Being a curly girl in straight-haired world can be tough. It can be tougher when you realize that a great number of stylists (professionals?) don’t know what to do when a curly-haired beauty enters their shop. I’ve been told on more than one occasion “Sorry, I only style straight hair.” In my book that is simply unacceptable. Need help finding the right stylist? Here's what you'll need to know as you embark on your quest for the ultimate curly-haired expert.
• Look for a stylist who offers sulfate-free shampoo. According to Lorraine Massey, author of "Curly Girl" and co-owner of New York City's Devachan Salon, curly hair has a tendency to dry out quicker than most other hair types, and as a result, women have endured years of abuse from standard shampoos. Massey developed her own brand of sulfate-free shampoo called "No-Poo," which cleans the scalp and hair without dehydrating them.
• Make sure your stylist knows how to master a dry-cut. The key to any good curly cut is that it takes your hair's springiness into account. It's no secret that your wet hair and your dry hair are drastically different, so in order to get the best results, you'll want to get your hair shaped when it's in its natural dry state. This way, what you see will be what you get, according to Massey. Some experts tout the wet cut for its ability to make the hair easier to manipulate, but if you're someone who has frequently walked away from a salon experience with major curl shrinkage and disappointment, it may be time to try the dry cut.
• Watch for a one-size-fits-all approach. Not all curly types are created equal, either. It's my belief that a good stylist will take some time before getting out the shears to analyze your curl shape and come up with a plan of attack. Typically, they'll wash your hair first and apply a lightweight mousse to encourage your hair to display its natural bounce.
Finally, remember that the way your curls look day after day largely depends on how you care for them outside the salon. Try Redken Ringlet 07 Curl Perfector for extra frizzy days and that extra oomph of definition, I seriously swear by it.