Guide to Curls: 42 Curly Hair Ideas, Style Tips and Tutorials

Even more ways to embrace your curl power!

Here at All Things Hair we just love curly hair. Since we are very much into celebrating curls, we also know that there are tons of flattering haircuts out there for all different lengths and curl structures. With your natural curl pattern and texture, you can enhance your locks, opt for more (or less volume) by adding layers, or lose some length by chopping it off. Whatever style you’re going for, we have you covered!

Curly Hairstyles to Check Out Now

Read on to check out a few of our favorite hairstyles for curly hair.

1. Long, Curly Pixie

curly hair pixie
A curly cut that lets you rock a shorter length. Photo credit: Suzanne Cohen Photography

Curly hair and short hairdo mix, and we have been loving seen more and more iterations of this look in the curly pixie. For 2017, why not try out a combination of long curls with a shorter back. You’ll still get a little more hair to play with to make cute styles like this pinned-back look.

2. Curly Layers

curly hair long bangs
Rock those curls with layers for your new look.

Two things that go hand in hand are curly hairstyles and layers. Layers help to take some of the bulk out of your curly hair so it can be styled down, without giving you triangle hair. For shoulder-length hair, we love to add in short layers as it allows you to create even more volume in your curly hair. If you’re going for a longer style, use some gel to help define your ringlets.

3. Curly Bob

fluffy curly hair bob
Say yes to the bob in your curly hair. Photo credit:

A chin grazing bob is this ultimate 1930s throwback hairstyle that looks sultry on curls. For even more vintage flair, add in some short layers that’ll both define your curls and highlight your features.

4. Extra Long Layered Curly Hair

layers curly hair
The layered look is so chic on curly hair.

Long layered curly hair does more for your hair than short layers. It’s a great way to really shape curly hair cuts. If you have curly hair that never poofs out (a.k.a curly unicorn hair) adding layers may take out a little bit too much hair.

5. Layered Bob and Side Bangs

short red curly hair
Go for a cute cut with a layered bob and some bangs. Photo credit: Dvora

We love the look of stylish curly bangs! They can add a totally gorgeous new element to curly hair cuts. If your hair is in between curly and wavy, why not try out this layered bob look with bangs. It’ll give your curly waves an extra romantic look that you can enhance by using some of the Suave Luscious Curls Curl Defining Cream.

6. Angled Blunt Cut

curly hair red brown tones
Take your cut to the side with this angled cut. Photo credit: Dvora

We love dramatic haircuts, like blunt curly haircuts, that allow you to shift your hair to the opposite side. Not only will this add some natural volume to your mane, but it’ll also help to showcase and define your curls.

 7. Curly Bangs

curly hair bangs
Bangs are not just for straight hair!

Curly bangs can be rocked on any hair length. But, because they’re right there in front of your face you’ll want to make sure they really look good. The key to making sure curly bangs look great is keeping them moisturized and tangle-free.

We love working with a leave-in conditioner or a detangler like the Dove Amplified Textures Moisture Lock Leave-In Conditioner to add moisture, shine, and to help ease out knots.

8. Brushed Out Curls

brushed out curls curly hair
Amp up the volume for a girls’ night out.

Lightly combing through your curls will add some serious volume to your hair and give you that glamorous holiday look you’ve been craving. Watch out, though, because this curly hairstyle can easily get away from you as your voluminous curls quickly turn to unmanageable frizz. A dab of some anti-frizz cream combed through your strands will keep them smooth and voluminous without weighing them down.

9. Coiled Updo

curly hair fancy updo
Create some amazing coils on your curly hair for your fancy event.

This chic updo is the epitome of hardcore holiday glam. Start by creating a deep side part in your hair and slick down the smaller side with a comb. Tease the roots of the larger section and then lightly comb it towards the back of your head. Create a low ponytail at the nape of your neck and coil your hair while being careful to maintain your curls. Pin the ponytail in this coiled pattern to secure it into place. To make sure your updo holds up until the clock strikes twelve, try a few sprays of flexible-hold hairspray.

