My Curly Hair Care Routine

(This article was first published on

A lot of lovely ladies have asked me about my curly hair routine…! I’ve often been told, ‘Oh you have curly hair… it must be a tough job maintaining them’… and frankly, it makes me laugh…! Simply because, in my mind, curly hair requires the least amount of maintenance and things to do… and when I say that to people, they think I’m being modest and don’t believe me! But it’s true! Hence, I thought of sharing my curly hair routine with you guys… but let me warn you guys, it really is no fancy affair!

Now, I have classic Indian black hair. Though curly, I don’t have the noodle-like, well-defined curls. It’s mostly loose curls, which means that if I don’t treat them right, my curls could open up and make my hair look more wavy than curly, thereby, losing their edge!

Frequency of wash:

I wash my hair almost every alternate day, i.e. at least 3 times a week. My hair isn’t all that oily and I could probably do with washing it a little less often, but I always feel that my hair tends to look the best when it’s freshly washed… hence, I do it a little more often than necessary 🙂

Pre-wash routine:

Oiling: I coloured my hair, red, about 7 months ago and now it’s in a situation where the colour has become almost light brown and makes the hair look damaged at the ends. This step, hence, has become all the more important to me.

I try and oil my hair every time before a wash. Obviously however, since I wash my hair quite often, it becomes difficult and inconvenient to oil it every single time.  However, I do try to keep the oil on, even if it’s for just 30mins before the bath.

On a regular basis, I simply use Parachute coconut oil. I love the fact that it has a nozzle-like mouth, which makes it very easily to directly pour oil onto my scalp and makes the application process easier and very quick. I simply massage my hair for 3 – 5mins and then leave it on till I get into the shower.

On weekends however, I do try to do a slightly more elaborate oiling routine. I mix my Bipha Ayurveda’s neelibhringadi oil and almond oil (Rogan Badam Shirin) or castor oil, and keep these on for about 3-4hrs.

I’m not someone who can keep oil on overnight and sleep with it. I’d probably just suffocate on the smell in my sleep! Hence, I simply do it as soon as I wake up on Sunday… Coz holidays obviously mean late showers! 😀


Shampoo: I’ve currently been using Garnier Ultra Blends, Royal Jelly and Lavender. However, I don’t just stick to one shampoo continuously because, firstly, I feel that hair gets used to it pretty quickly and stops responding to it. And secondly, I get rather bored using the same thing continuously L

Hence, I shuffle between the Garnier and TIGI Catwalk’s Curls Rock Shampoo. Now though getting rid of ‘coconut’ oil is not that difficult and just shampooing once is sufficient… ayurvedic oils are a stickier story! Both the stickiness and the smell shall prevail if you don’t wash properly! Hence, on days that I use these, I do a double wash (shampooing twice in the same bath).

And yes, I try not to use castor oil if I have a shoot or a party that day. There’s always a chance that the castor oil hasn’t left your hair completely even after the double wash.


Conditioner is an absolute MUST for me because that’s the only thing that detangles my hair (especially coz I don’t comb my hair)! At times, if I feel my hair’s too dry and I don’t have time for oiling, then I just give my hair a conditioning wash. And Curly hair means you need twice the amount of conditioner that other women need.

I apply the conditioner on my entire hair, not just the ends as they usually say… but make sure not to touch the scalp with it, keep it on for 3-4mins and then rinse it off. I usually use the TIGI curls rock conditioner though off-late I’ve been using The Body Shop’s Rainforest Moisture Conditioner for Dry hair which is damn good.

About once a week though, I also use Schwarzkopf’s Spa Essence masque for dry hair. It basically acts like a thicker and creamier conditioner which I leave on for slightly longer i.e. 5-6mins before washing off. Ideally people say I should be doing the hot-towel and keeping it longer, etc… but I’m damn lazy to do all that, and this short-cut pretty much seems to work for me. 😉

Post Wash:

Towel Dry: I only towel dry my hair. No blow drying since the hot air tends to frizz-up the curls and no combing!

Leave in conditioner: After towel drying, I use a leave in conditioner. On an everyday basis, I use something light like a few drops of Kiehl’s dry argan oil. On days of my shoots however, I use TIGI Catwalk’s Curls Rock curl amplifier… and on days when I need a more dramatic hold, I use TIGI BedHead’s Small Talk.

And all these, I apply on damp, towel dry hair…only on the hair ends and scrunch my hair with my fingers and my palm.

And that’s it! Am all set to go!

Oh and on the days when I don’t wash my hair, it’s even easier. Coz I need not do anything to it at all! 😀

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About Me

Sonal is a Post Graduate in Luxury Brand Management from Polimoda Institute of Fashion Design and Marketing, Florence (Italy) and has over 9 years of experience as a Brand Strategist working in the advertising industry.

She has also been a Consumer Insights Miner specializing in fashion and luxury brands.