Curly vs. straight hair: 6 Beauty Panel tips for straying from your natural texture in the summer

curly vs straight hairstyle beauty panel

At one point or another, we’ve all wished for hair different than what we were born with. Which straight-haired gal hasn’t deemed her hair lifeless some mornings and prayed for bouncy curls? And show us a curly-haired lady who hasn’t dreamt of effortlessly sleek strands? Let’s face it; we all want we don’t have. With celebrities these days, being the hair chameleons that they are, rocking envious curls one day, and silky smooth, straight hair the next, we’d be lying if we said we weren’t totally jealous.

But without a hairstylist on hand 24/7, jumping from one spectrum to the other on our own is no easy task. Sure, many of us have learned to be okay with the fact that our hair tends to do what it wants , but when you feel determined to step over to the other side, we’ve turned to our panel of beauty gurus to help you out. So, for those who are born with curly hair, Beauty Panel has tips and tricks for keeping it straight. And for those with straight hair who like it curly? Don’t worry, we’ve got the answer to that too.

Challenge 70: How do you maintain a hair texture that isn’t the one you were born with ? See the answers now! »

For those who can’t make up their mind on whether they’d rather have it curly or straight, you’re in luck because Elaine Atkins of Toronto Beauty Reviews and Shayna Wiwierski of A Pop of Colour have solutions to achieving straight hair one day and curly the next in the most effortless ways possible. Have slightly textured but still straight hair? Fear not. The Bunnie Hole‘s Gerry Xun gives us a play-by-play on how to go get voluminous curls that are worthy of red carpet events. And if you’re looking for ways to tame that curly hair, then you need to read what Vanity Presse’s Amanda Raponi Hart has to say. Besides showing us how to go from unruly to sleek straight locks, easily, this beauty guru also shares one secret tool she always keeps in her purse for hair emergencies.

Have a beauty question you want to see the panel answer? Send it our way at Read on for the answers to this week’s challenge and for more goodness, get to know all contributors on our Beauty Panel hub page.


curly vs straight hairstyle shayna

Shayna Wiwierski
Winnipeg | A Pop of Colour

Although I always wanted curly hair as a teenager, I have been loving my straight hair recently. That being said, most days I end up curling it. I love the look of loose waves and I’m fortunate that with my hair texture, I can do a lot of things with it.
I have five different curlers – a little excessive, I know – but each one is different. Barrel size, clip-free, with a clip, bubble wand, S-waves; curlers come in all shapes and sizes. Although I find myself reaching for a standard one-inch curling iron with a clip most often (it’s the fastest, in my opinion), the type of curler I use depends on the look I’m going for. My hair can usually hold the curl for a few days depending on the iron used. For the best kind of relaxed waves, make sure you curl your hair the night before so that when you wake up in the morning, it’ll look like the perfect “I woke up like this” bedhead.

Products used: Hot Tools One-Inch Curling Iron

curly vs straight hairstyle gerry

Gerry Xun
Vancouver | The Bunnie Hole

Big, glamorous curls are what my hair dreams are made of, but even though I am blessed with a good head of hair, it can use a little help in the curling department. If you have straight yet slightly textured hair, here’s how you can work your natural texture into some good-looking curls.

1. Prep with a volumizing mousse through damp hair, especially if you have fine hair, as this will help add more body and grip when you put in your curls with a wand.
2. Avoid blowing your hair straight with a brush when drying, the natural texture of your hair will act as a good base to build volume. Flip hair upside down and lift the roots with your fingers while drying. When hair is too silky or straight, it’s easy for the curl to fall right out and loose its bounce.
3. Mist each sections of hair with a fine light hold spray before curling with either a traditional curling wand or a clip-less variation. Pay special attention to the ends of the hair, making sure they are wrapped properly around the iron in order to avoid frizz.
3. If your motto is “go big or go home,” tease the underside of your hair by raking your fingers from ends towards the root. Then lift the entire section of hair and hairspray from underneath as you let your hair fall.
4. Finish by slightly teasing the crown of your hair at the roots, then while lifting the under sections with a rat-tail comb, hairspray again to keep that volume in place. Smooth over any obvious surface frizz.

