Gorgeous Curls: Your Complete 3a-3c Curly Hair Care Guide

Hello wave queens! We all know the struggle of taming those wild waves, right? The frizz, the lack of definition, and the endless hunt for products that hydrate without turning your hair into a greasy mess. But fear not, we will cover all the stuff you need to know in this article!

Getting to Know Your Wavy Hair

First things first, let’s get to know your waves. While they might look like they’re just curly hair’s less-coiled cousin, wavy hair has its own unique needs.


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Typically, wavy hair is finer in texture, which means it can easily be weighed down by heavy moisturizing products. So, when you’re choosing conditioners, oils, and gels, think light and airy, just like your waves. And let’s not forget about frizz control. Wavy hair is a bit of a frizz magnet, so you’ll need to take extra care when styling.

Pre-Poo with Hair Oil

Before you even think about reaching for the shampoo, consider pre-pooing your hair with oil. This involves applying a small amount of oil to your scalp and hair, then letting it sit overnight or for at least half an hour before showering. This can help protect your hair from potential damage caused by shampooing.

A product like the Moroccanoil Treatment Light, specifically formulated with lightweight argan oil suitable for fine hair, is ideal for this step. However, if your hair is naturally oily, you might want to skip this step.

Moroccanoil Treatment Light

Moroccanoil Treatment Light, 3.4 Fl. Oz. Moroccanoil Treatment Light, 3.4 Fl. Oz. @ Amazon Amazon Prime

This pre-poo superstar is perfect for wavy hair, thanks to its lightweight formula that won’t weigh down your delicate waves. It’s enriched with nourishing argan oil, which helps to hydrate and strengthen your hair from root to tip.

The Moroccanoil Treatment Light is the HG when it comes to pre-pooing, as it protects your hair from the potential damage of shampooing, leaving your waves feeling silky smooth and frizz-free.

Key Ingredients:

  1. Argan Oil: Deeply moisturizes and nourishes hair.
  2. Linseed Extract: Promotes hair health and adds shine.
  3. Cyclomethicone: Provides a lightweight, silky feel.

OGX Argan Oil of Morocco Extra Strength Pre-Shampoo

OGX Renewing + Argan Oil of Morocco Shampoo & Conditioner, 25.4 Fl Oz 2 count (Pack of 1) OGX Renewing + Argan Oil of Morocco Shampoo & Conditioner, 25.4 Fl Oz 2 count... @ Amazon Amazon Prime

For those days when your wavy hair needs an extra boost of hydration, the OGX Argan Oil of Morocco Extra Strength Pre-Shampoo is a must-try. Packed with a potent blend of argan oil, this pre-poo treatment deeply conditions and restores moisture to dry and damaged hair. It’s especially effective for wavy hair that craves that extra TLC, leaving your waves soft, manageable, and beautifully defined.

Key Ingredients:

  1. Argan Oil: Rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and essential fatty acids for intense hydration.
  2. Shea Butter: Moisturizes and adds shine.
  3. Silk Amino Acids: Helps to strengthen and repair damaged hair.

Shampooing: The Sulfate-Free Way

When it’s time to shampoo, make sure you cleanse your hair and scalp thoroughly to remove all dirt and impurities. Try to avoid daily shampooing, as this can lead to scalp irritation and dry hair. With wavy hair, natural sebum tends to travel from the roots through the length of your hair faster than with curlier textures.

To maintain a healthy scalp and hair, opt for sulfate-free shampoos, like the Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Moisture Retention Shampoo, which gently cleanses and moisturizes dehydrated hair, leaving it soft and manageable.


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Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Moisture Retention Shampoo

Sale Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Shampoo and Conditioner Set, Deep Moisturizing with Sea Kelp & Argan Oil, Sulfate Free & Silicone Free, Curly Hair Products, Family Size, 16 Fl. Oz. Ea. Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Shampoo and Conditioner Set, Deep Moisturizing... @ Amazon Amazon Prime

This sulfate-free shampoo is a true hero for wavy hair. Enriched with raw shea butter, sea kelp, and argan oil, it gently cleanses your hair without stripping away its natural oils. The Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Moisture Retention Shampoo leaves your waves feeling clean, soft, and manageable, while providing essential moisture to keep frizz at bay.

