How to Diffuse Curly Hair? Do’s & Don’ts
If straight-haired girls have shampoo, conditioner, and a hair mask on the bathroom shelf, we, curlies, could open a hair products shop with everything that we own. If you have curly, coily, or wavy hair you might hear about diffusing already. Is diffusing your hair work and HOW to diffuse curly hair?
How to diffuse your hair: 5 steps
Okay, now the fun part: how to diffuse wavy, curly, or coily hair for volume and definition?
1. Wash & prep your hair
After washing your hair with curl-friendly shampoo and conditioner, add a dime size of leave-in conditioner and distribute it evenly throughout your hair.
Then, pick your favorite curl-enhancing products (such as gel, cream, or mousse) and apply them with a scrunching motion.
I work at a hair salon for 8 years now and there is a sentence that I’m repeating every single day: “Always use a heat protectant”. This step is crucial as curly hair is dryer. If you use a heat protectant, you can diffuse your hair on medium heat and avoid all the damage.
I have prepared a list of the best heat protectants. They all are curly girl method approved!
2. Pick the right temperature
If your hair is still soaking wet, it will take an eternity to diffuse your hair so it’s better to let your hair air dry before starting to diffuse.
As I mentioned before, it’s better to diffuse your hair with cold air. At least at the beginning. Don’t forget to diffuse your roots with cold air – it will give you that awesome volume!
3. Diffusing time!
Always start with the ends of your hair. At first, you don’t want to touch your hair with the diffuser. Just move the diffuser around your head.
When you feel that your hair ends are already semi-dry, gently cup your curls and scrunch hair from the ends up. It’s crucial to work in smaller sections as it will save you lots of time.
NOTE: don’t stay on any section of your hair for more than 15 seconds.
4. Flip your hair upside down
After diffusing your hair ends, flip your hair upside. It will give your more volume.
Repeat the same hair cupping process and move your head from one side to another. At this point, you can use medium heat as it will speed up the drying process.
Stop when your hair starts feeling “crunchy” from the styling product.
5. Scrunch your hair
Use a few drops of oil to break the cast from mousse, gel, or hair cream, and scrunch your curls gently to help them soften. Voila!
What does diffusing hair mean?
Diffusing is basically a hair drying technique that uses an attachment for your blow dryer. It changes the airflow from a direct stream to a wide circle. It’s gentler to your hair.
What does diffusing your hair do?
You can expect faster drying time (as the air stream is wider), less frizz, better curl clumps, and more volume. If your hair lacks definition and looks flat you should definitely try diffusing your curls.
How long does it take to diffuse hair?
It depends. If your hair is super thick and long, expect to diffuse your hair for at least an hour; if you have thin hair it can take up to 30 minutes.
Should I diffuse my hair with cold air?
Yes, to avoid any damage to your precious curls, always diffuse your hair with cold air. Cold air also prevents hair from frizz.
Can I diffuse my hair daily?
Yes, you can but you should do that with cold air.
Diffused curls: is there any difference from air drying?
Diffusing is easy once you find what suits your hair best. Maybe you have to start with soaking wet hair or maybe you should air dry your hair for at least 30 minutes before diffusing to get the best results.
Having curly hair is a never-ending process of trying (and sometimes failing) but now that you know how to diffuse those beautiful curls of yours it should be easier to have a good curls day.