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How can I make my curls more defined?

How can I make my curls more defined?
Welcome to our guide for stunning, defined curls! From preserving your curls overnight to embracing hydration and protective styles, we've tailored expert tips to suit your hair type. Discover the power of scrunching and air-drying, plus specialised advice on enhancing waves, curls, and coils. Learn natural techniques like finger coiling and hair plopping, alongside top-notch product recommendations for nourishing and revitalising your curls. Get ready to embrace your curls with confidence!
  1. Begin by washing the hair with a hydrating shampoo and conditioner specifically designed for curly hair. This helps to remove any build-up and provides moisture to the curls.

  2. After washing, use a wide-tooth comb or your fingers to detangle the hair gently while it's still wet. Start from the ends and work up to the roots to avoid breakage.

  3. While the hair is still damp, apply a generous amount of leave-in conditioner to help moisturise and define the curls. Focus on distributing the product evenly throughout the hair.

  4. Choose a curl-enhancing product such as curl cream, gel, or mousse based on your client's hair type and desired level of hold. Apply the product evenly throughout the hair, focusing on the mid-lengths and ends.

  5. To ensure even distribution of the product and encourage curl formation, try the "praying hands" method. Gently smooth the product over sections of the hair between your palms.

  6. Scrunch those curls, scrunching helps to encourage curl definition and bounce. Use your hands to scrunch small sections of the hair upwards towards the scalp. Repeat this process throughout the hair.

  7. You can either air dry hair or use a diffuser attachment on your blow dryer. If you're using a diffuser, use a low heat setting and cup the curls into the diffuser, lifting them towards the scalp to dry. Avoid touching the curls too much while they dry to prevent frizz.

  8. Once the hair is fully dry, you can apply a small amount of lightweight oil or serum to your hands and gently scrunch it into the curls to add shine and reduce frizz.

  9. Throughout the day or on subsequent days, you can refresh curls by misting them lightly with water and applying a small amount of curl-enhancing product if needed. Scrunch the curls gently to revive them.

  10. To protect the curls while sleeping, advise your clients to consider using a satin or silk pillowcase or wrapping the hair in a silk scarf or bonnet to prevent friction and maintain the curl pattern.


Top Tips For Making Your Curls More Defined

Pineappling at Night - To preserve curls overnight, advise your client to try pineappling - loosely gathering the hair at the top of the head and securing it with a scrunchie or satin hair tie. This helps prevent frizz and maintains the curl pattern while sleeping.

Regular trims - Advise your clients to schedule regular trims every few months to remove split ends and prevent breakage, which can disrupt curl formation and lead to frizz.

Hydration - As a general rule the more hydrated the hair the tighter and bouncier the curls become. Use a hydrating shampoo such as Fanola Curly and Wavy Hair Shampoo specifically formulated for curly hair to keep your client's curls nourished, healthy and full of life.

Avoid heat styling - Advise clients to minimise the use of heat styling tools such as flat irons and blow dryers, as they can cause damage and frizz. Instead, suggest they opt for air-drying or use a diffuser attachment on their blow dryer with a low heat setting.

Scrunching technique - After applying products, use the scrunching technique to encourage curl formation. Gently scrunch small sections of your client's hair towards their scalp, using your hands or a microfiber towel, to enhance curl definition.

Protective Hairstyles - Advise clients to wear protective hairstyles like braids or twists to minimise manipulation and maintain moisture levels, which can help improve curl definition over time.


The Different Curl Types

Specialised tips for your client's curl type

There are 4 different curl types breaking into 3 different sub-categories A, B and C

Type 1: Straight
Type 2: wavy, 2A: soft waves 2B: wavy, 2C: Deep waves
Type 3: curly, 3A: soft curls, 3B: Curly, 3C: Ultra curly
Type 4: Coily 4A: Coiled, 4B: zig-zag 4C: Tightly coiled

How to enhance curls in each hair type

How to enhance curls in wavy hair?

How to enhance 2A waves

  • Heavy styling products can weigh down 2A curls and make them appear limp or greasy. Choose lightweight styling products such as mousses or light gels to enhance the natural wave pattern without weighing down the hair.
  • Use a diffuser attachment when blow-drying to enhance and define the natural wave pattern.
  • Be sure to keep the hair hydrated

 How to enhance 2B waves

Typically, this hair type is thicker and can be coarse or fine.