Key Ingredients:

  1. Raw Shea Butter: Deeply moisturizes and nourishes hair.
  2. Sea Kelp: Helps to strengthen and promote hair growth.
  3. Argan Oil: Provides intense hydration and shine.

Unwash Bio-Cleansing Conditioner Hair Cleanser: Co-Wash Cleansing & Conditioning

unwash Bio-cleansing Conditioner Hair Cleanser, Co-wash Cleansing & Conditioning (33.8 Oz (Pack of 1)) unwash Bio-cleansing Conditioner Hair Cleanser, Co-wash Cleansing & Conditioning... @ Amazon Amazon Prime

For a gentle yet effective pre-poo, look no further than the Unwash Bio-Cleansing Conditioner Hair Cleanser. This co-wash cleanses and conditions your hair in one step, perfect for wavy hair that craves hydration without the harsh stripping effect of traditional shampoos. Infused with nourishing oils and extracts, this pre-poo leaves your waves soft, manageable, and ready for the best wash day ever.

Key Ingredients:

  1. Coconut Oil: Provides deep hydration and helps reduce protein loss.
  2. Abyssinian Oil: Nourishes and adds shine to hair.
  3. Quinoa Extract: Strengthens and protects hair.

Condition with the “Squish to Condish” Method

The “squish to condish” method is a must for wavy hair. It enhances curl definition, adds volume, and deeply conditions your hair simultaneously.

After washing your hair, flip your head upside down and ensure your hair is soaking wet. Apply conditioner, gently finger detangle, and distribute it evenly. Gather a pool of water in your palms, dip your hair into it, and start squishing your curls to define them and reduce frizz. Continue this process until your hair is no longer dripping.

The DevaCurl One Condition Delight, designed for wavy hair due to its ultra-lightweight structure, is perfect for this step.

DevaCurl One Condition Delight

DevaCurl One Condition Delight Lightweight Cream Conditioner, Green Oasis, 12 fl. oz. DevaCurl One Condition Delight Lightweight Cream Conditioner, Green Oasis, 12... @ Amazon

Your wavy hair will love the DevaCurl One Condition Delight. Enriched with rice protein, lotus flower, and chia-flaxseed extract, this lightweight conditioner provides the perfect balance of hydration and volume. It defines your waves, reduces frizz, and leaves your hair soft and bouncy without weighing it down.

Key Ingredients:

  1. Rice Protein: Provides volume and strengthens hair.
  2. Lotus Flower: Gives hair a luxurious feel and promotes elasticity.
  3. Chia-Flaxseed Extract: Nourishes and adds shine.

Curls Blueberry Bliss Reparative Hair Mask

Sale Curls Blueberry Bliss Reparative Hair Mask - Deep Conditioning - Repair, Protect, Restore, and Grow Your Hair - Detangle and Moisturize - For All Curl Types, 8 Fl Oz Curls Blueberry Bliss Reparative Hair Mask - Deep Conditioning - Repair,... @ Amazon Amazon Prime

Treat your waves to a luxurious spa-like experience with the Curls Blueberry Bliss Reparative Hair Mask. Infused with blueberry extract, coconut oil, and grapeseed oil, this deep conditioning mask restores and repairs dry, damaged hair. It deeply moisturizes your waves, enhances curl definition, and leaves your hair looking and feeling rejuvenated.

Key Ingredients:

  1. Blueberry Extract: Rich in antioxidants and vitamins for hair repair.
  2. Coconut Oil: Provides intense hydration and softness.
  3. Grapeseed Oil: Helps to strengthen and protect hair.

Leave-In Conditioner: Yay or Nay?

Some wavy hair types may not respond well to leave-in conditioners, so this step is entirely dependent on your hair type. If your hair benefits from it, continue squishing in the leave-in conditioner. The MIZANI 25 Benefit Miracle Milk Leave in Conditioner is a great option if your hair needs that extra bit of moisture and detangling.

MIZANI 25 Benefit Miracle Milk Leave in Conditioner

Mizani 25 Benefit Miracle Milk Leave in Conditioner | Heat Protectant and Detangler Spray| Formulated with Coconut Oil | For Frizzy & Curly Hair | 8.5 fl oz Mizani 25 Benefit Miracle Milk Leave in Conditioner | Heat Protectant and... @ Amazon Amazon Prime

The MIZANI 25 Miracle Milk Leave-in Conditioner is a true multitasker for wavy hair. This lightweight spray is infused with a blend of fennel seed extract, xylitol, and coconut oil, which work together to hydrate, detangle, and protect your waves from heat styling and environmental damage. It’s the perfect leave-in conditioner to keep your waves soft, healthy, and frizz-free.

