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View Full Version : I am utterly lost with my messy, stringy, and frizzy hair



Doomjoon
April 20th, 2017, 03:22 PM
I'm trying to prevent my hair from looking like rat's nest merely hours after washing it, especially after sleeping. It starts looking stringy (a lot of the time it tends to form small clumps instead of preferable "ropes"), and somewhat frizzy (a lot of the hair doesn't even form into thin clumps, but rather the individual strings tend to go about their own way), and in general it looks messy and "heterogeneously" positioned around my head.

Here's how it looks like after a Sunday CWC wash (I generally like how this looks, but even here it can sometimes look rather stringy, frizzy and messy in general, which might not be that visible in the pictures):


https://postimg.org/image/trra8ktnn/
https://postimg.org/image/odsi113xf/
https://postimg.org/image/jt6bm3k83/
https://postimg.org/image/b8czuxa1v/



And here's some examples of how it can look like the very next morning (a total mess, I'd rather have it in a ponytail than display it):

https://postimg.org/image/uux1l2bqh/
https://postimg.org/image/ctdwn9hpl/
https://postimg.org/image/d7f8mv1t5/
https://postimg.org/image/5374i4fe1/
https://postimg.org/image/kd6zpbaw9/
https://postimg.org/image/zafgqbo4p/
https://postimg.org/image/4hi5m0kbt/
https://postimg.org/image/ljazo3z6x/
https://postimg.org/image/snssx56g9/
https://postimg.org/image/qkidph6nd/
https://postimg.org/image/qn6uq1zop/


My routine is a CWC wash on Sundays, and co-wash on Wednesdays (which brings a look that's somewhere in the middle of a fresh Sunday CWC wash and the look I get the next morning). I braid my hair every night before going to sleep since I've heard it helps with tangles and potentially stringiness, but that wasn't as effective as I'd hoped. I air-dry my hair after showering, and before showering, I comb it. Any sort of brushing, combing, or even finger detangling is otherwise not a good idea since it turns my hair into a frizzy bush:

https://postimg.org/image/6yr82eo83/

Other than that, I don't interact with my hair in any other way, other than wearing it in ponytails so as to not look like a caveman.
Is there any help at all? Something that's gonna give my hair a more coherent structure, or something that could "refresh" it other than just straight out washing it again? I've heard that using more sulfate shampoos can help with stringiness (and my hair does indeed seem to look better after a CWC wash than a co-wash, but that doesn't last very long), which is what I'm now planning to use on my otherwise conditioner-only Wednesday washes, but wouldn't that also increase frizzyness, which appears to be another problem?
I'm fairly new to haircare, so I haven't yet experimented with oils or anything like that.

Rebel Rebel
April 20th, 2017, 03:32 PM
I'd definitely use some oils to help control the frizz that bothers you. It really helps my hair to use oil when my hair is damp after a wash. I'm sure you'll get some good advice on the LOC method. I usually only do the oil part but for curly hair LOC might be your best option. I personally like argan oil.

Just have to say that I love the look of your hair whether frizzy or not. I guess I like the look of big wild hair!

lucid
April 20th, 2017, 03:34 PM
I just wanted to say that I think your hair looks great!!

And I would just do CWC every wash since your hair seems to like that. And possibly look into some leave-ins, LOC method maybe? I'm sure you'll get plenty of tips from others with actual experience with your hairtype :D

Chocowalnut
April 20th, 2017, 03:42 PM
I have the same hair type as you and my hair does the exact same thing. Then only time I really like it is after a wash, I have the same problem with 2nd day hair, it's a mess. The only thing I've found work for me is loosely clipping my hair on top of my head with a claw clip when I sleep so that hopefully the next day the hair will look good, but that even doesn't always work. Finding the right leave in can help with frizz and definition, make sure to apply it when hair is still soaking wet after your shower, this will help prevent frizz.

Doomjoon
April 20th, 2017, 03:46 PM
Thank you all, although I'm not sure if what my hair is experiencing even is frizz. The fact is that a lot of the strands tend to get separated and go wild on their own, but I don't know if that necessarily means frizz.

Kellylee
April 20th, 2017, 04:04 PM
I would try oiling it. I use Moroccan oil but there are many cheaper options. just separate into four sections and start from the ends. I like to do it at night but you could do it in the morning.

lapushka
April 20th, 2017, 04:10 PM
Do you comb or brush it after it comes out of the wash? If so, don't... Only detangle when your hair is full of conditioner in the wash, and leave it alone after that. You could look into the LOC method for styling (link is in my signature). It honestly looks like you combed or brushed your hair afterwards.

