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rosegarden
June 26th, 2015, 06:23 AM
Hello there everyone!

Right now I'm feeling a tad bit overwhelmed by all the time, effort, and patience it will take to achieve the hair that I want, so I've decided to turn to this forum for advice and moral support. (I'm pretty sure it's ok to ask for really specific advice, right? If so, let's get started.)

My hair right now:

Is slightly below collarbone length
Has a layer that was a fringe once upon a time ago
Has a bit of a wonky hemline (but a low amount of split ends) from a homemade haircut/hair restart from a few months ago
Is still adjusting to a water-only routine (aka VERY OILY, especially considering that I'm a teenager)
Not living up to its potential

My hair goals for the future:
Clean hair with a water only regimen (this bit hopefully happens in the NEAR future! :D)
All hair is the same length (no layers)
A substantially long length (tailbone or classic, I might even grow it out to terminal someday 'cos im curious)
Little to no taper/thinning(before my hair restart, it was at waist length with a weak hemline, something i would like to avoid if at all possible)
When my hair reaches a good length, I would like to have some (healthy) fairytale ends(this doesn't have to be an oxymoron, i just like the look of a more natural hemline over a blunt one)

Also:
I'm considering dyeing with henna or lightening with honey(when my hair grows out), but we'll see what happens. I like my natural color well enough.
I want to have a good repertoire of hairstyles and the hairtoys to make them possible (all safe for my hair of course!)
I'm pretty low maintenance/natural when it comes to hair and body care and stuff.

Any advice on how to make these hair goals possible would be much appreciated! :)

Seeshami
June 26th, 2015, 06:30 AM
Water only doesn't always work for everyone. It did not for me and thats all the advice I can really give.

amino
June 26th, 2015, 06:36 AM
How long have you been doing WO? At this point to me it seems like there's not much you can do except wait for your hair to adjust to that treatment. I don't think henna-dyeing will be very useful at this poin tbecause your hair hasn't adjusted yet.

Hairstyle wise...
At this point you may be able to do half-ups with your hair, or put it in a ponytail? But beyond that at CBL I don't remember being able to do much with it except tie it back—my hair is finer than yours, which I believe makes updos easier?

What kind of brushes and combs are you using? How do you brush your hair?

ETA:

Out of curiosity, why water only? Do you have a sensitive scalp, are you allergic to the ingredients in most shampoos, or are you just curious?

Arctic
June 26th, 2015, 06:43 AM
Honey lightening also does not work for everyone, the results might be very subtle, and since it is based on peroxide, it too can be damaging.

Before you jump to henna wagon, consider it a long time very carefully. If you want to stop hennaing, it's most of the time impossible to remove and needs to be cut off.

Hairstyles: I have many style ideas with photos in my blog for shoulder+ length hair. Most of the time you don't need fancy hair accessories, if they are not your style. I personally don't care for them much.

Feye's self trimming method might help you correct your hemline.

If you want to keep your hemline thick-ish as you grow, you'll probably need regular micro trimming (unless you are one of the rare few who seem to be able to just grow and yet their hemline keeps shape).

Arctic
June 26th, 2015, 06:51 AM
Hairstyle wise...
At this point you may be able to do half-ups with your hair, or put it in a ponytail? But beyond that at CBL I don't remember being able to do much with it except tie it back—my hair is finer than yours, which I believe makes updos easier?


I keep bumping into this statement over and over and over.

Many many hair styles are indeed possible at shoulder length hair. I even started a hair style project to prove it (in my blog). Ofcourse much depends on the hair thickness and slipperiness, but I am quite sure there are styles for everyone. If hair is thick, instead of one bun, make two or three and so on.

If the person who does for some reason (skills or hairtype etc) difficulties with hair styles at shoulder-collabone-APL length, it doesn't mean everyone has.

Sorry I got on the soapbox, this subject just seems to come up so often I get a bit ticked off by it. Nothing personal towards you! :flowers:

rosegarden
June 26th, 2015, 06:54 AM
I've been doing WO for a while now, a bit less than a month. My hair is just beginning to adjust(thank goodness :D). I don't really think I'll try coloring my hair soon.

Other than wearing it down,I can pretty much put my hair in a ponytail, or a rather sad-looking braid(better for sleeping in than anything else). I also like to put a flower in my hair: http://www.rookiemag.com/2015/05/how-to-wear-flowers-in-your-hair/ That always gives me a boost of self confidence!

