- Keep It Simple! Yes, mom or dad, this is the starting point. Start with simple tools that can aid you in caring for your child's hair: Cleanser (Shampoo), Conditioner, Leave in Conditioner, Wide toothed comb. These don't need to be specifically for curly hair, but usually they work better on curly hair when they are manufactured specifically for curls.
- Detangle! There are different ways to detangle your child's hair; detangling before washing, during conditioning; with a comb, with the fingers; in sections, etc. If your child's hair is long and has tight curls I'd guess that before washing is the best time to detangle and working in sections. If your child has medium length hair with loose curls then it might be enough to detangle during conditioning during the bath or shower.
- Moisture! Everyone's hair needs moisture, but specially curly hair in a cold climate like in Scandinavia. Always use warm water to rinse hair. Then end the rinsing with colder water, this basically helps the water to stay in the hair strands. Find products that have water as the first ingredient or as one out of the top five. Leave in conditioners are great for adding moisture, so take time to find one that works well on your child's hair and things will start getting easier.
- Seal In Moisture! To make sure the moisture stays in the hair you need to seal it in. Oils and creames work well to do this. Find what works for your child's hair; olive oil, coconut oil, jojoba oil, avocado oil, almond oil, the options are many. You may have to go through a few before you find just the one for you.
- Little Manipulation! Find hair styles for your child that can be easily maintained and worn for longer periods of time without manipulation. You want to keep your hands out of your child's hair as much as possible (and hopefully your child's hands out of his or her hair as well). Cornrows, two strand twists, flat twists, braids, bantu knots whatever you can think of, the options for curly hair are endless :)
- Loving the Kinks, Curls and Frizz! Be a role model to your child and learn to care for your child's hair. Also teach your child to care for his or her hair and understand his or her hair. Like every other part of life you have to learn to love what you've got, and this goes for hair as well.
- Role Models! This ties into the point above. Children need to mirror themselves in other people and other children for them to find their identity and to thrive. Try to find role models they can relate to. The world outside our homes is filled with straight haired people that might not look like our children. Find movies, dolls, YouTube clips, whatever you can that your children can relate to and mirror themselves in.
- Have Fun! Hair is fun, try creating an environment around your child's hair that makes it fun for him or her to do their hair. Let your child pick the hair ties or clips she wants. Let your son decide the length of his hair. Involve your child and let them feel empowered when it's time to do their hair. Look at pictures of people with curly hair and pick hair styles that your child likes.
- Book a Consultation! If you feel like you need more help to better understand how to care for your child's hair then book a personal hair consultation. In this consultation you'll get help to create a routine that will enable you to care for you child's hair in a healthy way.
For more tips and ideas concerning kids look under the Kids category on this blog.