10. Messy Updo

messy, curly hair updo
Simple and classic while still leaving room for some personality.

If you’re looking for a hairstyle that’s tasteful and classy while still showcasing some personality, try out a chignon updo. Scrunching some of the Suave Professional Captivating Curls Mousse Cream through your damp hair will give you some lift at the roots as it defines your curls. Once your hair has dried, follow this simple tutorial to create the perfect chignon.

11. Cascading Ringlets

curly hair ideas ringlets
Ringlets are always a good idea!

We love the look of voluminous, long ringlets for the holidays (and really every day!). To get this style, create a short side part and brush the top of your hair backward. This step is totally optional, but you can also take a flat iron to straighten the top few inches of your hair to get a slicked-back look. You can also use the flat iron or, if you are working with wet hair, use some mousse to help define your curls.

12. Bouncy Natural Curls

blonde natural curly hair
Rock your natural texture for the holidays with this look.

Show off your curls by wearing your hair down, without any other accouterment. To keep your natural curls springy and bouncy, make sure that they are nourished and moisturized. Before your night out, treat your hair with a revitalizing hair mask. Once your hair is dry, use your fingers to scrunch and shape your curls.

13. Wet Hair Look

curly hair wet look
With this style all you need is gel! Photo credit:

Curly hair works well with the wet hair look. This super simple style is easiest to style on wet, freshly washed hair. When you step out of the shower, use a towel to gently squeeze the majority of the water out of your hair. Then make your usual parting and apply a liberal amount of some gel.  You can define your curls into individual ringlets then let your hair air-dry. The shiny texture of the gel will keep the wet hair look without the crunch.

14. Faux Hawk

curly hair faux hawk
Wear a faux hawk style to show off your curls. Photo credit: Dvora

Great for those who are blessed with natural curls, a funky faux hawk offers some festival edge, without requiring an insane amount of styling time. To get this trendy style, start by applying a curl-defining product to your clean, damp hair. To get that faux hawk finish, simply apply some styling gel onto the sides of your head, brush both sides back, and secure with a large clip or some carefully placed bobby pins.

15. Create a Fun Twist

curly hair fun twist
A half-up, half-down style is always Bohemian-chic.

Half-up, half-down styles are great for those with curly or wavy hairstyles as they create the same vibe as braided festival styles without having to create an intricate plait. Creating a beautiful side twist, for example, gives your curls a hippie-chic look that’s totally on-trend. Get the full scoop on how to create this look from the romantic knitted bang tutorial.

16. Sporty Space Buns

curly hair sporty buns
Space buns take under ten minutes to create. Photo credit: Verity Jane Smith

If you want a style for your curls that’s off your face, wearing a space bun style is definitely a good style to try. Achieving this look is fairly simple, as you’ll want to use a styling product like the SheaMoisture Papaya & Neroli All Day Frizz Control Styling Gel onto your damp and clean hair. To get your buns, simply create two high pigtails on either side of the head, and wrap and tuck carefully with bobby pins to form your quirky bun style. Finish with some strong-hold hairspray to keep your style secure.

curly hair messy top knot
A top knot is an easy style to create.

17. Messy Top Knot Bun

Messy top knots are a no-fuss and sexy style for the festival season since they can be created in minutes without any complications. This style tends to work well on second-day hair, as it gives your bun some messy volume. But if you need to give your bun some extra texture, use the Suave Dry Texture Finishing Spray to help give your style some oomph.

18. Try a Sexy Center Part

sexy center part curly hair
A dramatic center part is always sexy. Photo credit: Verity Jane Smith

A bold center part is a striking and easy style to try, as it gives curly hair that gothy-cool edge that’s essentially perfect for festival season. To achieve this look, apply gel to your hair and then create your part with the assistance of your fingers and a comb. Brush down your hair and add some mousse to your hair where you can define and show off those awesome curls.

