Here’s the deal: When you transition to natural hair, your tresses can start to feel tough. But before you throw on your widest-brimmed hat and run for the nearest salon, slow down and get schooled. Natural hair can be soft and pliable—and easy to style and maintain. All you have to do is follow these three simple rules from

1. Moisturize Correctly

Since textured hair tends to be dry, it’s even more important to make sure your hair is properly moisturized. Here’s a simple fix! Fill a spray bottle with water and spritz into your curls a few times a day. And stay away from “sealing products” that use oil as a base ingredient—these dry your hair when used before a water spritz or water-based moisturizer. So toss that mini spray bottle of water in your purse, and you and your hair are good to go.

2. Remove Buildup

Whether you use two or 20 products (natural or not), this all adds up to product buildup of chemicals, oils and dirt that can make your hair greasy, waxy and heavy. To clean up the mess, use an organic hair wash or a clarifying rinse with apple cider vinegar. And try to let your hair breathe between product applications.

3. Avoid the Harmful Stuff

Does your shampoo have sulfate? Do your styling products contain baking soda? Not sure? Take a close look. If you don’t know what’s in the bottle, you may be harming your strands. For example, if you wash your hair and it feels extremely clean, that might be a sign you’re stripping away healthy natural oils. The result? Dry, breakage-prone hair. To revive tresses, use a deep conditioning treatment after washing (with healthy shampoos, natch!).

Looking for more hair-health advice? Click here to read dermatologist-dispensed, science-backed hair-health advice.