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jesis
March 31st, 2011, 10:10 PM
Okay, this has been bothering me too much. I didn't want to start a new thread, but I've asked a few individuals on the LHC and I've looked around and I just need to get some straight answers.

My hair is about 2c/3a. When I first cut heat out of my hair-care routine, it was really curly. I was visiting naturallycurly.com a lot, and they advise layers, so I was getting layers regularly cut into my hair to keep my curly locks. When I joined the LHC in December, I decided layers=bad and I started to grow them out. They were at the bottom of my ears at that time and now they are a little below SL.

The problem is, I'm losing my curl, and what I'm getting is NOT pretty. I try to wear my hair up, but it's very thin due to some hair loss due to stress and mix that with the fringe that I am trying to grow out that refuses to stay back and out of my face. UGH it's just frustrating trying to put/wear it up.

There are pictures in my album of my hair from December and of my hair now. The most recent hair picture is me scrunching and scrunching my hair trying to get it to curl, the picture from December is when I had shorter layers, and the curl is effortless.

I'm getting to the point that I just want to chop those layers back in, to heck with my hair goals. I put value into looking nice every day, and the way my hair has been lately, that's not the case. So should I get layers? Should I try some other method (I've tried plunking, it doesn't work for my hair)? Ugh what can I do?!?! It's so frustrating!! Any suggestions will be accepted with my deepest gratitude.

TIA. :)

MeganE
March 31st, 2011, 10:13 PM
Your hair looks pretty to me. It's not as curly, but you still have some nice waves. What don't you like about it?

jesis
March 31st, 2011, 10:17 PM
Thank you! I guess I just miss the big curls that I had before, and the way it took so little time to do my hair in the morning. Now it's a huge effort to get it to look nice.

UltraBella
March 31st, 2011, 10:18 PM
I think you have lovely hair :)
I personally love layers and I love how your hair looked curly, but are you sure it's the lack of layers causing you to lose your curls ?

jesis
March 31st, 2011, 10:20 PM
No, I'm not sure. The only evidence I have is that it has happened slowly over time, so I am assuming that is the case.

I don't know what else could have caused it, though. Whenever I was getting my layers cut in regularly, the curls were so beautiful. I just loved my hair. I was so proud of it. Now I'm just like "le blah" over my hair.

UltraBella
March 31st, 2011, 10:25 PM
Then why don't you add layers again ? Layers can be fantastic ! I would hate my hair without layers.

MeganE
March 31st, 2011, 10:26 PM
No, I'm not sure. The only evidence I have is that it has happened slowly over time, so I am assuming that is the case.

I don't know what else could have caused it, though. Whenever I was getting my layers cut in regularly, the curls were so beautiful. I just loved my hair. I was so proud of it. Now I'm just like "le blah" over my hair.

Well, I don't think you can expect to go from here to hair that you're perfectly happy with, but I'm only basing that on my own experience. It took me years to figure out if I wanted layers or no layers, and if so, what kind, and what style, and I made a lot of mistakes along the way and those mistakes all had to be grown out and something new had to be tried.

Now I have a really good idea of how I want to have my hair, and it's been working really well for me. I can't say exactly what you should try next, but if you're unhappy about it, I think you should try something new. A few years ago I realized that my highest priority was to have hair that *looks good* and if I can find a way to make it look good and be long, then I would do it. If not, I would rather have beautiful shorter hair than have long hair that I didn't like.

elbow chic
March 31st, 2011, 10:27 PM
I like my hair better with layers, too, if it is down. Brings out the wave.

But then it can be difficult to put up neatly, and near-impossible to braid.

I have decided that for now I'd rather work on updos and braids and sacrifice having stylish-looking down hair, but for you that may not be a good trade-off at all!

And, I think your hair right how is very pretty too. :D

jesis
March 31st, 2011, 10:27 PM
Good idea. :) I think I will do it. Can anybody direct to somewhere I can learn to do layers on my own? TIA!

MeganE
March 31st, 2011, 10:30 PM
I have used this method before and been pretty happy with it:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EYMyJ-LR8so

What I liked about it is how easy it is to do trims. Layered haircuts can be a nightmare to trim split ends, but this made it really really easy. I have straight hair though, so I don't know how different it would be with curly hair.

The downside to the technique is that the hair on top of your head is significantly shorter than the hair on the bottom of your head, so if you ever change your mind (like I have) you'll have a lot of hair to grow out in the back.

jesis
March 31st, 2011, 10:31 PM
I like my hair better with layers, too, if it is down. Brings out the wave.

But then it can be difficult to put up neatly, and near-impossible to braid.

