August 12, 2010 at 12:02 pm , by Jennifer Castoro
My general method of styling my kinda-curly, kinda-wavy, straight-in-random-spots hair is to throw in some mousse, scrunch and go. I know I should diffuse it or use more products or do something more involved than washing it and sleeping on it, but I just don’t know where to start. (That’s me at right, with my “before” curls – sorta frizzy, kinda fluffy, a bit long and generally meh.) So when I got the chance to take a lesson in curly-hair management from the masters at the Ouidad salon in NYC, I was stoked. Most every other cut I’ve gotten has ended with a time-consuming and ultimately pointless blow-dry, in which the helpless stylist expends maximum effort getting my stubborn hair to lie flat and succeeds until I leave the salon, when it shrinks up until back to its normal state of pouf. But my talented and super-friendly stylist, Mirsada, styled my hair in glossy, bouncy swirls after the cut and taught me how to recreate the look at home, on my own (see the “after” by clicking on Read More, below). Ouidad’s philosophy is that you shouldn’t fight your curls, and I appreciated the lesson in curl-styling since no one’s actually done it that way before! (Aside from the hairdo I got for my prom, when I instructed the stylist to go curly and I left resembling Marie Antoinette.) Mirsada also sent me on my way with a step-by-step styling guide (complete with illustrations, in case I was really challenged) that all clients at Ouidad get, too. The process:
2. Spray with botanical leave-in conditioner, so curls don’t frizz or tangle.
3. Apply frizz-busting gel to hair in four separate sections, one in back, one on each side of my head and one on top. Mirsada taught me the Ouidad rake-and-shake technique, which basically consists of coating the hair with gel, dividing it up with your fingers and wiggling it till the natural curl of your hair takes shape. (Check out the much-better description, with pictures, here.)
4. Scrunch hair with towel and air-dry naturally or use a diffuser to speed it up.
5. The next day (Ouidad recommends shampooing 2 to 3 times per week), refresh curls with leave-in spray.
Click through for the results…