Products used: Pantene Volume Triple Action Mousse, Pantene Extra Strong Hold Shaping Hairspray, Revlon Perfect Heat 1.5inch Curling Iron

curly vs straight hairstyle elaine

Elaine Atkins
Toronto | Toronto Beauty Reviews

I was blessed with really curly hair. When I was growing up it was more of a curse than a blessing, but over the years I’ve learned to love my natural texture! It makes me stand out and allows hairstyles to hold longer. Of course, curly hair requires a lot of work and can have a life of its own!

Curly hair tips: Use a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner. If you need to wash your hair often, skip the shampoo and use only conditioner most of the time. After the shower while hair is still quite wet, use a curl cream or thicker leave-in conditioner to help maintain moisture. Then use your favourite styling product (gel, mousse, cream etc.) in your hair and carefully “scrunch” curls up without breaking them up too much. Let it air dry if you can or use a diffuser.

Curly to straight: To help make my straight hairstyle last all day, the trick for me is to not go completely straight. When I try to do hairpin straight on my own, it NEVER works out and I always end up with frizzy hair with ends looking very dry and brittle. So, I use my regular curly hair products to keep my hair moisturized and as frizz free as possible. I usually go a whole day with my hair curly so I can flat iron it when it’s dry. I never apply a flat iron to wet hair! I add a serum before using the flat iron to first relax my curls then to add in a looser curl. When I’m all done I’ll add a bit more serum just to tame any frizzes and just run my hands through the loose curls to break them up even more.

Products used: Rexall Be Better Coconut Shampoo & Conditioner, Matrix Biolage Smooth Proof Leave-In Cream, Lush Zeste Hair Gelly, Redken Smoothing & Straightening Serum Duo, Rowenta Beauty Versa Style

curly vs straight hairstyle laurelle

Laurelle Alexandra
Toronto | Paint Me Pretty

I have naturally curly hair and for years I have hated it, fought with it and tried my best to make it straight. I have succeeded in keeping my hair straight using the right products, but in the summertime even the right products seem to give up on my forever-curly hair.

When I straighten my hair I like to use Kerastase Ciment Thermique to protect my hair from the hot tools I use to achieve straight hair. I then finish with Kerastase Cristal Sculpt, a serum to help keep my hair smooth and shiny. Those are my go-to products for achieving beautiful straight hair.

However, on the days that it’s especially hot and humid outside, no matter what I do it looks like I didn’t put any effort into styling my hair that morning. Those are the days I surrender to my curly hair. I have to say it takes far less effort to leave my hair natural, but we always love what we don’t have. For my curly hair days I use Marc Anthony Strictly Curls Mousse because it’s the only one I find that gives me soft, beautiful, natural curls without any crunch. I apply an even amount throughout my hair, scrunching as I apply, and then I diffuse my hair until dry. I’m left with lots of body and lots and lots of curls.
Sometimes ladies, we have to stop fighting with what we were given and choose to love our natural born hair.

Products used: Kerastase Ciment Thermique, Kerastase Cristal Sculpt, Marc Anthony Strictly Curls Mousse

curly vs straight hairstyle sarah-muncaster

Sarah Muncaster
Toronto | Beauty Funk

My hair is made up of straight, slippery, limp noodles that reject curls. It is very fine and long, and getting it to hold a curl has required years of experimentation with different products. I have to start by prepping my damp hair with a texturizing mousse. The Revlon Style Masters Volume Amplifier mousse is my all-time favourite, as it adds the perfect amount of volume and hold to my hair without being sticky or crusty. Then I blow dry with my head upside down, and curl my hair with a curling wand (I usually curl away from my face because I prefer the way it looks). Before applying hairspray, I hit my roots with a shot of dry shampoo for an extra lift. I love the Batiste Dry Shampoo for brunette hair so that my dark roots stay nice and dark. Then I tease the roots gently with a natural bristle brush, and follow up with my favourite Revlon Style Masters Hairspray (Modular 2). Even after all this effort, I only achieve a soft curl! Luckily, the effortless look is in right now. It just happens to takes a lot of effort for me!

Products used: Revlon Style Masters Volume Amplifier Mousse, Batiste Dry Shampoo, Revlon Style Masters Hairspray