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thirstylocks
October 13th, 2013, 02:35 PM
I'm so frustrated to the point of crying. My hair is between APL and BSL. It is completely virgin - never dyed, very minimal heat, no hair products like gel, spray, mousse, etc etc. I keep it up when I sleep and most of the day. I use gentle shampoo and conditioner, I deep condition, I oil, I've used every moisturizing product I could afford, from the natural lines, to the coney-est of the cones. Nothing seems to moisturize my hair.

Its gotten so bad recently that my hair is breaking off at the bottom and middle of my hair. I have split ends on almost every hair on my head (I've looked through my hair for hours and S&D just isnt an option - it would take ages. A trim owuldnt help because the damage is all over my head.)

I just want to cry. I see girls with chemically processed hair. They straighten it every day. Their hair feels like baby hair - WTF!!??? Its NOT fair. I've troubleshooted this problem on LHC and with so many hairdressers and nobody understands my hair. I finally went to a friend of a friend who specializes in ethnic hair. She inspected my hair and asked me to come back when I didn't have hairspray in it - the really sad part was that I had nothing in my hair. It just felt so gross that she thought I had hairspray in int. She asked if I relaxed or straightened my hair, based on how it felt and looked, and said "I'm guessing your hair is naturally very curly?" My hair is at most a 2a. The best she could do was offer me some samples of deep conditioners that I had, of course, already used before on my own.

What gives LHC? There is no explanation for the disgusting state of my hair and I'm so sick of this!!

Firefox7275
October 13th, 2013, 02:59 PM
Lots of questions ...

First have you chelated AND clarified recently? What are all the products you are using? Do you know what your hair properties are (elasticity, porosity, coarseness)? How do you know your hair is not more than 2a? What do you mean by 'moisture' and why do you believe your hair needs that - are you confusing moisture (water) with conditioning? The reason I ask is that silicones, natural oils and butters do not moisturise - add or increase water - they are occlusives/ anti humectants/ sealants.

I note from a previous thread you were playing with your hair a lot: do not underestimate how much damage you can cause mechanically, that was a major part of the damage I had to grow out. Also a couple of threads about UV damage - how have you been protecting from that - do you have a hat or scarf which guarantees a specific SPF? IIRC something like 200 hours UV exposure is equivalent to bleaching your hair. Damage is cumulative, one form of damage makes you more at risk of other forms because the structure is already weakened.

You might also consider a hair analysis, you can ask her to look at hair from different parts of your head or compare ends to lengths or whatever you like within reason.
http://pedaheh.blogspot.co.uk/2013/08/goosefootprints-hair-analysis-with-my.html

spidermom
October 13th, 2013, 03:05 PM
What is the state of your water? How much sun exposure does your hair get?

Of course, hair health starts with your general health. I assume you've looked at diet, exercise, sleep, water. Hair won't be hydrated if you don't drink enough water on a regular basis, and it can take quite a long time for the hair on your head to show a change when you go from chronic dehydration to proper hydration, but with patience it will make a difference. Then there's the matter of getting enough healthy fats into your diet.

I really don't know enough about you to offer advice.

thirstylocks
October 13th, 2013, 03:47 PM
@ Firefox- thank you for the detailed reply. I clarify pretty regularly (every 2-3 weeks with a sulfate shampoo) but don't chelate. I'm now using organix shampoo/conditioner and regularly oiling. Whenever my hair gets too dry, I spritz it with water and it temporarily feels better - in fact, my hair looks and feels better the first day after I shower and then gets progressively dry the longer I go without washing it. I'm guessing this is lack of moisture? I live in NYC so our water is good - so good that everyone drinks from tap. As far as UV damage - that is something I want to attribute the damage to (as you've read, I have a pretty outdoorsy lifestyle, and spend especially a lot of time underwater. I also am an archaeology grad student so I spent 6 weeks digging in the sun for 6-7 hours a day.) But I oiled/conditioned my hair in the summer and always, always, wore a hat and kept my hair in pigtail braids. I'm not sure what else I could have done. I had no idea about how bad UV damage is for your hair - EEK.

I've always known I had course hair, but that hair analysis thing seems like a good idea. My hair is porous and I'm not sure about elasticity. Some strands break easily and some stretch pretty far. I know I have 2a because I tested it with one of the suggested methods on LHC ( i think it was shampooing with a sulfate shampoo, letting it dry and not touching it.)

@spidermom - I have a very healthy diet and exercise routine, I'm active and try to keep stress free. Unfortunately, I do not eat fish. I've only just started to realize how bad that might be so I have been taking omega-3 supplements (but only the past two weeks :/)


edit- forgot to add, even though i play with my hair, the damage is coming up on pieces of hair that i dont touch or play with.

lapushka
October 13th, 2013, 03:50 PM
You say you use minimal heat, but... what kind of heat (just a blow dryer or real heat (a straightening iron, curling iron))? If it is breaking off, heat is the first thing I think about. Could be old (or new) damage getting the better of you. Try doing an S&D mission (YES, do *try*) and try seeing if you've got any white dots in your hair.

thirstylocks
October 13th, 2013, 03:54 PM
@ lapushka - I flat iron my hair once every 2 months, tops. I don't have white dots, but I have a lot of split ends and sometimes my hair does that weird tiny right angle thing (I'm not sure how to explain it) and if I touch it, that little piece easily breaks off.

jrmviola
October 13th, 2013, 03:54 PM
You sound like you have the hair i had when i was swimming regularly. I evenutally just stopped swimming and chopped off several feet back up to apl. But that was before i knew about the swimming shampoo stuff. Maybe your answer lies there...

