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No-Poo, Plopping, and Other Lessons Bella Learns at Dinner

Upon sitting down to dinner last night, my pal announced, "I will never use normal towels again." Now, she's rather dramatic, so I expected her to launch into a tale of why towels were the reason for all the world's problems. No dice. Before cluing me in to anything more, she added, ". . . and you shouldn't either."

She eventually clarified that face washing and showering were OK, but said she'll never again use one to dry her hair. Her decision came from a new stylist who advocates for the Curly Girl Method. In addition to their "no-poo" rule (that's no shampoo with sulfates), the method recommends drying hair with old t-shirts in an approach called plopping.

Totally intrigued, even with the silly-sounding slogans, I did some research and found that plopping sounded like something I'd want to try for my curly hair as well. Learn all about it when you


In order to decrease drying time and frizz, instead of air or towel drying, try plopping:

  1. Spread a t-shirt or microfiber towel on a flat surface.
  2. Bend over with your head down until your hair is in the middle of the cloth.
  3. With your head touching the cloth, pull part of the material up so the back of your head is covered with it (to the nape of your neck.
  4. Twist the two sides to form sausage rolls (illustrations here) and clip them.
  5. Remove cloth after about 30 minutes to reveal less frizzy, "plopped" locks.

I'm trying to find a "plop and lock" joke here, but instead, I'll just ask if you've had any success with this method.

