Does hair plopping actually work? A field study

The lazy gal’s solution to perfect curls yielded shocking results.

Mar 1, 2020, 1:10 am*

IRL

 

Jam Kotenko

Bad hair days are the worst, especially for curly haired folks like myself. I cannot tell you how many mornings I deal with extremely tangled hair and having to carefully unknot clumps with my fingers, for fear of going bald from too much brushing and hair fall.

Trips to the hair care aisle at the supermarket can be extremely painful—there are just too many products that promise to showcase your sexy waves, but are too pricey to buy and, let’s face it, a lot of hassle to use.

It’s a good thing there are a lot of women out there just like me, looking for a quick and easy way to feel beautiful. While looking for crazy hair solutions, I stumbled upon a video that detailed a process called “plopping,” which user Donata White defines as a no-heat method for achieving frizz-free, voluminous curls.

Naturally, I had to try it.

Here’s what my normal, everyday hair looks like:

Jam Kotenko

It’s almost straight and flat on top, with tiny waves at the ends. Depending on the day, the wavy part can get poufy and really messy.

This is what my hair looks like wet:

Jam Kotenko

If you compare it to White’s post-shower curls, mine is a lot flatter and dull-looking. (She doesn’t actually look like she needs the boost, to be honest.) My hair could use a bit of sprucing up.

Confession: I normally don’t put anything in my hair other than shampoo and conditioner (using Garnier Color Shield for both), so I can’t say I tried hard to style my hair to its full potential. I am hoping that this plopping thing is the lazy gal’s solution to perfect curls.

Anyway, based on the video’s instructions, I was supposed to put in product. I looked up the items she used, and it’s an expensive formula: $8 for an 8-ounce bottle of the TRESemmé Platinum Strength Strengthening Heat Protect Spray, $9 for a 3.3-ounce bottle TRESemmé Shine Serum Keratin Smooth, and $3 for a 10-ounce bottle of Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine Intensely Smooth Leave-In Conditioning Cream. Forget price, that’s just a whole lot of product.

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I rummaged through our bathroom crap pile and I found a leave-on conditioner impulsively bought for $5 at Walmart more than six months ago. I hardly ever used it and this seemed like the perfect opportunity to do so.

Jam Kotenko

I went nuts spraying it all over my wet hair and then applied a detangling comb.

Jam Kotenko

Then I took one of my husband’s cotton T-shirts and flattened it out on the bed.

Jam Kotenko

If you’ll notice, the shirt I used had long sleeves. That’s because we tried (I got my husband involved in my evening hair shenanigans because #romance) using a regular T-shirt and it wouldn’t knot together. I wasn’t only blessed with unmanageable hair but also a larger-than-average head.

I proceeded to assemble my nighttime headpiece.

Jam Kotenko

Not quite what White had in mind, but I guess this will have to do.

This won’t get me laid for sure.

This won’t get me laid for sure.

Jam Kotenko

Had to go to bed with my cotton helmet on, all for the love of beautiful, curly hair.

Jam Kotenko

Sometime during the course of my tossing and turning, my bulky bandana became some sort of makeshift sleep mask, which was convenient because I hate the first five seconds of waking up.

Jam Kotenko

“Want me to take photos of your hair?” were the first words I heard, rather than good morning. (I have the most supportive husband ever.) Grumpily, I got up and unraveled my T-shirt turban.

Jam Kotenko

Whoa… it worked! I actually have awesomely curly hair. And right after I got out of bed, too.

Jam Kotenko

And with that, plus a GPOY, I hereby hail my plopping experiment a success.

Jam Kotenko

Photos by Jam Kotenko

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*First Published: Jun 18, 2015, 4:59 pm