I guess I'm doing WO because I'm worried about detergents (and also ACV and baking soda) adversely effecting my hair. I guess you could just say I'm curious too! :D

amino
June 26th, 2015, 06:59 AM
I keep bumping into this statement over and over and over.

Many many hair styles are indeed possible at shoulder length hair. I even started a hair style project to prove it (in my blog). Ofcourse much depends on the hair thickness and slipperiness, but I am quite sure there are styles for everyone. If hair is thick, instead of one bun, make two or three and so on.

If the person who does for some reason (skills or hairtype etc) difficulties with hair styles at shoulder-collabone-APL length, it doesn't mean everyone has.

Sorry I got on the soapbox, this subject just seems to come up so often I get a bit ticked off by it. Nothing personal towards you! :flowers:

Don't worry about it! I've really been wondering about it. I'm remarkably lazy with my hair, so I don't remember doing anything with it. I found it hard back then to find hairstyles I could do with my hair. It's also partially because I was thinking about one-bun styles, which now that I think of it is a bit bizarre.


I've been doing WO for a while now, a bit less than a month. My hair is just beginning to adjust(thank goodness :D). I don't really think I'll try coloring my hair soon.

Other than wearing it down,I can pretty much put my hair in a ponytail, or a rather sad-looking braid(better for sleeping in than anything else). I also like to put a flower in my hair: http://www.rookiemag.com/2015/05/how-to-wear-flowers-in-your-hair/ That always gives me a boost of self confidence!

I guess I'm doing WO because I'm worried about detergents (and also ACV and baking soda) adversely effecting my hair. I guess you could just say I'm curious too! :D

Oh, okay! Then I think that if you are going to adjust (a lot of people give up or don't adjust at all), it shouldn't take more than a month. Have you found the WO thread yet?

rosegarden
June 26th, 2015, 07:05 AM
My hair tends to be really dark at the roots-when it grows out the ends are lighter. I cut off all of that light colored hair, so that's probably why I'm thinking of changing the color.
I don't like the idea of having to dye my roots to match the rest of my hair, or grow out the natural color and cut of all the hennaed stuff. That sounds really time consuming and awful. I don't think I'll dye my hair after all.

rosegarden
June 26th, 2015, 07:07 AM
No, I haven't. I think that might be really helpful though!

Nique1202
June 26th, 2015, 07:08 AM
I guess I'm doing WO because I'm worried about detergents (and also ACV and baking soda) adversely effecting my hair. I guess you could just say I'm curious too! :D

If WO ends up working for you then that's great, but keep in mind that plenty of people grow to classic, fingertip, knee, even floor length washing every day with sulfates and using 'coney conditioners, so don't be too afraid of using drugstore products. The way you wash and detangle and style your hair will have more effect on damage than the shampoo and conditioner you use.

Chromis
June 26th, 2015, 07:14 AM
If you want to clean your hemline up a bit, I'd suggest using Feye's Self Trim method: http://feyeselftrim.livejournal.com/ but only cut off a centimetre at a time. That will let you keep growing while slowly evening things out.

Water only might be a tiny bit tricky only for a couple of specific reasons, which might not apply to you. Thing 1: It is often a little easier if your hair is a little longer, since the sebum can be brushed down more hair to soak it up. From what I can tell of my own head, my scalp makes the same amount of oil no matter how long my hair is, so when it was short, it needed more frequent washing to keep from looking like an otter slick. Thing 2: Since you are a teen, biologically speaking, many people make *more* oils as all your hormones and whatnot do their thing, so it might suddenly work easier later on too (I say this not as a "wait until you get older" but more as encouragement that there might still be future hope!). Not everyone is the same, but if it is not working well, it might be a combination of those two factors. I washed my hair once a week growing up and it was fine, although I was not water-only. Other teens seem to need more frequent washing.

If WO, isn't giving you the result you like, your most probable compromise would just be stretching washing (I still do this as a not-teen, as do many others here) and you can very likely dilute your shampoo a bit as well. I use shampoo bars myself and am happy to spread the good word if you are looking for more natural options. (Not that I am putting down conventional products, just that they seem more in line with our OP's post, and the natural thing does work great for many of us too. Lots of heads, lots of good options!)

