If you’ve grown up with curly hair in India, I feel your pain. From unasked-for suggestions about getting your mane straightened to the only products that could help being ones you had to import with crazy duty tags, it couldn’t have been easy to manage your tresses. However, change is afoot. International products are entering the market more easily; forums and platforms where girls with curls can share their tales of woe (and find solutions) have cropped up; and homegrown brands have started dabbling in special ranges. There’s never been a better time to let the wind blow through your hair.
Not surprisingly, my curls have have kept me on the constant search for products that work for my hair type and don’t burn a hole in my pocket. This is what led me to Fix My Curls. Launched in June this year, I came across the homegrown brand on Instagram. Founder Anshita Mehrotra wanted to address the problems most girls with curly hair faced and as a solution created five products that help cleanse, condition, and style. Intrigued by their Instagram feed, I added to cart the Fix My Curls travel pack containing minis of all the products.
Meant to be used when the scalp has build-up, the Squeaky shampoo aims to get rid of the grime and leaves behind a cooling effect. If you have an oily scalp, use it 1-2 times a week; for those with a dry scalp, space it out to once in 10 days too. True to its name, it ensures a squeaky-clean mane, and has become my go-to when I’m short on time and can’t do the two rounds of shampoo. Its apple cider vinegar keeps the pH balanced, rosemary oil soothes any irritation, tea tree oil works its anti-inflammatory magic, and peppermint oil leaves you smelling great. It also sets the curls well, and eschews the need for any styling product afterwards. However, the brand clearly mentions it’s a strong shampoo, and may leave the ends looking a bit dry, so you may want to use a serum or cream afterwards.
Then again, we often need to shampoo more frequently, and there’s Evermore for that. A shampoo that locks in the moisture, you can use this as the second step after Squeaky, or on its own. The mango and shea butters help strengthen and moisturise, while the neroli oil makes sure your scalp doesn’t get too oily. It’s great for everyday use, and sets the curls really well with a healthy shine. I didn’t require any styling product post Evermore.
Off conditioners for years now, I gave this one a try because the others left an impression – instructions said it needed to be massaged onto the scalp. The results weren’t as immediate as the rest, but that might be because my hair isn’t used to conditioners anymore and is naturally very light. The first attempt left them slightly weighed down, but by the third, I could see and feel the smoothness and bounce. Its honey makes hair smoother, Vitamin A in goji berries boosts growth, and the Nigella Satvia oil acts as a balm. Would I use this post every shampoo? No. But I will use it every 10 days. Again, the frequency depends on each hair composition, so experiment and decide one that works for you.
Leave-in creams have been my hair’s best friend for a while now. They don’t weigh it down and make hair bouncy. And Stay is one that I’m hoarding now. The jojoba oil in it adds that shine, Nigella Satvia oil moisturises, and vanilla butter helps with creamy smoothness and fragrance. A little of it goes a long way – two pumps of the mini bottle were enough for my waist-length curls. Great definition and moisture lock-in that lasts till the next day, this one’s a must-buy.
Serums, on the other hand, have never worked too well for me. John Frieda did great frizz fighting, but it’s not easy to get, plus didn’t help with definition. However, Glaze changed that. There is vanilla, along with sunflower oil for deep moisturising without the weigh-down, and soy protein for repair and that glossy look. Light and with minimal amounts needed, it gives your curls that hard-stay definition and sheen that lasts through windy or humid situations.
All five products are Curly Girl (CG) friendly, cruelty-, sulphate-, and paraben-free. While Fix My curls recommends using all five for the best styling, I only tried two at a time. One can experiment and come up with combinations that work best for them.
They’re available on their website, Amazon, and Naturally You Me. The price ranges from Rs 725 to Rs 895 (250 ml) variants, and Rs 880 for a travel pack of 50 ml each.
All images: Courtesy Fix My Curls