How to | Sleeping on naturally curly hair

Sleeping on naturally curly hair is one of my most asked about topics on instagram. With so many different ways to protect your curls at night, how do you find the right one? 

I have tried many different methods of protection and made for you a list of them, including how to do them, and the pros and cons, in the hope that i can help you make the right choice. 

Regardless of which method you choose, remember that protecting your curls at night is a huge part of the healthy curly journey. There is no one correct way to sleep on your curls and it all depends on the length of your hair, the texture of your curls, and if you sleep on your hair wet or dry. 

There are many others, but here are some of my favourites;

 The pineapple;

Without a doubt one of the most popular ways for curly girls to wear their hair to bed (or work, or the gym) is the pineapple. 

This style gets its name from the way it looks. Think of a pineapple, everything it gathered neatly on the top. 

To do this style you need to grip all of your hair right to the top of your hair and secure with a scrunchy. The easiest way to do this, is to flip your head forward while you create the pony tail, and then stand back up and flip your head back. To stop the hair from falling into your face, separate the hair onto one side, or in two sides. 

This style stops hair from being squished and flattened during the night. In the morning just spritz some curl refresher or water and the curls should hold. 

Results: I was a huge fan of this style at the start of my journey. Due to the fact i have found other methods more effective for me, i don't pineapple my hair as much now. The reason being, that i find that even though i wear the hair loose, i still feel that it reshapes my hair in the morning and i have to do alot more fluffing. This is however, my go-to summer bedtime style due to the hair being off my neck. 

I always use a satin scrunchie which i order from osocurly and can also be found at naturalistic products

 The loose bun

Another favourite amongst curly girls is the loose bun style. As well as being a lazy hair day style, wearing a bun to sleep is a great way to protect your hair. 

 As long as it isn't pulled tightly, this should not manipulate your hair any more than the pineapple style does. 

Keeping your ends tucked in gives them the most protection possible, and moisture is held inside the bun. 

Results: This is my go-to style if i am doing an over-night treatment or a pre-poo. It is also a great way to keep wet hair off your face and neck while you sleep. Having a wet pillow when your roll over can lead to spots on the face due to oils. 

I always use a satin scrunchie by  Osocurly.

 Satin scarf or bonnet

This is another style that you see curly girls everywhere doing for bed. 

Silk/satin is alot better for your curls as it will not soak up moisture. If you like to refresh your curls before bed, then the last thing you want to do is go to bed on a cotton pillow. 

Wrapping the hair keeps it all tucked in, moisture kept in and you don't need to use any bobbles/scrunchies. 

There are many videos on youtube which talk you through how to do this, and there are different ways to do it as well. When wrapping my hair i used a clip to secure it to the top of my head first. I then pulled the scarf over the back of my head and began twisting it at the front creating a rope. This rope was the curled into a knot at the front and tucked underneath. 

Results; Possibly one of the least sexiest ways to protect your hair. Besides not wanting to be seen in your scarf (although there are so many patterns etc to choose from), i found that the scarf slips off in the night. I woke up so many times with it hanging off my head or off completely. However, i won't travel on holiday or for sleepovers at my mums house without my scarf.  It is easy to keep in your handbag for travelling. 

I got my scarfs from amazon but they can be found in Afro hair shops as well.

 Satin Pillowcase

Hair will slip easily over a satin/silk pillowcase without causing any frizz and soaking up moisture. 

Some people choose to sleep with a pineapple/braids/twists on a satin pillow, some will even still wear a scarf and bonnet on a pillowcase just to get the extra protection. For others sleeping with hair down on a satin pillowcase is enough. 

If you don't like the look of wearing a bonnet/scarf, or are the type of person who just falls asleep and can't handle the effort, then this is the method for you! 

Results; Sleeping with my hair down on a satin pillowcase is my go-to method. I find that it doesn't change the shape of my hair, keeps my curls moisturised enough that i do not need to do my hair in the morning, and is great for those nights when you're tired or coming home from a night out. 

I got my pillowcase from Osocurly again and this one is reversible. If you don't manage to get your hands on one, then using a satin scarf wrapped over your pillow helps to work just the same. 

The only downside to sleeping with your hair down is if it is wet (with product or water) then you run the risk of oils getting into your skin. If it is a hot night as well, then you will sweat a little more. For nights when this is the case, i will pineapple my hair before sleeping on the pillowcase. 

 Satin scarf and pineapple

As mentioned above, sometimes double the protection works great and there are more ways to wear your scarf than just one.

For a while the way on the left was how i wore my hair for bed. I found this style to look a little more attractive, and it didn't slip off my head so much. 

For this style using scrunchie i secured my loose pineapple. I then chose to leave the pineapple curls hanging over the top of the scarf, rather than being tucked under. 
Results; this method kept on my head for a lot longer than fully wrapping it in a scarf, and it was a cute style which i didn't feel ashamed to be seen wearing.  

There are of course other ways which curlies protect their hair at night including: 

- Braiding, two strand twisting and french braids; 
This was my only way of keeping my curls nice after wash day, when i had no clue how to handle my hair. Keeping it in two braids would make sure that i didn't get any more knots and tangles. It is still what i will do before a salon visit as it is the most effective way of keeping it tangle free while you sleep. If you are wanting your wash & go to last however, than braiding is going to manipulate the curls too much. If you're wanting wavier curls, than this works brilliant.  For french braids, every wash day as a child my hair ended up in these and they stayed for a few days keeping my head safe from being combed. Now i will only use these styles if i am doing an overnight treatment, just because of how it changes the curl pattern so much. 

What is your go-to bedtime hair style to protect your curls and give you the best results? Which styles help your curls to last days and days? Are there any i have missed? 

IG: @Candi_Curls 


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