I have decided that for now I'd rather work on updos and braids and sacrifice having stylish-looking down hair, but for you that may not be a good trade-off at all!

And, I think your hair right how is very pretty too. :D

Thanks :):):) I agree, putting my hair up is just getting easier, but still not totally possible with what layers I do have. I do have a bald spot on the back lower side of my head, it's not huge, but it makes it nearly impossible to do updos that are pretty. So wearing my hair down is what I try to do more often to hide this until it (hopefully) grows back.

jesis
March 31st, 2011, 10:32 PM
Well, I don't think you can expect to go from here to hair that you're perfectly happy with, but I'm only basing that on my own experience. It took me years to figure out if I wanted layers or no layers, and if so, what kind, and what style, and I made a lot of mistakes along the way and those mistakes all had to be grown out and something new had to be tried.

Now I have a really good idea of how I want to have my hair, and it's been working really well for me. I can't say exactly what you should try next, but if you're unhappy about it, I think you should try something new. A few years ago I realized that my highest priority was to have hair that *looks good* and if I can find a way to make it look good and be long, then I would do it. If not, I would rather have beautiful shorter hair than have long hair that I didn't like.

I love that last line! It's very true. If my hair doesn't look good long, I might not ever be happy with it. And I guess that's what this journey is all about, trial and error, and finding out what you like. Thanks for putting that into perspective for me. :)

x0h_bother
March 31st, 2011, 10:34 PM
I miss my curls too, but I am so excited to be able to braid at all one length that I am growing my layers out and I don't want to chop for curl. I'm not sure which is to blame (or both)- my hair being in better condition or less layers. But I'm completely understanding your problem. (see album). I don't have a solution, cept to say hang in there :blossom:

jesis
March 31st, 2011, 10:38 PM
Ohh I love your curls, they remind me of mine, but your hair is also gorgeous now. If mine grows out to be as pretty as yours, I won't even worry about it. :) Unfortunately, I think I have more curl to my hair. My hair is absolutely unpredictable, too. Lol.

If I cut layers back into my hair, I know there is no hope I will be able to do updos or braids that look decent anytime soon. That's one of the thing holding me back. Another is my hope for a blunt hairline someday.

pilateschick7
March 31st, 2011, 10:38 PM
I noticed in your bio that your hair "loves henna". I don't know if you have done repeated whole head applications or just henna glosses. There are a couple threads that indicated henna loosens curl for some folks.

I was big into curly girl NC board prior to joining LHC. I still get good curl with a flax seed gel and brulee combo and my hair is now waist length. It is made by a NC member and I absolutely love the stuff! She makes each batch to order with your ingredient choices. However, some of my old NC classic purchases just don't work with my longer lengths.
http://www.etsy.com/listing/54454989/8-oz-all-natural-flax-gelee-custom

Perhaps using tiny claw clips like france luxe mini clips at your crown could help you get root lift and survive the grow out stage. The arrangement of clips is in the Loraine Massey book. I will go look up the page number. (Not the drying technique but clips left in place as part of your style)

I find that to get good curl now I have to daily wash..any bun wearing makes for mutated curls on 2nd and 3rd day hair:)

I hope you find something that works for you.

jesis
March 31st, 2011, 10:42 PM
The henna did pull the curl out of my hair for a few days after application, then it was right back to it's curly self. The curls on that site are absolutely gorgeous. I am going to look into buying some of her gel, thanks so much!

I daily wash as well, it's a must, unless I decide to bun my hair the second day. Sometimes, the first day, I have to repeatedly wet my hair down to get it to stay in any curl formation. It's so much work and it's discouraging.

Thanks for your suggestions, I appreciate them :)

MeganE
March 31st, 2011, 10:44 PM
If I cut layers back into my hair, I know there is no hope I will be able to do updos or braids that look decent anytime soon. That's one of the thing holding me back. Another is my hope for a blunt hairline someday.

Yes that's the reason I decided to grow out all except my layers in front. Maybe the thing to do is to try to maintain it for a year or so, and get some more length going and see if you like it better then. In the meantime, try to find simpler ways to style it. There's TONS of tutorials online, more than enough for a person to have a different hairstyle every day for a year!

ooo
March 31st, 2011, 10:48 PM
My hair texture is quite similar. Once my hair is getting longer I'm planning on getting layers in the last third of my hair. Something more vivid.

jesis
March 31st, 2011, 10:48 PM
You're right. I think I will try a few different things for the next 2 weeks (2 week rule GO!) and see if I can't get it to look decent for the time being until I can grow out my fringe. I hope with the better weather my hair will be more at peace with itself as well ;) If I don't figure anything out, I will consider layers again.
Thanks for your help!

jesis
March 31st, 2011, 10:49 PM
ooo, you have gorgeous hair! :)

ETA: And quite a stash!! HOLY!

