De Su Mama

Legacy of Multiracial Motherhood

Curly Mixed Hair: Infant Natural Hair Care Routine

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This is the second post of a curly mixed hair series. The first post deals with curly mixed hair, personal identity and why the issue of healthy, natural hair is so important to me. I want nothing more than for Alina to grow into a strong, self assured womanhood. I know that issues of hair are causes for low self esteem in many women of color, including me. Therefore, ensuring Alina grows up with healthy, natural hair and is affirmed in its beauty is crucial to our parenting values.

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Alina was born with a full head of hair. Straight hair, which was a shock. Over the last 16 months, her texture continues to change. But, at this point in time, I am going to say that her hair is remarkably similar to mine at her age. Maybe slightly more curly. But not by much, if at all. The texture itself is also extremely similar to mine, perhaps slightly more coarse. But again, not by much. The picture above is of me {tucked in my Grandmother’s bed} with my brushed out cone head. In the first post of this mixed hair series, you’ll read how my mom used to brush out my curly hair. Please, do not ever dry brush curly hair. Below is Alina, at 16 months old in her Great Grandmother’s bed, with beautiful defined curls.

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One of the most inspirational resources I came across is Tightly Curly. Teri is a biracial woman who has struggled with her hair for years. She finally threw out everything she had been taught and told from her straight haired family, and began to learn what works best for her textured hair. The before and after pictures of Teri’s hair are amazing. AMAZING. Teri provides a list of commonly available biracial hair care products that she recommends, detailed instructions of her mixed hair care methods, and tips for little kids with mixed, curly hair. I learned so much from her site, and feel its a great starting point for anyone interested in learning about curly mixed hair care.

How to care for infant biracial curly hair

First of all, dismiss anything you might think you know about curly hair. Most products and product advertisement for hair care management is not appropriate for curly/textured hair. If you have straight hair and are caring for someone with curly hair, realize that nothing is the same about the two hair care regimes. Curls need vastly more moisture than straight hair does {the curlier, the more moisture required} in order to look its best. Appropriate products have a big impact on how much moisture you retain.

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mixed hair, biracial baby, latino family, curly hair, mixed hair, how to care for biracial baby hair

I started my hunt for the best hair care products for mixed/curly hair for babies when I was still pregnant. I wanted to be prepared for when my infant needed more than just a simple shampoo/body wash treatment. And although there are some great children’s biracial hair care lines out there, I could only find one specifically for infants {AND its organic!} suitable for my needs.

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From about 6 months to 14 months of age, I used Curls’ It’s A Curl For Babies for Alina’s biracial curly hair . I used all four products in the line, and loved them all. The shampoo is tear free, the conditioner is easy to comb through, the moisturizer did its job, and the leave in cre’me gave just the perfect amount of hold without being greasy. The site also has a great resource guide to help you classify your type of curl, recommends products accordingly, and a forum to discuss curly hair.

Once every 3 days, Alina’s hair is shampooed and conditioned {the days in between we use water and conditioner, sparingly}. Once out of the tub, leave in conditioner is applied and combed through with a fine toothed comb. The next morning I use a spray bottle to wet her hair down, apply the leave in cre’me and style loose curls with my fingers.

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At about 14 months, I ordered Curls’ kids line and have been pleased with it thus far. We use the shampoo, conditioner and the Curly Q Milkshake leave in conditioner for fine hair that is pictured above. The Curly Q Milkshake, although described as not providing any hold, helps to define Alina’s curls without weighing them down.

I carry a small spray bottle in our diaper bag to help form her curls after car rides {when her hair gets all squished in the back}, but other than that, her hair care regime has stayed the same as when she was younger. As her hair gets longer/fuller, I will start pinning segments down at night, to retain the curl and avoid frizz {as instructed on Tightly Curly’s tips for little ones}. I will also have to look into a product that contains holding properties for styling. Sleeping on satin pillow cases {or covering your hair at night} will help avoid morning frizz as well.

