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View Full Version : My hair looks and feels horrible. MUST get it into shape.



pariate
April 11th, 2008, 05:44 AM
:cry: :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry:

Please give me guidance and ! My hair type is listed in my avatar section. It is naturally quite dry.

I desperately need suggestions please to get me on the right track. At the moment I CO and use a little Biolage Matrix Condish Balm as a leave-in mixed with a drop or two of avocado oil. The first clean day it looks shiny and feels alright-ish. It never feels soft like it used to when I started CO and the day or two after I wash it looks and feels horrid - dry, coarse, tangled... I used cassia last Saturday. There are splits EVERYWHERE. I never brush, only use a horn comb and my fingers. I do S&D missions for splits but there are so many of them now it's ridiculous.

So, I know there are a few basic things I should try first -


clarify with suflate-free poo, maybe follow with a very dilute ACV rinse,
maybe do a heavy oiling before I clarify,
wear it up for a few weeks, see if that helps.If anyone has any ideas or suggestions that would be great. If anyone just has words of encouragement that would be wonderful too because I am feeling so disappointed with myself at the mo - I can't help but feel that I'm doing something wrong here. There's no way I'm at the stage where I'm contemplating cutting it :eek: but my hair is nothing to be proud of recently and that's a horrible feeling!

Thank you in advance.

pariate
April 11th, 2008, 05:46 AM
On the plus side, at least the biggest problem I have right now is hair and not something trivial, like, you know, a mortgage, divorce, family illness... ;)

Just reminding myself to keep it in perspective! :lol:

akka naeda
April 11th, 2008, 06:07 AM
I had a similar problem a few weeks ago - loads of splits. I was thinking of trimming off a whole lot off to get rid of the splits, but instead I washed it, remembered that when it was really nice I made a point of making it wet (wetter than misting but not so wet it drips) and then putting a light oiling over that two or three times a week, instead of just once a week. I have no new splits. Perhaps tiny ones, but these were great big things - 1/2" or more of split appearing overnight, and sometimes halfway up the hair. It'd depend on how often you need to wash your hair anyway, but for me the combination of wet hair and oil really helps.

Katze
April 11th, 2008, 06:10 AM
It kind of sounds like you could have buildup.

When I tried CO, it was wonderful at first, and then started being like you describe. I tried baking soda, vinegar, everything...then a natural sulfate shampoo. WOW, my hair was suddenly shiny, smooth, and felt good.

So I stayed with shampoo, and it works well for me. I wash every other wash -or so - WO, which keeps my hair moisturized, but which, I notice, doesn't get it really clean.

Another thing I noticed is that you mention splits, dryness, etc. Could it be that your hair likes 'cones? I was totally against them, but the overall condition of my ends looks and feels much better with them. I don't use them every wash, either.

hth!

Katze

Lamb
April 11th, 2008, 06:15 AM
I don't know if clarifying with a sulfate-free shampoo would help. If you want to clarify, perhaps use a sulfate-shampoo, one with sodium laureth sulfate?
Other than that: could it be protein-overload? I don't know the ingredients in the things you use, but too much protein usually results in what you describe.
I, too, struggle with hay-like hair. Actually, what helped me most was using nothing but water and a little diluted shampoo on the scalp. CO is all right, if I don't overdo it, but I cannot CO twice in a row without a huge shedding.

seabear
April 11th, 2008, 07:01 AM
Katze and Lamb both brought up the points I wanted to make, buildup and protein. The only thing I haven't yet seen mentioned is to try a vinegar rinse. It always, ALWAYS helps my hair, gives it shine and softness and a fresh start.

I sympathize, I have 2C/3A hair as well, and it's a troublesome type! I have tried all the LHC trends, CO, WO, no sulfates, no 'cones.... I keep coming back to the same routine.
- I wash every 4 or 4 days, using shampoo every other wash (usually with a CWC technique, and my shampoo and condish have 'cones) and CO on the in between washes (using VO5 condish and LOTS of it, then my usually coney condish afterward);
- vinegar rinse once a month or so; use a shea butter-based leave-in after a wash;
- My own version of Kimberlily's defrizz spray daily, sometimes twice a day. It's water, aloe vera gel, jojoba oil, and lavender oil for scent, and my hair loves it. It makes my hair soft and supple, really helps keep down the frizz, and makes it smell wonderful.
- I never use baking soda to clarify, it dries my hair out. I know lots of people swear by it, but my hair hates it.

Lastly, if you have many, many split ends, like too many to handle with S&D, you might want to consider a tiny trim so you get a fresh start with tidy ends. Those splits will tangle your hair like mad, and possibly cause even more. Good luck!

aisling
April 11th, 2008, 07:10 AM
:cry: :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry:

Please give me guidance and ! My hair type is listed in my avatar section. It is naturally quite dry.

I desperately need suggestions please to get me on the right track. At the moment I CO and use a little Biolage Matrix Condish Balm as a leave-in mixed with a drop or two of avocado oil. The first clean day it looks shiny and feels alright-ish. It never feels soft like it used to when I started CO and the day or two after I wash it looks and feels horrid - dry, coarse, tangled... I used cassia last Saturday. There are splits EVERYWHERE. I never brush, only use a horn comb and my fingers. I do S&D missions for splits but there are so many of them now it's ridiculous.

