In her book "Curly Girl: The Handbook" curly-girl Lorraine Massey shares her professional tips for embracing and loving your naturally curly hair. I highly recommend reading this book, as she breaks up her chapters into particular curl types (something I won't get into here).
But, here are some basic tips that apply to ALL curly girls.
1. Regular SHAMPOO is not your friend! Any form of sulfates are bad for curly hair. Invest in sulfate-free shampoo, or use conditioner to massage & cleanse your scalp--then rinse. At this point, I am still experimenting with what I like best. I bought sulfate-free Burt's Bees shampoo/wash for babies & have used that. I've also cleansed my scalp with conditioner. The verdict is still out on what works best for my hair.
2. Get rid of brushes, combs (even wide-toothed ones), straighteners and blow dryers (unless diffusing). All these hair care tools are bad for curly hair, breaking down the fine fibers curly hair is made of. Only use your fingers to comb your hair when it is slathered with conditioner.
3. For most curly girls, DON'T rinse out your conditioner. I know...weird. But so far so good here! And, use a surprising amount of conditioner, think almost palm size...no skimping!
4. No towel drying! What??? Instead, use a micro-fiber towel or a cotton T-shirt. I've been going the T-shirt route & it works great! (Also, no turbine wrapping...instead, "squish" your hair dry.)
5. After putting in gel right out of the shower, DON'T TOUCH YOUR HAIR until dry! Your gel will provide a gel-cast...once dry, gently shake out hair to remove the gel cast. If you touch your hair while wet, it will cause frizz.
Like I said, these are some general tips. I gained much more from reading the book...and I have one for someone to borrow :) You can also purchase this book from Amazon or Barnes & Noble...or inquire with your local library.
After a couple weeks of using this method, I'll update you with results.