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riahbobiah93
December 10th, 2016, 08:11 PM
Hello, all! I need some help!

I recently decided that I didn't just want hair that wasn't short - I wanted hair that was long, long, long! But one problem that I have and have always seem to have had is keeping healthy ends. I stopped chemical dyes years ago (5? 6? 7 years?), and have henna'd twice since 2014 (LUSH henna blocks both times, followed by a deep conditioning treatment). I also don't use heat on my hair - I think the last time I heat styled was for my wedding in May 2015, and even then, I had stopped using heat for a few years to combat dryness.

I've tried no 'poo with baking soda/ACV and it was okay, but in the end I switched to Lush shampoo bars with coconut oil as a conditioner. This helped overall, but my hair was still too dry, so I ended up adding conditioner back in. Coneys made my hair oil up faster, which I'm not a fan of. I used them for years and always had hair that was just as dry, possibly more dry....

I like to avoid chemicals in general, and I've been using Calia Natural Moisturizing shampoo & conditioner (CWC method) for around 2-3 months now. I love it, and I've gone as far as 16 days without washing while using it.
https://usa.calianatural.com/collections/hair-care/products/organic-moisturizing-shampoo-240-ml

I also do a coconut oil mask for an hour or two before washing, and apply more to my damp ends after washing, and then some to the dry ends everyday, but I still have split ends and frizz ALL the time. A week or less after a trim I have split ends all over again. I did try an egg yolk & honey mask last week and my hair felt amazing for 2 days.... and then was back to dry and crunchy, especially my ends. Just this week I really started to focus on protective styles, but I am wondering what recommendations the LHC has for me.

Should I wash/condition more frequently? Switch to CO? Will deep conditioning once a week or more help, or will washing out the conditioner void that out? Do more protein masks? Hot oil treatments? Add in a cone serum after oiling when wet???? I feel like every hair on my head is split right now, and I got a 1" trim around 2 months ago. Help!

Borgessa
December 10th, 2016, 08:21 PM
You sound like my twin, I hope someone has some good advice for you/us :)

vampyyri
December 10th, 2016, 08:26 PM
Hmm... are you perhaps overbrushing your hair? It's a problem with 1c/2a hair that overbrushing produces a lot of frizz.
Sometimes coconut oil can make the ends crunchy with overuse, I would look into a perhaps trying a different oil for a while and seeing if that helps.

turtlelover
December 10th, 2016, 08:30 PM
Maybe you need to clarify and then use some humectants. Oil can seal out moisture as well as seal it in depending on the circumstance. By the way, baking soda will destroy my hair in NO time, so is there any way that your time with baking soda could have caused some damage?

Decoy24601
December 10th, 2016, 08:31 PM
I would try using film-forming humectants like aloe vera gel or flaxseed gel for long-term moisture.

Coconut oil is really a poor oil for conditioning. It's good before washing to help prevent hydral fatigue, but it doesn't provide much slip. My favorite oil for slip and shine is Jojoba oil (it has no ability to penetrate the hair shaft). It's also fairly good at helping seal in moisture (note: oils and cones do not form impenetrable seals. They are semi-permiable. You can load on the cones and oils, and it will not completely prevent your hair from getting wet or absorbing water). Coconut oil can also rather make hair feel rather crunchy and "dry". Try using coconut oil as a treatment before you wash your hair, and jojoba as a conditioning/sealing oil after.

riahbobiah93
December 10th, 2016, 08:33 PM
Hmm... are you perhaps overbrushing your hair? It's a problem with 1c/2a hair that overbrushing produces a lot of frizz.
Sometimes coconut oil can make the ends crunchy with overuse, I would look into a perhaps trying a different oil for a while and seeing if that helps.

For brushing, I've been using a Wet Brush for around 6 months, and usually only brush once every other morning.... But since my egg yolk mask washing I have only been finger combing, hoping this will help!

Do you have any recommendations of which oils would be good substitutions?

riahbobiah93
December 10th, 2016, 08:35 PM
I would try using film-forming humectants like aloe vera gel or flaxseed gel for long-term moisture.

