Natural hair doesn’t slick, slay, or lay down….says who?!
I have a very dense and thickly populated head of extremely coily and rather unruly strands that range in hair type classification from 3C to 4B depending on where you look. And so, I have often thought there was no product combination to tame my particular brand of au naturale. But with years of trial and error came revelation so I am happy to share the tips that have worked for me in hopes that they will work for you.
1. Try to start on detangled hair
This step is easier said than done depending on the amount of time you have. It’s not mandatory but can drastically improve the look of your slicked back style by making sure every strand is well stretched and detangled.
2. Spritz with water before applying more product
Most of my buns are the result of a stretched out style that’s flopped so I don’t usually need to apply more product, just a bit of water to reactivate what’s already there.
3. Apply a GLOB of gel with your fingers
Yes, a glob, a generous amount, like more than you think is appropriate. This is the step I used to mess up, thinking that a dab would do it. But unless you’ve got relaxed, not-so-curly, or baby thin hair, a large two (maybe three) finger glob will make the job much easier. Depending on your hair, you may even need several visits to the gel jar to really have enough to tame your curly q’s. You have to gauge what’s right for your hair, but it’s easy to tell that you’ve got enough gel when your curls begin to clump together as you smooth the gel over your hair with your fingers. I love the ECO Styler Olive Oil Gel because it has a strong hold without any drying effects.
Warning; This gel typically does not flake when used alone, BUT if you have large amounts of product prior to the gel application you may find small amounts of flaking on day two. It does, however, go away with more water and a bit of brushing.
4. Apply a less generous glob of control paste
The control paste’s job is to really hold in place all your previous globs of gel. I usually rub the paste between my fingers first to help distribute it along my hairline. The Curls brand Passion Fruit Curl Control Paste smells great and works well with the ECO styler. At around $8 a jar it may seem pricey but one jar has lasted me over a year so it’s definitely worth it.
Now that you’ve got this lovely cocktail of gunk in your hair, it’s time to put on the finishing touches. Smoothing your hair using a brush with boar bristles helps preserve the health of your hair and the toothbrush allows for better precision in laying those baby hairs everyone fawns over.
6. Satin scarf until the absolute last minute possible
Don’t skip this step! Even if you can only wear the scarf for five minutes while you smear on your BB cream and lipstick, every second counts. The scarf allows for the marriage of all those products you applied so that they can insure sleek edges all day long. The more gel you apply, the more time you should allow for the scarf so that your hair doesn’t revert due to the water based gel.
SLAY THE STRAIGHT WAY!
If you’re going for a sleek straight style don’t worry! You can simply skip the gel and just use the control paste, brush, and scarf. You’ll still get to slay the edge game without having your straight hair revert to curls.