The Best Wash and Define Routine for Kinky Hair - ADU LUXE

The Best Wash and Define Routine for Kinky Hair

 

With so many different “how-to’s” and various techniques for “totally defined curls”, it can be difficult to find that PERFECT wash and define routine that works wonders for your hair. Well, the search is over. You’re about to learn how to achieve the best wash and DEFINE (a step up from the wash and go) of your natural hair journey.

Keeping it Kinky: The Ultimate Wash and Define Cheat Sheet

No two naturalistas have the same kinks and coils, but there are proven methods that work well for all types of natural hair. Let’s get started!

1. Always Start on Clean Hair

If you want your curls to look their absolute best, follow the sage advice of our resident natural hair expert, Myriam. She says it’s essential to begin every wash and define by following the most important rule:

Only do wash and defines on clean and hydrated hair.

I know what you’re thinking, “Does my natural hair really need to be shampooed?”. The answer is yes! All of the best wash and go routines absolutely need CLEAN hair for the best results.

The truth is that when natural hair is freshly washed, the curls will always look their best. After washing with shampoo, any dirt, product residue, and excess oils won’t be weighing your hair down. This is the first step that will allow your curls to really POP. Furthermore, with well-hydrated hair, curls are better defined, shinier, and healthier looking overall.

2. Keep Your Hair Soaking Wet

wash and define on natural hairNow for the second rule of the wash and define process:

Always have hair soaking wet before adding in products.

In regards to the second rule, you may be thinking to yourself, “I’ve seen plenty of tutorials done on damp or dry hair”. While you can go through the process of washing then defining on hair that isn’t soaking wet, it simply won’t ever look as defined or voluminous as it would otherwise.

The texture of natural hair is the most prominent when it is completely wet, so it’s best to manipulate your hair during this time to ensure you get the definition you’ve been dreaming of. Moreover, your natural hair has to be soaking wet so you can significantly cut down on any unnecessary puffiness that you would experience when trying to define dry or damp hair.

3. Coil and Shingle for Best Results

Now that your hair is clean, hydrated, conditioned, and completely wet, it’s time to get into the nitty-gritty of the defining process:

Use the shingling and finger coiling methods for well-defined natural hair.

The key product you will need to use during this step is styling or defining gel that will help to hold the shape of your coils and reduce frizz. When choosing your product, keep in mind that naturalistas with lower porosity hair should use a lightweight gel, while those of us with higher porosity hair should opt for a heavier gel. For very kinky hair, it’s better to use the heavier gels as it will have a stronger hold and is the best product for creating and enhancing your kinky coily texture.

When shingling:

When going through the shingling and coiling step of the definition process, patience is your best asset. As Myriam says, “The wash and define process takes patience and more than 10 minutes to complete. Once you get the hang of it, your wash and define will take an hour or less.”

Shingling will get you those luscious high-definition coils you’ve been wanting. This step will allow the gel to solidify the shape of your kinks and curls, making the pattern as noticeable as possible. When shingling, you’ll need to go through your hair section by section. Using your fingers to smoothe the gel into the entire length of each section of hair, your curls will start to absorb the product.

When finger coiling:

wash and define and finger coil on natural hair

Begin finger coiling after you have applied your products by taking the same section of hair and wrapping it tightly around your finger. Hold your tightly spiraled section of hair for a few seconds. For kinkily defined goodness, repeat this shingling and coiling process throughout your hair.

4. Give Your Hair Enough Time to Dry

So you’ve made it this far. Your hair is clean, hydrated, and has enough product to keep your curls frizz-free and highly defined. This last step is what so many kinky haired queens miss:

Avoid over-manipulating your hair as it dries.

 

Whether you love the look so much that you just HAVE to touch it or you’ve run out of patience with the whole process, over-manipulation is not the answer. If you start manipulating your hair after the product is in it, you’re setting yourself up for some serious frizz.

Trying to speed up the drying process? Try these methods:

  • Blow drying with a diffuser
  • Using a bonnet or hooded dryer
  • Air drying

Blow drying with a diffuser
Use a blow dryer with a diffuser to dry your kinks without disturbing the curl pattern. The diffuser allows you to do almost completely eliminate frizz while drying your hair faster than air drying would. Drying with a blow dryer and diffuser is easily the best way to achieve the most definition.

Using a bonnet or hooded dryer
Moreover, a bonnet or hooded dryer is another excellent option because it allows even distribution of heat throughout the hair. The heat reduces any frizziness and puffiness that air drying may bring on.

Air drying
While the previous two methods significantly speed up the drying process, if you want to avoid heat completely, air drying is the best choice for you. Though you won’t get the same level of definition if you air dry, this will allow you to avoid any potential heat damage.

5. Consult with a Professional

wash and define on natural hair coil texture

As we’ve said before, no two naturalistas are the same. In order to get THE BEST wash and define, it’s important to consult with a professional. Book an appointment at All Dolled Up with a stylist like Myriam. This will allow you to see what products and processes give you the best results. Even if you’re a pro at your own wash and defines, spending time with an expert will help to expand your natural hair knowledge.

So there you have it: your guide to the best wash and define of your life! This routine will forever change the way you care for your kinks. Leave us a comment, share a picture or two, and let us know what you think!

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