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Curly Hair and Styling Products

Q: I have curly hair and as I understand it, putting styling products into my hair (like an anti-frizz serum, a leave-in conditioner or wax on the tips) would do great things for my curls, but wouldn't this mean that I'd have to wash my hair everyday? I don't like the idea of leaving styling products into my hair for many days without washing them off (this also applies to mousse or gel). I feel like my hair is dirty when I put styling products in it. Is this a false idea? What do you do to get rid of the styling products without washing your hair? I don't want to "brush them off" since this would destroy my curls! Am I supposed to leave them in and apply a new layer of these products on my hair each day?
 
A: While it isn’t necessary for most people to shampoo their hair daily, people who use certain styling products may find it needful to shampoo them from the hair. Such products as heavy hairsprays and spritz can be difficult to deal with when left overnight. This presents a problem for those women with curly hair since brushing the spray out of the hair results in the curls being broken up and the hair becoming bushy and/or frizzy.
 
      That being said, you could use gel, mousse, anti-frizz serum, and leave-in conditioner without shampooing daily, and without brushing the product from the hair. Some women simply mist their hair with water to refresh the product in the hair and restyle the hair or apply more leave-in conditioner for he same purpose.
 
      I can sympathize with the sensation that most styling products leave you feeling that your hair is dirty, and there’s nothing wrong with shampooing your hair daily if you feel the need. Just be certain to use a very gentle shampoo and a good rinse-through conditioner to keep from drying out the hair from too-frequent washing.
 
      As a tip to help you in dealing with the feeling of products making the hair “dirty”, try using “spray” versions of products like styling gel, and anti-frizz products. The spray application will allow you to direct the product primarily where it is needed and avoid getting the product on your scalp, which will only worsen the sensation of dirtiness.
 
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