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Peashy
June 28th, 2011, 04:22 PM
For the first time in YEARS I actually have hair long enough to be proud of. Every other time I tried to grow it long (prior to LHC) it would get so long and the hairdresser would convince me that if I cut a few inches off it would look better. After more blowdrying, straightening, dying etc etc it would grow back but be just as damaged, resulting in those few inches being cut off again.

Now I don't use any heat at all and have changed my hair routines considerably and don't even use a hairdresser (thank you Feye's method). It is finally long!! But I hate it :( I mean I really hate it. It's just frizzy and ratty. It is tangled as soon as it is brushed. I especially get lots of tiny knots in it that my tangel teezer or comb can't deal with, almost like when your finest necklace chain gets those knots which never come out. I cringe when I hear it snap despite all my greatest efforts. My hair is naturally fine and feels soft, it also now has great shine. But it's horrible to look at when left down and very difficult to work with. It breaks so easily. It's not what I pictured at all. I am really very tempted to pixie it to get back to 100% natural virgin hair and go from there. With the new know-how from LHC doing things right I am sure I would then figure out what is best for my hair and will see it really start to flourish and take shape. At present it just seems to get more tangly and frizzy despite henna, coconut oil and CO washing. I just don't know what to do with it.

I have never had very short hair before however and am really scared of not looking 'feminine'. Is there anyone who can give me any hints, tips or advice? Really need some words of encouragement right now. :pray:

danceri110
June 28th, 2011, 04:57 PM
If you cut a blunt bob it might help; and I always thought that cut makes everyone look very feminine and it tends to make your hemline look thicker(:
Maybe somewhere in between collarbone and just-grazing-you-shoulders length? Good luck !

Kherome
June 28th, 2011, 05:12 PM
Hair has nothing to do with femininity. Don't worry about that. Look at that Emma whats her name from the Harry Potter movies. She wacked her hair off, and no one is calling her manly.

Eire
June 28th, 2011, 05:16 PM
I kind of went through the same thing. My hair finally started to grow, and the area from roots to shoulder were healthy after 2 years of LHC, but the ends were damaged from prior heat styling. I just cut to shoulder. It's a lot healthier and pretty low maintenance. So far I have been called "cute" and "adorable" a lot by my family and friends, but no one has called me manly.

Misti
June 28th, 2011, 05:20 PM
It doesn't really sound like you *want* to cut your hair...

Could you, possibly, wear it up most of the time while you maintain your hair at it's current length with trims until you get 100% virgin hair? It's not the same as 'instant Pantene hair', but that's not what you get with a big chop, either. ;) This way you get long hair that gradually gets more lovely, and it's mainly up out of the way so it doesn't annoy you overmuch.

(I have the same superfine hair you describe, so you have my complete sympathy there. I find that when I get one of those horrid "necklace knots", the best think I can do is rub coconut and jojoba oil into it and then very gently work it out with a comb. But as your hair gets healthier, you'll find they happen less.)

Coffee Succubus
June 28th, 2011, 05:23 PM
If you're truly not happy with it, then do what you need to do to make you happy. Even if that means cutting it off and starting over!

A-line cuts are very cute and feminine. I am fond of pixies too!
The best news is, if you don't like it... hair grows and you can try try again! :p

Tips to appearing feminine no matter how short your hair is(face/head):
- Highlight what makes a woman look like a woman! That is EYES and LIPS. Old cartoon characters are pretty much all eye and lip! Think of Jessica Rabbit. As little as Mascara and a light lip shimmer will do. Feel free to play it up!
- If you're into the more natural face, earrings and/or cute hair barrettes work!


Here is me when I wore my hair short on my journey to long hair.
http://a4.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/photos-ak-snc1/v2257/106/90/1036044821/n1036044821_294655_7716.jpg
I played up my eyes, wore earrings, I believe that is a key necklace I am wearing...

I think you'll be okay!! +Huggs+ :blossom:

The only thing I can think that would make you look less femm is wearing boy clothes! It's really about the ENTIRE picture, wouldn't you think?

Rocket22
June 28th, 2011, 05:24 PM
Well can you just trim a tad off at a time and see if that works? sometimes we don't have to have a big chop for it to feel and behave better. Go slow and since you are doing it yourself it's not like it will cost you anything. :)

dulce
June 28th, 2011, 05:35 PM
Is your hair curly? If so, using lots of conditioner and less shampoo, and throwing away your brush[use a wide tooth comb as brushes turn curly hair to frizz and no heat,let it airdry.If you have curly hair,check out "the Curly hair handbook" a book on advice for n looking after curly hair. I have long curly hair to my waist and it frizzes horribly and tangles but that Curly girl book plus advice on this forum has helped so much.Good luck.

spidermom
June 28th, 2011, 05:41 PM
Oh no; don't bob it (one of my most NOT favorite styles)!