Coconut oil is really a poor oil for conditioning. It's good before washing to help prevent hydral fatigue, but it doesn't provide much slip. My favorite oil for slip and shine is Jojoba oil (it has no ability to penetrate the hair shaft). It's also fairly good at helping seal in moisture (note: oils and cones do not form impenetrable seals. They are semi-permiable. You can load on the cones and oils, and it will not completely prevent your hair from getting wet or absorbing water). Coconut oil can also rather make hair feel rather crunchy and "dry". Try using coconut oil as a treatment before you wash your hair, and jojoba as a conditioning/sealing oil after.

Sounds like a plan to me! It looks like I will be out buying some jojoba tomorrow! Fingers crossed.

vampyyri
December 10th, 2016, 08:38 PM
For brushing, I've been using a Wet Brush for around 6 months, and usually only brush once every other morning.... But since my egg yolk mask washing I have only been finger combing, hoping this will help!

Do you have any recommendations of which oils would be good substitutions?

I would personally suggest adding an oil like sunflower, avocado, sweet almond, or even argan and seeing how that fares.
Jojoba is an okay choice... but it doesn't penetrate the hair strands, it simply sits on top. Not the best for immediate moisture, but moreso for sealing moisture in from a leave-in/cream/conditioning treatment

riahbobiah93
December 10th, 2016, 08:38 PM
I would try using film-forming humectants like aloe vera gel or flaxseed gel for long-term moisture.

Coconut oil is really a poor oil for conditioning. It's good before washing to help prevent hydral fatigue, but it doesn't provide much slip. My favorite oil for slip and shine is Jojoba oil (it has no ability to penetrate the hair shaft). It's also fairly good at helping seal in moisture (note: oils and cones do not form impenetrable seals. They are semi-permiable. You can load on the cones and oils, and it will not completely prevent your hair from getting wet or absorbing water). Coconut oil can also rather make hair feel rather crunchy and "dry". Try using coconut oil as a treatment before you wash your hair, and jojoba as a conditioning/sealing oil after.

Also, how do you recommend incorporating aloe/flaxseed gel into my routine? Applying it in a treatment like SMT? Or as a mask? Just using it on dry ends?

Decoy24601
December 10th, 2016, 08:39 PM
Sounds like a plan to me! It looks like I will be out buying some jojoba tomorrow! Fingers crossed.

Who knows, what my hair likes, your hair might hate :). When you try it out, make sure to only use a few drops on the entire length of you hair first, and move up a couple drops at a time if you think your hair needs more. It's easy to overdo it.

My routine (at least when it comes to oils) is to use coconut oil lightly as a pre-poo treatment to prevent damage during washing, then 4-6 drops jojoba + 4-6 drops of argan oil post-wash. Argan oil does penetrate the hair shaft a little and is lighter than Jojoba oil, which can feel a little heavy on my hair. I really like the mix of Jojoba and Argan oil.

ETA: I would try experimenting with different ways. You could try an SMT, but that'll just wash out. You could mix some AVG or flaxseed gel with water in a spray-bottle and use it that way, or put it directly on your hair (whether damp or dry is up to you).

riahbobiah93
December 10th, 2016, 08:40 PM
I would personally suggest adding an oil like sunflower, avocado, sweet almond, or even argan and seeing how that fares.
Jojoba is an okay choice... but it doesn't penetrate the hair strands, it simply sits on top.

Well, I've been looking into picking up some avacado oil for oil cleansing my face... so I guess it's time to get that too. :)

vampyyri
December 10th, 2016, 08:43 PM
Well, I've been looking into picking up some avacado oil for oil cleansing my face... so I guess it's time to get that too. :)

I would definitely stray from coconut except for as a pre-poo. My hair personally hates it no matter what I do and it becomes much like you described... YMMV of course!

I would clarify first, then start with a fresh slate... perhaps look into doing an SMT to add moisture back in!