  • Use hair care products specifically formulated for wavy hair. Look for lightweight products such as mousses, creams, or gels that enhance and define waves without weighing them down.
  • Experiment with different styling techniques to enhance the natural wave pattern. Some popular methods include scrunching, plopping, diffusing, or air-drying with minimal manipulation.
  • Be gentle with the hair to prevent disrupting the natural curl pattern. Avoid brushing or combing the hair when it's dry, as this can cause frizz and disrupt the curl formation.
  • Keep the hair hydrated and moisturised to maintain healthy, defined curls. Use hydrating shampoos and conditioners, and consider incorporating deep conditioning treatments into the hair care routine.

How to enhance 2C waves

  • Frizz may be a common concern with 2C curls, especially in humid or dry weather conditions. Proper hydration and styling techniques can help manage frizz.
  • 2C curls require moisture to maintain their shape and definition. Deep conditioning treatments and leave-in conditioners can help keep the curls hydrated and healthy.
  • When detangling the hair, use a wide-tooth comb or your fingers instead of a brush to avoid disrupting the natural curl pattern and causing frizz.

How to enhance curls in curly hair?

How to enhance 3A curls

  • Advise clients to incorporate a deep conditioning treatment into their routine once a week to provide their curls with extra hydration and nourishment. They should look for products specifically formulated for curly hair to help enhance 3a curls' natural bounce and definition. Such as Fanola's curly and wavy hair mask, which provides the hair with deep hydration, while leaving it frizz-free and restoring elasticity to the curls.
  • Apply a leave-in conditioner to damp hair after washing to provide extra moisture and help define the curls. Look for lightweight formulas that won't weigh down the curls but will provide hydration and manageability.
  • Use curl-enhancing creams or gels to define and shape the curls. Apply the product evenly throughout the hair, focusing on the mid-lengths and ends. Scrunch curls upward to encourage definition and bounce.

How to enhance 3B curls

  • The finger coiling technique works especially well for 3B curls to encourage tighter spirals and minimise frizz. Take small sections of hair and twirl them around your finger to define the curl pattern.
  • Suggest that 3B clients use the pineappling technique. This will help maintain curl definition and reduce frizz while sleeping.
  • On non-wash days, advise clients to refresh the curls by lightly spritzing them with water mixed with a leave-in conditioner or curl refresher spray and gently scrunch the curls to revive their shape and enhance definition.

How to enhance 3C curls

  • Like all curly hair types, 3C curls require regular moisturising and careful handling to maintain their health and appearance. Techniques such as co-washing, deep conditioning, and protective styling are often recommended.
  • While 3C curls can be prone to frizz, proper care and styling techniques can help minimise frizz and enhance curl definition such as using a wide-tooth comb and wearing the hair in protective styles like braids.

How to enhance curls in coily hair?

How to enhance 4A coils

  • These curls require careful product selection and application to prevent overwhelming volume or frizz. To avoid frizz when applying a product you can use the praying hands method ensuring the product coats each strand evenly.
  • Due to the tightly coiled structure, 4A curls can be more prone to dryness compared to looser curl types. The natural oils produced by the scalp have a harder time travelling down the length of the hair shaft, making regular moisturising and sealing routines essential for maintaining hydration and preventing breakage.

How to enhance 4B coils

  • Because of their tight coil pattern, type 4B curls may require more product to effectively moisturize and define the curls. It's important to use products that are rich in moisture and have emollient properties to penetrate the hair shaft and provide lasting hydration.
  • Type 4B curls can be more prone to breakage if not handled gently. This is because of the tight coil pattern and the potential for dryness, which can lead to brittleness. You can use a wide-tooth comb or your fingers to detangle the hair in order to prevent breakage.

How to enhance 4C coils

  • Type 4C curls are prone to frizz, especially in humid or damp conditions. Managing frizz may require the use of anti-frizz products or techniques such as the LOC (Liquid-Oil-Cream) method (describing the order in which products of each type should be applied) to seal in moisture and minimise frizz.
  • Type 4C curls have a high degree of shrinkage, meaning that when the hair dries, it appears significantly shorter than its actual length. This can make it challenging to gauge the hair's true length accurately and may require stretching techniques to elongate the curls.
  • Due to the tight curl pattern type 4C curls are also more prome to dryness making hair hydration even more important

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I make my curls more defined naturally?