Well - if you like it, don't mind me.

I'd advise regular small trims, and style it in a way that makes you feel pretty! I don't see the point of treating it like antique lace if you really hate how it looks. Live a little!

UltraBella
June 28th, 2011, 05:43 PM
A pixie cut can look incredibly feminine, Halle Berry comes to mind. No way is she not feminine !!! Seriously, she is WOW.

I love short hair, just not on me. I also love really long hair, just not on me. BSL is a happy medium and works so much better for me. I wasn't enjoying mine long either.
Do what makes you happy !

Tea Lady
June 28th, 2011, 05:49 PM
Yes, small trims over time. That what I did starting way back in 2003. I had been using chemical coloring and had damage. So I stopped the damaging activities (heat and chemicals), waited three months, switched to henna, and periodically trimmed off small amounts. I also experimented widely with hair care techniques, finding those which made my hair feel and look nice. I also did "search & destroy" on the ends to get rid of splits. So I was able to stay fairly long while working through the damage. Eventually all the damage was cut off over time.

That was so much more reassuring than just choppin' it all off. And now my hair is long and in good condition (if I do say so myself!). A monster chop is not necessarily the answer.

Tea Lady

silverjen
June 28th, 2011, 05:57 PM
Do you think you have leftover damage from your years of blowdrying, etc? You've probably already read the article on damage, but if not, here's a link: http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/vbjournal.php?do=article&articleid=79

Way down in that article, there's a link to an article on rehabilitating damaged hair that may also be helpful.

I agree with the others that chopping to shoulder may help with the issues you're having. For one, shorter hair has less length to tangle... It sure sounds like you don't want to go to pixie, and I can tell you it takes forEVer to grow out.

ladyfey
June 28th, 2011, 05:59 PM
I've always wished that I'd tried pixie just once! I love bobs too, and that I've done! Do as you wish!

MonaLisa
June 28th, 2011, 06:32 PM
Is there such thing as perfect hair?

Mine snaps and breaks and tangles and has splits and looks awful some days..
But i love it, i haven't tried it short, but whenever I'd have it significantly shorter, i didn't feel good.

You could show us a picture, maybe it's not at all that bad as it seems to you.

InTheCity
June 28th, 2011, 06:35 PM
The problem with a "big cut" is that you can't un-do it. Not quickly at least. Whereas small cuts can be done several times until you reach the desired effect.

As others have said, maybe you should cut off just a little. See how you like it. Cut off more if you want. Even if you want (or think you want) a huge chop/short hairstyle, it can be really traumatic when you do it.

I'm 2 weeks into having chin/almost shoulder layers after having had almost-BSL for a year. I knew it needed to be cut but decided to do it a little at a time, see what I liked. Of course, I should have done it myself because my stylist took the liberty of cutting off, ooh, just 8-10 inches!!! :(

You can always cut more...

Mesmerise
June 28th, 2011, 06:46 PM
Of course, it's 100% up to you what you do with your hair!

For me though, whenever I'm tempted to just chop it all off and have virgin (except for henna) hair, I realise that it will still take me exactly as long to have the long hair I want... except that in the meantime I'll be growing out all those awful lengths and hating my hair even if it is in better condition.

For me the compromise is just to wear it tied up most of the time. Eventually I'll have trimmed out all the old hair damage from chemical colouring and heat straightening my hair, and I won't have to suffer through the annoyance of growing my hair long in the meantime (and having to trust my length to hairdressers as I'll no longer be able to self trim as it will be too short!!).

Unfortunately, even with better care you can't FIX hair that's already damaged. You can prevent further damage from occurring, and you can improve the appearance of hair, but once it's damaged, it's damaged. I think a lot of people come to LHC believing that if they follow the techniques their hair will improve (which of course it will...over time) but doing stuff like quitting heat, and doing CO still isn't going to fix hair that's damaged. It will make the growing hair healthier because that hair won't be exposed to all the damaging stuff of the past, but it takes a long time for that growing hair to come all the way down, and in the meantime you've got to deal with the old hair.