Decoy24601
December 10th, 2016, 08:44 PM
Penetrating oils don't moisturize hair, since they're oils. They're better at protecting the hair from absorbing too much moisture during washes, called hydral fatigue. They can make hair *feel* moisturized though, by adding softness and slip. :D :flower:

riahbobiah93
December 10th, 2016, 08:45 PM
Who knows, what my hair likes, your hair might hate :). When you try it out, make sure to only use a few drops on the entire length of you hair first, and move up a couple drops at a time if you think your hair needs more. It's easy to overdo it.

My routine (at least when it comes to oils) is to use coconut oil lightly as a pre-poo treatment to prevent damage during washing, then 4-6 drops jojoba + 4-6 drops of argan oil post-wash. Argan oil does penetrate the hair shaft a little and is lighter than Jojoba oil, which can feel a little heavy on my hair. I really like the mix of Jojoba and Argan oil.

ETA: I would try experimenting with different ways. You could try an SMT, but that'll just wash out. You could mix some AVG or flaxseed gel with water in a spray-bottle and use it that way, or put it directly on your hair (whether damp or dry is up to you).

Thank you for the tips! So here comes the not as fun part of experimenting. :rolleyes:

I still would love to hear what people think on frequency of washing. I might head over to the 1c/2a thread and ask how often people wash or DC......

Decoy24601
December 10th, 2016, 08:47 PM
I personally wash the length of my hair once every 4-6ish days. I do scalp-only washes every 2-3 days.

Tip: Leave a little bit of your conditioner in your hair at the end of every wash and see what that does.

vampyyri
December 10th, 2016, 08:49 PM
I wash my scalp/bangs near daily, and my length once a week. If you think your hair is drying out from overwashing, definitely look into scalp-only washes, they're a godsend!

mizukitty
December 10th, 2016, 08:50 PM
IIRC Calia shampoos are basically liquid soap, and I can't find the full ingredient list for their conditioner. I'm assuming it's pH balanced to offset the alkalinity of the shampoo, but can't be sure.. Maybe the shampoo is too harsh for your hair? Did you try ACV rinses following the shampoo maybe? Also if you have hard water it could be causing mineral build up and soap scum.. Just thinking out loud.. Also seconding a different oil. Olive makes for very soft hair, whereas coconut makes 'strong' feeling hair in my experiences. Jojoba is also great!

Annalouise
December 10th, 2016, 09:01 PM
In my opinion you are damaging your hair with baking soda, coconut milk, coconut oil, henna, soap based shampoos, and whatever else you're doing..:p Natural is good for our house cleaning and its good to be environmental and eat healthy, but this lifestyle doesn't always lend itself well to hair care. Henna is a natural form of hair dye so its not good because even though its not a chemical, it still lifts the cuticle to deposit color. Soaps are alkaline and our hair is more acidic around 4.9. When you use something alkaline like soap or baking soda it lifts the cuticle and this causes frizz and tangles. It's really not good for our hair. (even though it is biodegradable). Coconut milk has protein and that is probably making your hair stiff and hard.
Basically, I would do the opposite of everything you are doing. I would use a good pH balanced shampoo & conditioner and also a deep conditioner once a week with heat. You can use a shower cap and then wrap your head in a warm towel for 15 minutes and then rinse it out.
Your hair needs moisture, that's all. And it needs products that don't lift the cuticle causing damage. If you use a soap based shampoo, and then a wet brush, you are asking for damage. This is what creates the frizz. Please don't comb or brush your hair wet if you can avoid it.:)

riahbobiah93
December 10th, 2016, 09:01 PM
IIRC Calia shampoos are basically liquid soap, and I can't find the full ingredient list for their conditioner. I'm assuming it's pH balanced to offset the alkalinity of the shampoo, but can't be sure.. Maybe the shampoo is too harsh for your hair? Did you try ACV rinses following the shampoo maybe? Also if you have hard water it could be causing mineral build up and soap scum.. Just thinking out loud.. Also seconding a different oil. Olive makes for very soft hair, whereas coconut makes 'strong' feeling hair in my experiences. Jojoba is also great!


I have done an ACV rinse following my last condition, and it was the same result as I've had with Calia so far - great that day & the next, and then dry after. Not really a difference that I noticed from not using a rinse, but I have not tried one after shampoo only. I have well water that is without a softener... nice & rusty! LOL!