I do love henna, although you will almost certainly need to bend the water-only in order to use it. Even I use a natural conditioner to wash the mud out with instead of my beloved shampoo bars! It's the only reason I have conditioner at all. On the bright side, the stuff lasts me ages, haha. Lots of people like thinner conditioners for this, but I find I use less of the thick ones, even with what feels like using handfuls every time. I'll just assume you already understand that it is permanent and messy :)

I would totally check out Arctic's blog and search out styles of your length. Growing out would have been so much nicer had I known sooner how to do fun updos and my hair would have been happier for it too!

lapushka
June 26th, 2015, 07:22 AM
I wouldn't recommend BS as an alternative to shampoo - at all. It is very alkaline and drying on the hair. Regular sulfates aren't nearly as bad as BS is!

rosegarden
June 26th, 2015, 08:01 AM
Ah, thank you for such a sweet and encouraging reply! :)

I'm currently recovering from an earache so I can't get my ears wet for a while (no mermaid bathtub soaks!) so my scalp is a lot oiler than usual. I actually kind of forgot about this and that made the problem seem worse than it actually was. It makes sense that having longer hair=having oil more spread out and less noticeable. And I really do hope that WO can become easier in the future, that would be great!

Thanks for all of your help!

rosegarden
June 26th, 2015, 08:02 AM
Ah, thank you for such a sweet and encouraging reply! :)

I'm currently recovering from an earache so I can't get my ears wet for a while (no mermaid bathtub soaks!) so my scalp is a lot oiler than usual. I actually kind of forgot about this and that made the problem seem worse than it actually was. It makes sense that having longer hair=having oil more spread out and less noticeable. And I really do hope that WO can become easier in the future, that would be great!

Thanks for all of your help!

flickm
June 26th, 2015, 08:49 AM
Having just had quite a lot cut off to remove uneven length, damage etc (in April), i now regret it, so my suggestion would be to delay cutting till you have enough length to be encouraged by how long it's getting, then trim a bit at a time. On balance, i would rather be, at this moment, sitting here with hair heading to waist length and an uneven hem, than hair growing back and only now at armpits.
It's a family characteristic for our hair to be a lot darker at the roots. Again, once your hair is long, most of your hair will be lighter, so why bother with colouring. I have henna in mine now, but that's because i got fedup with trying to blend blonde with increasing grey.
As for care, i think it's possible to nurture your hair without going to extremes. I tried no poo for two years, but my scalp stubbornly refused to adjust enough for me not to wash it at all. Now i use shampoo bars and a vinegar rinse once a week, and that seems to be a happy balance. I wear my hair loose, and I don't fuss about protecting it from the wind (I LIKE the wind in my hair!), but I'm now careful to never brush; I use a horn comb sparingly, and i never, ever put anything sharp or any elastics in my hair - I destroyed my hair with elastic hair bands and am growing out layers where it has snapped off.
Other than that, eat a healthy diet and get enough sleep when you can.

endlessly
June 26th, 2015, 10:43 AM
Well, back when I had your length hair, I was washing it and styling it daily, so I don't have any experience with the WO method since truthfully, I couldn't live without my shampoo and conditioner. That being said, because my hair was in great condition, it grew very quickly, but what really helped me the most was honestly just the fact that I never paid attention to it growing and I didn't stress. Most on this site that are struggling to grow their hair have become too fixated on having it grow very long very quickly and then they feel frustrated that it doesn't seem to be doing anything. So, my best advice is to just take a step back and relax a bit. Take care of yourself first because what goes into your body will affect the health of your hair, and try not to worry too much. Depending on your growth rate, it could take a few years to achieve the length you're aiming for, so try not to think too far ahead. It certainly doesn't hurt to plan and take care of yourself now so you can make your hair as healthy as possible in the future, just know you're in for a bit of a wait. I would suggest seeing how the WO method is working for you and worry about trimming your hair once you gain more length - don't make any drastic decisions. Neglecting my hair actually works the best for me and quite a few others on here, so just give it some time and don't stress too much. Best of luck!

flickm
June 26th, 2015, 10:58 AM
but what really helped me the most was honestly just the fact that I never paid attention to it growing and I didn't stress. Most on this site that are struggling to grow their hair have become too fixated on having it grow very long very quickly and then they feel frustrated that it doesn't seem to be doing anything. So, my best advice is to just take a step back and relax a bit. Take care of yourself first because what goes into your body will affect the health of your hair, and try not to worry too much. Depending on your growth rate, it could take a few years to achieve the length you're aiming for, so try not to think too far ahead. It certainly doesn't hurt to plan and take care of yourself now so you can make your hair as healthy as possible in the future, just know you're in for a bit of a wait. I would suggest seeing how the WO method is working for you and worry about trimming your hair once you gain more length - don't make any drastic decisions. Neglecting my hair actually works the best for me and quite a few others on here, so just give it some time and don't stress too much. Best of luck!

