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Sleeping with curly hair
4 minute read

Sleeping with curly hair: how to protect curls overnight

One way to take care of our curls is so easy we can do it in our sleep. Literally. By protecting your locks overnight, you’ll wake up to healthier, shinier, bouncier curls. Want the lowdown on how to sleep with curly hair? Read on!

Sleeping with curly hair

Why protect curly hair overnight?

We already know curly, wavy or coily hair deserves extra love and attention. And this is true even while you sleep. After a long day, we just want to tumble into bed whichever way and hope for the best. But, if we can take a couple of seconds to prep our curls before we get some shut-eye, we’re giving our future selves the gift of happier hair.

Curls that hold their shape all night and need minimal styling come morning? That sounds like a lie-in to us! Plus, protecting our curls means they break less as we toss and turn. So your hair will get fuller, stronger and smoother over time.

How to protect curly hair at night

Here are our tried and tested tricks to protect your curly hair while you sleep. Find out what works for your locks, so you can get the best out of your curls come morning. If you have any questions, our curl experts are waiting to help.

1. Hydrate

Just like you put a glass of water by the bed, doing a pre-bedtime ‘refresh’ will keep curls hydrated while you sleep. Mix a small amount of Curl Cream or Curl Conditioner with a little water in your hands.

woman scrunching Bouclème's curl conditioner into her curly hair

Glaze it over the parts of your hair that need TLC. Hair should be hydrated but not wet. If your hair is on the finer side, go easy on the product to keep your curls full of volume.

2. Pineapple

The best way to keep long curly hair fresh overnight is to tie it up in a pineapple. Simply grab the nearest non-snag tie or scrunchie and tie hair loosely in a ponytail on top of your head. If you have a fringe or shorter face-framing pieces, use a small butterfly clip to secure them and you’re bed-ready.

3. Sleep on silk

Just like us, curly hair enjoys the finer things in life. For maximum slip while you sleep, replace your cotton pillowcase with a silk one. It’ll help keep your hair hydrated, prevent breakages and minimise frizz. For vegan-friendly alternatives, look out for satin and bamboo.

woman holding a silk pillowcase from Bouclème behind her head of curly hair

4. Wear a hair bonnet

Meet your new best friend: a hair bonnet solves multiple curly hair sleep dilemmas. It keeps your curls in place so they stay looking sharp, while preventing breakages and dehydration. You can pineapple your hair before popping your bonnet on. Or, if your hair is short, just slip on and drift off to sleep.

3 Step quick morning refresh

If you’re anything like us, morning priorities include great hair and strong coffee. Follow these three steps to achieve iconic curls with minimal effort.

1. Let it out

Undo your bonnet or pineapple to see how your curls have held up overnight. Give your hair a fluff by putting your fingers at your roots and gently shaking. Flip your head upside down and repeat.

2. Let it settle

After eight hours in a pineapple or bonnet, it can take a little while for your curls to settle. Leave your hair down while you eat breakfast, check your messages or make a coffee. Hit the mirror after 15 to 30 minutes and see how things are looking.

3. Refresh it

Bouclème's mist spray bottle for refreshing curly hair

It’s totally normal for curls to lose their bounce, group together or flatten out overnight. If your curls need a little love, it’s all good. Here are two quick morning refresh routines:

  • Steam refresh - At the end of your shower, flip your head upside down and let the steam of the shower reform your curls. Lightly glaze over your hair with damp hands to smooth and define your curls. Take care not to get them too wet. Quickly diffuse hair on a low speed and medium heat and you’re ready to go.
  • Spot refresh - Working curl by curl, you’re going to smooth and redefine using gel and water. Take our Super Hold Styler or Curl Defining Gel and either mix with water in your hands, or spray individual curls with our Mist Spray Bottle and smooth the gel over separately. Scrunch curls to encourage definition, then air dry. For overall definition, mix gel and water between your palms and glaze over the surface of your hair.

Want to wake up to smoother, healthier hair that lasts longer between wash days? Make hair protection part of your night-time routine and check out our curl-proof accessories.

Shop this article

  • This leave in curl cream offers unrivalled moisture for perfectly defined curls.

    Curl Cream


  • Created to quench curls, coils and waves its hydrating, lightweight formula softens strands, enhances definition and increases shine.

    Curl Conditioner


  • Pillowcase made from the highest quality 100% mulberry silk with a thickness of 22 momme

    Silk Envelope Pillowcase


  • The ultimate curly hair gel for definition and firm hold, to keep your curls in shape on a busy  day.

    Super Hold Styler


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