19. Go Bold and Colorful

curly hair bold afro
Bold hair color always pumps up your curls. Photo credit: Allyson Alapont

Bold hair color always dresses up any hair look and allows you to show off your curls in an exciting new way. Opt for a temporary color for your festival, or go for it by visiting your colorist before your music fest to make a bold statement. 

20. Teased Hair

teased curly hair
A look with tons of volume.

Or maybe you’re all about volume for your curly hair. That’s cool! Try teasing it before your festival for a head-turning look that will stay put throughout your festival. Master teasing in our teasing hair guide and you’ll be good to go.

21. Natural Afro

short natural curly hair
Keep it natural for an effortless curly-haired look. Photo credit: Allyson Alapont

If you’re lucky enough to have naturally curly, textured hair, what better way to embrace your curls than to simply perk it up with a few spritzes of hair oil, like the Suave Professionals Castor Oil & Mango Butter for Natural Hair & Scalp, and a little time with a wide-tooth comb to give it extra volume. The result will be nourished, softly textured fro perfect for morning, night, and everything in between. Plus, this oil even helps strengthen and repair your strands.

22. Curly Updo/Pony Combo

blonde curly hair updo
Pull your hair up without disrupting your curl pattern for a feminine curly hairstyle that’s super convenient. Photo credit: Dvora

Some days call for a fuss-free ‘do that will rev up your style without blowing into your face every two seconds. And on these days we have just the answer for you: updos. In a simple twist and clip motions, you’ll have the perfect curly hairstyle for an on-the-go day. Not only will this look last all day long, but it will look expertly created while doing so.

23. Half-Up Top Knot

half-up curly hair
Get the best of both worlds with this half-up messy bun.

Think of this as the best of both worlds–in one simple hairstyle you get to let your mane flow freely while also keeping your face clear of any flyways. To make the most of this look, use some volumizing mousse to really perk up your flowing curls, which will create a chic contrast with your top knot.

24. Defined Curls

defined waves curly hair
Create soft loose curls for a super quick, but totally stylish look.

Some days you just want to roll out of bed and rock a lived-in look. You can either curl your hair and shake them out, or you can get a little hands-on action with your curling wand the night before and sleep on them for a more natural look.

25. Tousled Side Part

tousled curly hair
Tousle your natural curl pattern for a more frizzed-out, laid-back look. Photo credit: Dvora

Side parts are the perfect way to rock a curly hairstyle if you have a long, narrow face. Off-center parts are a great option for long faces because they have a way of making your face appear slightly wider. When you chop your ‘do with blunt ends it will make you look more picturesque by elongating your neck and giving a super classic, yet slightly edgy look.

26. Curly Space Buns

cool curly hair space buns
Point blank: space buns are always a good idea. Photo credit: Dvora

It’s no surprise that we had to include space buns in our round-up. This ’90s hairstyle is alive and well, and it’s especially vivacious on short curly hair because it has a way of keeping the buns as perky as possible. We also love how they can make you look effortlessly cool while getting your hair out of your face.

27. Bang-Heavy Mohawk

bang-heavy mohawk
Rock a mohawk with your curly pixie this year.

Mohawks aren’t just for the dudes. We love this look because you can create it on straight hair if you have a long on-top pixie, or create it with naturally thick curly hair. For the curly girls, start by brushing your hair upwards, focusing the brush on the roots. Then, when you’ve got your hair positioned in a mohawk, pin it in place. Then apply some gel to your hair to help to create a defined look to your hair as well as help hold onto this awesome style.

28. Teased Out Volume

natural long curly hair
Embrace the volume in your hair with this teased-out hairstyle. Photo credit:

Have a day when you just can’t with your hair? Go for this super fun NYFW-inspired hairstyle. You don’t even need to start with defined curls. Just detangle your hair lightly with your fingers. When you don’t have any major knots to deal with, tease out the sides of your hair. This look is all about big curls that you can compliment with a chic accessory like a feminine headband.