This is such good advice and so true. I've had mine cut most years, to shoulder length in the spring, then, by the end of the summer it's back down below my bra strap. I never notice how quickly it gets there (pretty fast i think) - but now I've decided I want to grow to waist or hip, I spend my time trying to see if it's grown any more, and it seems to be so slow.

lilin
June 26th, 2015, 01:04 PM
Hello there everyone!

Right now I'm feeling a tad bit overwhelmed by all the time, effort, and patience it will take to achieve the hair that I want, so I've decided to turn to this forum for advice and moral support. (I'm pretty sure it's ok to ask for really specific advice, right? If so, let's get started.)

My hair right now:

Is slightly below collarbone length
Has a layer that was a fringe once upon a time ago
Has a bit of a wonky hemline (but a low amount of split ends) from a homemade haircut/hair restart from a few months ago
Is still adjusting to a water-only routine (aka VERY OILY, especially considering that I'm a teenager)
Not living up to its potential

My hair goals for the future:
Clean hair with a water only regimen (this bit hopefully happens in the NEAR future! :D)
All hair is the same length (no layers)
A substantially long length (tailbone or classic, I might even grow it out to terminal someday 'cos im curious)
Little to no taper/thinning(before my hair restart, it was at waist length with a weak hemline, something i would like to avoid if at all possible)
When my hair reaches a good length, I would like to have some (healthy) fairytale ends(this doesn't have to be an oxymoron, i just like the look of a more natural hemline over a blunt one)

Also:
I'm considering dyeing with henna or lightening with honey(when my hair grows out), but we'll see what happens. I like my natural color well enough.
I want to have a good repertoire of hairstyles and the hairtoys to make them possible (all safe for my hair of course!)
I'm pretty low maintenance/natural when it comes to hair and body care and stuff.

Any advice on how to make these hair goals possible would be much appreciated! :)

Hi rosegarden!

I am WO. I've tried it in the past and it was a massive failure. But this time, it's working very well for me.

I have to say my hair is much shorter than the first time, and that might be part of the reason it's working really well. BUT there is also another major difference between now and the last time I tried this: I got a shower filter.

For me, this was a HUGE improvement! The minerals in water can stick to your hair, leaving it waxy and oily and reducing water's ability to wash away oils. I cannot recommend getting a shower filter highly enough. Alternatively, you can make "miracle water" by adding a pinch of citric acid and asorbic acid. This will help the minerals settle out, and you can wash your hair with that instead of the regular tap water.

Make sure you are scritching well! This is important. Let water run over the hair for a minute or two to soften the oils, then scritch and preen it through your hair. I soap my hands once or twice to clean any oil that might be there off.

It took at least 2 months for me to start seeing the full potential of my hair with a WO routine, and 3 for it to become consistent. This is an adjustment that requires time. Also, don't WO-wash every day. Your hair will probably feel better the second day, as it re-absorbs the oils that were brought to the surface by the water. This is true for both me and my partner. Our hair feels much cleaner the day after a wash.

These days, my scalp is so adjusted that I actually find water can over-clean it. So I pre-oil before every other wash. Yes, really. It's working beautifully for me right now.

There is still a possibility straight WO may not work for you regardless. It doesn't for everyone. Ultimately, there's no such thing as a universally good hair care routine. I may find that as my hair gets longer, WO gets more difficult.

If WO simply doesn't work, there are many natural options you can consider. I'm a big DIY'er, and personally I love soap nut liquid. I suggest combining it with a thickener (xanthan gum, guar, etc) to make it easier to control. It's a mild nonionic surfactant which is quite gentle to hair. It does not foam like regular shampoo. You need to give it a good rub for it to work properly. Doing this once every couple weeks may be all you need.

Try Feye's method for self-trimming. It's an easy way to wind up with pretty consistent length and a controllable hemline. Maybe trim once every few months, so you don't feel like you're losing too much progress on length.

I love hair sticks and hair combs. With a bit of practice, you can do a lot of styles with them that take virtually no time.

yahirwaO.o
June 26th, 2015, 02:26 PM
I wouldn't recommend BS as an alternative to shampoo - at all. It is very alkaline and drying on the hair. Regular sulfates aren't nearly as bad as BS is!

Yes BS is terribly awful for hair that even the strongest SLS shampoo is gentle compared to it!!! :pumpkin:

Lianna
June 27th, 2015, 12:33 PM
I think your hair is ready for the sock bun. You can also try two french/dutch braids for some braid waves. Wash it until it's clean, doesn't matter the method. Healthy scalp grows hair. If you change from WO someday, oil the ends lightly after washing. Wait.