Question:

What steps should I take to take advantage of naturally curly hair?

Lots of Naturally Curly Hair

As an actress, Bernadette Peters always works her best selling point; she has "lots and lots of naturally curly hair." If you too have piles of curly red (or brown, or blond, you get the picture) hair and you want to look more like Ms. Peters than Annie, just follow these simple tips.

1) Use products designed to work with your hair from shampoo to finished style . One line that works well for naturally curly hair is Frizz Ease by John Frieda. These products help you make the most of your curls while battling the enemy of polished curly hairstyles--frizz.

2) Get a good cut . For the best results, find a stylist who is used to working with long curly hair and who can cut your hair into a style that works for you. Keep in mind, long layers usually work better than blunt cuts, which tend to "stack" curly hair.

3) Use enough product . While many hairstyles need very little product, making it easy to overdo, natural curls are often very frizzy if left on their own. Use enough mousse or spray gel to properly coat the hair. Don't overdo it right away though, it is easy to add more product, but nearly impossible to get it out without washing and starting over. Put a modest amount in at first, then add a little at a time until the hair is properly covered.

4) Avoid damaging habits . Blow dryers, flat irons and rubber bands all cause damage and add to the potential for unwanted frizz. Whenever possible let your hair air dry, find styles that take advantage of your curls, and only use non damaging accessories in your hair. Also remember, don't brush hair with stiff products in it. This will cause it to break. Try to avoid these, or at least, shampoo the product out before going at it with a brush or comb.

5) Use your fingers . Whenever possible, make your hands your main tool. For natural curls finger combing is gentle and effective, and avoids the damage often inflicted by brushes and combs.

6) See your stylist regularly . Your hair needs regular trims to eliminate split ends and your stylist can determine when and if deep conditioning treatments are right for your hair. Try to make it to the salon at least every six weeks.

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For black hairstyles, ask your stylist if a golden brown color would compliment your skin tone.

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