Why All Curly Haired Women Should Be Doing the Rake and Shake

The secret to your best curls ever

Woman with Long Blonde Curly Hair
Photo: Getty Images/AJ_Watt

If you've ever visited a hair stylist who specializes in curls—or are a fan of Ouidad products for curls—chances are you're familiar with the rake and shake. For those who are new to this method, you're in for a treat because this might just be the trick to your best curls ever.

Ouidad, a brand focused entirely on letting curls do their thing, was founded in 1984 and has since become a go-to source for natural-looking curls. They currently have three flagship salons, including one in Fort Lauderdale, FL; in addition to certified salons throughout the country. One benefit of visiting an Ouidad-certified salon, or any stylist that specializes in curls for that matter, is learning about the proper technique for caring for your curls. One such method that has changed the way we style our curls is the rake and shake.

To give it a try, start with a product lineup specifically designed for your curl type. Ouidad breaks down the ideal formula on their site for loose, classic, tight, or kinky curls.

Working from the nape of the neck upward, divide hair into five sections. Apply a small amount (about a quarter-size depending on the thickness of your hair) of styling product to each section, raking from root to tip. Raking through the curls with your fingertips will help to detangle and smooth, section by section.

As your fingertips near the end of each section as you're raking, shake your hand to loosen-up strands. The shake is what will help your curls form in their most natural way. Remember when we used to scrunch? This is the new and improved version that actually promotes your curls doing their thing all on their own.

Diffuse to dry, with your tool set on a low, warm setting—just be sure you don't touch your hair with your fingers as you dry. Messing with your curls will promote frizz. Finally, once your strands are dry, top it off with your favorite finishing product for curls that will last all day.

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