LaurelSpring
June 28th, 2011, 10:18 PM
Honestly, dont give up. Everyone hits these phases at some point or another. Try working with some different products or routines. This can make a huge difference. For instance, I notice you have fine hair. Mine is fine and I absolutely cant do CO. Its horrible on me. Coconut oil either. Try things that you read about on here but let the condition of your hair be your final guide to what works and doesnt work for you.

It will take time for the damage to grow out. My old colored damaged ends are still at the tips and I have been dusting them away gradually. Learn to work with your hair and dont give up. It has taken me years to find what works and doesnt work for my hair. Hang in there. Remember every day is a good hair day when you can put it in a cute updo with an amazing hairtoy. That doesnt happen with bobs.

jaine
June 28th, 2011, 10:28 PM
Pixie cuts are such a fun mix of femininity and power - I love them!

I felt different sides of my personality exposed when I had a pixie cut. The leader in me came out of hiding.

I liked getting a bit theatrical with my pixie cut - eye makeup, big colorful earrings. I felt very badass with short hair. (I miss that, actually ... I do pushups and pullups now so I can still feel badass!)

I think a pixie cut is a great thing to do at least once in your lifetime, if you have the urge!! Once your hair has more healthy virgin roots it'll be harder to give up virgin growth just for a haircut - but if your hair is already damaged it's the perfect opportunity to try it.

torrilin
June 29th, 2011, 07:15 AM
It is tangled as soon as it is brushed. I especially get lots of tiny knots in it that my tangel teezer or comb can't deal with, almost like when your finest necklace chain gets those knots which never come out. I cringe when I hear it snap despite all my greatest efforts. My hair is naturally fine and feels soft, it also now has great shine. But it's horrible to look at when left down and very difficult to work with. It breaks so easily.

When's the last time you clarified? And when did you swear off the blow dryer?

That is pretty much what my hair does when it's got build up. It's also what my hair does if it is heat damaged. My hair can't take heat styling at all. Stylists don't believe me, but even one use of a hairdryer on low is enough to make me miserable with tangles for 6 months to a year. And that's on virgin hair!

That said, F hair is just plain delicate. I habitually wear mine up or braided, and I handle it as little as possible. Wearing my hair down is a once every few months thing at this point, because the tangling is really unpleasant.

Peashy
June 29th, 2011, 07:21 AM
Thank you everyone for replying so quickly and with really encouraging comments. I will try to upload a picture soon. I have just tried shea butter so I don't think it's a good time to take one untill my next wash. I have been meaning to take a photo for some time though, mainly for comparison purposes and to help show progress to get me through moments like this. I think for now though I will try smaller cuts. Afterall if I do try them and am still unhappy with it I can cut more off next week. If I cut today then I can't have it all back for some time. I do tie it up though, everyday. I just can't really handle it down for long and it doesn't really look nice. I really struggle with nice updos too, can't even plait for prettyness, only convenience although I have been practising alot lately. My hair is fine, with some movement (get S waves where it hits my shoulders) so clips and sticks tend to just slide right out and I don't have enough hair for really heavy things so still struggling with toy experiments.

I agree that pixie cuts can look lovely and still be feminine - Natalie Portman looks lovely with short hair. But I am not Natalie Portman. Even with a bob I feel it is just 'too short' and I don't look pretty but don't really have the time, patience or understanding to play around with extensions - besides that's not the quickfix I really want :(

So yeah, just some small trims for now, see how that goes and really work hard at finding a new updo that isn't too hard and that i'll have the energy to do before starting work at 6am! Thank you again so much for the replies and i'll get a picture uploaded asap :)

Peashy
June 29th, 2011, 07:30 AM
Hi Torrilin, I clarify about the second or third wash. I even have the chelating(?) shampoo which I use to try to get rid of any excess rubbish. I haven't been using a hairdryer or straighteners since Christmas. I know it isn't really THAT long a time, but I have seen significant improvement in shine and perhaps softness. I just seem to have this 'canopy' of messy strands of hair right around my head which make it look less smooth and quite frizzy, especially when down. Add this with the tangles and that is why I just felt frustrated having longer hair that doesn't look nice down. (I guess it really is only BSL but it's long for me after years of 'cutting it back to get rid of the damaged bits' only to damage it some more)

Theobroma
June 29th, 2011, 07:52 AM
I agree that pixie cuts can look lovely and still be feminine - Natalie Portman looks lovely with short hair. But I am not Natalie Portman. Even with a bob I feel it is just 'too short' and I don't look pretty

I was the same way. I had a pixie cut once in my life (I was 12 or 13) and I hated it from the word go -- it actually looked good on me, but short hair just wasn't, isn't, and likely never will be me. I grew it straight out again and bitterly regretted chopping it in the first place!


