Wondering what are the common mistakes using hair gel on curls? Read on to find out and avoid them!
If you’re someone with curly hair, I’m sure you would have tried using hair gel at some point, right?
I mean, I’m certain you’d love the look of gel on your curls, making them look way more defined, enhancing your hair look like never before.
The gel helps retain sufficient moisture in the hair and makes the curls look more crisp and less frizzy.
But the question remains, is hair gel the right product for curly hair? Can it be a cause for weighed-down curls? Well, this article will help you find out more details about using gel for curly hair.
It will also talk about the mistakes curly-haired people make while using gel on their hair, how to apply gel the right way on curly hair, and whether gel or hair mousse would be more suitable for one’s curls.
Check out everything you need to know right here below!
- Related: How To Style Curly Hair With Gel
Common Mistakes Using Hair Gel on Curls
Mistakes We Make While Using Hair Gel
- Over-application of hair gel
Some people often assume that the more gel they use on their hair, the better will their hairstyle look. Well, that is just a myth.
Using too much of gel on your hair will simply lead to hair that is greasy and sticky, thus weighing down the hair and making it look flat and lifeless.
So therefore, use just a little gel on your hair, but make sure to apply it the right way, so that the gel gets evenly spread throughout your hair.
- Using gel with high alcohol content
Most hair gels contain some percentage of alcohol which helps the gel to dry faster and have a better hold of the hairstyle. Thus, the alcohol in these gels evaporates and leaves the polymers to remain and give the gel a hold on the hair.
But these gels with a high alcohol content can be very drying and damaging to the hair. So it is important to use a gel with a moderate level of alcohol content.
- Brushing your hair after applying the gel
After applying hair gel, combing or brushing your hair is a big no! This defeats the purpose of the gel, as it will destroy the hairstyle you’ve chosen to have.
So, the better method would be to style your hair first and then apply the gel to hold the hairstyle in place. Scrunch your hair or run your fingers through your hair to give it more definition instead of brushing.
- Application of gel on wet hair
Whenever hair gel is applied on the hair, it is essential to apply it on hair that is damp, but not wet or soaking wet.
This is because when the gel is applied on wet hair, the efficacy of the gel reduces and the gel will not work as it is supposed to, thus giving unsatisfactory results for hairstyling.
- Usage of high-quality hair gel
Using poor-quality hair gel can make your hair feel sticky, greasy and over time, limp.
Make sure to invest in a high-quality hair gel, that is also one that washes out easily without leaving any residue.
- Improperly applying gel on the hair
Applying the gel evenly all over your hair is very essential and not just applying it on your hair tips. When all the hair is coated with the gel, only then will your hairstyle stand out.
Applying the gel from your roots, until your hair tips is the correct way to do it.
Is Gel Bad For Curly Hair?
Well, let’s be clear here before we get into the details – hair gel is not bad for curly hair if it is used in the right way and for the right purposes.
It all depends on the way you use the gel in order to seek its best advantages, along with having the right intentions for usage in mind.
But while hair gel isn’t bad for curls, I have to also put it out there that just like any other hair styling product, hair gels to have their own fair share of disadvantages as well.
Hair gels are often used to help give curls more definition but are not products solely for hair moisturization. People often use hair gels to moisturize or “add moisture” to their curly hair and that can be detrimental to their hair in the long run as their curls will soon look oily and weighed down.
So if your purpose of using hair gel is to hold your curl pattern and make it look defined and enhanced, while also making your curly hair look less frizzy, with a sufficient amount of moisture in the hair, then using hair gel is the right choice.
Keeping this purpose in mind, remember that while using hair gel, your hair would have to first be in a good and healthy condition for the gel to work.
If you’ve used hair gel on your unhealthy curls, then there are chances it may not suit your hair or turn out to be bad for your hair.
So if your hair isn’t healthy or isn’t in the best condition, then you can follow a good and rejuvenating hair care routine for a while, bring back life to your hair and then start using a hair gel to give your curls some definition.
How to Apply Gel to Curly Hair?
Step 1: Cleansing your hair
First, you will have to wash your hair well with a mild shampoo, to get rid of any dirt and grease.
You could also choose to co-wash (conditioner wash) your hair during this step, on the day you’re going to use gel on your hair, because hair gel works best on well-maintained and healthy hair.
Step 2: Using a deep conditioner
The next step would be to use a good deep conditioner and leave it on your hair for some time before you wash it off completely.
Step 3: Apply a leave-in conditioner
Once the deep conditioner is washed off properly, you will have to apply a good quality leave-in conditioner onto your wet hair (after pat drying out the excess water from the hair) and let your hair dry until it is damp.
Step 4: Use a sufficient amount of hair gel
Lastly, you will have to apply the gel to your damp hair. So, you can take a pea-sized amount of hair gel into your palms and rub your palms together.
Then, joining your hands with your hair in between, slide your hands down your hair, right from the roots to the tips, so that all your hair strands get coated with the hair gel.
You can repeat this process for areas that haven’t got sufficient gel coverage (in case you have long hair), until all your hair is evenly coated.
Is Gel or Hair Mousse Better For Curls?
Well, I’m sure this is a topic that most would find “debatable” because both these hair products work well on curly hair, but the extent to which either is better for your hair will all depend on your hair type, the curl pattern that you have naturally and thereafter, what kind of curls are you looking to get.
The best part about using these products is that they can even be combined to get the best results. Yes, they can also be used together!
But to be fair, let me give you a little general outline about the advantages and disadvantages of using hair gel and mousse on your curly hair, so that it can be easier for you to take a call on which product you’d like to use on your hair.
Using Hair Gel for Curly Hair: Pros and Cons
So as for hair gel, it can help you get lovely scrunched up finger coiled curls, which can add a lot of definition to curly hair and of course, help style it as well.
It can also help reduce hair frizziness and even works well for those with very thick curly hair. It helps lock in sufficient moisture in one’s curls and makes them stand well for longer hours.
But using hair gel on curly hair has its own set of disadvantages of course. Hair gel is heavy in nature and thus, if you are looking for loose curls, it could make your hair look oily.
In addition to this, some hair gels contain excessive alcohol that can be very damaging and dry to the hair. Also, using hair gel can make your hair feel sticky, initially, and thereafter, it will harden after a while.
Using Hair Mousse for Curly Hair: Pros and Cons
Hair mousse is a foam-like substance and is another hair styling product. It is a product that can help give the volume of your curls and will not weigh down the hair like gel. It makes the hair look very bouncy and is very suitable for those looking for wavy curls.
But on the flip side, hair mousse will not be able to give your curls a lot of definition, as it lacks holding power, and therefore, will not hold a hairstyle for a long time. It can also dry the hair to a certain extent and make it look frizzy after some time.
The Final Takeaway
I hope this article was able to give you a clear picture of the common mistakes made while using hair gel on curly hair and how exactly is the right way to use it, to give your curls the best definition.
Also, if you feel confused on whether you should choose a hair gel or a mousse for your curly hair, well, you could try out both to see the difference and check which works better on your hair, while you could also try using them as co-products at the same time as well.
No matter which hair styling product you choose, the right way of usage is always of utmost importance.