For low porosity curly hair and type 3A curls, here is my curly hair method and tips for refreshing hair for up to four days after wash day. I hope the painful detail helps you and gives you as much joy as it has brought me lately.

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A word about how to refresh curls after sleeping

This curly hair refresh business is so much easier than a hair wash. It takes less time, gives results AND it’s healthier for the scalp to go longer between washes. So after Day 1 wash day,

  1. Sleep on a satin pillowcase or use a satin bonnet to protect hair during sleep.
  2. After waking up, spray your hair with 1:3 part conditioner and water mix.
  3. Use curly hair after wash products like a cream, a gel or both, rake them in.
  4. Scrunch … a lot.
  5. Use a diffuser (the right way) to dry or air dry.

My first refresh experience and lessons learnt

Day 1: Wash day

Shampoo

I usually cowash properly once or twice a week. But clarified hair once a month with Pantene Lively Clean Shampoo, followed by an ACV Rinse

Method: Put your curly hair upside down and apply only on the inside, NOT on top of the head. Rhea Joe from the Indian Curl pride group suggests a gentler way: take only a small amount of shampoo, dilute it in half a mug of water and use this to clean your scalp only. The water will trickle down to the length of your hair anyway. I’ve found this method to be quite helpful.

Note: This shampoo can be “harsh” because helps you “clarify” all the build up so use it sparingly. I use it only once or twice a month. NOT every wash.  The “Curly Girl” (CG) method has no shampoo at all.  I use it because low porosity curly hair causes a lot of build up and oil residue.  

Hair mask/ Deep conditioner

Method: Applied honey + glycerine + amsarveda hair mask (1+1+3 tablespoons) Section hair first and “rake” the paste in your curly wet hair. Use a wide tooth comb to distribute. I kept it till I scrubbed my bathroom clean (that long but you can keep it longer if that’s what your hair needs). Using the Swish to condish method (STC) wash the mask away with warm water.

Note: Low porosity curly hair needs warm water to help open the hair cuticles.  That way, more product can go into the hair and stay moisturized. Here’s a great video for the science of low porosity curly hair.

Conditioner

Take a BIG dollop of conditioner and apply on top of the head and on the tips, without disturbing the curl clump formation from the mask wash. Step away from the shower, fill your palms with water and throw it, on the top of the head, three times. This keeps most of the conditioner in. Squish squish squish.  Srcunch, scunch, scrunch.  This is the CG method described in the Curly Girl Handbook by Lorraine Massey. If you don’t have it yet, I recommend you get it ASAP.

Style

Use styling products, I used Eco styler gel and kinky curly custard on wet hair. Not towel dried or t-shirt dried hair, but right there on wet hair, in the bathroom. Squish squish squish the excess water out and scrunch scrunch scrunch a lot more. Low porosity curly hair is tight, scrunching a lot helps the product to penetrate the hair. The products help conceal the moisture

Air-dry.

I have a Chroma diffuser but I’m still learning how to use it the right way. I didn’t use it this time.

Day 2 – No Refresh

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Second-day hair after sleeping in a Pineapple – No Refresh

It’s happened, you guys. It’s finally happened. I was so excited with this result, I did not refresh at all. Well, I should have because by Day 3 my hair was coarse, dry and had a lot of frizz.

Day 3 – Refresh Mistakes 

Curly Hair Refresh Routine for 3A type curly hair, second day wavy hair, how to refresh curls after sleeping, how to refresh curls after pineappling, how to refresh curls without water, next day hair, how to refresh a wash and go on natural hair, how to refresh natural hair, second day curly hair products
Day 3 Curly Hair after refreshing it the wrong way

I refreshed with Kinky Curly Custard (KCCC) and Cantu Curl Activator. I did not refresh curly hair the right way, which is: 

  • first section hair,
  • then, use a hair spray to complete wet hair,
  • “rake” the products in and scrunch.

But I didn’t and that’s why it looks so frizzy here.

Day 4 – Refreshing Curly Hair 

Curly Hair Refresh Routine for 3A type curly hair, second day wavy hair, how to refresh curls after sleeping, how to refresh curls after pineappling, how to refresh curls without water, next day hair, how to refresh a wash and go on natural hair, how to refresh natural hair, second day curly hair products
Day 4 Curly Hair after Refresh

Used only Cantu curl activator here. It took a long time to dry but now that it has, my hair is soft and defined.

  1. Spray your hair with 1:3 part conditioner and water mix.
  2. Use curly hair after wash products like a cream, a gel or both, rake them in.
  3. Scrunch … a lot.
  4. Use a diffuser correctly to dry or air dry.

Mistakes:

  1. I should’ve followed with eco gel or KCCC to fight the frizz.
  2. I should get a hairspray to make a water+conditioner base for leave in before I used any product.

Being a minimal person, I discovered Bouncecurl Light Creme gel and it’s a great product to refresh curly hair on non-wash days. Here in this post, I did all the right things and got great DAY 3 hair.

Lessons+ The Right Way to Refresh Curly Hair

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Low Porosity Curls? Ditch Your Leave-in Conditioner and see.
  • High Porosity: Fill a spritz bottle with part leave-in conditioner + rose water + filtered water. Low Porosity hair, use plain filtered water. Spray to wet hair completely; dripping wet, you guys!
  • Detangle, section hair and apply curl cream.
  • Use the Denman Brush for clumps.
  • Apply a generous amount gel and scrunch a lot.
  • SOTC with Cantu Curl Activator. It’s better than using dry hands or even oil to SOTC.

All this may feel like 100 years to do, but no, it takes less than 5 minutes to refresh. So, don’t be disheartened. You can do this. Here is my YouTube video to help you!

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Author: Liz

Child of the King. Wife. Mother. Writer. Lover of all things sweet and honest.

7 Replies to “The Curly Hair Refresh Routine Article of Your Dreams

    1. Thank You Kawalpreet! Since I follow the CG Method 100 percent I only cowash. But being low porosity I do get buildup so I use Pantene Lively Clean shampoo once a month to clarify. Its local, cheap and does NOT have silicone – so yay! Silicone is my enemy. I can’t wait for the Bounce Curl line of cleansers and conditioners coming out end of September 2017 *claps excitedly* If I come across more gentle cleansers I will let everyone know 🙂 Subscribe, so you get a notification too!

  1. Yay… so I do have 3A hair. I am so glad I see this… as tomorrow is day 4 and today I didnt refresh my beauties right!!!
    I wonder if there is a way to see curl type by curl size… either way. It’s all about loving our hair and learning how to treat it right… 😉

  2. Can I use as I am to refresh low po hair after the hair is wet (before the gel)? Also, when do you soak hair with the t shirt on refresh days as it is dripping wet?

    1. Yes, make sure you use warm water to wet your hair first. That’s important for low po hair. It helps open up the cuticles. Doesn’t matter whether you refresh or wash day if you have dripping wet hair, using a soft shirt or a microfiber towel to scrunch gently helps to get the excess water out. do that after you style. Styling on soaking wet hair gives you the best results!

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