Before diving into how to care for kinky hair, you may have questions about what differentiates kinky hair from other curly textures.
Well, it’s all pretty interchangeable. Kinky most typically refers to the curliest of textures. While this is a gorgeous texture, the curlier your hair, the more prone to dryness it tends to be. Throw in hair porosity considerations and you really may be at a loss for how to keep kinky curls healthy and thriving. No matter what your texture, thickness, or tightness, create a regimen with kinky hair products that focuses on moisture. It’s what every curl type needs most. Whether you’re looking for a routine update or starting from scratch, here’s some guidance to get you going toward your best kinky coils.

What Is Kinky Hair?
Kinky hair is really another word to describe curly hair. It’s usually connected to the most textured pattern. Kinky, although somewhat subjective to individual interpretation, is most often associated with curl patterns in the 4A to 4C range. These are the tightest of the bunch and often require more care and slightly different natural hair care products than others, especially when it comes to moisture and definition.

What Is the Difference Between Kinky and Coily Hair?
As mentioned, kinky and coily are two terms that are essentially the same thing. Kinky can be interpreted as a really coily strand. The coil is the actual curl, whereas kinky has more to do with how tight that coil actually is. So, you can have a wavy coil that’s more in the 3s bracket or a tight coil that falls anywhere from 4A to 4C.

How to Care for Kinky Hair
Any level of curl tightness craves moisture most of all—but kinky hair care, in particular, requires a bit more effort to keep your strands hydrated. The natural oils that the scalp produces to keep strands moisturized have a trickier time making it from the root to the ends of each strand. Therefore, you’ll have to make up for it by applying kinky hair products with the right hydrating ingredients. If your hair is kinky, every step of your routine from wash to style should focus on moisture. Here’s how to do just that.

1. Make moisture a priority. You want to use a curly hair shampoo that has some moisturizing properties to it, but don’t forget the importance of cleansing, too. The Monoi Repairing Sulfate Free Shampoo has both monoi oil and coconut cleansers to de-gunk while infusing moisture.

Your conditioner is typically where you’ll really start to replenish the majority of nutrients that are lost through damage, cleansing, and regular wear and tear. The Coco Crème Creamy Conditioner combines coconut oil, coconut milk, and mango seed butter to rehydrate parched, kinky hair. From this point forward, every product you’ll be using should have hydrating ingredients specifically for your hair type.

Kinkier curls are usually better able to withstand heavier creams and oils, like castor oil and shea butter, without getting weighed down. Give hair a warm rinse post-shampoo to allow the cuticle to open up and slather on a rinse-out conditioner like Black Vanilla Moisture & Shine Hydrating Conditioner. The shea and biotin in it will penetrate the hair shaft, hydrating and fortifying from the inside out. Focus your application on the hair itself and less near the roots.

2. Practice monthly maintenance. In addition to your regular wash day and daily styling, incorporating a deep conditioning treatment like the Coco Crème Curl Quenching Deep Moisture Mask and a hair steamer is a great way to give hair an extra moisture boost. If your hair has low porosity, regular (meaning weekly or bi-weekly) steam treatments will help open up the hair shaft so that moisturizers that typically have a tough time settling in can enter.

3. Make the most of protective styles. For this hair texture, protective kinky hair styles are essential. It’s the best way to allow moisture to really get into hair and helps prevent damage and breakage. It’s also a great method to promote hair growth. Your kinky hair style could be flexi-rod sets, which you’ll likely need to re-do weekly, or if you want to set it and forget it, try kinky hair braids and other twisted styles like faux locs and box braids. for a style that you can install and wear for months.

How Do You Wash Kinky Hair?
The key to washing kinky hair properly is to start with a hydrating cleanse. Kinky hair generally does best with fewer shampoos and more co-washing, but when you need to remove product buildup, grease, and grime, a sulfate-free shampoo will be one of the best products for kinky hair. These formulas have the right surfactants to break down the excess buildup without stripping hair of the natural oils that it needs. Build these cleansers into your kinky hair care routine once a month, and when you use it, focus your efforts on the scalp instead of the strands. The pointed nozzle on the Wash Day Delight Sulfate Free Shampoo for Curly Hair makes it easy to target the scalp, while the formula uses a micellar technology to grab the buildup that’s weighing your hair down.

Follow up by detangling your hair thoroughly. One downside to denser hair is that the kinkier it is, the easier it may be for it to get knotted. Also, because it’s usually more dry, it’s prone to breakage. Keep in mind: Hair is more fragile when it’s wet, so you have to handle it with extra care, especially when detangling. Avoid using a plastic bristle brush on hair that either doesn’t have any slip to it or that feels dry to the touch. Stick to a wide-tooth comb when detangling instead of a brush and work from the ends of hair upward to prevent excessive tugging.

Don’t forget your leave-in conditioner! Once you’re done detangling, pump even more moisture into your hair with a lightweight leave-in like the Monoi (Repair + Protect) Multi-Styling Milk. Think of this as your last step to get all the goodness inside before closing the door.

How to Take Care of Kinky Hair Naturally
If your goal is to care for natural hair with no heat and minimal ingredients, there are plenty of ways to do so. Make hair oils your best friend for moisture and stick to protective hair braids to help add definition without any hot tools. Look for oils that both penetrate the hair shaft and ones that seal it in. When protective styling, kinky hair may need a bit of extra hold to help the style set, so try an oil-infused twisting cream. The combination of heat-free styling and using the best products for kinky hair is a minimalist but effective way to care for kinky hair naturally.

Knowing that kinky hair is more prone to damage than other textures, Here’s How to Stop Breakage before it happens.

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