When referring to curly hair, shrinkage is the difference in length of your hair when it falls naturally (dry hair) and the length when it is extended. Wavy hair shrinks around 2 to 4 inches, medium curly hair around 5 to 8 inches, and extremely tight curls can shrink around 9 to 12 inches, sometimes more. It varies from mane to mane, but two things remain the same for every curly head--your hair will be healthier, and your life will be easier if you can learn to embrace your hair shrinkage and choose a style that works with it, not against it.
Hair | Tips | styling
A braid-out is a great way to add waves to straight hair or stretch and lengthen curly hair without using a heated styling tool, such as a curling iron or crimper. A braid-out is a healthful style choice for your hair, and it is easy to do. First, wash and condition your hair. Second, part your hair into sections (four sections will usually suffice, but you may want more depending on your preference--the smaller the braid, the tighter the wave pattern will be). Third, gently comb each section and then braid it. If your hair is prone to frizz, you may want to add a small amount of styling gel to each section before braiding. Remember not to braid your hair too tightly--you do not want to have any tension near the scalp. For the safest and healthiest option, let your hair air-dry (time will vary depending on climate and hair texture, but thick hair usually takes at least 12 hours). If you don't have time to let your hair air dry, you can use a blow-dryer with a diffuser or a hood dryer (time will vary depending on texture, but thick hair usually takes at least 60 to 90 minutes). After your hair is completely dry, unbraid each section and let the styling fun begin. Results will vary depending on texture, but you should have some luscious waves to work with--the possibilities are endless.
Before you comb, style, or apply heat to your hair, here are 5 facts about hair and water that you should know:
1. Hair consists of 10 to 13 percent water, even when it is dry.
2. Wet hair has 100 percent moisture level.
3. Hair can absorb 30 percent of its weight in water.
4. Hair is more vulnerable when wet because the hydrogen bonds that reinforced it have been broken.
5. Water boils at 212 degrees Fahrenheit.
Blow dryers, curling irons, and hot rollers can reach up to 390 degrees, flatirons around 450 degrees, and pressing combs nearly 500 degrees. In other words, heated styling tools can boil the water inside of your hair shaft, so use with caution.
Hot roller clamps are simply the best for holding hair up when sectioning for braiding, blow-drying, or styling. They are lightweight with a wide grip and won’t snag hair like smaller clips. Especially helpful when dealing with a lot of hair.