Sahithi Alla and Anjana Yelavarthy founded India’s first exclusive salon for curly hair needs in Hyderabad
Embrace your curls
Did you know that women have, over the years, faced discrimination over the texture of their hair? Well, if you were born with straight hair, you were probably oblivious to ‘curl shaming’. It is sad that showing up in non-straightened or ‘untamed’ hair is sometimes considered ‘unprofessional’ or ‘unkempt’. It’s high time we do not let ads and brands tell us that a woman’s hair is beautiful only if it is straight!
In an attempt to bring about a much-needed change, two women from Hyderabad — Sahithi Alla and Anjana Yelavarthy — have founded India’s first exclusive salon for curly hair needs. Called ‘Curl Code’ and nestled in Jubilee Hills, the salon runs with the simple agenda of making women embrace their curls. “Our salon exists to help women realise that they should not have to change the texture of their hair to feel confident or beautiful. They are all that and more, just the way they are,” shares Sahithi.
The founders had decided to start Curl Code when they failed to find a one-stop-shop for curly needs. Yes, curly hair needs different products, care and routine. Explaining what those are, Sahithi shares, “Curly hair, because of its texture, demands different products and methods. For example, curly hair needs to be cut when dry, as opposed to a wet haircut like for all other hair types.
Our salon introduces the ‘Curly Girl Method’ (CGM), an approach to hair care designed by celebrity hairstylist Lorraine Massey, for natural hair — be it coils, waves or curls. We give our customers a new routine, according to their hair’s needs — the right conditioner, shampoo, etc. We also do away with the traditional blow-dry method after a haircut. We style them naturally and use no harmful heat treatment.”
The founders are serious when they say ‘be natural’. Sahithi recalls how there have been customers, with ‘poky’ straight hair, walking in and asking them to curl their hair.
“We politely tell them that we do not alter hair and are here only to enhance their natural locks. Our job is to come up with a solution for a curly hair problem, we do not believe in temporary, artificial makeovers,” Sahithi says. Sahithi, herself, had been looked down on for her curly hair. She rues how she believed people when they told her that she did not look presentable enough if she didn’t straighten her hair. But she’s happy to see that things are slowly changing.
“Today, curly-haired models get paid more than those with straight hair. That’s probably because they look more authentic and exotic. Brands, too, are recognising that people’s hair comes in different types and textures, and that’s a great win.”
The Curly Girl Method is both simple and complex. It’s a no-parabens and no-heat way to good haircare
Step 1: ‘Reset’ Wash
This step requires you to wash your hair with a sulfate-filled shampoo to remove the silicone and wax buildup from your hair
Step 2: Cleanse
After the reset wash, use a sulfate-free shampoo to wash your hair and scalp. Massage the shampoo into the scalp for at least 60 seconds before you wash it off
Step 3: Condition
Take a generous amount of conditioner and scrunch it through your hair thoroughly. Detangle your locks using your fingers or a wide-toothed comb. Rinse out a little of the conditioner
Step 4: Style Rake and scrunch your styling gel into your wet hair from root to tips
Step 5: Dry Cup and scrunch the excess water with a cotton tee. Air dry only