Be sure to check out the other posts on this Curly Mixed Hair Series:

Curly Mixed Hair: Personal Identity

Curly Mixed Hair: Toddler Hair Care


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44 Discussions on
“Curly Mixed Hair: Infant Natural Hair Care Routine”
  • Hi Vanessa,

    First and foremost, I want to thank you for providing this information. It’s been so helpful to me! I have a 6-month old daughter that has curls similar to your daughter’s pictured above. Do you know of any specific stores that carry “It’s a Curl”? I’ve looked online at their website, but couldnt not find any information. So, since I could not find the product. I bought Shea Moisture. Have you heard, and/or tried this line of products?

    • I have only found the Curls infant products online, unfortunately. But, for babies, the bottles do last a long time. It’s totally worth the hassle! I am working on a post on our favorite haircare products, including Shea. Hopefully I’ll get that up soon!

  • This is very helpful…Thnkyou….as for the shea moisture it was ….ok for my childs hair..but not wat i wz expecting for the price!

  • HI Vanessa. Thank you very much for this information, this is very helpful. I do wash my daughter’s hair everyday and brush out the curls and it all gets frizzy, now i know better, thanks…

  • Hello! Great blog! I have a question for you? My daughter just turned two and also biracial and I notice you said something about clipping segments down at night! What do you use to do this? My daughters hair is very cult and thick but still not long enough to pull all back at night so for now trying to find another way because once morning comes it is quite crazy!thanks so much! Danielle

    • Hi Danielle, Do she sleep on a satin pillowcase? Also, try a leave-in conditioner with a bit of hold (we love Mixed Chick’s Leave-In). Otherwise, I wouldn’t try to tie/clip her hair down if it’s not long enough to do so. She’s still an itty bitty baby. You’ll have a head of hair to tie up at night before you know it! Just try to keep it well moisturized and spray down with water in the morning for styling.

  • Hi Vanessa,

    I feel so blessed to come across your blog.

    My daughter also have several textures, with her curls really tight at the back, and lovely and loose at the front. The back gets very dry whereas the front stays silky.

    She is 16 months now. I shall definitely be taking on your advice.

    Thank you so much for sharing!

  • Vanessa,

    I wanted to take a moment to thank you for these tips. My daughter is not biracial, but she has been blessed with the same curls as your daughter. She just turned 16 months, and I have been struggling with figuring out how to care for her hair.

    I had the same curls as a child, but my mother has passed away, so I can’t ask her how she cared for mine. I’m still curly, but I don’t mind the tugging and patience it takes to comb the knots out of my hair.

    This blog has been a lifesaver! I just can’t tell you how much I appreciate you taking the time to share all of this with the rest of us. I will definitely be checking in as Meara grows to get more tips and ideas on how to help her love her hair.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  • You’re brilliant!! Loves everything about your blog! I feel super prepared to handle my daughters hair. We have similar hair textures (except hers is extremely softer than mine) and multiple of my blacks friends continue to tell me what to do with her hair. And time and time again I ignore them and inform them she doesn’t have that kinky africanamerocan

  • Hi I have a biracial daughter and I have always brushed the front of her hair straight but now when I do it goes all over the place. Am I brushing it wrong or is it naturally straight? The back used to go straight when I brush it but now it is way curly and I cant brush it.

  • Hi I have a biracial daughter and I have always brushed the front of her hair straight but now when I do it goes all over the place. Am I brushing it wrong or is it naturally straight? The back used to go straight when I brush it but now it is way curly and I cant brush it. I have naturally wavy hair.

  • Also her hair in the back looks just like your daughters in the picture that shows the back of her hair but not as thick she is almost 15 months. I just want to make sure I don’t mess up her curls if she has curly hair.

  • Thank you thank you thank you.
    Finally I have found a blog which tells me simply what to do with my daughters’s curls. I am mixed myself but my hair was relaxed from an early age on and never known differently. My daughter has very lose curls but it is still frizzy. I will definitely check for these products online as we live in Ireland, and unfortunately the mixed population is not that large yet over here. Will keep on reading your blog with much enjoyment from now on. Thanks again 🙂

  • Hi Vanessa, I have a 6 month old biracial boy, who has lots of beautiful hair. The top has soft curls, but the back is straight, and gets dry and gets knots in it. I was thinking of trying Shea moisture for his hair, but I’m not 100%. My hair is so different from his, and I love it, but I feel like I’m doing something wrong using regular baby shampoo. His poor hair looks so dry.