Lovely hair, though! :D

Doomjoon
April 20th, 2017, 04:15 PM
Nope, I only ever comb it before showering. I might do some minimal fiddling with my fingers after removing the braid in the morning to get rid of some tangles, but as I said, too much of that, and my hair turns into a bush.

Also, looking at this picture with me wearing a braid, I guess you could say that there is indeed frizz going on:

https://postimg.org/image/xs8po8oyr/

spidermom
April 20th, 2017, 04:52 PM
Ah yes, the bane of wavy and curly hair. The only thing that helps is a good styling product, even several in combination. I find that raking a small amount of curl creme through my hair with my fingers helps it to form defined waves and curls instead of POOF! Second and more day hair looks better if I stroke a small amount of styling gel over the surface by rubbing a finger-nail size glob between wet palms, then gently over the surface. It's too short now, but I used to make a scrunchie bun on top of my head for sleep when my hair was about your length, and the resulting bun waves looked pretty good.

Kat-Rinnč Naido
April 21st, 2017, 08:45 AM
Wow you have gorgeous hair.
Unfortunately curly hair is more demanding of moisture.
You might like to consider the LOC styling method after you wash. Then you may need to spritz some moisture on the 1st or 2nd day after wash and add just a little oil to seal in moisture focusing on the drier portions of your hair. Also try during wash days not to let your shampoo run on your hair but only work it on your scalp as that messes up your curls. Also during autumn and winter your hair needs more DT'S than in summer. Be careful with oils as you don't want to keep moisture out but want to trap and seal.
Hope this helps. Good luck.

tigereye
April 21st, 2017, 09:22 AM
I have much straighter hair than yours, but when my hair looks stringy, it has turned out to be my hair not getting the moisture it needs, whether that be through build-up or just wrong products. Recently my hair was being confusingly stringy and dry, and frizzy, but weirdly way waiver than it had ever been the day of washing then way straighter and straggly any other day. Turns out it was the water - I'd moved to an area with both harder water and more chlorine than I was used to, and it only really clicked when I realised how fussy and dry my skin was too. A filter for the shower to remove the chlorine and soften the water, then chelating my hair once fixed it straight away. I haven't had any issues since.

lithostoic
April 21st, 2017, 09:42 AM
You could finger curl some larger sections after a wash, some aloe vera gel would aid in that. Also, try "pineappling" instead of braiding or wear a silk cap. I may be a straightie but my hair, somehow, can be both frizzy and stringy simultaneously. Finger curling with avg helps immensely. As does serum for the frizz.

Entangled
April 21st, 2017, 09:46 AM
I've heard flax seed gel works well for curlies? Can anyone second this? I don't have experience with it.

Kat-Rinnč Naido
April 21st, 2017, 09:51 AM
Hi! Sorry for the much rushed previous post. But I was in a rush to go prepare supper.

Firstly I would like to know what is your weather, climate temperature like where you are living. Also do you spend a lot of time in the sun. As all this can affect your hair.
Next ponytails are not the best for hair as the more exposed your hair is the more moisture it loose.

I see you are new welcome to the LHC. Just a word of caution do not go out trying everything at once. I received this advice from lapushka when I joined and it has been a huge hair saver. What may work for one hair may or may not work for another as your mileage may vary. If your hair does not like anything you are currently doing discontinue it. You can always try it a few weeks later and if it still does not like it don't force it too .

Doomjoon
April 21st, 2017, 10:05 AM
For some reason pineapples and buns didn't really work for me, while braids are the only thing that did have definite noticeable effect. I'm soon planning on acquiring silk/satin pillowcases, which should help too. What about those spray conditioners? Those might be nice for moisture, although the only ones I could find contained alcohol, which I heard isn't very good.

As for climate, I live in Zagreb, Croatia, so it's a continental climate, with very sunny and warm summers and snowy winters. I don't spend any significant amount of time in the sun, although there certainly can be plenty of it during summer, spring and early autumn.

As for ponytails, what other alternative is there? I've heard that they're good since they relieve the amount of contact between hair and clothes. And thank you, I know, I'm taking things slowly.

Kat-Rinnč Naido
April 21st, 2017, 11:26 AM
Hi Doomjoon according to your photos on the 2nd day your hair looks like the atmosphere sucked up the moisture (I could be wrong). You must do a LOC after you wash and condition (Liquid, Oil & Cream = LOC). Do not rinse your conditioner out completely gently squeeze all the water out. Apply a little oil not a lot just maybe a drop then apply your hair cream. If you do not have hair cream a body cream is fine. While doing this try to scrunch your hair as you are styling.