Firefox7275
October 13th, 2013, 04:12 PM
@ Firefox- thank you for the detailed reply. I clarify pretty regularly (every 2-3 weeks with a sulfate shampoo) but don't chelate. I'm now using organix shampoo/conditioner and regularly oiling. Whenever my hair gets too dry, I spritz it with water and it temporarily feels better - in fact, my hair looks and feels better the first day after I shower and then gets progressively dry the longer I go without washing it. I'm guessing this is lack of moisture? I live in NYC so our water is good - so good that everyone drinks from tap. As far as UV damage - that is something I want to attribute the damage to (as you've read, I have a pretty outdoorsy lifestyle, and spend especially a lot of time underwater. I also am an archaeology grad student so I spent 6 weeks digging in the sun for 6-7 hours a day.) But I oiled/conditioned my hair in the summer and always, always, wore a hat and kept my hair in pigtail braids. I'm not sure what else I could have done. I had no idea about how bad UV damage is for your hair - EEK.

I've always known I had course hair, but that hair analysis thing seems like a good idea. My hair is porous and I'm not sure about elasticity. Some strands break easily and some stretch pretty far. I know I have 2a because I tested it with one of the suggested methods on LHC ( i think it was shampooing with a sulfate shampoo, letting it dry and not touching it.)

@spidermom - I have a very healthy diet and exercise routine, I'm active and try to keep stress free. Unfortunately, I do not eat fish. I've only just started to realize how bad that might be so I have been taking omega-3 supplements (but only the past two weeks :/)

Chelate: you have nothing to lose. Consider a proper UV protective hat/ scarf if yours is not, Buff do them, most conditioners will do little to help. No idea what to do when underwater other than a swim hat but by all means keep oiling. For highly porous low elasticity hair coconut oil coconut oil coconut oil.
http://www.naturallycurly.com/curlreading/curly-q-a/dealing-with-damage-done-to-your-hair-bywater
http://www.naturallycurly.com/curlreading/ingredients/polyquaternium-59-sun-protection-for-your-curls

You don't say which Organix line but for coarse hair check your products for hydrolysed protein and drop it, it can make hair brittle and a build up can dry hair out and make it feel rough. Consider a leave in conditioner, many wash outs can be used in this way but do avoid proteins. The basic emollient (softening) ingredients of any conditioner (fatty alcohols and cationic surfactants) are weak humectants, they help the hair hold the right amount of water. If you think your hair is UV damaged consider ingredients like ceramides, 18-MEA and panthenol; these replace lost components of the cuticle, patch repairing and penetrating. The first two are challenging to find without proteins in the formula tho: try L'Oreal brands, Redken, Komaza Care Moja.
http://www.naturallycurly.com/curlreading/curl-products/curlchemist-porosity-and-curly-hair
http://www.thenaturalhavenbloom.com/2010/08/ceramides-patching-up-damaged-hair.html
http://www.naturallycurly.com/curlreading/products-ingredients/panthenol-hair-products
http://www.cosmeticsandtoiletries.com/formulating/function/repair/129803678.html

Not having oily fish is a health issue, not just long chain omega-3s but also bioavailable vitamin D in the months you are not getting UV exposure. Do you eat plenty of seeds rich in short chain omega-3s (ground flax, chia, to a lesser extent pumpkin) or omega-enriched eggs? That can help tho still doesn't replace oily fish. Do be aware an active lifestyle means you need more of every nutrient, for example a five times a week moderate to intense fitness routine would roughly double your needs.

HTH!

MidnightSunlite
October 13th, 2013, 04:29 PM
I would for this swimming shampoo jrmviola mentioned since you mention go underwater alot, right? I also read that you can over moisturize and give your hair too much protein. Dunno if that is your problem or not, but it wouldn't hurt to consider it. Plus just cause your hair dry to the touch and doesn't feel all wet or moist doesn't mean the hair isn't moisturized. It could be moisturized on in the side of the strand, since that is what matters mostly.. not the outside where most moisturizers sit.

thirstylocks
October 13th, 2013, 05:54 PM
I'm not a swimmer, I dive and surf, so I don't get the damage from chlorine but rather from saltwater and from the hood I wear when I dive.

Does anyone know why my hair would feel like it has hairspray in it??

@Firefox - funny you mentioned redken, I was just going to post that the only brand I haven't really toyed around with was redken and that that was the next brand I was going to try!Do you have any suggestions as to which line is best for my hair?