29. Perfected Curls

natural curly hair flexi-rods
Flexi-rods can create defined ringlets in your hair. Photo credit: Verity Jane Smith

We love the look of these perfectly defined curls. And, they’re actually created with flexi-rods! Check out our hair tutorial to help you recreate no-heat curled hairstyles with hair rods. It’s the perfect do in advance because in the morning you just need to un-twist, add moisture and go!

30. Jeweled Space Buns

jeweled space buns curly hair
Say yes to space buns to enhance your curly hair. Photo credit: Verity Jane Smith

Space buns are one of our favorite ’90s updated hairdos. On thick curly hair, it looks awesome because there is so much texture! This is a great style to start off with some extra moisture. To style, apply a curl-defining spray all over your hair. Then create two buns on the top of your head (much like as if you were creating pigtails). Secure with some bobby pins and get fancy by decorating your buns with little gems for a super fun and funky look.

31. Pineapple Hair

curly hair pineapple hair
Pineapple looks amazing on curly locks.

Easy, protective styles are a must-have in any curly girl’s repertoire. The pineapple hair look is perfect for days that you want your hair off your neck, or you’re just dying to style your favorite bandana. To master this look, check out our easy pineapple hair tutorial.

32. Curly Messy Shag

curly hair shag
The shag is back and better than ever. Photo credit:

You might say that we’re a bit obsessed with the shag hairstyle with curls. It’s a ’70s #throwback hairstyle that we hope never stops being cool. To make sure the shag looks like a cute way to style curly hair, make sure you define your curls. After you wash and condition your hair, use a blowdryer with the diffuser attachment on, and prep your hair with some mousse. Shagtastic!

33. Half-Up Braids

wash and go braided half-updo
A simple two-part braided updo lets your curls do their thing and gets your hair out of your face too.

Bored with your bun or ponytail? Try the super quick and easy half-up braid hairstyle instead. We know the overall effect is pretty much the same, but we love how versatile it is to style a half-updo. Prep your dry hair with a couple of drops of hair oil, then braid two sections of the top half of your hair, gather all into one ponytail, and you are good to groove!

34. Intricate-Looking Braids

fishtail braid curly hair
Master braids as a way to show off your curly hair.

There is no reason you can’t do fun braids with curly hair. It’s one of the more ridiculous “hair rules” we’ve ever heard. You can (and should!) do a fishtail braid in curly hair! We think it looks totally gorgeous because naturally, curly hair has so much texture! You’ll get a more interesting braid that will actually stay braided. So perfect.

35. Side-Swept Bangs

curly hair side swept
Go dramatic with your hair and enhance your curls with this side-swept look.

Do you want to wear curly hair with bangs but don’t want to commit to the cut? We totally get that! Getting bangs can be kind of scary. If you’re more into the fake it till you make it group, try the hair flip style! With hair that is about shoulder length, doing the flip can let you play around with the look of having curly bangs, without needing to actually cut curly bangs. Keep your style intact with a light mist of hairspray.

36. Very Voluminous

big hair curly hair
Create even more volume on your curly hair this year.

We love how this curly style is wearable but totally ’80s. All you need to do to get this big fluffy hair look? Break up your curls or tease the sides! If you have a tighter curl structure, you may be able to get this kind of volume just by fluffing out your hair with your fingers. For wavy/curly gals, just take a teasing brush and lightly pull back on your curls. It gives crazy volume without having to deal with tons of knots later.

37. Uptown/Downtown M.O.D.*

curly hair rich girl hair
The ultimate lazy-girl sexy curl: the rich girl bend. Photo credit:

The model off-duty’s* take on unnatural curls? None at all, if she can help it. This is why we’re loving this iteration, which features that coveted rich-girl bend popular in recent seasons, with just the faintest hint of a blowout. Easy as pie to recreate, this could very well be a wash-and-wear look for women with some natural texture, such as wavy hair, to work with. Otherwise, it’s just a matter of spritzing on some texturizer for a street-er feel too salty waves.