So, I know there are a few basic things I should try first -


clarify with suflate-free poo, maybe follow with a very dilute ACV rinse,
maybe do a heavy oiling before I clarify,
wear it up for a few weeks, see if that helps.
If anyone has any ideas or suggestions that would be great. If anyone just has words of encouragement that would be wonderful too because I am feeling so disappointed with myself at the mo - I can't help but feel that I'm doing something wrong here. There's no way I'm at the stage where I'm contemplating cutting it :eek: but my hair is nothing to be proud of recently and that's a horrible feeling!

Thank you in advance.

Clarify with a sulphate free shampoo? Is that even possible? If you're going to clarify, throw in the heavy stuff, good, cleansing sulphates and it might actually clarify your hair, if that's what you need.

I wrote a long list in another thread just a few minutes ago, but as a CO:er I want to ask: do you use only that one conditioner when you CO? I always use two, first a light one that work as a cleansing agent, then a heavier to condition my ends. After rinsing out that, I put some coconut oil on my still wet ends, that works well.

lora410
April 11th, 2008, 07:11 AM
it sounds alot like my hair when it had big time buildup (where talking yrs worth) I clarified, heavily oiled, and then co'd it out and that helped tons. I use natural oil as a leave in. Right now I use a poo bar, acv rinse, and light oiling. Poo bars have been the best thing that has happened to my hair!

Silver & Gold
April 11th, 2008, 07:24 AM
I agree with everyone who diagnoses build up. I had a lot of build up that I didn't even realize I had until I started experimenting with CV bars. They were working nice for my husband, son and daughter so I knew that my problem wasn't merely with my water. So I started clarifying and moisturizing.
One thing I've found that is really helping to soften my hair (but I think clarifying comes first) is using cassia. I have to really concentrate on moisturizing my hair after a treatment but my hair seems to be getting softer and stronger and I can finally use the CV bars.
We do have water that is a bit on the hard side and I wash my hair in the tub with a nice soak. Adding baking soda to my bath water is really helping my hair as well. I'm not sure if it's partly due to baking soda helping with clarifying or if it is due to the softening effect it has on the water - perhaps the effect is one in the same - but for whatever reason this has helped me too.
I also agree that keeping the hair moist by misting and then adding a bit of coconut or EVOO is a good thing to try, it has been helpful to me.

pariate
April 11th, 2008, 08:21 AM
Clarify with a sulphate free shampoo? Is that even possible?

:) I use MOP's clarifying shampoo. It's sulfate free. I'm not terribly knowledgable on ingredients, but I trust them. It's also cone free. Obviously there's some kind of detergent in there, just not a sulfate-based one.

Thank you so much for all your suggestions. You've all been lovely :flower: I'm going to wash my hair now with the clarifying shampoo, then heavy oil and wash that out either with CO or with indian herbs (my delivery arrived this morning, yay!). I heard it's best to clarify before starting herb washing, so the timing is perfect.

I'll post back with my results. I hope it's just build up. I found a spare spritzer bottle just now so I'll try that mist you've all recommended.

Thank you again!

Altocumulus
April 11th, 2008, 08:48 AM
When this happens to me, I wash all the way down to the ends (call it clarify if you wish) with sulfate-free Kiss My Face Whenever shampoo, and it always fixes the problem. I don't use cones, so maybe my buildup is easier to get rid of. YMMV and good luck!

Nightshade
April 11th, 2008, 08:53 AM
I'll agree with everyone saying buildup and that if you're going to clarify you need a sulphate shampoo, OR a clarifying shampoo like this (http://www.avalonorganics.com/?id=88&pid=27) ( use it with great results fwiw).

Also maybe consider some shea butter conditioning cream rather than straight oils? My hair plays a lot nicer with that;


After a shower I use Fox's Shea Butter leave in, which is 1 part coconut oil, 2 parts conditioner, and 2 parts shea. I use Frank & Myrrh Shea (http://store.africansheabuttercompany.com/sheabutterjars.html) because I love the smell, and my Jason Henna-Hi Lights conditioner. To make it I add the shea to a glass bowl in the sink, surrounding it with hot hot water and mash with a spatula until it's melted, replenishing the hot water as often as necessary to keep the glass hot. Then I add in the coconut oil (it has a lower melting point, so it blends into the shea quickly. Then I take out the bowl, dry it off and add the conditioner and blend with a hand mixer. To make it set faster and keep it from getting grainy I put it in the freezer for a minute or two, take it out and hit it with the hand mixer again. Repeat until it's the consistency of frosting and well blended. Once its done I transfer it into a glass jar and put it in the bathroom. To apply I scrape up about two peas worth and smooth it between my palms, then start at the ends, smoothing them, working higher up as there is less and less shea on my hands.