Also - I used to used coconut oil religiously but stopped for a while to try other types of oils. Perhaps its time to get myself a new jar of it.

caren
October 13th, 2013, 05:57 PM
Don't give up. Create a hair diary and approach like an experiment.
Try no protein, some protein, and lots of protein. Try cones and no cones. Try evoo, coconut oil, sesame oil, almond oil, aloe, cocoa butter, etc. Try even Vaseline and mineral oil. Try acv rinses. Take notes on what works and what doesn't for you. Everyone's hair needs are so different.
If you are worried about damaging your hair more by experimenting, collect your breakage and sheds to try it on them.
Good luck.

Marbid
October 13th, 2013, 06:56 PM
I agree with the post right before me. Your hair condition sounds like a mystery even to you. (especially to you). Treating it like an experiment (do it on your shed hairs just in case) is a good way to find out what is going on with your hair. Write down the results and how your hair reacts to the chemicals/oils/brands... It's a good way to narrow down and find out what you need to get your hair back to baby soft.

Kaelee
October 13th, 2013, 07:06 PM
My guesses: Buildup, hard water, and the one thing that keeps sticking in my mind- TOO MUCH moisture. Is your hair stretchy by any chance? You can totally overdo moisture.

CurlyMopTop
October 13th, 2013, 08:47 PM
Temporary thread hijack! I've had issues with my hair since spring! Couldn't figure it out for the life of me. Compounded the problem with summer sun, swimming (a couple times in chlorinated water) hair loose of course. Started having major breakage, so started experimenting, went back to sulfates (made it even worse) ect.... I could go on and on. I just gave up and chopped the last few inches off. Still felt crappy. After reading this thread it dawned on me, I hadn't done any type of Cheleating! Now, I have to confess I hate viniger, but don't have any special shampoo. My hair has always hated the diluted viniger rinses. It never dawned on me to use a stronger mix! I just mixed 1/3c. ACV with 1/3c. Warm water, applied it to my dry hair starting from scalp to the ends, let it sit for about 5 min., then rinsed in warm water, washed with non sulfate poo, put in leave in condish with a couple of drops of Argan oil. Holly crap my hair feels like mine again and it's not even completely dry yet! I could tell a difference as I was rinsing the ACV out! Mind you, the damage I already did will have to get trimmed away, but I can't believe the difference! Firefox I owe it to you! Thank you! Ok, end hijack. :D.

Magalo
October 13th, 2013, 09:05 PM
Everytime your hair get wet, the cuticle open up and let go of some moisture. If you're sealing your hair after with oil, moisture can't go back in neither. It could be the problem.

WilfredAllen
October 13th, 2013, 11:31 PM
I need to use some heat to get moisture into my hair

also, oil of any kind makes my hair feel nasty.


not saying either of these are what's going on with you, but since it's a mystery I'll throw in what I have discovered about my hair

if you ever get to a complete breaking point (pun noted), I recommend greenhouse method moisturizing (with no product, just water) and water only washes as a minimalist hair care routine

Flor
October 14th, 2013, 01:56 AM
I'm not a swimmer, I dive and surf, so I don't get the damage from chlorine but rather from saltwater and from the hood I wear when I dive.

Does anyone know why my hair would feel like it has hairspray in it??

How frequently do you surf? Saltwater can easily overdry hair. AND will make it feel like it has hairspray in it.

Audhumla
October 14th, 2013, 05:52 AM
How frequently do you surf? Saltwater can easily overdry hair. AND will make it feel like it has hairspray in it.
Agreed. If you don't thoroughly wash salt water off your hair it will dry stiff and crunchy. That's why they sell salt water in bottles and call it texturising spray.

Apart from that I agree with chelating your hair. Good water for drinking doesn't mean it's free from metals that can build up on your hair.
Also try completely cutting out protein (iirc the organix products have hydrolysed wheat protein in them and for me that's the one that seems to have the strongest effect).
I'm almost certain it will be one of those three things or a combination thereof. Don't give up or cut your hair before you've tried these potential easy cures first. Just remember that protein buildup can take a while to recover from if that's an issue for you and you have to stick to a protein-free routine and clarify a few times to get over it.
Also I think the organix range has a high dimethicone content. Going cone-free isn't necessarily something you need to do but maybe try a brand with a cone that's more easily washed off since dimethicone is one of the hardest to get off your hair with clarifying. Can lead to some pretty harsh buildup. Maybe try looking for one with no dimethicone but with amodimethicone which is reported to form a single layer on the hair and not be able to build up past that point unlike some other cones and is also relatively more soluble in water than other cones. Certainly a lot more than dimethicone.

Good luck.

Firefox7275
October 14th, 2013, 06:19 AM
I'm not a swimmer, I dive and surf, so I don't get the damage from chlorine but rather from saltwater and from the hood I wear when I dive.

Does anyone know why my hair would feel like it has hairspray in it??

@Firefox - funny you mentioned redken, I was just going to post that the only brand I haven't really toyed around with was redken and that that was the next brand I was going to try!Do you have any suggestions as to which line is best for my hair?

