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This Curly-Hair Pro Found Her Curl Go-To’s



For Michelle O’Connor, Creative Director of the InStyle Salon at JCP, beating her own intensely curly hair into submission is not the goal. That’s because this talented pro–she’s a North American Hairstyling Awards Winner in the “Texture” category–likes to celebrate her natural ringlets, even when they present a challenge or two. (Or three.)

Fortunately, she’s nailed down some savvy tricks, tips, and products that keep each strand nourished and well behaved; even during the drizzly/humid fall and winter months in her hometown of Miami. Here’s Michelle’s curl confessional…


Sulfate freedom!

“We all saw sulfate-free shampoos take a front seat as the preferred product for color-treated hair. But thanks to Joico’s Curl Care Cleansing and Curl Care Nourished, we’re finally seeing the same benefit for textured hair as well. Face it: Curly hair is dry hair…it relies on moisture retention in order to be frizz free, so it’s essential to find products that put it back into the hair.”

Give me a break–not!

“Whether we like it or not, curls twist and bend all the way down to the hair shaft, and with each bend comes a weakened section. (Even worse, the tighter the curl, the more weakened areas exist!) One of the reasons I’m so enamored with Curl Care is that it contains repair technology that strengthens each strand, resulting in 64 percent less breakage. That’s HUGE.”


The washing “situation”

Straight-haired girls can take comfort in knowing that oil production from the scalp manages to do its job by traveling down the hair shaft to nourish each strand. Curly girls not so much. That’s because oil can’t manage the topsy-turvy twists and turns of each tendril, causing hair from the mid-shaft down to be deprived of essential moisture. Curl Co+Wash allows me to gently cleanse my hair several times a week, knowing that I’m not stripping even more of that moisture out of my hair with each washing.”


Michelle working

Fro sure!

I have coarse, thick hair that has the potential to be twice the size of my head. So naturally, volume has never been an issue! Don’t get me wrong: I love a good curly ‘fro, hair pick and all; but if I don’t achieve distinct ringlets, we’re talking about a serious frizz situation. I’ve recently fallen in love with Curl Controlling, because it allows my curls to dry in a really defined way. I can literally just shake them out and watch each strand expand into a beautiful, well-managed curl. For added volume, I then use a pick to lift my roots, while keeping the gorgeous definition and bounce.”


Find your curly-girl personality here.