Key Ingredients:

  1. Fennel Seed Extract: Provides intense hydration and nourishment.
  2. Xylitol: Helps to retain moisture and improve hair texture.
  3. Coconut Oil: Adds shine and protects hair from damage.

milk_shake Leave-In Conditioner Spray Detangler for Natural Hair

milk shake Leave-In Conditioner Spray Detangler for Natural Hair - Protects Color Treated Hair and Hydrates Dry Hair For Soft and Shiny Straight or Curly Hair, 11.8 Fl Oz milk shake Leave-In Conditioner Spray Detangler for Natural Hair - Protects... @ Amazon Amazon Prime

For wavy hair that needs some extra detangling power, the milk_shake Leave-In Conditioner Spray Detangler is a go-to product. This leave-in conditioner is enriched with milk proteins, fruit extracts, and quinoa proteins, which work together to hydrate your waves, reduce frizz, and make detangling a breeze. Plus, it adds shine and protects your hair from environmental damage.

Key Ingredients:

  1. Milk Proteins: Nourish and condition hair.
  2. Fruit Extracts: Provide antioxidant protection and add shine.
  3. Quinoa Proteins: Strengthen and repair damaged hair.

Styling Products: The Wetter, The Better

To seal in the moisture from the “squish to condish” method, apply a hair oil to your ends. Rub a few drops between your palms and apply it to your hair, continuing to squish and scrunch your waves. If you want more hold for your waves, finish with a light gel, mousse, or cream. The Paul Mitchell Twirl Around Styling Cream-Gel is a great choice for this step. It provides enough hold to define your waves without making them crunchy.

Paul Mitchell Twirl Around Styling Cream-Gel

Paul Mitchell Twirl Around Styling Cream-Gel, Defines Curls, Eliminates Frizz, For Curly Hair, 5.1 fl. oz. Paul Mitchell Twirl Around Styling Cream-Gel, Defines Curls, Eliminates Frizz,... @ Amazon Amazon Prime

Paul Mitchell Twirl Around Styling Cream-Gel

If you’re looking to enhance and define your wavy hair, Paul Mitchell Twirl Around Styling Cream-Gel is a fantastic choice. This dual formula combines a hydrating cream with a smoothing gel to create perfect, frizz-free waves. It provides long-lasting hold and shine without the crunch, leaving your waves looking naturally gorgeous and feeling soft to the touch.

Key Ingredients:

  1. Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein: Strengthens and protects hair.
  2. Awapuhi Extract: Provides moisture and shine.
  3. Glycerin: Helps to retain moisture and prevent frizz.

Cantu Shea Butter for Natural Hair Moisturizing Curl Activator Cream

Sale Cantu Moisturizing Curl Activator Cream with Shea Butter for Natural Hair, 12 fl oz Cantu Moisturizing Curl Activator Cream with Shea Butter for Natural Hair, 12 fl... @ Amazon Amazon Prime

Cantu Shea Butter Moisturizing Curl Activator Cream is a holy grail for wavy hair. This styling cream is formulated with shea butter, aloe vera, and coconut oil, providing the perfect blend of moisture and hold for your waves. It defines and enhances your curls, tames frizz, and leaves your hair soft and manageable. Say hello to bouncy, beautiful waves with Cantu!

Key Ingredients:

  1. Shea Butter: Provides intense hydration and promotes curl definition.
  2. Aloe Vera: Soothes the scalp and promotes healthy hair growth.
  3. Coconut Oil: Adds shine and seals in moisture.

Drying: Use a Microfiber Towel

Never use a regular towel to dry your hair! Instead, opt for a microfiber towel or an old pure cotton t-shirt. These materials create less friction, reducing the chance of frizz. Flip your head over and scrunch your waves into the towel or t-shirt to remove excess water and enhance your curl definition. The Aquis Original Hair Towel is a great microfiber option that’s gentle on your waves. Allow your hair to air dry completely or use a diffuser until it’s 70% dry. After that, keep scrunching your curls with your palms for more defined waves.