38. Low-Key Natural Bob

curly hair natural bob
A chic way to rock your natural bob. Photo credit:

The natural/afro haircuts for curly hair is one of our favorite curly hair down dos, as it showcases some major texture in a cool, on-trend length. We’ve seen several fashion mavens rock this look at chin-level with a center part, and diffusing the coils ever-so-slightly (as above), earns it even more street cred. To keep your coils from frizzing out too much, squeeze in a leave-in onto your hair around once a day, or as needed.

39. Clubby Waves + Micro Fringe

curly hair micro bangs
The high contrast between a straight fringe and wavy lengths in these curly hair-down dos is both confident and futuristic. Photo credit:

Techno-punk meets athleisure was another big movement we’ve spotted on the streets, and this translated to hairstyles that were edgy and had a bit of a club-kid aesthetic (check out our space buns post!).

A baby bang paired with some seriously chunky Z-shaped curls took this trend to the fore, and we can almost see this going hand in hand with slit-side elephant trousers, raw-edge denim, and wide boat-necked tees. For the fearless fringer, ask your stylist for a length that hits a few centimeters above your brows, and urge in those rad bends with a texturizing powder, scrunched on the lengths.

40.  Natural Curls

hairstyles for curly hair afro
Curls that are worn with their natural texture always look fresh and confident.

For the ready-in-five-minutes girls of the world, this look is for you. When you’re blessed with naturally curly hair and already have it prepped in a fun afro look, all you have to do to freshen things up for your date is to add some shine cream to infuse your curls with moisture and de-frizzing benefits, but most of all gives a gorgeous shine.

41. Curly Updo

curly hair updo
A pineapple-inspired high pony shows off a delicate neck and collarbone area.

Although we call this an updo, it’s really much simpler than the word lets on. Essentially all you have to do is flip your hair up and secure it with pins in the back around the nape, or tie with a hair elastic, in order to keep your curls flowing from the top in a pineapple look. Since your ends will be free, the look helps give you a whimsical, flirty vibe that’s perfect for laid-back date nights, where you still want to show off some feminine style. To finish, crunch some curl-defining cream onto your curls for more definition.

42. Half-Updo

long curly hair updo
Business up top, party on the ends (and all night long). Photo credit: Dvora

The half-up hairstyle is having a bit of a moment these days with celebs, models and everyday folks rocking this ’90s look from the runways to the streets. Since it’s the best of both worlds—hair is conveniently out of your face but still has the lengths free-flowing—this is the look to rock on blind dates or surprise getaways when you’re not quite sure where the night will take you (oh, all that possibility!). A volumizing hairspray imparts your look with a controlled bounce.

Curly Hair Tips

Not sure how to care for your curly hair or what products you should be using? Check out our top tips below!

1. Comb Hair From the Bottom

curly hair maintenance
The key to a great curly hairstyle is moisture and proper care.

Need to up your hair care game? Check out our top tips for curly hair. It’s always best to start combing your hair, especially curly strands, at the bottom and then work your way up to the top. This will make it easier to work through any knots that are tangled without trying to force your comb through your hair, leading to less breakage overall.

To make detangling easier, use a spray like Sheamoisture Raw Shea Butter Deep Moisturizing Detangler. This will moisturize your hair and make your comb glide through your strand so easily!

2. Get Regular Trims

Getting regular trims is beneficial no matter what hair type you have. To maintain healthy hair and remove any dead ends, it’s best to go every 6-8 weeks.

3. Use Product Cocktailing

Product cocktailing means mixing two or more products together to receive the benefits from both. We love a hair hack like this! When product cocktailing, you can’t mix any two products together–it’s all about balance. Try to use one light product, like a serum, with a heavier product, like a mousse or cream. When you apply your cocktail, make sure to avoid your roots so you don’t cause any unwanted build-up.

