How to preserve your curls when you sleep

Imagine having a great hair day where your curls are cooperating, your products are doing exactly what they're supposed to do and your hair is bouncy and shiny. Come nightfall (or whenever you prefer to sleep), you're wondering how you can make your curls last the next day, and the day after that, and the day after that, without having to wash and style your hair again. The way you prepare your hair for your beauty sleep can help protect them and keep them looking great for a longer period of time. 

Since curls are made of spirals, it’s best not to sleep on your hair as that will crush the hair follicle which can result in messy and frizzy hair. No curly would wish that upon themselves as we work so hard to style our hair.

Here are 5 ways you can preserve your hair while you sleep:

Use a silk or satin pillow cover

Get rid of your regular cotton pillowcase as it can absorb oils from your hair and scratch against the hair strands. A silk or satin pillowcase is best for protecting the hair follicles while you toss and turn at night. It will reduce friction on hair as you sleep. 

Pineapple your hair 

Pineapple is simple a way of tying your hair to protect your curls. Use a satin or cotton scrunchie to tie your hair up at the crown of your head. Flip your head upside down, gather your curls into a high ponytail on the top of your hair and wrap it once in a scrunchie. If you have finer hair, you can wrap it twice but make sure you don't crease your curls. Don’t use a hair elastic or thin hair tie as that can leave a dent in your curls. Be careful not to pull too hard or make the pineapple too tight.

Wear a silk or satin bonnet or scarf

This can be used as a standalone method or in combination to putting your hair in a pineapple (or a protective hair style) while you sleep. Simple wear a bonnet made of silk or satin or tie a light hair scarf around your hair before your get into bed.

Make protective hairstyles like twists or braids

To prevent hair follicles rubbing against each other, they can be tied up in protective hairstyles. Try simple twists using bobby pins or small elastics. Alternatively, experiment with different types and number of braids. A loose braid will help maintain your natural curl pattern. A tighter braid can stretch your hair and give you a looser curls if your curls are very tight. If you’re more on the wavy side, a tight braid can give you tighter curls. Instead of a regular braid, try putting your hair in a French braid if you know how to make one. This will stretch our your curls at the roots. You can also part your hair into multiple braids and twists. Experiment with different braids to see which one works best for you.


Plopping is a popular curl drying method that helps prevent hair being weighed down by gravity. This technique requires you to apply styling products and gel to hair. Then lay a microfibre or cotton T-shirt on a flat surface and flip hair over, allowing it to pile on top of itself into the towel (the "accordion" technique). Tie the sides of the towel or tee so that it will remain securely on your head. The towel will speed up drying time, and the “pile” of curls will set nicely. If your hair is wet, this is a great way to protect your hair while you sleep.

While it’s important to preserve curls while you sleep, don’t let it turn your nights sleepless! There are many ways to fix your curls when you wake up, even if they’re a little messy and frizzy. When you rise and shine, try using steam to moisturize your hair. Simply take a steamy shower without washing or wetting your hair and let your hair absorb the moisture from the steam. You can also use a curl refreshing spray to moisturize and revive your hair.


Leave a comment

All comments are moderated before being published