Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Curly Girls Gotta Plop!

Hi. I'm Bunny
{"Hi, Bunny"}
I'm a naturally curly girl and have been all of my life.
{"Applause, encouragement, sympathy..."}

As a young girl on through to adulthood, I struggled with my curls. I was certain there should be a support group for freaks like me. My hair was schizophrenic. One day it would curl ever so nicely doing just what it should making me feel very pretty and proud.  The very next day it was a giant ball of frizz with bits and pieces waving this way or poking out that way. Those were Quasimodo days and I just wanted to hide.

Looking back I realize a lot of my problem was that I was fighting my hair's natural tendencies. I was trying to make my ringlets "feather" like Farrah Fawcett. Or I'd try to blow them out straight so I could get a little Jaclyn Smith action. Mostly though, for whatever reason, I had bangs in every style and I looked like I had horns growing from my temples. Bangs on my forehead laid so-so, but when you got to the end...flip! Think handlebar mustache on my noggin. And if it rained...or I sweat during P.E. class or if there was just too much humidity in the air....disaster.

I tried a shag, a Dorothy Hamill or wedge and all of the Angels at some point or another. There were also the, "I don't know just make it look cute" cut. It became clear that the beauticians in my small hometown had no idea what to do with my curls either and I never once...and I really, truly mean that I NEVER, EVER even ONE TIME came out of a salon WITHOUT tears on my cheeks. Aaaaargh!

Fast forward a couple of decades and what seemed like, hundreds of cuts/styles and tissues later and I finally found an acceptable compromise. I went with the Michelle Duggar mullet-ish look. I still fought the bangs but they curled under more willingly than being flattened out and so...tease, tease, curly iron and voila. This worked for me and so I hung onto it like grim death. It was basically just me releasing the back of the beast to curl freely however she chose and I would choose to wear it in a ponytail on bad days or down if it wasn't too "out there" in frizz-ville. All family photos from the early to mid 90's have me with all of that hair.

The late 90's came and ushered in the Seinfeld era and I changed my bangs to a poof like Julia Louis-Dreyfus. Never mind it looked like I was wearing a hairy hot-water bottle on my head. It was a style that was generally accepted by society and I kept it long and poofed like that until about 2001.

That was when I was inspired yet again by "Elaine" or, as I call her "Elaine the Emancipator". You see...when she went shoulder length and uncaged her curls in long-ish layers, she set me free. {light dawns, angels sing...}. For the first time I concluded that my curls were not a curse, but that they truly could be my crowning glory.

Now, before I get carried away and give you the false impression that I was ready for a hair product commercial let me explain that it was the best hair "I" ever had, but there were still problems. It still had schizo tendencies, the only way to get it to curl right without a ton of frizz was to avoid all heat styling. No blow drying meant that I had to get up about two and a half hours before I had to be somewhere so that it could air dry enough to let me leave the house. Once I discovered the diffuser (anyone else just throw that blow dryer attachment away because who-knew-what-to-do-with-it?) I could speed things up a bit, but I still had to let it air dry a good 80% of the way and then just "touch" it with the diffuser.

I also started using the "good" hair stuff from salons. I always poo-pooed the idea that a brand of shampoo or conditioner or hair gel/mousse could make a difference. I was sure it was a conspiracy to convince us that spending more meant getting better and my frugal side refused to be duped. Well, rather than being a dupe I was a dope. Hear me...please...HEAR ME....do not skimp on your hair products. There's a million ways it matters and makes a difference so don't be a dope. Too expensive? Skip a meal before you buy a hair product anywhere other than a salon (there are some homemade recipes out there I'm going to try so I can't review them, but that's for another time).

What's the point you ask? Why is it that I've chronicled my hair's life story for you? Because I want to introduce you to something and I want you to know that I've seen and done it all, I know the pain and now...I have found a solution. Or at least a tool and technique to help us curly-girls toward one. It's called...plopping.

I'm posting the video that introduced me to it via Pinterest. I heard about it and thought "Oh, mercy. What sort of failed curly head experiment have they come up with now?" I scoffed. Still it was so easy I figured it couldn't hurt to try. So I got the biggest t-shirt in my husband's closet, washed my hair, laid the shirt across the toilet lid, turned myself upside down, tugged and twisted and tucked and bada-bing, bada-boom...I had plopped.

Now, each morning, I run around doing a bad Princess Leia impression, and hubby loves to make fun, but my gosh do my curls look great! Smooth and curly. No frizz and no tears. In the video she uses a t-shirt material, but others that I saw first showed it with a real XXL t-shirt and so that's what I do. It makes no sense to me to buy a special towel for it, but I know not everyone thinks like me so, by all means. 

Every curly head is different, so you'll have to experiement, but I keep it plopped-up for about 30-40 minutes, turn my head upside down and gentle take it off to keep from de-curling anything and then I let it air dry the rest, or most of the rest of the way. I add mousse right before I do a 2-3 minute diffuse when necessary. That's all there is to it.

And so I say to my curly girl sisters, give it a try. You will LOVE IT!

Plop on! 


  1. Hi Bunny!
    I've been laughing all the way through this post because you have perfectly described my life as a curly girl. Only I had short-short hair for a time along with the Dorothy Hamil cut and etc. I found plopping this summer on Pinterest too and have been doing it with a LONG sleeve T-shirt because the sleeves help me to tie it over the front of my head. Works like a charm.

    I'm interested in what products you are using in your hair and what type of cut/style you have now. I mostly use a curl cream when plopping and then use Fekkai Glossing Cream when it's nearly dry. It helps my silver hair looks shiny and seems to keep the frizz down.

    I'm looking forward to more from your new blog!

    1. Thanks, Gumbo Lily!

      We're sisters in hair trauma that's for sure. As for products, I've really been liking Bed Head conditioner. I've mainly used all Redken Fresh Curls, but this was on sale and I'm actually really liking it. There's a product by Bumble and Bumble for curls and for the life of me I can't remember the name. I don't have any to look at either, but it can only be gotten online or in a salon. Beware, very pricey, imho, but truly THE BEST gel/mousse/cream I've ever used. Soft curls without flattening them out or frizzing them up. A super product if you can/want to spend that much. My go-to mousse is Curls Rock Mousse, but I switch them all around now and then and have used what seems like an endless line up. You know how it is.

      Thanks for stopping by~!

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