4. Use a Diffuser

Diffusers are lifesavers for curly hair. If you aren’t familiar with it, a diffuser is an attachment that sticks on to the end of your blow dryer. It helps make the airflow less concentrated so it doesn’t mess up your curl pattern.

To use the diffuser, place your hair in the claws of the diffuser and move it up towards your scalp. Use it to dry your hair 80% of the way to prevent frizziness.

5. Moisturize at night.

The amount of moisture in your hair also plays a huge role in the upkeep of your curly hairstyle. If your hair is dry, your style and hair will become lackluster. Take the time to re-moisturize at least three times a week or when needed. Trust us, those quenched curls will thank you and look pretty incredible to boot. One way to do this is to use a product that moisturizes your hair like TRESemmé Curly Hydrate Combing Cream, or simply spritz with water at night, then proceed with one of the methods explained above. 

How to Maintain Your Curly Hairstyle

We’ve all been there. You finally achieve the perfect curls, they stay in place all day, and now it’s time to go to bed. Luckily, there are a few quick tricks you can do to ensure you wake up with those perfect curls still intact. Check out the tutorial below.

1. Pin curl your hair.

curly hair maintenance with pin curls
If you’re wearing your hair in loose curls, maintain the look with pin curls at night.

Stretch the life of your amazing curls, loose ringlets, or drop curls with some trusty pin curls. This method takes a little practice, but it’s definitely not rocket science. Use pin curls as big or as small as you want and start at the end of your hair. Then, roll your hair upwards using your left and right pointer fingers until you have landed at the roots with a loop. Your hair itself should resemble a hair roller.

While holding onto the curl, proceed to lay it flat onto your head and set it in place with a bobby pin (or multiple, if needed). When pin curls are laid flat onto the head, it makes them much easier to sleep in. Continue this method throughout your entire head. In the morning, gently remove the pin curls and separate them to achieve your desired style.

2. Twist or braid your hair at night.

girl with three strand braid
Gather your hair into a three-strand braid to protect your curls at night.

For twist-outs, braid-outs, or hair styled in loose waves, maintain your hairstyle with this method. At night, without combing to prevent losing that perfect curl you’ve been rocking all day, grab a section of your curls and mold them into a two-strand twist. Continue this process on the entire head. Braids work well for loose waves and braid-out hairstyles. If you’re constantly fighting a battle with curl shrinkage, this method can help stretch curls out over time while keeping their natural bounce.

3. Try the pineapple method.

girl with pineapple hairstyle on natural hair with head scarf

A quick and easy way to maintain those cute curly hairstyles is with the pineapple method. Simply use a headband or large hair tie that you let slide up and onto your hair as if you were creating a high ponytail. Allow your curls to flow freely on top. Lastly (but optional), tie a silk scarf around the base of the head to keep your edges intact. In the morning, release, shake, and go!

4. Try the multi pineapple method on short hair.

We find this method particularly convenient and ideal for thicker, textured, and shorter curl lengths. Instead of creating one pineapple ponytail, create two or more all over your head. Release it the next day by just shaking it out and tousling it with your fingers.

5. Sleep on a silk pillowcase.

pile of silk pillowcases
Opt for silk over a typical cotton pillowcase.

We all have those nights when you just want to jump into bed (okay, more like every night). Before you go head first onto your mattress, use a silk pillowcase to keep your stylish curls in place. Silk pillowcases can help retain moisture in your hair and reduce friction on your strands, as opposed to pillowcases made from materials like cotton that draw moisture out and can even tangle your hair while you sleep.

The smooth surface of silk allows the hair to move smoothly across the pillowcase, and not stick or rub or cause breakage. We love this super low-maintenance method.

How to Create High Impact Curls

The only product you need to achieve these high impact curls is Dove Hair Therapy 7-in-1 Miracle Mist! Simply spritz the product through your hair and add a little bit of heat to activate it and create perfectly defined curls.

Looking for even more curly styles? Check out these recaps featuring some of the best short haircuts for curly hair.

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