Join The Conversation
Natalie-Love Natalie-Love 6 years
I have naturally long wavy hair which I used to straighten all the time- after I shampooed it would go frizzy and I'd have to flatten it out. A few weeks ago I changed to a sulphate free shampoo (Burt's Bees Grapefruit and sugar beet) and I really did notice a difference! Now I brush my hair while the conditioner is in it, gently pat dry, braid, go to sleep, and I wake up with soft wavy soft, smooth hair. As a University student, so glad I need to spend no time in the morning straightening!
Nicole14830270 Nicole14830270 7 years
Works wonderfully! I used an old t-shirt but plan on buying this: It's actually cheaper than I expected! I will definitely be drying my hair like this from now on, it's wonderful to have my hair dry frizz-less and more defined while I do my make-up with my hair out of my face. When I'm done with my make-up and putting on my clothes I just take it out, shake, and fix my bangs. It's a perfect no-muss no-fuss routine!
emilyann325 emilyann325 8 years
i'm doing this today. after reading so much about it, i must try.
starsinmypocket starsinmypocket 8 years
I've been plopping for about 2 weeks now and will NEVER let another terry cloth towel touch my curly locks EVER again! Im a big fan! I hope to try the sulfate free shampoo's soon. What about sulfates in styling product or conditioners??? Any word on that?
BethS BethS 8 years
I've been doing the no-poo and co-washing for 2 weeks now, and it's really made a difference, no more straightening my hair! I was surprised that my scalp/hair is not oily at all. The only problem is that I'm growing out bangs, and they don't look so cute curly :( When I do shampoo w/sulfate free shampoo I use Organixx coconut milk. They have it at Safeway for pretty cheap! The plopping didn't work so great for me, plus my boyfriend got too much of a kick out of it and kept taking pics of me with the "sausage rolls" on my head, so I just scrunch and air dry. I wish I had known about this method a while ago!
pollypo pollypo 8 years
Thanks, cary!
caryatid caryatid 8 years
oops, link to demo videos:
caryatid caryatid 8 years
sausage rolls to secure - is a godsend to me! she has some great demo videos, including one on 'plunking'/plopping/whatever you wanna call it. def check it out and i highly recommend island fantasy scent anything, smells so good!
pollypo pollypo 8 years
I am a little confused. Are you supposed to have half of your hair in each sausage roll or is the hair in the middle and the sausage rolls are just to secure the towel?? I would love to try this if anyone can help me wrap my brain around it - thanks!
Advah Advah 8 years
Ok, I made the bold move - Burt's Bees shampoo and conditioner (I'd been looking for an excuse to buy them for quite a while :P ), and plopping (with a towel as I couldn't find a big old tee). It's working really well so far! Usually my curls flatten once I've slept on them, but I'm on day 2 after washing my hair, and it still looks great! Thanks Bella!!
nestingdolls nestingdolls 8 years
nestingdolls nestingdolls 8 years
I used the t-shirt idea and I'm happy with he results. I had no clue that you shouldn't use regular shampoo on curly hair. i was wondering why my curls were so, blah! I was clueless. Instead of straightening my hair everyday, Im going natural. i am starting to love my curls.
PeachyKeen19 PeachyKeen19 8 years
Symphonee, how do you figure out whether you are a 3c and so on? I haven't checked that out for myself yet.
Symphonee Symphonee 8 years
I already don't poo and occasionally co poo. I use Carol's Daughter because her shampoo smells great and does not contain most of the extra additives and no sulfates. I didn't use her products for a couple of months and broke down and bought regular shampoo, big mistake. My hair looked like a sheep's behind. It was a dry, lifeless, dull pouf. I air dry my hair and I had heard plooping before. I am not sure of how it would work. I'm skeptical becuase I have 3c/4a hair but what the hey....
misslilad misslilad 8 years
just wanted to say that i plopped all weekend long and i cannot believe that i wasn't doing this sooner. got compliments on my hair and even on a rainy day like today i have no frizzes
PeachyKeen19 PeachyKeen19 8 years
Oh and yes sulfates are just BAD, definitely.
PeachyKeen19 PeachyKeen19 8 years
I'm really surprised that people didn't know about it, that's not to say I've tried it (I've been wanting to for yeaarsss...but I go to a Dominican Salon to get my hair done) Anyhow, I relax my hair and have been contemplating on going natural. Black girls, some Hispanic girls, are familiar with the no-poo system...doesn't it go all the way to stylist Andre Walker who has done Oprah's hair? I definitely there are Cacausian girls (with curly hair) that are familiar with the Curly Girl method...the book is featured on Amazon. I was going to go no poo after doing the "big chop" we'll see...
carhornsinapril carhornsinapril 8 years
Happsmjc, i'll pipe in on the sulfate-free question -- giovanni triple tea tree shampoo is a great option. make sure you clarify with a sulfate shampoo first that doesn't have silicones, and avoid other products with silicone, dimethicone--any ingredient ending in -cone, really--or you will experience some build-up on your hair after time. -cones can't be removed without sulfates, so you might need to be careful about that.
carhornsinapril carhornsinapril 8 years
YES! i cannot recommend no-pooing or plopping enough, to tame frizz and define curl. 15 minutes is a long enough plop, in my case, then i blow dry for a few minutes on low. perfect.
Celebrity Celebrity 8 years
i am so trying this over the weekend never heard of it but cant wait to see what happens. thanks bella!
mkvamme mkvamme 8 years
I've been using Pureology shampoo for over a year now, but this plopping idea sounds brilliant... if it works. My hair is so hard to tame, I'd be willing to try anything to not have to wake up two hours early to blow-dry and straighten the jungle on my head.
ThePerfectScore ThePerfectScore 8 years
yeah.. sulfates are bad but are in 99% of all cleaning products sold.... i tend to just do co-washes and only use sulfate shampoo to clarify my product build up. And I heard about the tshirt idea.. but i just blot with my towel... I really want to get a SHAM WOW for it haa.
Happsmjc Happsmjc 8 years
Chekseacbboyl, what are some of your favorite sulfate free shampoos? I'm very intrigued by this.
chelseacbboyles chelseacbboyles 8 years
I've been using Sulfate free shampoos for a while now and I LOVE LOVE LOVE them so much better. I have always splurged on fancy hair products simply because I hated my hair growing up and once I got to college I decided to be proactive about it and stop just using the Pantene that my mom had in the shower. That being said, having an expensive, fancy shampoo was not the trick. I learned about Sulfate free shampoos from my local Beauty First girl (a little plug for them), and she taught me that sulfates are something that most hair products have in them in order to prolong their shelf life and basically preserve them. These sulfates contain wax which when in your hair immediately pull all the moisture from the air around you into your hair causing INSTA-FRIZZ - no fun! Even if you have dry hair, these sulfates are not good for your hair either b/c OILY hair is different than moisturized hair and oily hair is what you get with sulfates. Ending comment... some GREAT sulfate-free brands to try are: Enjoy, Halo and Pureology Those are my faves.
macgirl macgirl 8 years
I'm going to try this! And for the record I would have loved a Plop and Lock joke ;-)
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