Kat-Rinnč Naido
April 21st, 2017, 11:34 AM
With regards to conditioner rather make your own. Dilute a little of the conditioner you are using with a little distilled water make a small quantity (as you might need to make a fresh batch weekly) in a spray bottle and spray this in your hair when you feel the need. Remember to always seal your conditioner spray with a little oil. Since your braids have been working for you then stick to braiding.
Good luck. Please keep us informed how everything goes.

lapushka
April 21st, 2017, 02:17 PM
For some reason pineapples and buns didn't really work for me, while braids are the only thing that did have definite noticeable effect. I'm soon planning on acquiring silk/satin pillowcases, which should help too. What about those spray conditioners? Those might be nice for moisture, although the only ones I could find contained alcohol, which I heard isn't very good.

You can easily make your own. All you would need is an empty spray bottle (maybe save one from a "bad" conditioner that contained alcohol, clean out the bottle well, tadaa). Then add water, and put a squirt of conditioner in it, shake well. You could add some EOs or a few drops of regular oil to it if you want, some Aloe Vera, or glycerine even. It's your own concoction! And it works well. I used to do this a lot when I had BSL.

Doomjoon
April 23rd, 2017, 06:39 AM
For the after-wash LOC, should I use coconut oil? Since I heard that it's bad to use after washing since it's not "liquid" enough. I have an alternative generic oil from L'oreal. I don't really have any leave-in or cream, but I do have a Syoss leave-in serum from my sisters, but I don't know if I should be using that, and how. Any suggestions on what to do with the products I have after washing?

Doomjoon
April 23rd, 2017, 06:55 AM
(I apologize for double posting, can't edit yet)

The L'oreal oil is Elseve extraordinary oil, and the Syoss is some leave-in serum for reconstructing for "chemically treated and mechanically stresses hair", which is why I'm doubtful about using it.

oxymora
April 23rd, 2017, 07:39 AM
I'm finding these tips useful too as I think I have hair that is a bit similar, albeit a lot shorter! Thanks all :) I would like to get somewhere near the length that you have Doomjoon, but I find that my wavy/curly fine hair gets a bit unmanageable once it gets longer. I henna my hair and am using a LOC method now so I'll see if that can help me. Still figuring out which products to use, especially for the last step.

oxymora
April 23rd, 2017, 07:48 AM
Sorry for double post also, but I am interested that you asked about coconut oil not being liquid enough, Doomjoon. I have been using a monoi oil but it's about to run out and I was thinking of trying coconut oil. Would that be for the oil step if warmed between my palms and smooshed on? For the 3rd step, I have started using Umberto Giannini curl-enhancing gel to improve my curls, having only ever used serum/creams before, but I am concerned it is not good for hydration

Doomjoon
April 23rd, 2017, 07:57 AM
It's solid at standard room temperature, so it can make hair feel crunchy. Which is why, I've heard, it's usually used before showering, rather than after it.

Doomjoon
April 23rd, 2017, 09:10 AM
More doubleposting? More doubleposting.

So, I just did my standard CWC wash, and once my hair was sort-of-towel dry, I used a bit of the generic L'oreal extraordinary oil stuff on it. Here's how my hair looks right now, mostly dry (yes the lighting is badly done I know, I have zero experience taking pictures of myself):

https://postimg.org/image/tc48oz1t9/
https://postimg.org/image/a8ax8moz1/
https://postimg.org/image/a9kv21qst/

It does look a bit different (although there still seems to be a nice amount of frizziness), but it does also just sort of "feel" better. I'll see how it looks tomorrow morning.

spidermom
April 23rd, 2017, 10:11 AM
I wouldn't use the Syoss, but you can use the oil. I use 4 drops of Fiji therapy styling oil at my length - shoulder (and thick). I put one drop on each finger of one hand, then rub the fingers of my other hand against it. Then I pinch apply to ends first, finishing by running my fingers through my hair. I keep it off my scalp.

I use coconut oil prewash by rubbing it between palms to liquefy, then grab my hair length, half in each hand, and slide my hands down. Oh, and I do this while bent forward so the canopy gets oiled. Then I comb through and braid until I'm ready to wash. To get it out, when I shampoo, I leave the suds in my hair for a few minutes before rinsing, then do the same with the conditioner.

spidermom
April 23rd, 2017, 10:15 AM
You can use either more oil over the surface to tame the frizzies or gel (which works better for me).

ghanima
April 23rd, 2017, 10:52 AM
I don't remember if you mentioned having clarified? that's another thing I would check out. Build-up looks on my hair exactly like your hair look. And in my case, as I found out just recently, using SLS shampoo on the whole length works much better than the alternatives. That's due to low porosity, products sit on my hair without penetrating much the closed cuticles, and therefore I am prone to build-up very easily. SLS shampoos were the last thing I thought was right for a curlie like me, and instead... so yes, check that out.

