{ The inside scoop on some of our own best practices }
1How do I style my Mixed Kid’s curls without them appearing greasy?
When looking to avoid greasy hair when styling the curls, you will want to stay away from using a lot of oils. Our styling gel & styling cream steer clear from that, which will be helpful. The confusing part is that utilizing oil is what really helps our hair grow! Our suggestion is to use the heavy oils at night time (or on a day you are staying in and don’t mind the extra oily look/feel). An example of a heavy greasy oil you do not want to use for styling, is Coconut Oil. For the most part, heavy oils will all leave the hair looking greasy, so when styling curls, stick to more of a cream based styling product or gel. It is ok if they have these useful oils in them, you just want to avoid those oil based products.
2I deal with a lot of frizz by the end of the day, how can I work towards frizz free curls for my Mixed Kid?
Frizz is unfortunately something that most mixed kids will deal with, but there are definitely ways that we can minimize it! Here are some tips that will help minimize the frizz. 1- Use a microfiber towel (if you don’t have that, an old cotton tee shirt will do the trick). Typical terry cloth towels strip your hair of its natural oils and completely suck the water from your hair. The main goal is to add moisture, not take it away! 2- Wrap your hair at night with a silk scarf or bonnet. I know kids may fight this...no big deal, use a silk pillow case instead! When tossing and turning all night, it makes our hair run wild and creates frizz, causing split ends from the constant hair to sheet friction.  3- Keep hair conditioned! Always keep moisture in those mixed kids curls! Our Detangling Refresher Spray is a great way to do this when styling on the go, because it not only wets it down for styling, but it also has conditioning components! 4- When coming right out of the bath or shower, you have one of two options. You could try not using a towel at all. Just wring out the hair and start styling. The other option is to towel dry, but for no longer than one minute. Being conscious of this step will allow your hair to soak up the water and the products for extra moisture and ultimately less frizz! The longer you keep the towel on, the more dried out it will get. If you keep towel on to long you will probably start to see little fly already drying and running free (which you don’t want). There is something to say about the right amount of towel dry… it is essential! If it dries to much you are looking at frizz central!
3My Mixed Kid’s curls always seem dry, dry, dry! How to I add moisture and make sure it gets the right amount of hydration?
Mixed Kid's curls tend to be drier than other hair types because the sebum produced in our scalp. It has a harder time getting through a strand of curly hair than it does straight hair. This is why straight hair can get greasy fast, whereas curly hair tends to be drier. The most important thing is to keep it moisturized and refreshed! Don’t skip out on conditioning, shampoo less, use a leave-in conditioner any time you get it wet, and when possible, apply oil at night! Visit our BLOG for some good DIY masks you can do to add moisture.
4How often should I shampoo my Mixed Kids curls?
Shampoo is needed to remove excess oil, so typically one time a week will do the trick, possibly two (you may have to improvise with a messier kid). Shampoos are made with a low pH, so its acidity raises the hair cuticles, making it easier to remove dirt and build up. Use just enough to clean it, because using too much shampooing can strip your hair making it more dry and frizzy. Make sure not to overdo it with the shampoo!
5Why do I want sulfate free shampoo?
Sulfates are what makes your shampoo create the suds. This is just a coat on the hair which ultimately loosens the grease and sebum from your hair and scalp, and as curly hair people we know how much we need that sebum! When you use for a long period of time, sulfates also weaken your hair follicles, making it brittle and more prone to breakage. Sulfate-free shampoo is ultimately a gentle cleanser for the hair and better for the health of our Mixed Kid’s curls!
6How often should I condition my Mixed Kid's curls?
Conditioning is our favorite thing to do! We definitely suggest conditioning every time you get in the bath or shower for the best moisture! Anytime the curls are wet you want to add some moisture to it. This is called “Co-washing” …using a conditioner to wash to add in extra oil! Most rinse out conditioners have a small amount of cleansers in it. The tricky thing is, there is such thing as over conditioning. So, pay attention to the hair! If the curls feel spongy or mushy no need to condition.
7Is a Leave In Conditioner necessary? If so, when do I apply it? Before towel dry or after? Could I just use my normal conditioner as a Leave-In?