There are plenty of ways to enhance your curls including naturally

  • Finger Coiling: After applying a styling product, take small sections of hair and twirl them around your finger to encourage tighter curls and enhance definition.
  • Cold Water Rinse: After conditioning the hair, give it a final rinse with cold water. Cold water helps to seal the hair cuticle, resulting in smoother and more defined curls. It helps in sealing in the hair's moisture and also helps in clumping the coils and curls together for even more definition.
  • Hair Plopping: After applying your styling products, lay a microfiber towel or cotton T-shirt on a flat surface. Flip the hair over onto the towel, then wrap and secure it around the head. This technique helps to set curls and minimise frizz while the hair dries.
  • Twist Outs or Braid Outs: After washing the hair, twist or braid small sections of damp hair and allow them to dry completely. Once dry, unravel the twists or braids to reveal natural-looking curls. You can use styling products like mousse or curl cream to enhance the curl definition.

how can I make my curls naturally curly permanently?

If your clients are looking for a long-term permanent curl enhancement there are a few options you can consider

  • Layered Haircuts: Cutting layers into the hair can help enhance the natural curl pattern and add volume to the hair.
  • Weight Distribution: Removing excess weight from the hair can allow curls to spring up more easily and bounce freely. Thinning out heavy sections or removing bulk can prevent curls from being weighed down, allows them to form more defined and lively curls.

How can I get tight curls?

  • Hair rollers: Start with slightly damp hair and divide it into small sections. Choose rollers with a small diameter for tighter curls. Roll each section of hair tightly around the roller, securing it in place with clips or pins. Allow the hair to air dry completely. Once dry, carefully remove the rollers to reveal beautifully defined, tight curls.
  • Flexi Rods or Curlformers: Flexi rods and curlformers are flexible rods or tubes that you can wrap the hair around to create curls. Apply them to damp or dry hair, then leave them in until the hair is completely dry. Carefully remove the rods or curlformers to reveal the curls.
  • Pin Curls: Pin curls are another heat-free method that involves wrapping small sections of hair around your finger and pinning them in place until they dry. Once dry, remove the pins and gently separate the curls.
  • Perm: If your clients are looking for a more long-lasting solution, opt for a perm. to alter the structure of the hair to create curls.

6 Hairdresser - Approved Products for Perfect Waves and Defined Curls

Curl Passion mouse - curl passion




● Ideal for defining Curly and wavy hair
● Leaves curls soft, light and bouncy
● Makes hair perfectly hydrated/nourished
FIX: 3 - Lightly fixes the curls into place without weighing them down
● Apply to damp hair and leave to dry naturally or with a diffuser


Osmo Curl Revival Replenishing Cream



  • Deeply nourishes and hydrates, combating dryness for luscious curls
  • A lightweight solution, leaving curls defined and full of life
  • Shields your client's curls from harmful UV rays, maintaining their colour and health
  • Apply to damp hair, focus on curl definition areas, allow to air dry or use a diffuser for added volume


Curl defining cream - get curl





● Separates and models curls and waves
● Restores elasticity, texture and shine
Fix:2 - minimum fix - maximum define
● Apply to damp hair and define the curl movement. Dry naturally or with a diffuser

Osmo Curl Definer Fluid





  • Defines curls
  • Gives body and bounce
  • Adds extra shine
  • Controls and maintains curls
  • Distribute evenly to damp hair. Allow hair to dry naturally or use a diffuser for a more defined finish

Curl defining fluid - feel the control




● Formulated to enhance, define and restore elasticity
● Anti-static action
● Fix;3 - Lightly fixes the curls into place without weighing them down
● Apply to damp hair and fully brush the curls, defining each curl before drying

FarmaVita HD Life Style Curl Cream Amplifier



  • Provides hold and control for defined curls and waves
  • Offers exceptional protection against humidity
  • Keeps your clients' curls and waves smooth and frizz-free
  • Apply the product to damp hair from the roots to ends, twisting hair sections with your fingers to define curls and waves. There's no need to rinse out the product, allowing for hassle-free styling

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