    • Hi Neethie, did you catch the post I did on my daughter’s infant hair care? I used (and loved) Curl’s baby line. It’s organic and mild, but very nourishing. I highly recommend it!

      • Thank you, I was wondering what you thought of Shea moisture products. I wanted to give them a try. I use their products, and I like them. But are they good for mixed hair?

        • I use several of their products for both my and my daughter’s hair (and my little guy’s hair sometimes, too!). I really like their deep conditioner, although some of the styling products are a bit heavy. The one product we always keep on hand, though, is Mixed Chicks Leave In Conditioner.

  • This info has been great! My daughters hair keeps getting curlier and curlier. So far it’s easy to manage because she’s only 10 months and her hair is not that long yet. However, because I have stick straight hair that dries done and ready to go, I need some serious help with dealing with curls. I take pride in how my child looks and don’t want her looking messy. Do you suggest I start some type of hair routine with her now? Mostly I pull her bangs to the side and put a bow to hold it, with the rest of her hair curling around.

  • Hi, thank you for this awesome post! I have a mixed daughter, now 10 months, and her curls have started to appear. Especially in the back, where they are getting all fuzzy. So far I haven’t washed her hair but with water. It does not get oily and the food (…) is easy to rinse out without any products. However, since her hair apparently is curling up I started to make some research and I think this Curls series sounds amazing! I am myself very keen on using organic products and also for my own hair I only use shampoos without parabens, sulfates and silicons. But, to my question! I read you started using the Kid’s line at 14 months. Since my girl is now 10 months, I am not sure if to purchase the infant or the kid’s products. Is the kid’s line tearfree too? I don’t live in the U.S., but luckily I have a friend who works at an airline, so she promised to purchase the products for me. Now I just have to settle on which products to get! Do you have any opinion on which line I should go with at this stage? Also, I think I would get my hands on these products at around Christmas (when she would be almost 12 months), and the next bash I’d be able to get my hands on at around April.

    • The kids’ line was fairly mild and we loved it, but I really adored the baby line. I transitioned from one to the other at around 12-14 months. You really can’t go wrong!

  • I just ran across your blog & let me say I’m sooooo happy! My bi-racial 9 month old is moving into her curly hair and I’ve been looking for product & advice! She’s had curls from birth when it was wet but now it’s coming in thicker & faster all the time. My sis-in-law said to use baby oil but to me it looks like I’m going for some baby jheri-curl look if I use too much, not to mention you should see what the head cushion on her car seat looks like! Thank you so much for taking time to explain!

  • Soo, I got email about your most recent post, and while on your site I clicked on this adorable picture of our little angel. I remember her like this, what a cute little love bug she was and still is, just growing so fast. I miss her!

  • Hello love, I am very happy to have come across your site. I am a First time mom, my daughter is 8 months old and I’ve been struggling to take care of her hair. Her curls always seem be very frizzy and extremely dry. I have no idea how to style her hair so I always just leave her with a fro and headband. I’ve done finger foils curls a few times but when I separate the curls her hair goes right back to frizzy instead of looking shiny and curly. Please please please help me with a style/technique I can do to achieve the best curly look for my princess. Thank you

    • Hi Tiana! Congrats on your baby girl… I just LOVE her age right now! I think at her age, ensuring that her curls are healthy and moisturized is the most important. I used the Curls infant organic line when my little girl was a baby (that was the only stuff out at the time!), but there might be other options now. I would do simple styles, with headbands and flowers, being mindful not to pull hair into tight styles. Now that my daughter is 6 and has super tight curly hair, our routine is totally different. Enjoy your sweet baby… they grow WAY too fast!

