One of the best parts of natural hair is discovering the flexibility, diversity and complexity of your hair. Although I love my fluffy fro, there’s something about rocking a style that showcases my curl pattern or allows me to go from curly-to-wavy without using any heat. Here is a rundown of our favorite ways to enhance natural curls and what products can help you get the look.

Bantu Knot-out

Part damp hair into 4 sections. Starting in one of the sections, two-strand twist hair from root to tip and then wrap/coil the hair into a little knot-shaped ball. To make the knot, roll the hair tightly at the root and wind it until it begins to make a corkscrew shape. You can secure with clips or bobby pins but sometimes the hair stays put by itself. Note: You can add about 4-5 knots per section depending on the look you’re going for. The more knots you have, the smaller the curls. Apply a satin bonnet and allow hair to dry overnight. Take down carefully, apply Shea butter or a moisturizer to the ends, fluff and go!

Suggested product: Shea Moisture Organic Coconut & Hibiscus Curl Enhancing Smoothie, Cantu Shea Butter


When I initially went natural two years ago, I remember asking a friend of mine how her curls were so defined. “Shingling,” she said. My initial reaction was “shingle-what?” After a little research blended with trial-and-error, I got a grasp on how to shingle. On wet, detangled hair, start at the nape of the neck and part hair (horizontally) into small sections (about ½ inch thick). Apply a curl enhancing product and rake it into hair either using your fingertips, a Denman brush or a rattail comb to help enhance curls.

Suggested product: Miss Jessie’s Curly Pudding, Kinky Curly Curling Custard


My personal natural hair mantra is “When in doubt, twist it out!” Twist-outs have been a lifesaver for my hair on several occasions because I know that regardless of how big or small the twists are, when done correctly, my curls will have some added definition. For a slightly looser curl, try two-strand flat twists.

Braid outs are a fun and easy way to get a cool tight, wave pattern in hair. You can either do individual plaits or braid hair down to the scalp. Again, for a tighter curl-pattern use smaller braids and if you want looser results go for larger braids. This style can be done on dry or wet hair.

Suggested product: Uncle Funky’s Daughter Extra Butter, Cantu Shea Butter Leave In Conditioning Repair Cream

How do you create styles to show off your curl pattern in the summer?

-Margaret Francois


  1. I used to do bantu – knot outs all the time when i was a teenager and all i used was olive oil.
    They always came out looking nice, very short very defined curls.

    I’ve never attempted to shingle and my twist outs just stopped working.
    I think that flat twists and mini french braids/cornrows give amore defined pattern and after a few days/weeks.

    I just usually use an oil or shea butter to set my natural styles. Other things just tend to make it shrink up more

  2. Shoedooo

    I have done twist outs and twists are my go to look. Curly Custard is a must. I love love love the product. I’ve never done shingling with it but I will defintley try it out. Bantu, my hair hasn’t reached that point. But it will get there.

  3. I’ve been natural for quite some time now, and it saddens me that no matter what product or technique I try, none of these styles have ever worked for me. I always end up resorting back to a puff :(

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