Also - I used to used coconut oil religiously but stopped for a while to try other types of oils. Perhaps its time to get myself a new jar of it.

Salts are drying, frequent water exposure causes hygral fatigue, read the links I am posting. Again chelate, then come back to us if your hair still feels this way. All we can do at present is speculate and make educated guesses, unless you try some of the things we are suggesting we cannot move forwards. A swimmers shampoo should chelate away more than just chlorine, it will work on mineral deposits too.

I know Redken Extreme has 18-MEA, ceramides and protein, I don't know which of the lines have 18-MEA and/ or ceramides without protein since I don't use silicones. Once you have chelated and read the ingredients on the products you are using at present (or post them here, we can 'analyse') we can't say if you might or might not have protein overload. Definitely try coconut oil for reducing porosity.

Hoods and hats rubbing on your hair can certainly contribute to mechanical damage, and wet hair is weaker than dry. Maybe piling oils or silicones onto your hair beforehand would help with 'slip'. Some line their sunhat bands with satin ribbon.

Really your thread is a positive one, we are finding plenty of possible culprits so there absolutely is a way forward for you. Before I came to LHC I had a lot of breakage from mechanical and chemical damage which I could not understand as I did not bleach nor heat style. I was totally underestimating the effect of daily ponytailing, brushing when wet, twirling the ends of my hair, 'refreshing' the lengths with the box dye for five minutes each time - things I thought were 'normal'. You can laugh but I didn't even know there is peroxide in dark box dyes, it was a real shock when I started reading ingredients labels!!

TiaKitty
October 14th, 2013, 08:00 AM
I'd also like to add that so many recommendations have been made here... please don't try them all at once! I like the idea of the journal and recording your results. If you try too many options at once, knowing which worked will be so hard!!!

Heni
October 14th, 2013, 10:08 AM
I don't have much to add, but I just wanted to say don't give up, surely has the answer to your problem. There is a lot of help here! I am sure it will be solved. Hugs :)

Emichiee
October 14th, 2013, 11:27 AM
Aside from all the good hair care advice you got, you might want to consider that it could be a health issue or a hormonal imbalance, which are the most common reasons for hair not at its best.
Genetics and hair care play a smaller part than health. Of course it is never good to abuse the hair with all sorts of treatments, but what I mean is that if you take care of it well and don't do anything all too harsh, it should not be 'this' damaged.
Normal hair can take a considerable amount of damage.
There are some people with really abundant hair, these people are lucky for their hair not to be affected by health issues, hormones or a dietary problem (yet, it can always happen later).

You don't have to be deadly ill or have to have obvious hormone problems for it to affect your hair.
It could be something as simple as a malabsorption (digestive) issue where your body does not absorb and break down nutrients efficiently, therefore you end up lacking key nutrients.
Since your body is very interested in survival ;) it first stops supplying the hair with nutrients. It is the least important (not to LHCers :P)
Well, this could easily be fixed with probiotics, enzymes, HCl...depending on how your gut is doing.
Should there be any damage a diet change is often advised...but a doctor would first need to check you.

One side note: Standard Hormone and Blood Testing is sadly pretty vague (surprising huh?) and can often not detect everything. So you should do it old school and always treat by symptoms as well, listen to your body, test out different things.

There could also be actual health issues like thyroid or diabetes that wreck havoc on your hair, so again...getting checked is a good idea. Damaged hair is NOT just a cosmetic issue. It is often your body trying to signal that there are health issues at play (unless of course - you cause obvious damage with bleach or heat etc.)

Hormones that are not in balance can cause cosmetic (hair, skin, body, aging) as well as health issues on the long run. Hormonal imbalances are so common because of toxins and endocrine disruptors we are exposed to in foods, cosmetics, plastic, water...literally everywhere. It is a new epidemic in a way. And then there is hormonal birth control which can throw the body off balance.

Write down the possible culprits in your life, get tested by great doctors, compare symptoms...that would be my suggestion and eventually you might figure out what causes the problem.

Like I said, if hair breaks easily at a not so short length even, and it feels funky and you are really not abusing it, then it can NOT be a hair care issue...there is just no way.

Something like build up can add to the problem, but not cause all this.
Which doesn't mean you won't benefit from the right care. Of course you should be as gentle as possible to your hair.

Mine was more brittle due to hormone related issues and what greatly helped was very gentle washes with minimal soap, lots of oiling (coconut oil) and frequent small trims and S&D. That is how i got throught that phase and eventually fixed the underlying health problems.
This summer I was able to "abuse" it with wearing it down lots and having it down in chlorinated water :lol:.

Emi

thirstylocks
October 14th, 2013, 03:38 PM
Thanks so much to everyone for the support :blossom: I'm so sad about all this. Really, people treat their hair far worse than I do, yet somehow my hair is in worse shape than even the most over-processed hair. I've been on the long hair journey for exactly three years now and have long since cut off the last of my bleached hair (I used to bleach and straighten every day) and now that my hair is virgin and untreated in any way, I don't see that much of a difference in its quality. Its really heart breaking. @Emichee mentioned that this might be due to hormones, and I'm interested in looking into this. I don't believe I am abusing my hair, and this amount of damage doesn't seem proportionate to how I care for it. A few splits and dry ends would be acceptable, but the terrible state of my hair is NOT acceptable for how I treat it. Still, my skin and nails are quite healthy....