  • Vanessa,
    I am very grateful for your site; this is invaluable information!! I have mostly straight hair and as such was greatly concerned before my daughter was born about what I would do with her hair! I have just discovered your page, now that my daughter is 15 months old. She has only developed true curls relatively recently, and it’s still not what I would consider a full head of hair. My question for you is what was the determining factor for switching from baby to kid products at 14 months? Age? Length of hair? Thanks so much!!

    • Once she was about your babies age (I believe soon after she turned a year old, maybe two years old? It feels so long ago now!), I switched over. I did so because she had a ton of hair and 1) it was more cost effective to buy kid products versus the baby products 2) her textured needed more moisture/heavier products to ensure it was hydrated and 3) since I use high end products that don’t contain sulfates, etc, I didn’t worry. If you’re little one doesn’t have a full head of thick hair and the cost is manageable for you, I would stick with the baby products when possible until at least two years old. The Curls line has a organic baby line, although nowadays there are probably more. Hope that helps!

      • Thank you so much! I think I’m going to go with the Curls line. As long as we don’t have any problems with it. I have strange allergies, so you never can tell! Thanks, again!!

  • hiya . loved your post and all the information. I’m in the UK. where could I get hold of the it’s a curl products my daughter imani has the same hair texture as yours.

  • Hi Vanessa,

    Have you tried “Just for me” products? I was at Target last night and bought the CURL SOOTHER CREME. Do I need to buy a leave in detangler, put that on first and then use a leave in conditioner or the creme for instance? Just to be clear, comb hair only when wet right, never brush or comb when dry? My daughter is 10 months has curly hair towards the front and straight and knotted in the back. I bought the “just for me” product because I did not see “it’s a curl for babies.” That was the reason for my trip!

  • Fantastic this a great site and very informative for my twins. They also have curly hair and I’m still trying on what to used. Their hair is getting very dry but I will try your suggestions experience.
    Thank you

  • Thank you Vanessa for your wonderful blog! I’m a proud new mama of a Christmas day baby girl whose racial make up is even more mixed than my own family. My family background is Indian, Asian, African, Native American, Cuban, West Indian, Scott’s Irish and that’s just my mother’s side. We (my grandma and 4 of her five children) happen to look black with some black features and some black hair textures however in our family the look is so varied you wouldn’t think we were related. I’ve been approached by an Asian man and asked if I was of Asian decent because I shared a few features (mainly my eyes though lots of people in the world have almond shaped eyes.) in common with him and my golden peachy slightly yellow undertone. I didn’t know how diverse my family’s background was at the time. My husband is German, Scott’s Irish and Native American with some Romanichal gypsy (not the American ones) but when he tans he can look Mexican. We all need DNA tests to tell us what race we are. A lot of the blogs I read tend to come across as negative towards us the non straight and silky smooth haired folks. They preach pride and self confidence then put everyone else down at the same time for having any kind of texture at all. As I watch our 3 week old grow I wonder what texture she will have. Hair care to me is less about race and ethnic background and more about the overall health and texture. I hope I can use some of the brands I use on her when she’s older. I use Shea moisture, Carol’s daughter, Nexxus and two more I can’t think of right now. This entry of your blog gives me hope that one day I might not have so many issues with my daughter’s ever evolving hair. Thank you for being so positive and supportive!

  • THANK YOU Vanessa!!! My husband and I adopted our son several months ago and he is just now starting to show signs of curls in his little baby hairs. I am so excited! I have always struggled with my textured hair, I could never find the right products or cuts until I stumbled upon DevaCurl, but they don’t do a line for kids. Now with our son with even MORE texture to his hair than my own, I want to make sure I am extra diligent in finding what is right for HIS hair. I had been looking at the Curls products and this article has given me that little boost of confidence that I needed.

  • My sweet girl is biracial and 8 months. She has an almost bald spot across the back of her head bc she so often rubs it in the carseat, in bed or in her swing. I only wash once a week, use leave in conditioner and use milk spray as well as Olive Oil for setting. Do you have any other advice? I plan to switch from the Shea Moisture line to the one you recommended. Thank you so much!

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