two and a half nearly 3, Margo’s hair has calmed down a little bit. It’s definitely been more manageable, but I feel it’s mostly because we’ve figured out how to take care of it. (I blogged here about what we use and how we started) We’ve experimented and settled on the following three things as our new conventional wisdom for taming a curly toddler mane (or, OUR curly toddler mane.)
1. Trims. We get it trimmed 2x a year now. I guess I’m intending to let it grow longer (with the “we’ll cut it when it’s too long” guiding principle.) Trimming off the split ends makes the curls nicer and makes getting a comb through it easier.
2. Once a week hair washing. Just like I do (using lots of Curly Girl wisdom), we limit shampooing the hair. A typical bath, we’ll just wet her hair and use the Kinky Curly Leave In conditioner afterwards when we comb it. Once a week I’ll wash it with the same shampoo & conditioner I use – Nature’s Gate. Frankly, it’s easier (bc washing toddler hair is a pain, right?) and her hair does better anyway. It’s not greasy or dirty or flaky, and the curls are tighter and more defined.
3. Rewetting in the mornings. When we get ready in the morning, I use a spray bottle of water and just try to get her hair a touch beyond damp. Then, comb & scrunch and tie it back in some way so it’s not in her face all day. It sort of re-uses the conditioner, I think. I’m no hair scientist, just a hunch.
I mean, if you’d have asked me if I wanted my kid to have curly hair, I’d have categorically, emphatically said no. It’s a pain, and I know the mixed blessing. But, now that we understand it and tame it, it’s actually not as huge of a burden as it once was. And most of the things we do, Scott can do too (though he insists he can’t scrunch. How can you not scrunch?) It’s probably a little more work than straight hair, though I can’t really compare. I do love looking at it and feel lucky to have that God-given right as a mother to twirl it when we’re sitting together.