Curly Hair Hacks and Tips for Parents

 Girl with Beautiful Textured Curly Hair

Our kids' hair comes in all types and textures. As parents, it's our job to instill confidence in their natural hair. We want our littles to feel good about their curls so that confidence can carry on in their lives. When we take the time to create special memories of hair days at home, we're honoring our kids' natural hair and empowering them to love their locks. Of course, doing hair as a parent isn't always as easy and relaxing as a salon visit. Keeping up with our energetic kiddos can sometimes be a lot to untangle. We've put together the best curly hair hacks for parents to make doing your kid's hair a breeze. There are even a few kid and tween-friendly techniques to transition into teaching your littles how to care for their own curls. 

Kid Friendly Products vs Curl Friendly Products

When it comes to hair care for kids, there are a lot of fun, colorful products on the shelves that promise to make hair days more enjoyable. But are childrens' hair products really the best for natural hair? 

The answer is - it depends. The majority of commercial kids products are not made for curly hair. They often contain lower-quality ingredients and cheap "fillers" such as sulfates, parabens, and fragrances that can dry out your children's curls. Look at ingredients before fun colors and designs. The same hair care rules apply to little curls too! Steer clear of additives and focus on hydrating ingredients like natural hair oils (think coconut, jojoba, rose, and argan) and moisturizing butter for shine and movement. 

Of course, high-quality children's hair products are often expensive for the same ingredients you likely use in your own curl care routine. Consider sharing your own curl care products and facilitating a teachable moment in daily hair care routines. Share your routine with the kiddos! You can turn curl care into a fun DIY project by decorating cute containers to store your kids' hair products in. Add in your own curl-safe scents like rose oil and peppermint. Not only is this an efficient and budget-friendly way to share hair products, but it's a great way to get your kids into healthy hair habits and turn hair day into a fun activity.

What Are the Best Kids' Hairstyles for Natural Hair?

The best kids' hairstyles for natural hair don't need to be highly elaborate or time-consuming. We know living up to the hype of being a Pinterest parent can be daunting! These cute trends are as chic as they are quick and simple. 


Beaded Braids

Depending on how long your child's hair is, beaded braids can either be a quick go-to hairstyle or a hair day look. Either way, the upkeep is low maintenance and the versatility allows your child to be creative and have a voice in their style. Try metallic beads, colorful hair strands, and chunky 90's pastel hair jewelry. For longer hair, a fantastic curly hair hack for parents is braiding sections rather than the whole head of hair. Chunky braids, fishtail braids, and three asymmetrical braids are just a few ways to create a chic (but quick) look that your little or tween will love.


Bantu Knots

This is a winner for active kiddos! Bantu knots will last through an entire school week. The history of this style originates with the South African Zulu people. It's an easy, low-maintenance protective hairstyle that's especially ideal for keeping thick curls up during the summertime. Simply section off the hair, twist it, and wrap it into small buns to create a whimsical series of spiral knots. This style requires much less patience than box braids and doesn't pull at the scalp nearly as much. 



Pigtails are a classic for mornings when you're running short on time. The natural texture and waves of your child's curls will add movement to a traditional style and give it a bit of flair. Accessorize with scrunchies, clips, and headbands.


Fancy Puffs

Puffs are another go-to for many parents. One easy way to dress this style up is by adding embellishments and baubles like mermaid-esque pearls, gold and silver beads, and antique hair clips that invoke a mod chic aesthetic. Embellishing classic puffs is also a great way to grow this style from a cute toddler look to a hip tween trend.

Check out these back-to-school hairstyles for curly hair for more inspiration.


Detangle Without the Tears

Coming up with creative new hairstyles for your child or tween is tons of fun. What's not so fun is detangling their curly hair! Tangles are the number one challenge for most parents, especially for young children. The tears, the pain, the struggle -- we know it all too well. Children with thick, tight curls and coils need frequent detangling help. Growing out natural hair in children requires even more diligent tangle-proof routines. The good news is that detangling doesn't have to be painful. 

Before beginning the detangling process, start by investing in a flexible detangling brush, or wide-toothed comb. Next, try a pre-poo treatment prior to detangling. There are a few different ways to pre-poo, but the simplest technique is adding an extra conditioning treatment to protect the hair's outer layer prior to shampooing. This will prevent some of the frizz and knots from forming. Use a low porosity shampoo designed for maximum moisture absorption in curly hair and always detangle hair when wet. Detangling dry hair can lead to yanking, tears, and breakage. For best results, detangle prior to shampooing. Using this method, you'll only need to do a quick brush through after washing to smooth away any snares. 

If your child is especially sensitive, we recommend working on a scalp massage every few weeks. This can be a great way to unwind and share great self-care routines with your kiddo. Use a lightweight scalp oil to gently exfoliate the scalp. This will help stimulate hair growth for long, luxurious locks as well as make detangling a more serene process. Going low heat is also a fantastic way to implement gentle styling techniques for sensitive little scalps.

Multiracial man with dreadlocks doing hairstyle for his little daughter

Stick to a Bedtime Routine

As every parent knows, kids thrive on routine. Curls also need a routine to thrive. It's important to maintain consistency when it comes to natural hair care for kids. Get on a schedule that works for both you and your child. The best way to start your nightly curl care routine is by replenishing moisture lost throughout the day. Dip the ends of the hair in a nourishing oil like coconut or jojoba to seal in that moisture. You'll be able to manage your child's crazy bedhead without adding time to your morning routine.

Protecting natural hair at night is a key part of the routine. Wrap or pineapple your child's hair before bedtime. Let your child pick out a cute, colorful bonnet or favorite satin scrunchie. Engaging your child in their nightly hair care routine empowers them to take pride in keeping their curls healthy. Wrapping the hair is a favorite for children who are prone to tangles. This technique protects your child's delicate curls from both frizz and breakage. Pineapple-ing is another tried and true technique to reduce frizz causing friction, especially if your child likes to toss and turn at night. Whichever technique you choose, be sure that your child feels comfortable and like she is a part of the decision-making process. This is a great hack for encouraging kids to join in with routines because they feel as if their voice is being heard.

So break out the Disney princess bonnets, color pop scrunchies, and elegant hair scarves. Let's make bedtime the best part of the day for you and your little one.

Fostering a love of curly hair in our children is a great way to build their confidence, honor their natural beauty, and teach them to love their heritage and celebrate their uniqueness. No two curls are the same and that's an amazing aspect of the natural hair community. Include your child in discussions about natural hair types, favorite styles, and natural hair icons. Be sure to select a salon that knows how to style your child's curl pattern. Even if they're still too young for complex styles, finding a salon where your little one is comfortable and feels empowered in their style choices will set them on a positive path as a tween and teens.

Our Reverse Air Dryer is a favorite among parents because of it's low heat, easy process and healthy benefits for their little one's hair! We hope our favorite home hair care hacks for parents make your next hair day even better! Looking for more amazing tips? Reach out to the team at RevAir.