View Full Version : Please advise a newbie

October 21st, 2009, 06:51 PM

The top layer of my armpit length layered 1c/2a hair ir much coarser and more damaged than the undernearth which is very fine and silky. I've had such bad experiences with hair salons that I'm very reluctant to go back - I've never found one that understood my hair. So I'd like to deal with the problem myself. The canopy hair (if that is what the top bit is called) is dull while the underneath bit is shiny.

Any idea how I can help my damaged hair? It's the shortest layer so getting it cut out would leave me with very short hair!:(

I used to use John Frieda volumising shampoo and conditioner for brunettes but am now using occasional BS/WV washes and am experimenting with Indian herbs - I don't really want to use commercial products any more. Oh, I've also been using a cassia/henna mix to colour my hair as I think the synthetic dyes the hair stylist used contributed to the bad condition. I've got various oils as I'm using the OCM on my face and tried the tiniest bit of organic unrefined coconut oil and the damaged hair seemed to soak it up but I'm not sure if it helped it. Would any of these help do you think?

Sorry if this has all been asked before but I'm totally new to all this.

Thanks in advance.

October 21st, 2009, 06:53 PM
Sorry, meant please advise a newbie! :o

October 21st, 2009, 08:43 PM
That maybe a build up issue there is your hair looks dull. Did you clarify before?

October 21st, 2009, 10:08 PM
Canopy layers tend to get a lot more handling than the rest and are usually drier. My initial inclination is to advise you to put down the baking soda (can be very drying) and give your hair a nice long soak in conditioner (or better yet, an SMT, which is a mix of conditioner, honey, and aloe gel). My hair's similar to yours, and I like Suave Naturals (other than coconut) for conditioners, and the biolage conditioning balm knock-off I found is wonderful if you want something heavier.

Oiling the hair certainly won't hurt it. If you're so inclined, try putting a whole bunch of oil on it (several tablespoons) and leave it in for a few hours or overnight. It's typical to do this before washing with Indian herbs anyway, because they can be too drying otherwise. Wash it out in the morning (herbs or a normal shampoo + conditioner session should probably get it out, no need to go overboard) and see if the hair seems any better. Light oilings right after washing are also good for the hair and might give you some good results if you stick to it for a while.

October 21st, 2009, 11:39 PM
Each morning (or night) I mist my hair with a little spritz bottle that just has some water in it and a tiny bit of conditioner (vo5). Then I put a little coconut oil on my hair. By morning it's usually soaked in (or you can wash your hair in the morning). That's really helped my dry canopy hair.

October 21st, 2009, 11:41 PM
I recommend the SMT and the oil. Both really help with dry hair for me! My canopy tends to be drier as well. :)

October 22nd, 2009, 08:27 AM
Thank you all very much for your replies!

I did clarify using washing up liquid before I hennaed - and I hadn't used cones for several weeks before that. I don't use any hair styling products or leave in conditioners (though that might change now!)

I'm glad to know I'm not the only one with hair canopy issues. I've only recently discovered this site and I've realised I've been very rough on my hair. For some reason it never occurred to me how damaging brushing and combing could be - I might look into getting a nice comb that doesn't have rough edges.

I put a good bit of oil in my hair last night and washed this morning using BS/WV (I've cut back on that but might drop it altogether). Put the tiniest smidgeon of coconut oil on the top layer and ends of my hair while still wet so we will see if this helps.

It's such a nuisance as my hair is actually quite greasy (though getting less so since I went No Poo) - it really is just the canopy that's nasty.

Thanks again everyone - this is wonderful site!

October 22nd, 2009, 08:26 PM
Update - the oiling seems to have helped. The canopy feels much softer although I fear the normal bits of hair might get lank too quickly. I found it tricky to target just the dry bits. My hair looks shiny under the light but I'm not sure about in the shade. Anyway, I'll stick with this for a week or so before I try anything else.