I surf and dive a few weeks a year in the summer, 2-3 weeks perhaps. (Next summer I'll be literally drenching my hair in oils and conditioner before I go to the beach every time, lol. And before I'm out in the sun.)


I used some random pantene shampoo/conditioner my mom had in her bathroom to see if it would make a difference if I didn't use organix, and its really not that different. it still feels very dry and tacky. I'm ordering a chelating shampoo tonight and crossing my fingers that this will make a difference in my hair!!=/

renia22
October 14th, 2013, 04:33 PM
I just want to cry. I see girls with chemically processed hair. They straighten it every day. Their hair feels like baby hair - WTF!!??? Its NOT fair.

They are probably the same girls who eat whatever they want and don't gain weight :/

In addition to all if the great advice you got, check out the section in this article on breakage; specifically the section on "ambiguous hair". It gives step by step instructions on what to do in a situation like yours. Good luck!

http://m.voices.yahoo.com/hair-care-shedding-breakage-understanding-difference-405173.html

spidermom
October 14th, 2013, 04:40 PM
Some hair is more delicate and a lot more prone to damage. Mine is that way. I take really good care of it, and I can always find dozens of split ends when I search. There are always so many that I'd never be able to snip them all. My daughter colors and bleaches her hair plus flat-irons it several times per week, and the last time I braided her hair, I searched for split ends and found one. 1! That's all kinds of unfair!

I think the sun and surf might be enough to blame. The last time I went on vacation for sunning and snorkeling, I braided my hair with copious amounts of coney serum every day and washed it out every night. Usually I would use oil, but the oil I took with me was rancid, so I used the serum instead. The serum did a MUCH better job of protecting my hair from damage.

patienceneeded
October 14th, 2013, 04:46 PM
IMO it's the saltwater. If you are sun and saltwater at the beach (surfing) and saltwater with a dive-hood (scuba) then you will see exactly the type of damage and texture you are describing. My hair did that too back when I was diving regularly. Coat that hair with an oil you like before hitting the surf and see if it helps over time. Unfortunately, what is already damaged can't be fixed, just babied or masked by products.

jeanniet
October 14th, 2013, 06:50 PM
I agree that it's likely primarily due to the saltwater and diving hood. Even if you're not in the water surfing the whole day, you're out there sitting on a board, with your hair soaked in saltwater and out in the sun. All the regular surfers I've known (guys) had pretty trashed hair, although they didn't care that much.


I would also do the hair analysis Firefox suggested. It's not that expensive, and you'll get some good feedback on how your hair looks. You can let her know what your lifestyle is, and maybe she can give you some better insight.

AMD
October 14th, 2013, 07:00 PM
If you're in New York City, many stores have chelating shampoos. I use a swim shampoo that is sold anywhere from cvs to babys r us. It is in a blue bottle, don't remember the name.

I hope your hair improves

Emichiee
October 14th, 2013, 07:30 PM
Thanks so much to everyone for the support :blossom: I'm so sad about all this. Really, people treat their hair far worse than I do, yet somehow my hair is in worse shape than even the most over-processed hair. I've been on the long hair journey for exactly three years now and have long since cut off the last of my bleached hair (I used to bleach and straighten every day) and now that my hair is virgin and untreated in any way, I don't see that much of a difference in its quality. Its really heart breaking. @Emichee mentioned that this might be due to hormones, and I'm interested in looking into this. I don't believe I am abusing my hair, and this amount of damage doesn't seem proportionate to how I care for it. A few splits and dry ends would be acceptable, but the terrible state of my hair is NOT acceptable for how I treat it. Still, my skin and nails are quite healthy....

I surf and dive a few weeks a year in the summer, 2-3 weeks perhaps. (Next summer I'll be literally drenching my hair in oils and conditioner before I go to the beach every time, lol. And before I'm out in the sun.)

And I still really doubt it is the sun and salt water alone. That can bleach hair, make it dryer and cause a slight increase in damage but not cause problems of this sort! At least not to someone with good health - healthy hair.

I once had zero damage with classic length hair. Finding splits was hard! And my care wasn't any different then. Then hormonal problems hit in the form of raised prolactin levels and thyroid problems and my texture changed! My hair even became more frizzy with weird kinky hairs inbetween and it was less shiny. Since regulating my hormones the texture has improved so much. But every time I go through a hormone related shed (atm it happens often due to breastfeeding or rather my son refusing to breastfeed for a week at a time, so my hormones can go on a rollercoaster ride) I start finding more damage again and once the shed it over it normalizes. I even have frizzy and smooth sections in my hair! The bottom of my hair is frizzier, then it is very smooth around BSL and frizzy again around chin length, then silky again above chin length. I have spent years watching my hair going trough its ups and downs lol. ;)

Flor
October 15th, 2013, 02:19 AM
I surf and dive a few weeks a year in the summer, 2-3 weeks perhaps. (Next summer I'll be literally drenching my hair in oils and conditioner before I go to the beach every time, lol. And before I'm out in the sun.)


