Curly Hair Brushes in Photoshop

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PhotoShop Brushes
BY Steve ON 14 Aug 2023

Curly Hair Brushes in Photoshop

Working with curly hair brushes in Photoshop can add a dynamic and realistic touch to your digital artwork or photo manipulation. As part of our PhotoShop tutorials, I have put together a step-by-step guide on how to achieve the effect of curly hair:

Step 1: Open Your Image

Start by opening the image in Photoshop that you want to work on. Make sure the image has a subject with hair that you want to make curly or enhance.

Step 2: Duplicate the Layer

Right-click on the background layer in the Layers panel and select “Duplicate Layer.” This will create a copy of your image to work on, keeping the original untouched.

Step 3: Select the Brush Tool

Choose the Brush Tool from the toolbar on the left side of the screen. Make sure to select a brush with soft edges to create a natural-looking effect.

Step 4: Adjust Brush Settings

In the top toolbar, adjust the brush settings to achieve the desired curliness and thickness of the hair. Play with the brush size, opacity, flow, and hardness until you get the desired results. Lower opacity and flow can help create a more gradual and realistic transition.

Step 5: Choose Hair Color

Select the appropriate color for the curly hair. You can either use the color picker to select a color from the existing hair or create a new color that suits the lighting and atmosphere of your image.

Step 6: Start Painting

Using your selected curly hair brushes in Photoshop, start painting over the hair areas that you want to make curly or enhance. Follow the natural flow of the hair while painting to make it look more authentic. If you’re working on a new layer, set the blending mode to “Overlay” or “Soft Light” to blend the painted curls with the original hair texture.

Step 7: Adjust Opacity and Blend

After you’ve painted the curls, you might find that the effect is too intense or not blending well. Adjust the layer’s opacity to control the intensity of the curls. You can also experiment with blending modes to achieve a more seamless integration with the original hair.

Step 8: Add Highlights and Shadows with curly hair brushes in Photoshop

To make the curly hair look more realistic, add highlights and shadows. Create a new layer and use a white brush with reduced opacity to paint highlights where the light would naturally hit the curls. Similarly, use a black brush for shadows to add depth and dimension.

Step 9: Refine and Smudge

Use the Smudge Tool to refine the edges of the painted curls and blend them more effectively with the original hair texture. This tool can help create a smoother transition between the painted curls and the natural hair.

Step 10: Final Touches

Review your work and make any necessary adjustments to ensure that the curly hair looks seamless and natural. You might need to go back and adjust the brush settings, opacity, and blending modes to achieve the best result. Remember that practice makes perfect, so don’t be discouraged if your first attempts don’t turn out exactly as you envisioned. Experiment with different curly hair brushes brush sizes, settings, and techniques until you achieve the desired curly hair effect in your project.

Why I Wrote This Guide to Curly Hair Brushes in Photoshop

I recently underwent a Afro hair transplant, embracing a cascade of stunning curls that now define my appearance. This profound personal change not only revitalized my look but also reignited my passion for discovering innovative ways to master the art of Photoshop, particularly when it comes to working with intricate curly hair textures.

I’ve embarked on a mission to refine my Photoshop skills, seeking methods that seamlessly blend art and technology to create visually striking and convincingly natural-looking curly hair effects. I hope you will find my step-by-step guide useful!