Mesmerise
March 31st, 2011, 11:11 PM
The important thing is that you LIKE and ENJOY your hair! My personal goal is to have great "wash and go" hair. You know, the sort of hair you can wash, comb, and voila! At the moment I'm not there, but I'm working on it ;)

My hair is odd, and something has pulled out my natural curls a bit. I actually noticed that yesterday after I CO'd my hair, it was curlier than today when I oil shampooed it (I'm trying not to wash my hair too often but I didn't really count the CO as a "wash"), so I know what you use IN your hair can have an effect.

At the moment, mine's awful cause the ends look kinda straight, and the middle is curlier. No idea what is with THAT!

I also used to have some layering in my hair, but I pretty much had it all cut out last year, and now my hair's thinned a lot from terrible shedding, so I don't want to get layers put in because I know my ends will look even worse.

So yeah, I share your frustration ;)

The good thing is that you CAN have long hair with layers! Lots of people have lovely layers in their long hair, and who knows, I may end up re-layering mine in the future once it's thickened up a bit. At the moment I hate my hair so much down, that I always wear it up BUT I really prefer the look of myself with my hair down!!! So, yeah, I'm going around each day not really feeling pretty cause my hair's always up, but when it's down I just look in the mirror and ARGH... lol... It looks good when I straighten it, but I don't want to heat damage it either.

Good luck with whatever you describe! Maybe start with some longer layers and see how well they work out?

varintalonguard
April 1st, 2011, 03:18 AM
Personally i think I look like a triangle head without layers. My shortest actual layer is about sl and my longest is about an inch or 2 past BSL. i would have less difference but for some damage i had to cut out. If you decided to do them go slow, get layers not that much different from your main length, you can always cut more off.

Firefox7275
April 1st, 2011, 03:39 AM
Maybe ask yourself what is different about your routine now and then, plus what is different about your routine and successful Curly Girls? Are you repeatedly wetting because you don't use a product that is reactivated by spraying with water? Could you go low-poo or infrequent washes or super diluted shampoo if you can't go without? What didn't work about plopping/ plunking? An alternative might be the Roller Jaw Clips. Your profile doesn't specify your routine so it's hard to make tailored suggestions.

jesis
April 2nd, 2011, 10:44 AM
My routine: I wash and condition my hair with Redken Real Control, comb while the conditioner is in my hair. Sometimes I will condition twice because I feel I get better results. When I get out, I immediately put a small amount of Camellia oil throughout my hair and then I apply my gel and scrunch. I put an old t-shirt under my hair while it is still dripping, I never touch it with a towel. I clip my bangs back with a bobby pin so they will dry nicely with the rest of my hair. Then I either blow dry it lightly on low heat with a diffuser or I let it air dry if I will be in the house for a while (usually the latter, I try to wake up early so I can avoid heat).

I have so far henna'd my hair twice, the last time was a couple of months ago. I'm not sure if I will be doing it again, though I do love the color. I clarify when needed and sometimes do an EVOO+honey deep conditioner which helps keep the frizz away, but I stopped doing that as often because it REALLY lightened my hair up. I do S&D when needed (which seems to be about every 2 weeks). My hair is in better condition than it was when I first joined. It feels nice and soft and I really appreciate all of the help I have gotten here at the LHC.

Honestly, though, my hair has a mind of it's own. Sometimes I am literally a 2b and other days my hair will look like a 3b, and still other days anywhere in between. The left side of my hair has a more distinctive curl pattern, while there is hair on the right side of my head that sometimes dries completely straight, no curl at all. I've tried plopping/plunking on numerous occasions and it made my hair a huge knotted mess. I hated it. If I don't scrunch, it dries in an awkward wave that kind of just sticks together, and if I don't use gel/cream, the frizz is unbearable.

I think I do miss my layers, but I'm so afraid that I will regret it if I cut them all off because then I'm back to square one if I decide I don't actually want them or if they actually aren't the problem. On the other hand, it is just hair (as much as it pains me to say it) and it does grow, and if I'm not happy without the layers, why not go for them? :)

See I'm so confused!!

jesis
April 2nd, 2011, 10:49 AM
The important thing is that you LIKE and ENJOY your hair! My personal goal is to have great "wash and go" hair. You know, the sort of hair you can wash, comb, and voila! At the moment I'm not there, but I'm working on it ;)

My hair is odd, and something has pulled out my natural curls a bit. I actually noticed that yesterday after I CO'd my hair, it was curlier than today when I oil shampooed it (I'm trying not to wash my hair too often but I didn't really count the CO as a "wash"), so I know what you use IN your hair can have an effect.