I used some random pantene shampoo/conditioner my mom had in her bathroom to see if it would make a difference if I didn't use organix, and its really not that different. it still feels very dry and tacky. I'm ordering a chelating shampoo tonight and crossing my fingers that this will make a difference in my hair!!=/

In the meantime, got any vinegar or lemons in the house?? Use about 2 tb.sp. of vinegar (apple cider or white wine) or juice of half of a lemon mixed with about 2 cups of water as your final rinse. You can follow with really cold water rinse if the smell troubles you. I have my bets on your hair getting softer and silkier immediately after this.

DreamWalker
October 16th, 2013, 10:28 AM
My hair occasionally freaks out rather like you're describing. It gets weird and crunchy - hairspray is a good way to describe it. The thing I've found that seems to consistently help is baking soda, lemon juice, and ACV. I just did that this weekend, and my hair is softer and nicer than it's been in a long time. I just mix baking soda into warm water (make sure it's pretty warm, and stir it a bit so the baking soda dissolves entirely) and rinse my hair with it. This time around, I added a very diluted lemon juice rinse, then a diluted ACV rinse. Something about lemon juice removing ions, and ACV restoring the pH balance of your scalp...I don't really understand the science though.

I'd also agree with the comments about too much moisture being an issue, as I've done that before. But I think too much protein can be an issue, too...so, just track it and see what your hair likes.

Do you use a BBB? I use mine a few times a week (not too many strokes) and that seems to help with crunchy hair, too. I know I'm very gentle with my hair, and I have a ton of split ends. I try to keep on top of them with S&D, but have never been able to really get ahead of them.

There are a lot of good ideas here, and I'd agree you can't try all of them at once. Just pick something, try it for a bit, keep track of the results, and adjust accordingly. Good luck!

thirstylocks
October 16th, 2013, 03:36 PM
Yes, I do use the BBB about once a week, but I usually comb through my hair with a wide-tooth comb.

I finally chelated my hair with the Ultra Swim shampoo! I've never used something like that before. I'm waiting for it to dry now and really anticipating to see what it comes out like!! I hope it is indeed softer. If not, I might have to accept that a) my hair is naturally coarse/dry and there is not much I could do to soften it up and b) I can't escape the imminent haircut

PS In case you were wondering how coarse my hair is - I'm pretty sure I could exfoliate my face my rubbing my hair on it. My hair would be an aggressive face-exfoliator.

sarahthegemini
October 16th, 2013, 03:38 PM
Yes, I do use the BBB about once a week, but I usually comb through my hair with a wide-tooth comb.

I finally chelated my hair with the Ultra Swim shampoo! I've never used something like that before. I'm waiting for it to dry now and really anticipating to see what it comes out like!! I hope it is indeed softer. If not, I might have to accept that a) my hair is naturally coarse/dry and there is not much I could do to soften it up and b) I can't escape the imminent haircut

I hope it turns out how you want it too :)

CurlyMopTop
October 16th, 2013, 05:32 PM
Patiently waiting on results. :D

Firefox7275
October 16th, 2013, 05:45 PM
Even if it only softens up a bit you'll know to use the chelating shampoo again again. Fingers crossed!

thirstylocks
October 16th, 2013, 06:22 PM
Hey all- the bad news is, my hair doesn't really look or feel any different.

The good news is that the swimmer shampoo didnt dry out my hair. I might try it again next week and see what happens.

My next move is to go on a hunt for a good protein free shampoo/conditioner and be protein free for a bit. Maybe that will soften up my hair!
If not - well, then I might give co-washing a try at long last.
I'll update again in a few weeks!

CoyoteSarah
October 16th, 2013, 09:30 PM
I have the exact same problem, in addition to hair loss. Recently ,I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism and according to the doctor, its responsible for my rapidly deteriorating hair. I also started getting horizontal ridges on my fingernails and very dry skin. When I mentioned that it had started some time before I went in for an appointment, he said that apparently your hair, skin and nails can hold some of the first signs of stuff like this. So, if it doesn't go away and/or gets worse, maybe get a checkup just in case?

Theres no fixing my hair now (the whole texture has changed) but if I had gone in when this first started getting bad, I could have gotten on meds for it sooner and there would be less damage to cut out eventually. :/ 'Cause like you, I've tried pretty much everything and take great care of my hair (which used to be strong, damage free and shiny and is now dull,coarse, broken, split on every end,etc). Soaking my whole body in coconut oil and wearing my hair up is whats getting me through at this point.

bananahanna
October 16th, 2013, 09:38 PM
I'm anxiously awaiting your results! Good growing to you :)

Flor
October 17th, 2013, 01:14 AM
Did lemon juice or vinegar rinse not work or you didn't want to try it?

lapushka
October 17th, 2013, 04:28 AM
Did lemon juice or vinegar rinse not work or you didn't want to try it?