A Leave In Conditioner is not something you will die without, but our curls definitely act better with it! You could always leave a little bit of your rinse out conditioner in your hair, but they typically contain heavier ingredients that tend to weigh down our hair. Leave in conditioners are great because they are usually more light weight and are intended for our hair to be style as needed. Apply your leave in when you get out of the shower putting it on damp hair before towel drying, and run your fingers through it. When adding it to damp hair it helps seal in the moisture, instead of waiting until you have moisture loss, making the hair more dry and frizzy. We noticed a huge difference in our finished styled look when we started applying it before towel dry vs after. It helps to add moisture to the hair right away and prevent breakage from the towel or the dry air.
8Is gel or crème better for my Mixed Kid’s curls?
We have found that for the thicker, more coarse curls, the creamier products seem to add more moisture (see our creme based option HERE ). For the more thinner curls that appear finer, a gel (only if you can find a good one, hint hint ) seems to not weigh the curls down as much. Again, this goes back to the Sebum discussed in an earlier question. The curlier the strand of hair is, the more difficult it is for the sebum produced by your scalp, to get through the strand of hair, causing it to dry out. This is why you may notice that those with looser curls may not deal with as much dryness or frizz than those with tighter ringlets. We will note that at the end of the day, it comes down to preference. Some may even swear by the combination of a gel and crème. Find what works best for you or your Mixed Kid.
9What is the best night time routine for my Mixed Kid to have healthy manageable curls in the morning?
If you want to keep your styled hair, wrap it. If your kid doesn’t like that wrap put it in a high “pineapple” pony (not too tight), put a little bit of oil in the scalp (not a lot it will make it greasy and weigh down the curls), use a satin pillow case. If you don’t mind restyling in the morning, braid the hair. When doing this you will want to use our Anytime Oil to help moisturize the hair and prep it for growth!
10What is the best way to refresh my Mixed Kid’s curls between wash days?
Damp the hair with water or our refresher spray (if you want to stay consistent on conditioning it simultaneously) before styling. Make sure you get it damp enough to get rid of the fly aways. Note that if you protect the hair at night you will need less refreshing in the morning. Our Detangling Refresher Spray should help bring the hair back to life every morning.
11I am always on the go, and my Mixed Kid gets a pony tail often. I deal with fly-aways all the time so my Mixed Kid’s hair looks messy. How can I keep it slicked back?
When trying to keep the hair slicked back, with the humidity and the running around, this is bound to happen! Baby hairs have a mind of their own! There are a lot of products out there to help with this, yet for us, none of them worked. Our Pony Style Stick is designed specifically for this issue. This product won’t make it appear greasy, but it is sticky enough to hold those fly aways back and give the hair a slick polished look all day long.
12When is it best to brush my Mixed Kid’s curls? (I know, not when dry!) Before or after conditioning in the tub? Before or after it is towel dried? Or not at all?
Hopefully you have learned by now that you never want to brush the curls when their hair is dry this will cause split ends and rip the hair out. The best time to brush the hair is in the tub or shower with conditioner in their hair. Not only will this give it a nice surface to get your fingers through the strands, you will have less of a struggle between the brush and the hair. We also tend to thing you get the best ringlets when styling if you brush before it is towel dried. If you prefer brushing after the shower, make sure you have applied the leave in conditioner in (as recommended above) or when it is still wet! Once it is styled you will want to leave the curls alone! Messing with it will produce frizz along with loosening the good curl.
13How long should I towel dry my Mixed Kid’s curls (if at all)?
You want to towel dry until your curls are damp. You don’t want the hair to be completely dry, this will not allow the styling to work as it should. We say the maximum you want a towel on your hair is one minute, less if you can. Another option is to try not using a towel all! If your hair soaks up water extremely fast, your best bet would be to ring it out as much as you can and style from there. This will help prevent some of that frizz! If you start seeing fly aways before putting applying your styling products, you probably waited too long.
14My Mixed Kid has shrinkage, what should I do so it appears longer for her? How do I help it grow?
With curly hair, you will always have shrinkage unfortunately. if you want to weigh the curls down you can add a bit of coconut oil to the hair, since it is a heavier oil. But just a bit! Another idea is doing twist outs (similar to a braid but twists). This consists of twisting your hair at night, and taking them out in the morning. This should loosen the curls some, making the hair appear longer.