Here is the conditioner list...
Aqua, Cocos nucifera (coconut) oil, Elaeis guineensis (palm) oil, Pinus banksiana (pine) extract, Medicago Sativa (Alfalfa) extract, Matricaria chamomilla (chamomile) flower extract, Echinacea purpurea flower extract, Urtica dioca (nettle) leaf extract, Trifolium pratense (clover) flower extract, Equisetum arvense (Horse Tail) extract, Cera alba (Bees Wax), Olea europaea (olive) fruit oil, Linum Usitatissimum (Linseed) Seed Oil (Flax), Curcurbita pepo (pumpkin) seed oil, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Acetic Acid (Apple Cider Vinegar).

Not that it probably matters, but I also added a few drops of Rosemary essential oil to my shampoo.

I've normally strayed from EVOO in the past, since I felt like it would be too greasy, but now I'm thinking that too greasy isn't really a thing!


I wash my scalp/bangs near daily, and my length once a week. If you think your hair is drying out from overwashing, definitely look into scalp-only washes, they're a godsend!

I'm not sure that it is from overwashing at this point, but again, I usually go 7 days minimum without a wash, and have gone over 2 weeks before. I think I might have the opposite problem now - where I'm not conditioning enough. Maybe I'll try a CO wash in between washes.

Decoy24601
December 10th, 2016, 09:05 PM
I would ditch the conditioner, to be honest. Coconut and palm oil is known for making hair feel... meh, when overused. Nature's Gate shampoo and conditioner is nice, if you're still looking for something closer to all natural. The moisturizing one was really nice on my hair. It ended up not working out for me, but it wasn't bad.

riahbobiah93
December 10th, 2016, 09:10 PM
In my opinion you are damaging your hair with baking soda, coconut milk, coconut oil, henna, soap based shampoos, and whatever else you're doing..:p Natural is good for our house cleaning and its good to be environmental and eat healthy, but this lifestyle doesn't always lend itself well to hair care. Henna is a natural form of hair dye so its not good because even though its not a chemical, it still lifts the cuticle to deposit color. Soaps are alkaline and our hair is more acidic around 4.9. When you use something alkaline like soap or baking soda it lifts the cuticle and this causes frizz and tangles. It's really not good for our hair. (even though it is biodegradable). Coconut milk has protein and that is probably making your hair stiff and hard.
Basically, I would do the opposite of everything you are doing. I would use a good pH balanced shampoo & conditioner and also a deep conditioner once a week with heat. You can use a shower cap and then wrap your head in a warm towel for 15 minutes and then rinse it out.
Your hair needs moisture, that's all. And it needs products that don't lift the cuticle causing damage. If you use a soap based shampoo, and then a wet brush, you are asking for damage. This is what creates the frizz. Please don't comb or brush your hair wet if you can avoid it.:)

Don't worry - I haven't brushed or combed my hair when wet in YEARS! Even though I use a "Wet Brush", I just like that it pulls less and I have less breakage with it. I haven't used baking soda for a year or two, and honestly I don't know what coconut "milk" is! But I will look into a different shampoo conditioner if I can't fix my problem before they are gone.

Does anyone know which ingredients specifically I should look out for if I decide to avoid alkalinity?

turtlelover
December 10th, 2016, 09:30 PM
In my opinion you are damaging your hair with baking soda, coconut milk, coconut oil, henna, soap based shampoos, and whatever else you're doing..:p Natural is good for our house cleaning and its good to be environmental and eat healthy, but this lifestyle doesn't always lend itself well to hair care. Henna is a natural form of hair dye so its not good because even though its not a chemical, it still lifts the cuticle to deposit color. Soaps are alkaline and our hair is more acidic around 4.9. When you use something alkaline like soap or baking soda it lifts the cuticle and this causes frizz and tangles. It's really not good for our hair. (even though it is biodegradable). Coconut milk has protein and that is probably making your hair stiff and hard.
Basically, I would do the opposite of everything you are doing. I would use a good pH balanced shampoo & conditioner and also a deep conditioner once a week with heat. You can use a shower cap and then wrap your head in a warm towel for 15 minutes and then rinse it out.
Your hair needs moisture, that's all. And it needs products that don't lift the cuticle causing damage. If you use a soap based shampoo, and then a wet brush, you are asking for damage. This is what creates the frizz. Please don't comb or brush your hair wet if you can avoid it.:)