So yeah, just some small trims for now, see how that goes and really work hard at finding a new updo that isn't too hard and that i'll have the energy to do before starting work at 6am!

There are a number of updos that are quick and easy to do, look great, and hold securely (depending on what you use to secure them with, of course). Have you tried a pencil bun (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z0k3dD4qX34) or a Nautilus (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tS-BQ5OMV2Y)? You can secure either of those with a hair stick or a two-prong hair fork used like a hair stick, or else with a Flexi-8 (which seriously holds up all day with no maintenance needed). Same goes for the lazy wrap bun (http://youtu.be/TTt771qkO24), on all counts, and it's a very elegant-looking style.

Also, try a French twist (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6cjaX_rUuE) -- which is dead easy according to the method in the video. With your length you probably won't have to fold over the double twist, just twist your hair until the ends disappear into the base of the twist, spread out the scalp hair over it, and pin. I can do this style in under thirty seconds and it comes right first time, every time and looks far more polished than it has any right to. It also hides a multitude of sins in terms of problem ends!

For hair toys, Flexi-8s hold wonderfully and are completely hair-safe. If sticks don't hold well for you, try lightweight forks -- holly and cedar are practically weightless, so you'll probably find that even fork sizes work for you that would be too heavy in the denser exotic hardwoods. Also, any kind of fork, even a two-prong one, will tend give better hold on shorter/thinner/slippery hair than a single stick will; sticks need more practice and may require a tighter bun than a fork of some kind.

Erm. Oops. Sorry to waffle on! :blushing: I really just wanted to say that it is possible to achieve a good-looking updo without spending vast amounts of time on it in the morning! :)

sherigayle
June 29th, 2011, 07:58 AM
It's possible that you just have a lot of new growth that isn't laying down with the rest of your hair. Maybe you could try some aloe vera gel to see if that can tame those hairs a bit.

sugar&nutmeg
June 29th, 2011, 08:08 AM
I'm glad you've decided, for now, not to do a big chop, but to trim slowly. It's tempting, sometimes, when the hair just.won't.behave...to go straight for a pixie. If the goal is long, healthy hair, starting from a pixie just means years of crazy-making growing-out layers.

For pixie cuts to really work, imo, it takes the right shape face (and head, and *body* for that matter). It's not just about the hair looking cute. I definitely look unfeminine with super-short hair.

Tressie
June 29th, 2011, 08:44 AM
I agree with those who said to give it some time. If you feel really compelled to do something, maybe a dusting of yours ends using the Feye's self-trim method? I know that my fine hair tangles very easily and it's frustrating to get those knots you mentioned. I HATE the "snap, crackle, pop" that I hear while doing my darndest to carefully detangle!

That said, I have to say that my hair will usually respond to the way I fashion my updo. If I do a figure 8, or modified, bun, my hair will usually be fairly smooth when I take it down (after sleeping with it up). That's if it was smooth and sleekly wound into the style to begin with.

This weekend I took down that updo and after a gentle combing, I put it up in a braided bun (it had been washed the night before). I slept on the braided bun, and when I combed it out the next morning it was pretty huge! It was the braid, I think, on the newly washed hair.

So, some days you'll struggle, but remember that this is usually true for every hair length in my humble experience. If you like your hair long, and want to keep it long, deal with those days as best you can and the "good hair day" will come! Just my two cents. (o:

QMacrocarpa
June 29th, 2011, 08:50 AM
I agree with sugar&nutmeg. Pixies can be beautiful, but with a super-short cut I simply looked like a boy (and today I would look like a somewhat older boy).

Instant tangling (as soon as it's combed through it's magically tangly again) is always my cue that it's time for a wee trim, so that might help.

torrilin
June 29th, 2011, 08:53 AM
Ugh. If your hair reacts as badly to heat as mine does... Christmas is nowhere near long enough.

It took at least 2-3 years for me to grow out my heat styling damage. I'd stuff my hair in a ponytail, braid or cinnabun, and ignore it. I got trims every 3 months or so, an inch or two at a time. I'd show the stylist how much I wanted to cut off by finger-combing my hair and showing her where my fingers got caught on tangles from the split ends. (I'm legally blind without my glasses, so I never can see what a stylist is doing) If I could comfortably finger comb my hair after the trim, I was happy. I started this process sometime around age 18, and by age 22, I was having to yell at stylists to cut off enough to actually get the split ends.