15How do I get my Mixed Kid's curls to grow?
As described in previous questions, helping the hair grow can be accomplished in many ways such as protecting it at night, adding oil before bedtime, braiding the hair up, use proper drying tools, avoiding using heat, adding moisture through-out the day, drinking plenty of water, and of course, eating healthy foods! Paying attention to what products you put in your hair is another key component. There is such an emphasis these days on natural ingredients for a reason. If you can find a product line (hint hint: Twined Ivy ), that removes the bad chemicals, you are contributing your hair’s health and growth. Honestly, as many of these pointers that you can stick to, please do! Once you get in the habit, it becomes second nature and your hair will become so much healthier. You will see growth! Another option is to do a deep condition every now and again. This would work to strengthen the hair and allow for all the good oils and moister to get back into the hair. Coconut oil is a perfect, easy option for this. Rub a lot of the oil into the hair while dry, making it appear greasy and weighed down. Put a cap on and let it set anywhere from 20-45 minutes. You would then rinse it out and shampoo and condition as normal.
16How do I avoid tangles?
If your mixed kid has extremely knotty hair, definitely Combing when soaking wet and full of conditioner will be your best option. Brushing or combing from the bottom up is key. Although time consuming, when you do this at every wash, make sure you get all the tangles out! This is like hitting the restart button every week! You of course will always have some tangles and deal with some hair coming out, but this should make the process easier. When it comes with every day quick styling, using a refresher that detangles as well and conditions is nice. Although you won’t be fully brushing the curls, if you can use a spray that will allow you to pull your fingers through the top layers, this should benefit.
17Should I use a brush, a wide tooth comb, or my fingers?
This comes down the personal preference in our opinion. You will read bloggers that swear by wide tooth combs, others specific brushes, and others none at all (solely fingers)! For us, we used trial and error, and found what worked best for our hair type (because as mixed kids, there is such a wide spectrum!). If you are anti-brush because you feel it rips the hair, then use fingers unless it is too tough, then use a wide tooth comb starting from the bottom up. If you feel like a brush is the easier and more efficient way to go, then use a brush starting from the bottom up. We would suggest trying out both ways and see what gives your Mixed Kid the best ringlets once styled with your hands. Whatever you do, if you feel that the hair is ripping to much or it is getting damaged, we would suggest trying the other approach.
18I hear about different types of towels and pillowcases being a solution to breakage problems. Is it true, and are they really necessary?
Yes this is true and completely necessary if you are serious about hair growth, breakage, and frizz free hair. The cotton sheets rub against your curls causing them to frizz and the ends to split. I highly recommending in investing in satin pillow cases, this way if you don’t feel like wrapping your kid’s hair or using a satin head cap, their hair is protected. The microfiber towels are the way to go for drying after bath or shower. The alternative for this if you don’t want to invest in that, is using an old cotton tee shirt. This will do the trick just as well.
19I always read about curl type and hair porosity in the Mixed Kids blogs. What does that stuff mean and how does that help me style their hair?
Hair porosity describes how well your hair is able to hold/ absorb moisture. Its determined by how easily moisture and oil can pass in & out of the cuticle. Knowing the porosity can help you choose the proper hair products. When looking at curl types, they from 2A-4C. 2a, 2b, 2c are wavy types. 3a, 3b, 3c are curly types. 4a, 4b, 4c are kinky or coils. Again, this can help you know your hair, and chose the correct hair products.
20My Mixed kid is a little girl. She doesn’t love her curls and always begs me to straighten it. Should I? How do I get her to love her curls?
Curly hair can be a fight with the young kids as they get older, no doubt! The best way we recommend is getting her involving in the journey of growing her hair! Show her other beautiful women with curls and explain to her how beautiful it is! If you do give in from time to time, know that straightening your hair isn’t completely bad if not done consistently. With that being said, excessive heat damage can indeed do terrible damage the hair, so in their younger years I would stay away from it. If you do straighten it you will want to use a deep condition after and allow for all the good oils and moister to get back into that hair (coconut oil is perfect, rub it all into the dry hair, put on a cap and let it set for as long as you want, maybe 20-45 min) then rinse it out and shampoo and condition as normal. The hair may be extra dry after this and you may see some loosened curls, nothing you can’t fix with a healthy hair lifestyle.