Curls and curves – two things we were never taught to embrace about ourselves.
But its 2019, and we are celebrating everything that makes us unique. More than a million curly haired cuties have joined the CGM journey started by the original curly girl, Lorraine Massey.
Don’t scratch those curls out girl! In the next few minutes, you will learn what exactly CGM is and how you can begin your curly hair journey with it.
CGM: The ‘CURLY GIRL METHOD’
You guessed it:
CGM is an acronym for the curly girl method. It is a complete hair care approach developed by Lorraine Massey, first revealed in her book ‘Curly Girl: The Handbook’ back in 2010. Since then, it has become a global phenomenon for curly and wavy haired people.
Keep in mind that CGM is not exactly a haircare technique or routine, but rather an approach. The idea behind the method is that curly hair has different hair care needs. It requires more moisture than non-curly hair, and incurs more damage at the hand of chemicals.
From your sulfate laden shampoo to your silicon-based conditioner, and from your towel to your cotton pillow cover – anything that strips your curl off its natural moisture goes down the bin. You need to give up all kinds of heat styling tools and switch your favorite hair care products with new CG-approved ones.
In simpler words, you need to be nicer, gentler with your locks.
Starting Your Curly Girl Journey
The Curly Girl handbook has a set of rules that needs to be followed. However, many get too overwhelmed by the amount of information that small book contains, and quit before they even start.
In all honesty, some rules seem to be going against what we have always been told about hair care. For instance, combing and brushing your hair is discouraged since it can disrupt your curl pattern. You are encouraged to leave more styling products in your hair after a wash.
The full set of rules can be a bit complicated and confusing, but you don’t have to follow the rule book to a T right from the get go.
Just keep three main steps in your mind: Cleanse, Condish, Style
Step 1: Cleanse
Speaking of the things you need to let go, shampoo would be on the top of your list.
Many believe that CGM is what started the no-poo movement. However, no shampoo doesn’t mean no cleansing at all. Your scalp needs to be clean in order to be healthy, but not scrub-it-like-a-toilet-floor clean. Your scalp doesn’t need all that sulfate; You need to wash it with a shampoo that is free of it and all other harsh chemicals that can destroy your curls.
In her handbook, Massey has introduced the ‘co-wash’ method. It stands for conditioner washing. You cleanse your scalp with a silicon-free conditioner instead of shampoo. Shampoo was absolute no-no until a few years ago. Now we have CG-friendly shampoos more easily available in the market.
Depending on your hair texture and condition, you can use a mild, sulfate-free, cg-approved shampoo just once a week or may be twice a month as you move further ahead in your journey.
Best Bet: Now CGM-friendly shampoos are supposed to keep your hair moisturized and hydrated. They must be free of baddies such as sulfates, silicone, and drying alcohols. Trissola’s Hydrating Shampoo beautifully fits that description and it doesn’t break your bank.
Made of essential oils and natural extracts, this shampoo can clean all the build up out without stripping the moisture off your strands or scalp. Result is, intensely hydrated, completely clean, and super soft curls. We love the fact that this shampoo offers a decent UV protection as well, keeping the sun from soaking in all the moisture from your hair.
Step 2: Condish
You must’ve guessed it by now, condish is a short for condition. It is the second yet most important step in the curly girl routine.
This is when you let your hair soak in as much moisture as it possibly can: through product and through technique. There are a tonnes of conditioning techniques introduced in the handbook, but if you are just starting your journey, you don’t have to concern yourself with a lot of it.
Just generously apply a CG-approved conditioner in dripping yet hair. Detangle using your fingers. Squish your stands to make them soak more moisture from the conditioner. Leave in for around 5 to 10 minutes. Wash it off. Viola!
For people with excessively dry or damaged hair, it is a good idea to leave-in some conditioner as well. It takes a few tries to figure out how much you need to leave in.
Best Bet: Burgati Leave-in conditioner is godsend. Almost every ingredient it features has a moisturizing property. From Argan Kernel Oil to Carrot Root extract, everything works together to hydrate the strands and lock the moisture in.
Plus, there is keratin for stronger, smoother, and more defined curls. It works from all textures, form wavy to kinky and coily. Keratin also seals your open cuticles, which are the major reason behind frizz and split ends.
Step 3: Style
Why do you need styling when CGM is all about keeping it natural?
Here’s the thing about curly hair. Every strand has its own curl pattern. After years of chemical and heat abuse, your hair loses that natural pattern and becomes an unruly mess. When you start your CGM journey, you will realize that your hair, despite looking lovely when wet, start to lose that beautiful pattern as it dries.
You need some extra help to hold that pattern so that your hair can get used to it. A good CG-friendly styling product will help you keep your curls bouncy, sculpted, and free of frizz throughout the day. You can even use it to refresh your curls every morning.
Best Bet:If you are looking fora fantastic option to tame and hold your curls, we recommend the Tela Beauty Organics Curl of My Dreams.
The key ingredient in this styling serum is the Quinoa Protein aka. The mother grain. It enhances shine and restores the natural strength of your hair. Your curls form better when your hair is healthier. Another magic ingredient is the patent-pending Pelusi Ceramide Complex. It hydrates the curls and locks that moisture in for a long time. You will witness a magical difference in curl definition and hold with this curl enhancing serum.
While we are talking about styling, keep in mind that you will have to change a lot about the way you style your hair. Not to overwhelm you with a lot, here is the basics of styling on Curly Girl Method.
- Avoid all heat styling tool including your blow dryer. Better use a diffuser on cold setting till its 80 percent dry. Air dry the rest.
- Throw away your regular towel and dry your hair with a t-shirt or a microfiber towel.
- Don’t brush or comb dry hair as it will disrupt curls, cause frizz, and increase breakage. Detangle with a wide toothcomb while you are in the shower with lots of conditioner on your head.
That is enough for anyone starting with CGM. All you need is the right technique, the right product, and the right mindset. Remember, there will be a transition period and you may not like how your hair behaves during that period. Stay patient, stay committed, and you will soon get back the curls you can fall in love with.