Curly hair girls/guys tell all: Diane de Costa
DIANE de COSTA
Mizani multi-textured consultant and author of "Textured Tresses"

What type of texture do you have?
“If you look on the Mizani Natural Curl Key, my hair is a combination of Type V to Type VI - very curly and coiled. I have a loose afro with medium size coils.”

How did you feel about your hair growing up and how has that changed since you became involved in the beauty industry?

Curly hair girls/guys tell all: Diane de Costa
Diane de Costa's naturally curly hair

“My entire family has natural textured hair, from loose waves to coil-y hair. I was very comfortable with natural hair, but always wanted my hair longer and smoother, as my hair was a thick and voluminous, shoulder-length, soft curly afro. My sisters had mid-back length, long smooth wavy and spirally curly hair. So, I was somewhat envious. My mother didn't know how to style my hair, and finally made me start styling my own when I was about 9 years old. That's how I got started in the business—as a child!

“When I was about 11, I went for a relaxer at the salon so I could be more like my sisters. However my hair was relaxed straight. That meant I still had a lot of work to do with my hair—blow drying, roller setting, hot curling etc.

“When I got in the industry, that completely changed. I grew out my natural hair. It was at that point that I started experimenting with all the natural curly styles and sets my mother would do for my sisters and tried on my hair when we were children. I love my hair for all its curls and versatility. Now with all the styling products and with the ceramic tools we have today, I am able to wear my hair blown straight without any chemicals, or worn naturally curly with enhancing products.

“In the last two to three years, I've enjoyed wearing my hair straight in the fall and the winter. All I have to do is wrap it, dry, blow it out slightly with MIZANI ThermaSmooth System and a ceramic iron. I wear my hair curly with enhancing products from about April to October.

What do you think are the most interesting developments in hair texture today?
“ It's amazing that everyone has embraced curly hair in all fashions and forms. For instance, Taylor Swift's long curly waves are a big look for spring. She's taken the music and entertainment industry by storm, and everyone's wanting her look, whether using irons, sets or extensions.

“It's also quite amazing that in the last 10 years so many small independent companies have been able to develop and manufacture hair care products for naturally curly hair, with natural and organic ingredients for all hair textures. And every salon brand now has a curly line incorporated in their overall product line-up with some natural ingredients included. Twenty years ago there were only about three, there were a handful of products available. Even MIZANI, the multi-textured professional brand known for relaxers and treatments, has created TRUE TEXTURES Curl Defining System, which launched this month, February 2010.”

What type of products/tools and what amount of time do you spend on your hair on “curly” days and on “straight” days?
“On curly days, I'll shampoo and condition my hair and apply a light leave-in cream on my entire head. Then I comb through it with a wide-tooth comb. After I apply an enhancing cream/gel on my entire head, I'll go through the hair with my fingers and finger stretch with some products, section by section. This technique, the MIZANI TRUE TEXTURES Free Hand Styling Technique, is part of the new techniques that I have created for the MIZANI TRUE TEXTURES Styling Collection and Techniques, which includes six styling and three cutting techniques. After, I'll air dry or diffuse to define the curls. Sometimes, I'll place a turban towel on my hair and let the curls set in the towel while I get dressed, then I'll finger comb with a styling cream or gloss for more vibrancy. All this takes about 10 minutes.

“When I wear my hair straight, I'll have it straightened with a wrap set, blow dry and ceramic iron in the salon after a weekly shampoo and conditioning treatment. On a daily basis, if I have to refresh the style with the ceramic iron. It takes me about 20 - 25 minutes, including apply a gloss or styling cream and comb-out.”

Any other comments/observations on curly/textured hair?
“Curly/textured hair is the most versatile, and provides the most options, whether you keep it completely natural or use a texturizer.”

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*This article is related to the Texture! Guide. Click here to return to Texture!