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A curly girl's guide to plopping for defining your curls like never before

Team Tira
min read
Tutorials & Guides  
A curly girl's guide to plopping for defining your curls like never before
A curly girl's guide to plopping for defining your curls like never before

For years, curly hair has received the step-child treatment among its other hair type siblings. They’ve been straightened, blow dried, chemically relaxed—basically, the beautiful ringlets have been coerced into turning into everything, but have never had the chance to be themselves. Thankfully, we now live in a world where curls of all types, textures and sizes are unanimously accepted. Moreover, haircare products and techniques to tackle curly hair have gained more popularity lately. One such technique is plopping. It’s a drying technique that helps define your curls, while preventing them from frizzing up. This technique, however, takes a little skill and experimenting to get right—so we got professional hair stylist and curly hair expert, Aleena Mackar to tell us how to do it best.

Firstly, what is plopping?

“Plopping is to ‘plop’ or place your hair into a t-shirt, a microfibre towel or a cotton towel and wrap it up,” she explains. This is done on wet hair and is one of the biggest game-changers for the appearance of curly locks.  How does it actually help? The expert says that there are several benefits of plopping your hair. “The whole purpose of plopping is to absorb excess water. It’s the most important part of this technique for me,” she says. “Secondly, it helps the definition of your curl clumps.”

A pro-approved guide to plopping curly hair

According to Mackar, plopping doesn’t follow a one-size-fits-all technique—there are multiple ways to plop the hair, based on your hair type. “It can also be a very preference-based thing,” she says. “I have medium porosity hair and I plop by putting my hair in a towel bonnet or I micro-plop my hair. This saves me a lot of time and gives me decent shrinkage.” Micro-plopping can be done with a micro-fibre towel or gloves, where you scrunch your hair dry, instead of wrapping the towel around.

For Low Porosity Hair

Mackar shares that plopping doesn’t always work on low porosity hair as the top layers are extremely frizzy. But, if you are plopping, then she’d recommend doing it with a shower cap or a shower bonnet so that it retains the moisture.

Pro tip: Doing it just for a few minutes is more effective for hair with low porosity.

For High Porosity Hair

She shares that, typically, one should plop their hair as the final step in a haircare routine, after styling and applying any products. This means you generally won't need to apply any more product afterwards. However, if you find that the gel cast has diminished or some of the excess gel has been absorbed by the cloth, it's advisable to reapply a bit of gel or mousse to your hair.

Pro tip: Use a towel, bonnet or a t-shirt to plop high porosity hair. This can be done for a longer duration, as compared to low porosity hair.

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