She can't try everything all at once, can she? :)

Flor
October 17th, 2013, 04:34 AM
She can't try everything all at once, can she? :)

She didn't respond to the suggestion in any way, that's why I asked. For what I know, she could have missed the message or may have tried it already and it didn't work.

CurlyMopTop
October 17th, 2013, 05:39 AM
Good luck Thirstylocks. Thanks for the update. We're all rooting for you!

bananahanna
October 18th, 2013, 10:32 PM
http://web.archive.org/web/20111224043306/http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/vbjournal.php?do=article&articleid=44

check out this thread

thirstylocks
October 22nd, 2013, 08:53 PM
Hey all, here's an update:

I chelated again and then deep conditioned. I used protein-free products. I put some sesame oil on the ends of my hair and let it dry. My hair looks much better! I'm not sure if it was the chelating for the second time that did it but I suspect that it was that and a combination of using protein free products. I'm thinking that my hair had a protein overload.

I haven't used sesame oil in a very long time. Does it work like a ceramide? I know someone mentioned that sun-damaged hair likes ceramids. Perhaps this helped out as well!! For the first time, my hair felt like the oil/conditoner really SUNK in. Usually, it just sits on top of my hair and creates this "oily-dry" effect (AKA it looks obvious that my hair is really dry but has oil on it.)

SO - to FURTHER prove that my hair might have a protein sensitivity, after my mini-success in softer hair, I decided to buy Redken's UV Rescue cream, which has hydrolized protein in it. My hair almost immediately went back to that weird, tacky, hairspray-like texture.

What do you all think?? Am I on to something?

PS - @lapushka I have tried lemon juice in the past without results. I'm planning on trying vinegar sometime in the next few weeks, so I can make sure I do it on days when I don't need to go to school/work.

WilfredAllen
October 22nd, 2013, 10:50 PM
What do you all think?? Am I on to something?

sounds like it! I used too much protein and it turned my hair pretty nasty. Now, I have being very careful too avoid protein, and my hair has improved so much. If you suspect protein overload, I recommend being extra gentle to prevent mechanical damage. I really hope your hair continues to improve, and I hope that we solve the mystery, if only for the sake of satisfying my curiosity

redtuss
October 23rd, 2013, 04:13 AM
Protein can really ruin things, my hair is the same - just add a little bit of protein and it goes uuuuurk! Messes everything up and you need to start all over again :)
I'm glad that you managed to pinpoint protein in this stage, at the moment I would advice to focus on moisture and oils and see what happen - maybe it will need a bit of protein further along the road but maybe not at the moment.

Best of luck!

Firefox7275
October 23rd, 2013, 11:28 AM
Hey all, here's an update:

I chelated again and then deep conditioned. I used protein-free products. I put some sesame oil on the ends of my hair and let it dry. My hair looks much better! I'm not sure if it was the chelating for the second time that did it but I suspect that it was that and a combination of using protein free products. I'm thinking that my hair had a protein overload.

I haven't used sesame oil in a very long time. Does it work like a ceramide? I know someone mentioned that sun-damaged hair likes ceramids. Perhaps this helped out as well!! For the first time, my hair felt like the oil/conditoner really SUNK in. Usually, it just sits on top of my hair and creates this "oily-dry" effect (AKA it looks obvious that my hair is really dry but has oil on it.)http://longhaircommunity.com/forums/images/smilies/redface.png

SO - to FURTHER prove that my hair might have a protein sensitivity, after my mini-success in softer hair, I decided to buy Redken's UV Rescue cream, which has hydrolized protein in it. My hair almost immediately went back to that weird, tacky, hairspray-like texture.

What do you all think?? Am I on to something?

PS - @lapushka I have tried lemon juice in the past without results. I'm planning on trying vinegar sometime in the next few weeks, so I can make sure I do it on days when I don't need to go to school/work.

Pleased you have had more success this time!

The ceramide content of oils is miniscule: sesame oil does contain useful amounts of oleic acid which can penetrate, plus some linoleic which will smooth the surface.

Lemon juice/ vinegar won't do anything a chelating shampoo won't in terms of mineral deposits, but the shampoo should also help shift product build up.

Flor
October 30th, 2013, 05:52 AM
Lemon juice/ vinegar won't do anything a chelating shampoo won't in terms of mineral deposits

But it could seriously tighten those cuticles.

To the OP - vinegar scent doesn't linger in dry hair, if you follow the ACV rinse with cold water.

Ok, ok, I'm outta here with my vinegar pushing LOL

thirstylocks
November 5th, 2013, 06:47 PM
Thanks for all your support :D
I'm continuing to avoid protein and started to get my hair used to co-washing as well (one wash is regular shampoo, the next wash is co washing). My hair is not as disgusting as before, but it is still desperately dry and sometimes gets sticky/hairspray-ish to the touch. I'm not sure what could be causing my hair to feel so sticky, even after clarifying or chelating and not putting any product in the hair.

