30 Hairstyle Ideas for Curly and Thick Hair

| Last Updated: January 3, 2021

Thick, curly hair can be very hard to manage. Trying to find a style that exudes elegance and gives you the desired fierceness can be hard work. That said, when you nail it, you’ll find that those thick luscious locks give you a glamorous feel. When properly maintained, your healthy, thick and curly hair can stay tangle-free and easy to style and you’ll have no issues trying out any of these 30 beautiful looks.

1. Beautiful Blonde Bayalage

Bayalage dyes can create a beautiful natural look. By painting the hair in a graduated way, with a lighter color at the bottom, you can prevent roots from showing through in a striking manner and still keep the overall lightness that allows your curl to feel bouncy.

2. Voluminous Long Natural Curls

If you have naturally springy curls, growing your hair long and wearing it loose can give you a fierce look. Try running mousse through your hair to define the curls, paying special attention to the end to accentuate those corkscrews.

3. Thick Short Curly Hair

Cutting your hair shorter will create a bold and voluptuous look for those with natural curls. Cutting in layers will create a rounder feel and will keep the curls bouncy, without losing springiness from the weight. Define the curls by running a little oil through the hair.

4. Half Twist

To keep thick curly hair away from the face, and to create a softer look, try the half up, half down look. Section the top half of your hair and pull it away from your face on either side. Twist the sections and pin back, just behind the ear.

5. Inverted Bob for Thick Curly hair

The inverted bob is a great way to create defined springs, without losing bounce. By cutting the hair shorter at the back, close the nape of the neck, you can retain a longer look at the front, while creating volume at the back.

6. Long Gypsy Hair With Tapered Ends

This style is achieved by graduating the cut from top to bottom. Keep the hair thick at the top, and have layers cut to thin the hair at the bottom. To create the tousled look, turn your head upside down, spray hairspray into your hands, and scrunch your hair.

7. Half Up Pinned Back Style

​​This pinned back style frames the face and accentuates the neckline while creating a fuller feel to the hair. Take the top section of the hair and pull it upwards. Pin it at the back of the head, high up to create a voluminous look.

8. Messy Bob

The messy bob can be achieved with natural curly hair or curled hair. To curl it, use an inch thick curling tong and loosely curl the hair. Scrunch the hair with mousse and either turn the head upside down, or shake the hair to loosen out the curls.

9. Layered Hairstyle With Bangs

Cutting bangs into your hair helps to frame your face and accentuate your eyes. To complement this, cut layers around the face, which will further define the curls and create a framing effect while lightening the weight of the hair to keep the curls from dropping out.

10. Short Layered Curly Style

Layers in curly hair assist with keeping the curls full without pulling them downward. For a more ferocious, bouncy bob, layer the hair all over from just below the brow line. Work some mousse through the hair to keep curl definition.

11. Curly Updo With Flat Twist

This is an elegant look to help control a mane of thick curls. Section the hair into inch-wide strips and french twist each section to the back of the head. When all the twists are complete, gather the loose hair into a high ponytail.

12. Brown Curls with Highlights

Highlighting brown hair can help to give curls more definition as the lighter colors will reflect in the sun. By adding just a few highlights, you keep the original hair tone, but lift the feel a little, to create a more summery look.

13. Flawless Long Curly Hairstyle

In order to achieve big bouncy curls like this, you need to set your hair on rollers, no matter how naturally curly it is. Using heated rollers or a hooded dryer will help to set the style. Use a good hairspray to keep the curls from dropping out.

14. Braided Crown and Curly Hair

Braiding an area at the top of the hair will help to keep curl definition by reducing the weight of the hair. French braid from the center to the back in an outward motion so the braid lays on top. Gently tease out the edges of the braid to give this natural, flatter feel.

15. Brown Curly Hairstyle With Rose Gold Highlights

Rose highlights give a warm feel to curly brown hair. Lifting the color slightly helps the curls to reflect in the sun, giving a much shinier overall look. Only highlight the top of the hair, as this will exaggerate this style.

16. Bold Bandana Headband with Long Curly Hair

When you have long, thick curls, they can be hard to maintain. Use a bandana to keep them away from your face and to smooth down the top of the hair. Tie the bandana around the head, with the tie at the back and the tail flowing down your back for an elegant feel.