Henna actually is very good for hair and doesn't lift the cuticle unless you use the stuff with metallic salts/sodium picramate, which can really dry out hair. In fact, I use the pure stuff and it has improved my hair texture greatly. I agree with you about the alkaline products for sure. Baking soda is the WORST possible thing for my hair, along with alkaline soaps. Not all of us can get away with not combing/brushing our hair when wet. I could at shorter lengths, but if I do that now, I look like Medusa and my hair is impossible to work with, so I absolutely MUST comb it out when wet (I use a Tangle Wrangler or Tangle Teezer) or I will be left with lumpy, awful, lopsided waves and tons of frizz. Though some things are always bad for hair (straightening, chemical color, sun damage) other things are black and white and different people have totally different experiences. I know people that swear that their hair can't tolerate being detangled wet.

vampyyri
December 10th, 2016, 09:34 PM
I would honestly look into the tangle teezer, the wet brush isn't too great over long term with those little ball tips and all.
I used a TT before I started finger-combing indefinitely, but it was definitely more gentle on my hair—it's a wonderful minimal damage tool!

Llama
December 10th, 2016, 11:40 PM
Where are you all seeing the soap listed on the shampoo's ingredients list?
I've tried the wet brush and it is definitely NOT like regular ball tipped brushes. It is really gentle and the bristles are more flexible than the TT. I don't think that is causing your split ends.

How often do you wear your hair up in protective styles?
You might just have residual damage from poor practices in the past. Is that possible? Or maybe the henna did some damage...I'm not too educated on henna personally.

Oiling is great for your hair. Keep using conditioner- I wouldn't skip the conditioner at all anymore if you are struggling with dry hair.

poli
December 11th, 2016, 03:28 AM
Henna actually is very good for hair and doesn't lift the cuticle unless you use the stuff with metallic salts/sodium picramate, which can really dry out hair. In fact, I use the pure stuff and it has improved my hair texture greatly. I agree with you about the alkaline products for sure.
Yes I hennaed my hair at least twenty times during last two years and I experience nothing but improvement. Besides Lush henna is basically henna gloss, so whatever OP's issues are, they are not likely from henna use (very moderate two times during few years!).
What henna might cause is protein sensitivity - hair feel dry and tangly if you use protein conditioners or treatments with or after henna. My only solution is to avoid that and concentrate on moisturizing and humectants.
CWC works wonders on my dry ends (past bleach and dye).

lapushka
December 11th, 2016, 04:06 AM
Should I wash/condition more frequently? Switch to CO? Will deep conditioning once a week or more help, or will washing out the conditioner void that out? Do more protein masks? Hot oil treatments? Add in a cone serum after oiling when wet???? I feel like every hair on my head is split right now, and I got a 1" trim around 2 months ago. Help!

BS is notoriously *drying* for the hair, so: no wonder. I'd never do that again. I'd stick to a regular shampoo.

You could try rinse-out oil (link in my signature), you could try moisturizing with the LOC/LCO method (link is in my signature). Basically, you have a lot of reading to do. ;)

Annalouise
December 11th, 2016, 05:50 AM
riahbobiah93 ~ *coconut mask, (not coconut milk). :p sorry for misreading it.

Turtlelover ~ we'll have to disagree about henna and wet combing.:)

Llama ~ "soap" is not listed. It lists the oils (and it leaves out the lye that mixes with the oils to make soap).

riahbobiah93
December 11th, 2016, 07:19 PM
Llama ~ "soap" is not listed. It lists the oils (and it leaves out the lye that mixes with the oils to make soap).

Just in case anyone is curious, I emailed Calia about the ph! This is what they said.

"All of our shampoos have a pH around 5.5 (except the Curative Shampoo which is a little lower). Conditioners are around a pH or 4.5. All of our ingredients in our products are listed- none of our products contain lye."

