These styling methods will elongate your curls, even in the summer heat. 

Bukky Ojeifo
Jun, 20, 2017

Shrinkage sometimes gets a bad rep in the natural hair world, but it isn't all that dreadful. It's actually a positive indicator that your hair is healthy and has high elasticity ( your hair's ability to revert back to it natural state when wet). However, for those of you who want to experience more curl length, try these 3 easy techniques for elongating them without heat!

Braiding/Twisting

Naturalistas are no strangers to the art of creating the perfect braid or twist out. This popular style not only helps to achieve more curl definition, but is also a tried and true technique for decreasing shrinkage and adding a bit of length to your style!

The Technique:

1. Shampoo, condition and apply your styling products as desired.

2. Part hair into 2 x 2 inch sections. Braid or twist each section from the root all the way to the ends.

3. Allow your hair to completely dry and then take out the braids/twists to reveal longer, more defined curls.

Banding

Banding is another technique to if shrinkage is bringing you down. Banding is best defined as using hair ties to gently stretch the hair. 

The Technique:

1. Shampoo, condition and apply your styling products as desired.

2. While your hair still damp, take a 2 x 2 inch section of hair (don't worry about perfect parting) and braid or twist each section from the root all the way to the ends.

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3. Starting at the top of one braid or twist, wrap a hair tie around the root and work your way down with more hair ties until you reach the end. 

4. Allow your hair to completely dry and then gently remove the hair ties. 

5. Separate and fluff your strands. 

Flexi-Rod Sets

"Flexin" in your flexi-rods is a must try when you have natural hair and want curls that will last at least one week.

By wrapping your wet hair around the full length of the rod, the tension you've just created will aid in the elongation of your curls as well as decreased shrinkage. 

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The Technique:

1. Shampoo, condition and apply a moisturizing leave in conditioner.

2. With damp hair, part the hair into neat  2 x 2 inch sections.  The parting size can vary depending on the size of the rods.

3. Using a styling foam, like Cantu's Wave Whip Curling Mousse, work a small size of product through the sectioned hair.

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4. Place the tip of the flexi-rod at the root.

5. Securely wrap your hair around the top of the flexi-rod and continue to wrap the strand around the rod, until you've reached the opposite end. 

6. Once the strand is fully wrapped, bend the rod to ensure the ends of your strands are secure and that the hair doesn't unravel.

7. Continue steps 2-7 around the entire head!

8. Let your hair fully dry and then gently take the rods out of your hair by un-bending each rod at the ends and then gently separating from your hair.

9. Separate and fluff as you desire!