Anje
April 11th, 2008, 09:02 AM
After you do a clarifying wash, I'd recommend doing an SMT -- they always help me for moisture. You'll find it in the recipes section.

missy60
April 11th, 2008, 09:04 AM
When I clarify I use a sulfate shampoo also and also lather up my ends. I usually CWC until my hair starts getting build up. I use a sulfate free shampoo to CWC and there is just nothing like a good sulfate to remove build up. You can even dilute it and get great results if your worried about it being to strong.

pariate
April 11th, 2008, 12:30 PM
Okay, probably never trying herb washing again! It's a bit too fiddly and messy for me, I'm quite lazy :rolleyes:

Never mind, I still clarified and did a good deep-condition. I'll mix up the spritzer while my hair dries off a little and hopefully this time tomorrow I'll see my hair back to some degree of normality! Oh, to have soft hair again...

birdiefu
April 11th, 2008, 10:08 PM
How long have you been using the Biolage Conditioning Balm? Did you start around the same time you started CO (when your problems began)? I ask because my hair gets *horrible* buildup with that stuff- no idea why as most of the ingredients seem pretty tame and I heard good stuff about it from other LHCers. But I got the same dry and coarse feeling, tangly, splitty ends once I started using it and had to clarify it off and get rid of my Biolage.

CurlyOne
April 12th, 2008, 12:08 AM
This is gonna be kinda long, heads up :D. I would do a few thing different if I were you. I have hair that sounds a little like yours and I have these problems too.

First, go to your local natural grocers and get your hands on some natural shampoo. :) Something that doesn't have a whole ton of harsh cleaners in it or cones. If I use a lot of cones in my hair it dries out extremely fast and breaks like you would believe. A nice rich conditioner will do wonders. Leave it on the ends for a few minuets and then rinse.

Second, learn how to do different hair styles. It seems like a lot of work at first but keeping your hair up 24/7, yes I mean 24/7, is the best way to keep is safe and moisturized, especially when put up wet right out of the shower. (of all the steps I would say this is the most important :cheese:)

Third, find an oil your hair likes. I tried jojoba and found that plain old extra virgin olive oil works the best for me, but play around :shrug:. If you find a natural conditioner that you like and your hair still seem dry try this.

After you rinse out your conditioner squeeze out the excess water from your hair and part your hair so you basically have it in two sections over your shoulders in the front. Get about a dime sized (more or less as needed) amount of oil in your hand and rub your hands together so both hands are pretty evenly coated. Next, with one hand per section of hair, work the oil into your damp hair. Then you can gently comb your hair out with a wide tooth comb (or not, depending on how many tangles you think you have) and put it up in a bun or anything else that will keep it up. This will allow your hair to soak it all in slowly and no one will know you have oil in your hair and the oil won't get on your clothes.:D

pariate
April 12th, 2008, 01:08 AM
Birdiefu - what condish do you use now? Or are you a herbal washer?

CurlyOne - thank you for all your tips :)

My hair is back to normal today, after clarifying yesterday. I followed my usual routine after I clarified and added a few sprays from Kimberlily's defrizz mister. Delicious! *Note to self* - MUST remember to clarify every few weeks when using CO!

Riot Crrl
April 12th, 2008, 01:25 AM
I use MOP's clarifying shampoo. It's sulfate free. I'm not terribly knowledgable on ingredients, but I trust them. It's also cone free. Obviously there's some kind of detergent in there, just not a sulfate-based one.

It's not a matter of trustworthiness, it's a matter of the clarifier needing to be a match for whatever it is you're attempting to clarify.

If you have sebum and house dust in your hair, vinegar rinse might get it out great. Dimethicone, bubble gum, motor oil... not so much.

pariate
April 12th, 2008, 01:34 AM
I don't use cone conditioners, but I worry about things like polyquats and ingredients ending in -cellulose. Surely these ingredients will build up over time?! Alas, just because a product is cone-free doesn't mean it won't contain anything that can cause build up.

I really should get around to making my own! :lol:

tiny_teesha
April 12th, 2008, 04:45 AM
We have a dog at work, Angus, his fur feels like troll fur.......so long as your hair isn't like that, it is worth saving :)
Perhaps a micro trim? SMT? Change of routine. Do you use cones???? That may be it?

birdiefu
April 12th, 2008, 03:31 PM
Birdiefu - what condish do you use now? Or are you a herbal washer?

When I did/do CO (rarely now since I have different tap water, more CWC nowadays), I used VO5 or Suave of some sort. Second condish might be a SMT with VO5 or Suave, or for a thicker conditioner Tigi Moisture Maniac or Nexxus Humectress. Leave-in with a *tiny* bit of Humectress or some GR and oil while wet/damp with fractionated coconut oil. None of those condishes have cones.

I don't know exactly what it was about the Biolage that gave my hair the issues. I need to look up the ingredients again and compare to other conditioners that work well with my hair and find out what the offending ingredient was.

pariate
April 14th, 2008, 04:10 AM
I don't know exactly what it was about the Biolage that gave my hair the issues. I need to look up the ingredients again and compare to other conditioners that work well with my hair and find out what the offending ingredient was.

Could it have been polyquats and ingredients ending in -cellulose?