That oil has improved things, but really, you want to read Lapushka's thread on LOC. That's what will change things radically for you, like others said. You can absolutely include that product if you want, as the O (oil) layer.

Doomjoon
April 23rd, 2017, 03:59 PM
That is something I considered and wanted to ask about. Hm, should I try double-washing? Sort of like CWWC? Since I only switched to scalp-only shampoo watching a few months ago with CWC, and before that I did standard full-length WC washing, but I've had the same problems for long time.

ghanima
April 24th, 2017, 12:12 AM
I would give a shot to WCC. Go find the link of WCC's thread in Lapushka's signature. First time, give a good wash to all length so the hair are clarified. Use two different conditioners. Then do LOC. I haven't tried her RO but I bet it's brilliant too.

Alternatively, after clarifying very thoroughly, try CO-washing with no-cones conditioners. CO-washing works well for wavies and curlies, but not for everybody, you need to give it some time so the scalp gets used to the conditioner. I personally tried it a few weeks but in the end I opted not to go that route.

I mean, maybe at the end of the exploration you will go back to CWC as your favorite, for me it is a frizz-factory but we are all different. It's a lot of trial and error, until you find your routine and your HG products. Every time you wash change one thing only, so you get a clear sense of what works and what not.

Panedora
April 24th, 2017, 01:58 AM
I use olive oil to tame my frizz and its amazing! I really love my hair again, my frizz was super bad on the ends and this saved my hair life lol https://c1.staticflickr.com/3/2896/34196187616_6a939f6f26.jpg

OhSuzi
April 24th, 2017, 02:28 AM
So I'm gonna get shot down for this but if I wanted really glossy shiny sleek hair and to tame all those wavy curls. I would give a decent hair salon a shot. Just to wash n dry your hair costs about £25 in uk dunno what it costs anywhere else. But the difference is remarkable, plus you can ask em what product they use, what type of brushes, what drying method they used. That might help.
Generally hair dressers are concerned with making your hair look nice the day you came in, so they are not bothered about using irons and hair dryers on high heat that if you used them alll the time you would wreck your hair.

But I'd try the hair dresser at least once to see what the result is and what they recommend.

Generally I don't know how much time you want to spend on your hair, but running a bit of protective oil through it and hair drying it gently section by section on a cool setting possibly with a wide tooth comb so it gets detangled but not too frizzy might help.

Also perhaps a girly suggestion, but maybe ask the hairdresser for a cut that will take some of the weight out and emphasise the curl. Look at slash from g n r his hair isn't all one length, and it full of volume and curl and it's totally rock!

Doomjoon
April 24th, 2017, 12:00 PM
I prefer a mane-ly (hehe) look for my hair, so I'm not really looking to modify it that way. About the hair salon, that is a nice suggestion and also another thing I've considered, but for now I'll go with what I have to see what effect it has on my hair (I don't even have the proper products for LOC yet, and perhaps even WCC washing.)

Here are the current results from the day after washing+oil, along with braiding which I started this week:

https://postimg.org/image/lwpnb7mwn/
https://postimg.org/image/i1m98n3qv/
https://postimg.org/image/uhnkg4mgn/
https://postimg.org/image/klmhghgon/

Overall, it does look a bit better, a bit less stringy, a bit less tangly, a bit less frizzy, a bit less messy, and seemingly with a bit more preserved and defined curles than usual (could be I'm wrong, I'll see how it goes). So for now I'll continue using oil and trying to get out product buildup (which I'm now fairly certain I have, looking at past experiences).
I just want to again say thank you all, you're wonderful.

sumidha
April 24th, 2017, 12:21 PM
I didn't read through all the responses so apologies in advance if I'm repeating what others have already said...

