5 Essential Travel Tips for Frizz Free Curls

I’ve had wild kinky-curly hair for most of my life but have only recently learned how to tame my seemingly unruly mane. Like most black girls, my mother started chemically straightening my hair at a young age, erasing any trace of my curl pattern. Straight hair was the only standard of beauty in the black community during my early childhood and I was taught to fear my naturally kinky-curly hair due to societal pressures. So, from the ages of 7-12 my hair was short, overly processed, bone straight and I loathed every second of it.


When I was finally able to do my own hair, I refused to get any more chemical straighteners. Despite my family’s lack of support, I took the plunge and grew out my hair. 5 years later I’ve never been happier. My hair is long, thick, healthy, and I’ve finally managed to handle my curls even while I’m traveling the world.


Traveling with curly hair can seem like such a pain especially with strict TSA guidelines. When I was accepted into a University in Guildford England, I was beyond excited to start my European adventure, but I also worried about the challenges of taking care of my hair. After 6 months of living in England, I picked up many tips and tricks to take care of my long curly hair and I hope to make it less intimidating for you as you’re headed out on your next adventure.

1. Try a protective style

A protective style is any hairstyle that has your ends tucked away. These styles include braids, buns, twists, extensions, and many more. Protective styles were essential for me while living in England. Hair products were either very limited or too expensive for curly hair, so most of the time I styled my hair in twists or braided hairstyles.

2. Check a suitcase

Checked luggage can be such a pain but because certain products can be limited or expensive, it’s worth the hassle. There is no limit on liquids for checked luggage and if you’re like me, you’ll need an abundance of products on hand to keep your curls shiny and frizz free.

Pro Tip

If you are going on a short trip or are only packing a carry on, put your products in travel sized bottles.  This way you can still take care of your curls but without the bulk or extra weight of full sized products.

3. Protect your hair during the flight

I wish I would’ve known this tip during my first flight. While you’re traveling on a plane for 10 hours with limited sleep, it’s easy to neglect your hair. An easy way to make sure you start your vacation on a high note is to put your hair in a pineapple for your flight. A pineapple is simply a high bun or ponytail placed on top of your head and say goodbye to smooshed curls!


4. Bring a silk or satin scarf

Wearing a satin or silk scarf at night is crucial for keeping your perfect curls. While it may seem insignificant, studies have shown that cotton sheets and pillowcases cause friction which dry the hair. Using a silk scarf reduces that friction and keeps your hair moisturized ensuring perfect hair throughout your whole vacation.


5. Use conditioner before swimming in salt water or chlorine

This tip has been a true lifesaver. Chlorine and saltwater can be extremely drying to curly hair causing excessive breakage and damage. Before entering the water, choose your favorite conditioner and apply it liberally to your hair. This will prevent dryness, tangles, and knots until you’re able to wash your hair.

Traveling with curly hair can be challenging, but it doesn’t need to be. Using these tips and tricks will ensure a relaxing vacation with happy frizz-free curls!  Leave your curly hair travel hacks in the comments below.

Chantell Highsmith

Blog Contributor


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