"Every time I finish my daughter's hair, I make sure to tell her how pretty her hair is and how beautiful she looks. She is a reflection of me so I have to keep her hair looking good or else I'm not fully committing to my role as a parent."
Darren is the father of a beautiful seven-year-old named Amelia. He acknowledges that hair care usually falls into the "mom category" but he explains that his wife is Puerto Rican/Honduran, and she genuinely struggled with understanding how to care for curly hair effectively. Darren was a bit more familiar with it, so he decided to educate himself further on how to care for curly-haired kids' hair.
Curly hair is so beautiful, but it can often be overwhelming for fathers to understand how to master what is deemed as such a feminine skill set. However, Darren is a perfect example of someone who has taken a keen interest in caring for his daughter's beautiful curly hair.
THE TRUTH ABOUT WHY IT'S IMPORTANT TO LEARN THIS SKILL
The world can be problematic when it comes to race and gender. For instance, women are sometimes expected to cook and clean quite a bit more than men are, even if they work full-time. In the same vein, mothers are usually thought to be the ones who should care for their daughter's hair.
While this division of tasks may seem rather innocent in everyday life, the implications are not great. However, it's incredible when a man can cook, clean, and care for his daughter's hair, at least some of the time. Women tend to find it this very attractive, and you're actually contributing to more equal gender roles in the future. This is a good thing for all genders because we'll likely all feel freer to explore every side of ourselves!
The act of learning how to style your daughter's hair and care for it is one of courage, and even rebellion, because there are so many assumptions surrounding men who know a lot about women's hair. Honestly, we need more Darrens in the world!
HOW TO DEVELOP A SOLID REGIMEN FOR YOUR CURLY-HAIRED KIDS
When curly hair is too dry, it often doesn't look that great. However, it's absolutely gorgeous when it's thoroughly hydrated, soft, and buoyant! Darren says that he only washes Amelia's ringlets once every two weeks, and he usually co-washes them with a moisturizing conditioner. He also deep-conditions her tresses at least once per month. This is an excellent regimen, particularly for people with extremely curly hair!
You may want to incorporate the following tips and tricks into your routine when you're caring for your little girl's locks:
- Avoid excessive shampooing
- Choose her shampoo wisely
- Do a pre-shampoo treatment
- Don't brush her wet hair
- Use a wide-tooth comb instead of a regular hairbrush before shampooing her curls
- Limit heat styling
- Opt for cold water whenever possible when washing her hair
- Trim her curls to avoid split ends
It's important to note that this routine may vary depending on the type of curls your daughter has: Some kinds of ringlets need to be washed more frequently than others! You can find her curl pattern here.
HOW TO USE CURLFORMERS
According to Darren, the key is to section your little girl's hair properly. If you do that, the process should be a breeze! He was inspired by this video on YouTube, but he doesn't use curlformers very often because his daughter finds them difficult to sleep on.
Curly hair can be challenging to work with sometimes, so it's important to practice patience with yourself and with your child. Darren says that sectioning his daughter's hair is the most effective method when it comes to applying products.
THE TROUBLING IMPLICATIONS OF YOUR DAUGHTER YEARNING FOR STRAIGHT HAIR
Your daughter may yearn for straight hair because her friends flaunt theirs, or she may see a lot of TV shows that idealize people with certain types of tresses. Fortunately, there are increasingly more shows celebrating diversity in all of its many beautiful forms, but it's still important that you encourage her to celebrate her unique beauty.
In a touching turn of events, Darren had to explain to his daughter Amelia that straightening her hair wasn't good for it and that he would likely have to cut off the burnt ends if he did. Because she loves her hair, she eventually stopped asking him to straighten it, and instead requested that he "let her hair free." This is such a beautiful tale about a young girl learning how to accept herself and her curls! A lot of us could learn a thing or two from the wonderfully liberated Amelia!
