on what type of curl you have.  You made need a heavy gel to weigh down your curls or just a little bit of mousse. These are the three that I have been happiest with. 

- Another product that I have fallen in love with is Mist-er Right by deva curl (pictured below).  It is a moisturizing spray for those days you don't shower or after you have worked out or your hair just needs a little pick-me-up. I guess it's like a latte for your curls! ;) It smells like lavender, tames frizz and is often just what I need to apply to my hair when it's starting to get a bit unruly. 

- If you have the time to air-dry that is best, otherwise never use a blow dryer without a diffuser as your curls will just fro out if you blow them with a jet of hot air in a million directions.  I think one of Lorraine's most genious inventions was her hand diffuser... AMAZING!  This diffuser allows you to get the blow dryer right close to your scalp drying all of your curls without blowing them all over the place like a wind storm, drying your hair quickly and resulting in some perfect curls.

Then you get to enjoy your curls! I am obviously covering so much less than her book, so the best investment you can make is to buy her book.  But even when I just started following Lorraine's suggested shampoo and conditioner regime I noticed such a difference.  I have to admit, I wasn't a believer right away, but the more I followed her weird bits of advice the more healthy my curls became.  And yes, there were some immediate results, but I have been using Deva Curl techniques and products for the last 7 years and I can honestly say every year my curls have gotten a little healthier and curlier, because all my traumatized hair from years of coloring and mistreatment had to grow out or be chopped off. 

I hope this blog didn't bore you too much and that it can be a great resource or inspiration to you girls who are sick of your curls and waking up every morning to a flat iron. Stop that! Embrace your inner curl and start living again! ;) If any of you have questions or comments or maybe even a success story in 6 months! Feel free to contact me... on Facebook : Katie Caudill or my email:

--> My curls today

#lorrainemassey #devacurl #curlygirl

The Grits Blog - Little Friday Linkup
Treasure Tromp


AmyMacWorld said...

I definitely need these wavy hair tips! Awesome :)

Ember Grey. said...

This was so interesting to read! I have wavy hair naturally and for the longest time would straighten it every day (it was so hard on my hair!)... and then I decided to just "go with it" - which also meant a few years of figuring out what that really meant, haha. I love your curls, Katie!!

amy said...

Oh I'm glad you found it interesting! At first when she told me what she was going to write about, I was like eh. But she's had a great response from it! :)

amy said...

I'm so glad it helped!! :)