Aquis Original Hair Towel

AQUIS Microfiber Hair Towel, Water-Wicking, Ultra Absorbent & 50% Faster Drying, for All Hair Types, White AQUIS Microfiber Hair Towel, Water-Wicking, Ultra Absorbent & 50% Faster Drying,... @ Amazon

The Aquis Original Hair Towel is a game-changer for wavy hair. Made with innovative Aquitex technology, this towel absorbs excess water quickly and gently, minimizing frizz and breakage. It’s lightweight and easy to use, making it perfect for protecting your delicate waves while drying. Say goodbye to harsh rubbing and hello to healthier, happier hair with the Aquis Original Hair Towel.

YoulerTex Microfiber Hair Towel Wrap

Sale YoulerTex Microfiber Hair Towel Wrap for Women, 2 Pack 10 inch X 26 inch Super Absorbent Quick Dry Hair Turban for Drying Curly Long Thick Hair (Gray) YoulerTex Microfiber Hair Towel Wrap for Women, 2 Pack 10 inch X 26 inch Super... @ Amazon Amazon Prime

Combing: Proceed with Caution

Once your hair is dry, shake your roots for extra volume, but avoid combing through your hair to maintain your curl pattern. Do this with your head upside down for the best results. If you absolutely need to detangle, use a wide-tooth comb like the The Wet Brush Original Detangler Hair Brush. But remember, less is more when it comes to combing wavy hair.

The Wet Brush Original Detangler Hair Brush

Sale Wet Brush Original Detangler Hair Brush, Amazon Exclusive Aqua- Ultra-Soft IntelliFlex Bristles-Detangling Hairbrush Glides Through Tangles For All Hair Types (Wet Dry & Damaged Hair) - Women & Men Wet Brush Original Detangler Hair Brush, Amazon Exclusive Aqua- Ultra-Soft... @ Amazon Amazon Prime

If you prefer a brush-style detangler, The Wet Brush Original Detangler Hair Brush is a fantastic option for wavy hair. Its flexible bristles gently glide through your waves, effortlessly removing tangles and knots without pulling or snagging. This brush is perfect for both wet and dry hair, making it an ideal tool to maintain smooth, healthy-looking waves.

Key Features:

  1. IntelliFlex Bristles: Flex and bend to detangle without breakage.
  2. Ergonomic Handle: Provides a comfortable grip for easy use.
  3. Suitable for All Hair Types: Works wonders on wavy hair and beyond.

Tangle Teezer The Original Detangling Hairbrush

Tangle Teezer The Original Detangling Brush, Dry and Wet Hair Brush Detangler for All Regular Hair Types, Pink Fizz Tangle Teezer The Original Detangling Brush, Dry and Wet Hair Brush Detangler... @ Amazon Amazon Prime

For a brush that’s designed to tackle tangles with ease, the Tangle Teezer Original Detangling Hairbrush is a top pick. Its unique two-tiered bristle technology effortlessly detangles your waves, reducing breakage and frizz. It’s compact, easy to carry, and perfect for on-the-go touch-ups, ensuring your waves stay smooth and gorgeous all day long.

Key Features:

  1. Two-Tiered Bristles: Effortlessly detangle hair without pulling or tugging.
  2. Compact Size: Ideal for travel and touch-ups on the go.
  3. Suitable for All Hair Types: Perfect for wavy hair and beyond.

Final Thoughts

While it may seem like a lot, the routine you create for your wavy hair is entirely up to you. The most important thing is to use sulfate and paraben-free products to maintain healthy hair. Also, try to avoid excessive combing, which can lead to hair breakage and frizz. Instead, finger detangle your hair in the shower as often as possible without using a brush. When you do need to comb your hair, use a wide-tooth comb or gentle brush to avoid breakage, and always do it in the shower with conditioner.

Conclusion

Caring for wavy hair doesn’t have to be a daunting task. With the right routine and products, you can enhance your natural waves, control frizz, and keep your hair healthy and vibrant. Remember, the key is to understand your hair type and find what works best for you. Happy styling!

Beauty Editor

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A passionate beauty specialist and blogger with a deep love for skincare and wellness. More about me here.

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