Anyway, at what point do you all say "I NEED to get a trim?" When do you realize you've exhausted all options? (I was thinking of starting a new thread asking this question but I don't want to flood the boards with my posts/)

Chromis
November 5th, 2013, 07:07 PM
Oooh I love when people come and make updates! All the advice I would have given was already said before so I just was lurking :)

For trims, I will trim when the bottom of my hair is "grabby" even when it has been clarified. Often I will have a lot of splits and white dots if I look in good lighting. This is different to me than trimming to even my hemline since even a very tiny microtrim is often enough to suddenly have nice fresh ends again. Also, my hair gets fussy and grabby if there are too many splits and dots in the length. Rather than trimming, then I search and destroy (with good hair scissors for either of course).

One other crazy idea, perhaps your hair is grabbing onto lint. I once had a flannel sheet set that made my hair feel really weird though it took me ages to make the connection. Finally I realized there was a tiny nucleus of lint in the middle of my tangles...that matched my sheets! Mystery solved and I stopped using that set.

HintOfMint
November 5th, 2013, 10:44 PM
Thanks for all your support :D
I'm continuing to avoid protein and started to get my hair used to co-washing as well (one wash is regular shampoo, the next wash is co washing). My hair is not as disgusting as before, but it is still desperately dry and sometimes gets sticky/hairspray-ish to the touch. I'm not sure what could be causing my hair to feel so sticky, even after clarifying or chelating and not putting any product in the hair.

Anyway, at what point do you all say "I NEED to get a trim?" When do you realize you've exhausted all options? (I was thinking of starting a new thread asking this question but I don't want to flood the boards with my posts/)

Glad to see you've found a solution to part of your problem! My hair can tolerate protein in small amounts, but it does much, MUCH better with out it.

As for your new question: For me it's when my ends are dry, possibly with a higher amount of splits, and I have exhausted all options. That means I've clarified, used a deep treatment, did a heavy oiling, abstained from protein for a while, and nothing has made my ends better. Another sign is when the ends are noticeably lighter than the rest of my hair. I've learned from experience that my hair needs a trim around the 6 - 7 month mark, and there's not a lot I can do to stave off that trim without having to hack off more than I'd like to at the next haircut. The hair is just old and around 6 months, my ends start to feel like it.

Eichan
November 6th, 2013, 01:06 AM
Sorry if I don't help, but... Have you tried drinking more and maybe a multi/a little more fat in your diet? I feel like that'd help .u.

I mean, imho diet is pretty important for hair. Even the length, at least for me .u.

starlamelissa
November 6th, 2013, 07:35 PM
Ahem, an option, would be to try old school hair care products designed for "ethnic" hair. Vaseline, mineral oil, heavy silicone type products. I know that a teeny pea sized amount of hair grease on the ends of my damp hair will keep my ends soft and happy till the next wash.

Grease has a steep learning curve, but, it's still popular for a reason. A tiny teeny amount will keep the moisture in hair until the next wash, with no need to reapply. In fact reapplying on dry hair is NOT recommended.

Now, I know vaseline is really looked down on, but I don't think it's damaging in the least. It contains no protein, and it'll last until...I don't know, the end of days?

thirstylocks
November 6th, 2013, 07:53 PM
@HintofMint - my ends are actually much lighter than the rest of my hair. Its been 13 months since my last trim/haircut so I might need to give in and just get one already.
@Eichan - I'm eating pretty well, but only just started to include healthy fats/omega 3 acids so I'm guessing it will be a while until i see results.
@starlamelissa - I was browsing through the ethnic hair products and did consider grabbing a few. A lot of them contained protein, though. I think I'll grab some deep conditioner or something, I have seen a lot of inexpensive ones at my CVS.
I've never heard of using grease or vaseline. Sorry if this sounds dumb, but where do you even buy grease lol? and how do you apply vaseline without it getting really messy?

starlamelissa
November 6th, 2013, 09:18 PM
Grease is just petroleum based hair product. It's like pomade, sort of. Anyways, there are a ton of these products on the market, however I like to keep it simple and use plain vaseline brand petroleum jelly, cuz you can use it for a million things, really. Blue magic, Tres Flores, and Murray's pomade are some name brands. But I use vaseline.

After washing and conditioning, and towel drying, while your hair is still damp, apply a teeny, tiny, barely there amount to the lower half of your hair. It helps to apply a very thin coating to to your the palms of your hands and then work it through your lengths. It will seal in moisture like nothing else ;)

I also like baby oil, a lot, and I apply it much the same as hair grease. However, I don't use any oil when I grease my hair. No need.

Seeshami
November 6th, 2013, 09:41 PM
I protein overloaded the naughty mess and now he hates protein like Squeek Doodle kitty hates baths so I strictly only use moisturizing conditioners now. They are great for razor burn too. Condition your legs right after shaving and then aloe after you rinse off and dry off.

The Naughty Mess says, "I hate baths too ya know. Squeek only gets them like 4 times a year, why do I get them about every 3 days?"

Because you're a jerk. And jerks get baths.