1. Moisture, moisture, moisture.
Shampoo strips away your natural oils that even your conditioner can't replace. Rather than shampooing everyday, switch to every other day or start co-washing. Harsh chemicals like sulphates and alcohol in your hair products are not good for your hair, so pick them wisely. Use oils like coconut oil (my personal favorite), serums, and creams to help keep your hair from being dry which leads to frizz. Spray your hair with water and organic aloe vera juice to reset curls on those second day curls.
2. Rinse your hair with cold water after washing.
As simple as this is, this is probably my number one tip for curly girls. When you wash your hair with hot or warm water, you hair's shafts open up much like the pores on your face. If you don't rinse it with cold water after, it stays open a little longer, letting moisture from inside get out. Do it in the sink if you're afraid of getting cold water on your body, but it literally takes a few seconds to help keep you hair from drying out... and it adds shine =)
3. Figure out your hair type.
Yes we may all be curly girls, but every curly girl is different. You can't expect you hair to respond the same way to products as someone else's would with a different texture. You may end up weighing your hair down, or just getting frizz.
Figure out what your hair likes and doesn't like (too much protein in your conditioners and leave-ins? creams rather than gel or mousse?) There are lots of sites dedicated to helping you figure your hair type and that would give you an idea if you need heavy creams or if just a little serum will do the trick. Figure out the porosity and density, too. Experiment a bit, and find what works for you. You'd be amazed at how simple your routine can be.
(I've gone to a basket of products to two: an oil -coconut or argan- and a cream -shea moistures curl enhancing smoothie)
We all know heat damages your hair. Especially if you've bleached your hair, you're going to want to find heat-less styling ideas. If you want perfect ringlet curls or even waves, pin curls and hair rollers (I use sponges because they are comfortable) over night. Twist outs and braid outs can take less time than putting in pin curls, but they give great results, too. If you want to straighten your hair, use those jumbo hair rollers and keep them in till your hair dries (heat will obviously speed up the process) If you do use heat, use a good heat protector, and don't use an oil before!
5. Let your curls go wild!
Be yourself! Sure, buns are cute. But don't always use them to keep your curls tucked away all the time. It's easy to fall into that habit, but your curls are beautiful. Take care of them, keep them hydrated, and let them do their thing!