I really like doing curly sets on my hair. It's a great way to stretch out my koil pattern so that my hair doesn't dry out as fast or tangle. Curly sets, because the hair is set in a certain curl pattern, are also a great way to decrease daily manipulation of afro textured hair and eliminate figuring out what to do with your hair every day.
Curly sets include:
Flexi Rod or Perm Rod Set
Here's some tips for how I keep my curly sets for a week:
1) Set it Off
Set the hair with a styler that will give some type of hold: setting lotion, a setting foam/mousse, gel designed to give hold or a hair butter like shea butter or a shea butter mix. I recently tried Jane Carter Solution Wrap and Roll (it's a light setting foam/mousse) for a Twist-n-Curl and had fairly decent results.
Note. Many setting type products can make your hair hard and dry some, so always be sure to use some kind of moisturizing product underneath it. I like Bee Mine Deja's Hair Milk. There a plethora of great leave in conditioners and hair creams or milks/lotions that work great too. Find what will work best for you.
2) Mind How You Sleep
Sleep on a satin pillow case. I sleep with a satin sleep cap on as well but if I don't feel like doing that, I always make sure my satin pillow case in on.
If you have longer hair, you can try the pinapple method, which is where you put your hair into a loose, high ponytail and it is said to preserve the curls quite well.
3) Shower With Care
Some won't mind if the humidity hits their curls. For those that do, try these tips:
- Take a shorter shower
- Leave a window or door (if there's no window in your bathroom) slightly open to let some of the steam escape
- Take a shower with warm water instead of hot water. Obviously, the less hot the water, the less steam it will produce.
- Cover hair with a scarf or satin sleep cap. This holds the curl pattern in place some so even if a little steam hits it, because it's contained in the cap, it may be less likely to fall.
4) Re-Set it Off
It's almost inevitable that half way through the week, the set may loose some definition like it had the first few days. With that being said, about halfway through the week, I will mist my hair with some water and re-set it with whatever styler I used. The water not only moisturizes my hair but gives me another shot of definition to carry me through the rest of the week.
5) Change Up Styling
If you are not interested in re-setting it, as the style loses definition, you can play around with the styling to get a week out of it. Maybe the first 4 days, you wear the set down and out, then if the front starts looking "eh" you can rock it with a chic head band, then the last 2 days slick it back into a puff/ponytail or do a fro-hawk.