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View Full Version : Combination hair - real prob with dry lengths



enni
June 27th, 2011, 10:55 PM
Hi everyone :)

My hair is BSL, thick and fine (it's quite messy and flyaway). I hope I've described that correctly...haven't been on for a while so I'm a bit out of touch.

I currently have an issue with about half the length being very dry. My ends have always been a bit scrappy but it's become worse, much more of the hair. Having said that my roots are oily! Ugh!

I brainstorm as to why but who knows really. I haven't had my hair this long for ages so maybe it's just that. I've started on a medication which may cause it (or not lol). I'm middle aged now...I don't know! :confused:

What I would like to know from someone, perhaps someone with similar type hair - what can I try to moisturise it?

I have tried coconut oil which was a pain. Jojoba oil. I have tried to leave in conditioners which look a little like a normal conditioner but they don't seem to add moisture - weird :O

So, any suggestions? I'm in Australia btw. :)

Melisande
June 27th, 2011, 11:36 PM
Enni, what is your wash frequency and technique?

Oily roots and dry lengths usually are a sign that you use too much detergent. Detergent as it is used in modern shampoos dissolves and washes away oils efficiently enough to clean grease from machines. It cleans so efficiently that the scalp is left with no oils at all and then begins to produce its own oils to compensate for the loss.

Remember: scalp is skin. Just as you compensate your body skin for loss of oils through post-shower lotion, your scalp compensates itself for the loss of oils by producing sebum.

Your lengths have no chance of getting oils from your scalp and dry out.

What you have to do, most probably, is: check your shampoo and begin to determine which detergent is good for you and which isn't. That will take time - try to remember which shampoo worked for you and which made your hair so dry.

Secondly, dilute your shampoo. Just let it sit on your scalp, rub as little as possible. Diluted shampoo cleans surprisingly well, you save money and the planet, and your scalp is less stressed out.

Thirdly, think about alternative ways of washing, like CO - conditioner only.

4ly, apply jojoba oil (which is like sebum) on your scalp the night before you wash. Reassure your scalp that oil is not lacking. If you want to, add some drops of essential oils of lavender, sage and rosemary - they relax the scalp. Oiling your scalp helps because oil dissolves oil, and washing is easier.

5thly, apply a very light oiling to your lengths daily - a tiny bit of coconut oil (that penetrates the hair shaft) will do. For many, damp bunning or misting hair lengths help. You may wish to mist your hair daily with a mixture of distilled water (or rose water), with some drops of oil (shake well before misting). Another alternative is mixing coconut oil and aloe vera gel ("cocaloe") for your lengths. Others have good results with a mixture of shea butter, oil and conditioner - this emulsion of water and oil moisturizes very well.

Your problem is very common and I personally believe it is caused by the over-use of modern, very strong detergents. It is important to remember that our skin and hair are NOT supposed to be 100% oil free. They need oils to be supple and keep moisture.

Laurenji
June 27th, 2011, 11:48 PM
My hair was like that. It still is, a lot of days, but I'm figuring it out. I've noticed that diluted shampoo really helps. I have a little bowl that I put a small squirt of shampoo in, then I fill it up with water and mix it all around. I've found that even though it's a very small ratio of shampoo to water, it still cleans my hair surprisingly well.

The second thing that I do is that instead of putting conditioner on after I shampoo, I put it on just before. Kind of like the CWC method, except for I don't do a second conditioner. I rinse out the shampoo and the conditioner all at once. I've found it leaves my hair a lot softer.

Una
June 28th, 2011, 02:00 AM
enni, I used to have exactly the same problem as you - and it also sounds like we have the same hair type. Do you use conditioners with cones? Because what worked for me was giving up cones completely. I think the silicones coated my hair shaft so that no moisture could get in. This lead to dry, scraggily ends, like you describe. Now I just use oils for moisture and it works a treat. I no longer have dry ends.

haibane
June 28th, 2011, 06:03 AM
I basically do two different routines for my hair. I use SLS+coconut oil shampoo for my scalp and CO the length (hold the length out of the way while I shampoo and rinse the scalp.) And then use a lot of conditioner as a leave in and mist the length for moisture, leaving the scalp alone.

Anje
June 28th, 2011, 07:37 AM
Usually, when someone complains that conditioners don't help provide moisture to their hair, buildup is the first thing to suspect. (Background: products, especially conditioner ingredients, build up.)

Your best bet is to start by clarifying. I'd suggest getting a "clarifying shampoo" that contains sulfates such as "Sodium Lauryl Sulfate" in the ingredients list. Shampoo with that twice, sudsing your hair from root to tips. Get your length really clean (it may feel better, or it may feel really nasty at this point -- both are normal possibilities). Then condition well.

You might want to try washing with something like CWC (condition length and then apply shampoo on scalp, rinse it all out, then condition everything) to help keep your length more moisturized, as a day-to-day washing technique. Keeping shampoo off the length most of the time helps prevent it from drying out, but comes with the consequence that it allows conditioning agents to eventually build upon the length. Generally, this is a preferable trade-off to shampooing everything every time and overdrying the length. Clarify and condition heavily on occasions when your hair stops behaving.

neesalena
June 28th, 2011, 08:11 AM
This is pretty much my life, too. I haven't found a solution but overshampooing was definitely a habit I had to break. I bought a dollar store mustard dispenser and mix shampoo and water in it. It makes sure that the shampoo gets right to where I need it and doesn't get all over my length. I put conditioner on first, and sometimes again after washing.