Wildcat Diva
December 11th, 2016, 08:32 PM
You have rusty well water? Can you chelate to address minerals in the water? There are threads on this.

mizukitty
December 11th, 2016, 09:07 PM
Just in case anyone is curious, I emailed Calia about the ph! This is what they said.

"All of our shampoos have a pH around 5.5 (except the Curative Shampoo which is a little lower). Conditioners are around a pH or 4.5. All of our ingredients in our products are listed- none of our products contain lye."

Yeah, it's still liquid soap because the ingredient list says "SAPONIFIED oils of..." and lists the oils that the lye (KOH - potassium hydroxide - which is no longer present) acted upon to achieve the final product - liquid soap. It's a little bit easier to mess with the formulation of liquid soap, you can add chelating agents (EDTA, citric acid) and stabilize the pH (also citric acid, likely). I doubt they use EDTA as they're synthetic, but it's a common addition nowadays with everyone's hard water issues.

However, since they're an "all natural" brand, they likely do not preserve their products with proper preservatives like phenoxyethanol or parabens. They most likely rely on the antioxidant effects and slowing of nasty-growing by using citric acid, which also acts as a mild chelator and pH buffer.

So, TLDR, the shampoo is most likely okay, I would only concern myself with not keeping it for over 6 months. ESPECIALLY since they lower the pH and don't preserve it. Normally, liquid soap pH is like 9-10, and the alkalinity is what keeps it shelf stable for years. Without that, I'd be kind of apprehensive. Just IMHO. I've dabbled in soap making for a long time!

renia22
December 11th, 2016, 10:00 PM
I agree with annalouise. Scrap everything and do the opposite. I'd clarify and start over. Whenever I've overdone it with various experimenting, Pantene weekly detox shampoo (the clear one) and detox conditioner specifically make my hair feel so much better. Other products are good too, but if you are looking recommendations, those are a couple of good ones if you need a break from the natural stuff and want to try something different. Paul Mitchell also makes this leave in product called "the conditioner" that's a godsend. They make a small trial sized 3.4 ounce size, so you can try it and not be stuck with a big bottle in case you don't like it. But I'd do something like that, just some regular ph balanced drugstore stuff for now, you can always go back to the other methods later.

riahbobiah93
December 12th, 2016, 12:31 PM
You have rusty well water? Can you chelate to address minerals in the water? There are threads on this.

Hmmm...never_heard_of_it_before-I_will_look_into!(sorry...spacebarnotworking.:(... )

riahbobiah93
December 18th, 2016, 08:23 AM
Just wanting to update in case anyone goes back on this thread...
I've switched to coconut oil before showers only, and started washing my hair more frequently - every 4-5 days - with deep conditions every time, and have been using grapeseed and jojoba oil on my ends. I've kept my hair pretty oily and up, but I wore it down yesterday, and while it felt a bit dry... it was nowhere near as dry as normal. I'll be getting another trim in a week or two, so hopefully after that I can maintain no split ends by keeping up with this regime.

I think that the coconut oil everyday and not conditioning enough due to not washing very often were some of my biggest factors. If things change, I know where to go for help!

Thanks everyone for all the information!

DoomPerDiem
December 18th, 2016, 09:04 AM
I've tried more than a few oils and Jojoba is by far my favorite. Its the closest oil to your skins sebum and has a small molecular structure. It soaks into deeper layers of your skin and hair for longer lasting moisture. It's pretty light too. Coconut oil actually dries my hair out. Too much protien, I think. I use a few drops of Jojoba in damp hair or do a hair mask with about once a month.

turtlelover
December 18th, 2016, 11:32 AM
I've tried more than a few oils and Jojoba is by far my favorite. Its the closest oil to your skins sebum and has a small molecular structure. It soaks into deeper layers of your skin and hair for longer lasting moisture. It's pretty light too. Coconut oil actually dries my hair out. Too much protien, I think. I use a few drops of Jojoba in damp hair or do a hair mask with about once a month.

I've heard of some hair not responding well to coconut oil, but for the record, oils can't and don't contain protein, so it has to be another issue.