You're definitely curly, and it looks like the main thing you need is something to define those curls. I'm only wavy but my DH is curly and one of the products that works for both of us is Kinky Curly Knot Today leave in. It defines my guys curls without weighing them down. He's medium fine-ish though, so you might need something stronger to make the curls 'clump'. The other thing is they might need some encouragement to do that, I would suggest a leave in of your choice finger combed into wet hair and then scrunching or plopping your hair to see if they gives the curls a hand getting themselves into order. I'm sure it's already been said but google the curly girl method for more great curl specific advice and products recommendations. :)

Kat-Rinnč Naido
April 24th, 2017, 12:51 PM
I prefer a mane-ly (hehe) look for my hair, so I'm not really looking to modify it that way. About the hair salon, that is a nice suggestion and also another thing I've considered, but for now I'll go with what I have to see what effect it has on my hair (I don't even have the proper products for LOC yet, and perhaps even WCC washing.)

Here are the current results from the day after washing+oil, along with braiding which I started this week:

https://postimg.org/image/lwpnb7mwn/
https://postimg.org/image/i1m98n3qv/
https://postimg.org/image/uhnkg4mgn/
https://postimg.org/image/klmhghgon/

Overall, it does look a bit better, a bit less stringy, a bit less tangly, a bit less frizzy, a bit less messy, and seemingly with a bit more preserved and defined curles than usual (could be I'm wrong, I'll see how it goes). So for now I'll continue using oil and trying to get out product buildup (which I'm now fairly certain I have, looking at past experiences).
I just want to again say thank you all, you're wonderful.

It is looking much better and must be feeling a little easier to manage:cheer:

When last have you done a DT ?
Try scrunching your hair while your are doing your LOC that should help to define your curls more. Good luck :flower:

Doomjoon
April 24th, 2017, 02:41 PM
The photos make it look sort of better than it is for some reason, but yeah, there is improvement.

As for DT, never actually, as I said I'm VERY new with hair care (I had to look up what it was). I do indeed scrunch my hair while damp, and thank you.

spidermom
April 24th, 2017, 06:05 PM
I always get my best curl formation by twirling strands of hair around my fingers as it air dries.

Simsy
April 25th, 2017, 02:46 AM
Just for the record, your hair seems very similar to mine. A bit wild, a bit untamed, possibly a bit thirsty (no promises but mine calmed a bit when I started going nuts on the moisture treatments every 2nd or 3rd week). I definitely agrees with the mane-like feel of it, especially days 2-5.

If you're interested in double conditioning, with or without the shampoo; you should be able to trial it with the conditionor you have already. I use the same conditioner twice every wash, and just add or subtract the shampoo as required.

Kat-Rinnč Naido
April 25th, 2017, 10:38 AM
The photos make it look sort of better than it is for some reason, but yeah, there is improvement.

As for DT, never actually, as I said I'm VERY new with hair care (I had to look up what it was). I do indeed scrunch my hair while damp, and thank you.

Good luck :flower:
Take it one step at a time. Soon you shall know your hair very well especially what it likes and dislike. It is good that you are not trying everything at once. When you are ready you can try a DT. I am also knew to hair care. But being curly DT'S have helped a lot. Oh and the LOC. However I did notice I can skip the DT'S in summer and get back to regular DT'S from autumn.

oxymora
April 25th, 2017, 03:27 PM
Thanks for the advice on coconut oil, that makes sense that it is too thick for a leave-in. I tried using it before washing and it did seem to help :) Thank you!

lapushka
April 25th, 2017, 03:48 PM
I would give a shot to WCC. Go find the link of WCC's thread in Lapushka's signature. First time, give a good wash to all length so the hair are clarified. Use two different conditioners. Then do LOC. I haven't tried her RO but I bet it's brilliant too.

Alternatively, after clarifying very thoroughly, try CO-washing with no-cones conditioners. CO-washing works well for wavies and curlies, but not for everybody, you need to give it some time so the scalp gets used to the conditioner. I personally tried it a few weeks but in the end I opted not to go that route.

I mean, maybe at the end of the exploration you will go back to CWC as your favorite, for me it is a frizz-factory but we are all different. It's a lot of trial and error, until you find your routine and your HG products. Every time you wash change one thing only, so you get a clear sense of what works and what not.

Yes and if you have any doubts about the LOC method, that link is in my signature as well. Who knows your questions might be answered there already. :flower:

oxymora
May 1st, 2017, 01:28 PM
Hope you are getting along with the curl scrunching, Doomjoon. I have been a long-time lurker on the LHC boards but have not tested too many different things. I am trying to make a proper effort now and came across this excellent advice on SMT (Snowymoon's moisture treatment), posted by Anje. Sorry I don't know how to/if I can link to users as I am a newbie still!
http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=128

There is a list of conditioners on there that people have found to be good (and not good) so I thought that might be a useful place to start. That is from 2008 though so I don't know if there is a more recent version.