At the moment, mine's awful cause the ends look kinda straight, and the middle is curlier. No idea what is with THAT!

I also used to have some layering in my hair, but I pretty much had it all cut out last year, and now my hair's thinned a lot from terrible shedding, so I don't want to get layers put in because I know my ends will look even worse.

So yeah, I share your frustration ;)

The good thing is that you CAN have long hair with layers! Lots of people have lovely layers in their long hair, and who knows, I may end up re-layering mine in the future once it's thickened up a bit. At the moment I hate my hair so much down, that I always wear it up BUT I really prefer the look of myself with my hair down!!! So, yeah, I'm going around each day not really feeling pretty cause my hair's always up, but when it's down I just look in the mirror and ARGH... lol... It looks good when I straighten it, but I don't want to heat damage it either.

Good luck with whatever you describe! Maybe start with some longer layers and see how well they work out?

I also want wash n' go hair. That's what I had for month before my layers got too heavy to hold the curl. I could literally get out of the shower, throw in my products, and go to class! Now I'm afraid to leave the house until I know my hair is mostly dry because who knows what it will end up looking like?

I also need to either learn to cut my own layers (which I know there are a couple of DevaCurl videos on how to cut in the curly girl method) or I need to find a competent hairstylist. My hairstylist is great, she knows a lot about long hair, but not so much about curly hair.

HintOfMint
April 2nd, 2011, 12:55 PM
If layers make you look nice with less effort, go for layers. A lot of people on this forum aren't so hot on layers and are growing them out, but that's because many of them want to do certain updos and braids without pokey-out ends, or they want a solid hemline. It doesn't mean that layers don't look nice or they're intrinsically bad or unwanted.

Latte Lady
April 2nd, 2011, 02:30 PM
If you liked your hair best when it had layers, keep them! What works for some of us won't work for everyone and curly hair has its own kind of needs. And curly hair comes in so many types that you can't decree one fit all cut and style for the group. And how boring it would be it you could!
I sometimes justify my long hair to others who don't know any better that the reason I have it is because I can do so much with it and that it is different. That reason losses some of it's meaning when all long hairs start to look like copies of each other.
Do what's right for you and don't worry about what others say or do. They are all probably too busy just noticing you wonderful hair!

jesis
April 2nd, 2011, 03:14 PM
Thanks everyone :):):)

krissykins
April 2nd, 2011, 03:52 PM
Well, I say get the layers. You are thinking this through, which is a good sign, but you know you want them ;)

MoonlightShadow
April 2nd, 2011, 11:07 PM
i think maybe u might regret it later? so, maybe you should wait a while before you get layers :)
i've heard from a few people that it makes your hair seem thicker. they kinda end up regretting it later.

BrightEyes7
April 3rd, 2011, 12:15 AM
Why did you want to grow out your layers in the first place? Were you unhappy with them? If not then get them again. I think you should do whatever will make you happy and from the sounds of it that is getting layers again!

Oh, the reason your hair acts different on one side is because that is the side you sleep on. Try sleeping with a silk or satin sleep bonnet.

jesis
April 4th, 2011, 04:50 PM
Well it's official guys, I picked up my layers the other night and cut them off about 1/2"-1" each. The difference is amazing!! My hair is it's curly old self again, and I didn't lose any length off of the total length.


Why did you want to grow out your layers in the first place? Were you unhappy with them? If not then get them again. I think you should do whatever will make you happy and from the sounds of it that is getting layers again!

Oh, the reason your hair acts different on one side is because that is the side you sleep on. Try sleeping with a silk or satin sleep bonnet.

It's not that I didn't like them, you're right. I guess I just thought growing out your hair meant growing out all of your hair. But since I wasn't happy with my hair as it was, I'm glad I made this thread, since it pushed me to do what makes my hair look great and me feel good.

You may be right! No matter how I fall asleep, I always wake up on my right side. However, I wash every morning. Do you still think this could be the cause of it?

Lady Medieval
April 5th, 2011, 10:08 PM
Although some people meet with success cutting in their own layers, if you are really worried about how it will look, I would definitely recommend going to a hair dresser...they aren't all evil, mine supports my long haired goals and just cut layers into my fine hair to keep my length but give me more movement. If your hair is all one length, I'd probably go to a salon, just to make sure the layer is even around the back of the head, and then if you feel confident, take care of the trims yourself.