I've had maybe one or two blow dryer incidents since then. Each time it was at least 6-12 months before my hair was back to normal. So I just will not touch them. My hair can't take it. WI gets cold enough that my hair will freeze solid in 5 minutes through two hats. Even so, being frozen leads to no detectable damage. So for my hair, the solution is to be as lazy as possible. Obviously, not everyone's hair is just the same.

Anje
June 29th, 2011, 09:16 AM
I wouldn't worry about femininity, but if you want long hair, cutting it off isn't the best way to get it!

Try clarifying and perhaps switching to a protein-free conditioner. If that doesn't help, trim a couple of inches. I've sacrificed length on hair that just needed buildup removed before, and it's worth ruling out the problem.

It's pretty common to have old damage that even the best TLC can't fix, but getting rid of even a few inches can make a huge difference in how well it handles. If clarifying and a trim don't fix it, then you can cut off more. Don't do anything drastic before then.

CrystalStar
June 29th, 2011, 09:36 AM
Perhaps slowly chipping away at it with small trims to grow out your virgin hair will work best? The big problem is once hair is damaged, it's damaged! We can make it feel better and not break off as much but it stil can cause tangles and what not. Make sure that whatever you do with your hair you're happy with it as it is you who has to live with it!

Pixies can look feminine and beautiful, but if you're worried about not looking feminine then perhaps a pixie wouldn't be the best option for you! I know someone with a pixie and she says that she feels she has to wear make-up every day so that she doesn't look 'boyish'.

I'd say get a haircut you know you can enjoy without doubting how it appears, whether thats pixie, bob, or whatever. :)

SpinDance
June 29th, 2011, 09:39 AM
You've gotten lots of good suggestions already, so I won't bother repeating them. However, one thing that sort of jumped out at me was that you say your hair is frizzy and you mention a brush. I wonder if you are actually wavier or curlier than 1b and the brushing is both causing the frizz and perhaps causing damage as well. I'm not F, but some of my hairs are, and I've had trouble with frizz for a long time. Less now that I use proper, seamless, combs, oils and went cone-free, but it has taken nearly 2 years before I'm consistently getting results I like.

I suggest lots of S&D if it is possible, cut out those wicked fairy knots, they can cause so much trouble, stop with the brush for a while and slowly try some other routines (CO, CWC, oil shampoo, cone free, etc.) to see what your hair likes. CO didn't work for me at all until I stopped using cones, now I use it most of the time, for example. I've been doing micro trims of about 5 mm every week or two for months now, trimming off old dye and trying to thicken my hemline. Putting it up and protecting the ends is a good way to get through these rough patches where it sometimes seems like the scissors are our only friends. Doing nice braids is all about practice. At first it's messy, then suddenly it just works. Practicing different updo's is also a nice way to enjoy your hair when there are things about it you don't like. It's been 2 years since mine was last colored, and it will probably take another 3-4 before it is all grown out, so updo's are my friends!

On the other hand, its your hair, so do as makes you happy! That's what it's all about.

kidari
June 29th, 2011, 09:54 AM
Try clarifying and doing a deep conditioning, maybe it's buildup? Also try different heat-free methods of curling your hair: rag curls, sock bun curls, deep waves tuturial found in a link in the damage article by Nightshade, pin curls, etc. It will not only make your hair look shorter but the set curls will make you appreciate the manageability it provides while wearing it down plus it's a temporary change. If it really is damaged ends that are driving you crazy, do a major trim like 2 inches, but don't do a major cut. If you really are craving a major cut I'd say it's better to do it in stages: go from waist to BSL, then shoulder, then chin etc. Baby steps to a pixie is easier than waist to pixie for the most part.

Misti
June 29th, 2011, 12:10 PM
I do tie it up though, everyday. I just can't really handle it down for long and it doesn't really look nice. I really struggle with nice updos too, can't even plait for prettyness, only convenience although I have been practising alot lately. My hair is fine, with some movement (get S waves where it hits my shoulders) so clips and sticks tend to just slide right out and I don't have enough hair for really heavy things so still struggling with toy experiments.


Oh dear. I have, er, had that hair. Until menopause, the only way I could get my hair to stay "up" was with a very tight metal barette because my hair was so fine and slippery that anything less damaging just slipped rigt out.

You have my complete sympathy on that, Peashy. (If you find a solution that works, please share it. My nine year old granddaughter has exactly that sort of hair and I'd like to help her put it up from tiem to time.)