QUICK AND EASY HAIRSTYLES THAT ARE SUPER FASHIONABLE
Darren usually opts for quick and easy styles that are super cute. These include wash n go's, twist-outs, and curlformers. He very rarely straightens his daughter's hair because he finds that doing so severely damages her ends. He's also made a point of letting her know that her curls are a magnificent part of who she is, and she should embrace them!
4 ADDITIONAL LOOKS YOU MIGHT WANT TO TRY
If you're feeling adventurous, or if your daughter wants to try something new, you may want to experiment with these hairstyles.
1. THE CLASSIC UPDO
- Let her hair air-dry.
- Apply a serum that is specifically formulated for her type of curls.
- Tie her hair into a ponytail between the nape of her neck and the crown of her head.
- Wrap the ponytail around the base of her hair to form a bun
- Secure the updo firmly with bobby pins.
- Use hair spray if desired (this is totally optional!)
2. THE ULTRA-HIGH PONYTAIL
- Get her hair together at the crown of her head
- Tie it up with a hair tie
- Use bobby pins if you want to keep it tight (this is optional).
- Use a curl-defining cream if you want to enhance her gorgeous ringlets.
3. THE SIDE-BRAID
- Part her hair into three sections on one side of her head.
- Start braiding
- Tie it up with a pretty hair tie!
4. THE MESSY HALF-BUN
The messy half-bun is totally in style right now by the way! Chances are, your daughter will strut to class feeling super cool. Here's how you can recreate this super stylish look:
- Take the section of her hair near her hair and make tie a ponytail
- Coil the ponytail until you have a bun (Don't bother to keep it neat: Messy is fun!)
- Secure the bun with bobby pins.
These are fun ways to change things up a bit, and most of these styles are relatively simple.
DARREN'S FAVORITE YOUTUBE CHANNEL
Naptural85 is an excellent YouTube channel that covers natural hair care and styles for beautifully melanated women with curly and coily hair! The woman who shoots these videos is very dedicated to using natural products so that her hair remains as healthy and hydrated as possible!
HYDRATION IS KEY
Curly hair can often become frizzy, and it can dry quite quickly, so it's essential to condition it regularly. You may also want to use a hair mask or coconut oil on her curls. This deeply moisturizes them, helping her tresses maintain their buoyancy, health, and shine!
HOW TO FIND A REGIMEN THAT WORKS WELL FOR YOU AND YOUR DAUGHTER
The best way to master this skill is to experiment with different products on your daughter's hair and read various blogs or watch YouTube videos on the subject that is simultaneously informative and entertaining: You'll most likely learn through trial and error. That being said, it's probably in your best interest to opt for natural products, because many shampoos and conditioners are laden with chemicals that could be toxic to your little girl's curls.
HOW TO HELP YOUR WONDERFUL DAUGHTER EMBRACE HER NATURAL HAIR
Society might be challenging for your little girl: She may be looked down upon sometimes because of her hair, and it could even be deemed as unprofessional in some cases. For these reasons, it's incredibly important to tell her frequently how beautiful her curls are and to steer clear of making playful jokes about her curls or saying anything remotely negative about them: Making demeaning comments, even if they're lighthearted ones, could affect her self-esteem more than you might realize. It's also essential to educate her about the struggles she may face in society, and how to stand up for herself: Everyone deserves to be treated equally, and that's more likely to take place if individuals continue to eloquently speak up about the many injustices that are present in our society.
While the road ahead may be a difficult one, there is also a lot of beauty in a woman owning who she is unapologetically, and many would argue that adversity builds character. That's not to say injustice in any form is fair — it's completely unacceptable!— but it will likely make your daughter stronger and bolder in standing up for what's right. Fortunately, progress is gradually being made and America is finally heading in the right direction: Teaching your daughter how to love herself for who she is—embracing her culture and her curls—is simultaneously a personal and political act!
It's important to teach her about her culture and her hair so that she can be proud of where she came from!
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