Like Anje said, eventually you'll have to clarify to get the build up off, but it's worth it to me. I usually do a deep conditioning along with the clarifying, which always feels nice.

enni
June 29th, 2011, 12:10 AM
Enni, what is your wash frequency and technique?


Actually I've been washing every day!! I didn't until earlier this year but I was exercising and so I found I wanted to wash my hair after that because I was so sweaty. Over time I've needed to wash it even without excercise due to the oiliness. Oily hair, or scalp rather, is common in my family but I think you are right - the shampoo is something to look at. I used to use a light baking soda solution but I switched to shampoo again earlier this year. It was more a change thing - wanted something pretty smelling - rather than an issue I had with the baking soda itself.

Last night I put henna in whcih I have not done for about 3 or 4 mths and after that I did put a bit of coconut oil in. It's so-so this morning but I might keep that up and see what happens.

Thanks for your advice and sorry I didn't reply sooner. :)

enni
June 29th, 2011, 12:11 AM
The second thing that I do is that instead of putting conditioner on after I shampoo, I put it on just before. Kind of like the CWC method, except for I don't do a second conditioner. I rinse out the shampoo and the conditioner all at once. I've found it leaves my hair a lot softer.

Thats an interesting idea. I think I might try the diluted shampoo as well, though I've just mixed up my baking soda ready to use again, but yeah...I'll give it a go. Thanks

enni
June 29th, 2011, 12:14 AM
enni, I used to have exactly the same problem as you - and it also sounds like we have the same hair type. Do you use conditioners with cones? Because what worked for me was giving up cones completely. I think the silicones coated my hair shaft so that no moisture could get in. This lead to dry, scraggily ends, like you describe. Now I just use oils for moisture and it works a treat. I no longer have dry ends.

I don't think it does but I will double-check. What I have trouble with when using the oils is for me it's so easy to put on too much and end up with greasy ends...looks about as good as greasy roots! :eek:

Do you have that problem and if so how do you avoid it?

enni
June 29th, 2011, 12:16 AM
I basically do two different routines for my hair. I use SLS+coconut oil shampoo for my scalp and CO the length (hold the length out of the way while I shampoo and rinse the scalp.) And then use a lot of conditioner as a leave in and mist the length for moisture, leaving the scalp alone.

Holding length of the hair out - sounds like a great idea! It doesn't need shampoo thats for sure. I'd never thought of doing that and I think someone else here mentioned it too. Yup, going to do it. :)

enni
June 29th, 2011, 12:21 AM
Usually, when someone complains that conditioners don't help provide moisture to their hair, buildup is the first thing to suspect. (Background: products, especially conditioner ingredients, build up.)

That is an interesting thought because I have been applying this leave in moisturiser that never seems to do it's job for some time. I wonder if it's been making things worse...



Your best bet is to start by clarifying. I'd suggest getting a "clarifying shampoo" that contains sulfates such as "Sodium Lauryl Sulfate" in the ingredients list. Shampoo with that twice, sudsing your hair from root to tips. Get your length really clean (it may feel better, or it may feel really nasty at this point -- both are normal possibilities). Then condition well.

You might want to try washing with something like CWC (condition length and then apply shampoo on scalp, rinse it all out, then condition everything) to help keep your length more moisturized, as a day-to-day washing technique. Keeping shampoo off the length most of the time helps prevent it from drying out, but comes with the consequence that it allows conditioning agents to eventually build upon the length. Generally, this is a preferable trade-off to shampooing everything every time and overdrying the length. Clarify and condition heavily on occasions when your hair stops behaving.

Thanks, I'll give that a try. It's like cleaning the slate and starting again - def worth a try. :)

enni
June 29th, 2011, 12:23 AM
I bought a dollar store mustard dispenser and mix shampoo and water in it. It makes sure that the shampoo gets right to where I need it and doesn't get all over my length.

That is great advice. I have done that with my bicarb soda - hadn't thought to do it with shampoo as well!

enni
June 29th, 2011, 12:25 AM
Hahaha - Pls anywhere that I have written 'baking soda/powder" I mean "bicarb" lol

Chiara
June 29th, 2011, 12:56 AM
Things that worked for me are:
1) WO or CO washes to stretch shampoo watches (so I now do a shampoo wash weekly, and do WO or CO washes in between). I won't lie- my hair does look a bit lank by day 6 (that's partly just the nature of my hair- and hey, it makes for grip when I put it up!) but the length is now so much better then it was.
2) using a much milder shampoo- I use Al'chemy Mandarin shampoo, you can get it from most Pricelines in Australia
3) conditioning from the ears down only with a rinseable conditioner, or a leave-in (Al'chemy leave-in is nice, with no silicones)
4) cassia treatments (there is a big thread on this in the herbal haircare section)

Lianna
June 29th, 2011, 02:46 AM
I've been on harsh shampoos, mild shampoos and conditioner only for several months. Even water only for about 2 months. And my hair was like that no matter what. The ends aren't very dry, but drier than my oily roots. I've always been this way.

What helps me is actually giving my hair what it wants. It wants water, so I wash it often. We should try to retain that water in the hair. For this you must test if you need protein, which helps to maintain moisture. And oil the ends (or even length if that gets drier too). My hair actually hates protein, but I don't know about yours. If it snaps easily or feels mushy, you need protein.

Some people like to CO often during the week, and wash with shampoo once or twice a week. Seems like a mild routine you could try. Oiling damp, towel dried makes a huge difference, because it seals the water in longer.

Do start with clarified hair, for reasons stated above in other posts.

ETA: I use olive oil by the way, my hair doesn't work with coconut oil either.