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A simple Curly Girl Routine is the best way if you are just beginning to follow the Curly Girl Method.


As with most things, the internet has a plethora of information available and everyone is an expert these days. To find the basics, sifting through the piles and piles of information often proves to be challenging and overwhelming.

Image showing curly hair fully styled

With this tutorial, I hope to remove some of that anxiety. By stripping out the unnecessary and leaving just the basics. There is always “more” you can do and over time you can definitely experiment.

Ready? Let’s begin:

BEFORE you start the Curly Girl Method, there are a couple of things you need to know.

#1  It is not a miracle cure that will miraculously undo the years and years of abuse.

#2  the 3 P’s – Practice, Patience and Perseverance. You know how that saying goes. Rome was NOT built in a day. Neither are fabulously, healthy, bouncy curls. It will take time and commitment and a few bad hair days along the way.

You will feel compelled to become a product junkie and search for that holy grail. (Not sure what that means? Check out our Curly Girl Glossary) Trying product after product. Searching for “the one”. You will definitely need a bigger house to store all of your hair products!

Simple is best. It allows you the opportunity to practice application methods. Your hair will start improving instantly from the moment you begin.

What is this SIMPLE ROUTINE you speak of?

Well it consist of 4 basic steps with an occasional 5th. A few years ago it was always suggested that you carry out a  a final wash. This removes all of the build up that currently sits on your hair and scalp. The ingredients from non-approved products stick to your hair. Silicone is one of these ingredients. This locks the good stuff out and the moisture your hair needs is unobtainable. Today though, that recommendation has changed and now we are told to just simply start the curly girl method using curly friendly products.

The theory is that the existing buildup will wash away over time and that a final wash is actually more damaging to the hair because of the drying sulphates in the shampoo you use.

I personally see the benefit of doing a final wash. If you have been using sulphate shampoos all along, one final wash isn’t going to do any more harm than what’s already been caused and I like the sound of a “clean slate”. If you’d like to do a final wash, using a non CG approved shampoo (minus the silicone) will work or you can buy Redwin’s Tea Tree Shampoo from somewhere like Chemist Warehouse.

You might need to wash, rinse and repeat. It just depends on how much build up you have. If you feel like the shampoo didn’t lather very well, rinse and do it again.

You are now ready to move on to your Simple Curly Girl Routine

Step 1: Cleanse


In the cleansing phase, you need a conditioner that has more CLEANSING properties than regular conditioner. You can also purchase a specific Co-wash or Cleanser that is gentle on the hair and won’t strip out your hairs natural oils. Anything that is approved and lathers, is considered a Low-Poo. These are used for different reasons which we will cover in a future article. Rinse fully.

Suggested products: Acure, Flora & Curl, Jessicurl, Boucleme, Giovanni, tgin, Inahsi Naturals, Curls

Step 2: Condition


Using an approved conditioner, apply a sufficient amount from the mid-shaft right down to the very ends. Squish to condish! Rinse Fully

Suggested products: Acure, Flora & Curl, Jessicurl, Boucleme, Giovanni, Inahsi Naturals, 

Step 3: Leave-In Conditioner


Gently squeeze out the excess water and hop out of the shower. Your hair should still be soaking wet. Using wet hands, emulsify and apply your chosen leave-in conditioner from the mid shaft to the ends. Squish to condish!

Suggested products: CurlKeeper, Flora & Curl, Jessicurl, Giovanni, Inahsi Naturals, Curls, Trepadora 

Step 4: Apply your styler and plop


Using wet hands, emulsify your styler of choice and apply using the praying hands method. A gel or a mousse will suffice to begin with. Encouraging the hair to be smooth and clump together. You can section your hair to ensure proper product distribution.

Post application, if your hair still feels too wet, you have the option to plop or micro-plop using an old t-shirt or a micro-fibre towel.

Suggested products: CurlKeeper, Flora & Curl, Jessicurl, Giovanni, Inahsi Naturals, Curls, Trepadora, Boucleme, tgin, 

Ready to try a Deep Conditioner?


Once you have got the hang of this simple curly girl routine, you can add an essential fifth step – a weekly deep condition. This is essential to provide your hair with the nourishment and moisture it needs to be healthy. Especially if you have lots of heat damage and colour damage. The frequency you deep condition is dependent upon your hair. A little bit of trial and error is needed to work out your perfect schedule. Look out for our post detailing the deep conditioning phase in a little more detail.

Suggested products: CurlKeeper, Jessicurl, Inahsi Naturals, Curls, Trepadora, Boucleme,


Showing what scrunch out the crunch looks likeYou can diffuse or air dry, the choice is yours. Don’t forget to scrunch out the crunch once your hair is 100% dry.

Simple is best when you are just starting out. Each time you follow this routine, you will become quicker at it and it will become second nature to you. Practice your application methods and experiment a little with the raking, praying hands and combing to see how your hair responds. Tweaking things here and there to get the optimal results. Don’t be afraid to experiment. That is how you learn what your hair likes and doesn’t like.

So there you have it, a simple 4 step curly girl routine to get you started. You can expand as you feel more confident.

Your Curly x