17. Effortlessly Dishevelled

To achieve this disheveled but voluminous look, use a good mousse in your hair. Gently tease apart the curls so that they have a more whispy feel. Create a deep side parting, and flick the hair over, spraying the hair to keep it on the side.

18. Curly Naturally Grey Hairstyle

Showcasing your naturally grey hair is one way to feel bold and beautiful. Curling grey hair is a little harder, due to its coarseness, so try to use a high heat and a good hairspray to set the curls.

19. High Curly Ponytail

The high curly ponytail is an optical illusion to make the hair look even longer. Section it into three parts: top, middle, and bottom. Slick the front of the hair and tie the top part into a very high ponytail. Next tie the middle layer to the middle of the head and the bottom layer at the base of the neck. Clip some hair to cover the hair ties and beef out the curls. This will give the impression of a super long, thick ponytail.

20. Pineapple Ponytail

This glamorous look accentuates the neck and jawline and creates a fun, fiery feel. Tip your head upside down and gather all the hair on top of the head. Clip the hair tie forward so the hair falls towards your face.

21. Braided Crown with Waterfall Braids

To create waterfall braids, you need to separate the top section of your hair. As you french braid it in an outwards direction, drop a part of hair each time you pick a new one up.

22. Low Updo With a Rose

Low updos are classy and timeless. Gather all your hair at the nape of your neck in a ponytail, leaving a thick section untied. Bend the ponytail under and run the thick section around, to hold the ponytail doubled over. Secure it with a beautiful hair piece.

23. Half up Half Down Princess Hairdo

This french braid gives the impression of a crown and creates a stunning bridal feel. Section 2 inches at the front of the hair and french braid outwards from ear to ear. Take the back of a comb and tease the braid outwards for the flatter, fuller feel.

24. High Bun on Curls

The high bun gives a tidier look to long and thick curls while keeping the curly vibe. Take the top section of hair at the back of your head. Twist it tightly and curl it into a bun, securing it with bobby pins. You can tease it out with a comb for a more messy feel.

25. Messy High Bun

High messy buns are a beautiful way to casually frame the face and highlight the cheekbones. Turn your head upside down and gather all the hair on top of the head in a ponytail. Take a second hair tie and loop the hair back over itself, letting a few strands dange down.

26. Straight Bangs With Curly Hair

Straight bangs can frame the face and give a more formal feeling to loose curly hair. You can either blow out your bangs with a hairdryer and a round brush or you can use a flat iron to achieve this.

27. Layered Hairstyle With Thick Curls

To create big, thick curls like this, you’ll need a curling tong with a wide barrel, around 2-2.5 inches. If you want to create the feel of thickness with natural curly hair, cutting layers into it reduces the weight, preventing it from pulling down on itself and losing curl definition.

28. Mid Length Feathered Hairstyle With Bangs

Mid-length curls tend to keep their springiness better than long hair. Combine this with side bangs for a sexy, flirty feel. You can achieve this kind of look by curling your hair with a flat iron and flicking your bang to the side.

29. Soft Curls With Purple Blue Pastel Highlights

This pastel blue look has a very mermaid feel to it. For those with dark hair, you will need to bleach it first. You can paint on various blue shades at the different layers, to create this textured and gradienteed feel. To soften your curls like this, gently run your fingers through them.

30. Messy Layers on Medium Curls

Messy curls are easy to maintain and always look sexy. Turn your head upside down and rub a little mousse in your fingers. Scrunch your curls to give them a messy feel and shake your head. Sea salt spray can also give this look.


While curly and thick hair is undoubtedly hard to manage, it can give some incredible looks. From classy updos to stunningly fierce down styles, curly thick hair has a lot to work with. When trying to style your hair, consider your own face shape and the parts you would like to draw attention to.

Try to play with different up and down styles before cutting into the hair. If you find that your hair tends to drop its curl, introducing layers will help to reduce the weight and boost those curls. Playing with color is also fun, with deeper, autumnal shades in the fall, and fun, flirty hues in the summer to really accentuate that full head of curls.

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Hi I'm Emilia! I like to think of myself as the "crash-test-dummy" of the hair world. Whether that means testing out the newest curling iron or going with fresh hair styles. I like to mix it up. I share my thoughts on Caffe Hair based on my first hand experience!