Peashy
June 29th, 2011, 04:48 PM
Hi everyone, just another update! I haven't yet put scissors to hair as I don't have my scissors with me (i'm staying over at my Grandparent's home) but it does sound like at least a small trim might help sort some of my problems so I will start there when I go back home the weekend. If neccessary I will gradually take away little bits at a time until my hair behaves. In the meantime I have bought some new hair toys today and that, plus LHC has given me a bit more excitement with my hair :) I will also try out some of the buns that were mentioned, i've honestly never heard of most of them so that should be adventurous!

As to the hair typing it may be possible I have got it all wrong. I know it is straight-ish and stays very straight untill it hits my clothes where it will kink or if I leave it tucked behind my ears when wet. It does tend to do it's own thing and if left in rollers or a braid it will hold curls / styles very well too (usually untill the next wash). When I put a picture up maybe someone will be able to state whether it is 1b or 1c. It is definitely fine however and I don't have much of it. I have thin ponytails and braids and often think i'm going bald as you can sometimes see the scalp easily when it is up.

I do have another issue though. Part of the reason I was so fed up with it is that when I did wash last time I did a really deep conditioning treatment hoping to make it somewhat better. Whenever I condition or even henna it seems to leave my hair feeling worse (or at least the same) as when I shampoo only. I don't understand as I know it is damaged and therefore needs moisture and conditioning, but when I do condition it seems to feel more lifeless and lank, with just as many knot issues and stray wild 'canopy' hairs - no more, no less. I have tried different conditioners, strong and weak, and tried only applying from the ears down but still it seems to look worse with it. So far oils have always left it stringy - coconut, EVOO and shea butter too even when trying to apply such tiny amounts. I have not yet tried aloe vera gel. I also try to finger comb with my hair parted (it seems easier to just work half at a time)but it really is such a stuggle, then I move onto my wooden detangling comb but that leaves it still with lots of those smaller knots and looks 'seperated'. Then I use my tangle teezer from ends to root but it really seems like I could constantly brush and NEVER not find a knot. With my BBB for oils too I can honestly say I have never owned so many brushes at one time!

Peashy
June 29th, 2011, 05:01 PM
Oh, I know I already did an essay, but I just explained to my DBF that the old (expensive) shampoo and conditioner I used to use when I heat styled my hair is now the worst I have and can't wait to be rid of it. I hate it. It almost feels heavy and sticky although of course it isn't and it seems when you use a hairdryer or something it just dries it up, but without it it is almost 'too conditioning'. If that makes sense.

Peashy
July 2nd, 2011, 05:11 AM
Picture, finally lol

Yemeni henna, clarifying chelating shampoo only - no conditioner. You can see a few bands where it has been tied up but besides those I think it is 1b as it is kind of straight, but not quite poker straight like pretty Asian / oriental hair.

http://i871.photobucket.com/albums/ab278/HalleyFisher/2-7-11Yemenihenna.jpg

Peashy
July 2nd, 2011, 05:20 AM
Sorry for the size of the pic, I didn't realise it would be so big :(

RitaCeleste
July 2nd, 2011, 06:05 AM
Your hair looks nice! But it also looks very similar to the texture of my daughters hair. Her hair tangles a lot too. I've deep conditioned her. I've put meadowfoam seed oil in her hair. My sister has straightened her and glossed her. All these things helped some. I would like to point out her hair is virgin hair. I grew out virgin hair once. I can remember telling this hairdresser that it was all natural virgin hair and watching them cringe as they felt it. "No really this is just how it is!" You see my virgin hair is very coarse, I have fine to thick hairs, blond, red, and black hairs, straight hairs, kinky hairs all on one head. The over all effect was wild waves, coarse, rough hair, in a non appealing shade of brown. It was NATURAL. That was its claim to fame, that hair. It wasn't the hair I dreamed of. It wasn't hair I liked. It tangled, I finger combed. I scrunched to make the waves "better". I even combed and didn't brush. I had it layered. I had it thinned. The v in the back ended in a scraggly little rat-tailed thing that reached past my waist. The hairdresser chopped off 4 inches of "dead ends" every time I dared go see her. She sold me Biosilk which made me shed like crazy but made it softer. (I asked if it would work on my hair and she said, and I quote"Black people use it, I don't have anything else for your texture of hair.) I decided if this was the hair I had to work with, the least it could do be was be RED! And it was softer after coloring. Whenever I hear peoples hopes and dreams for their virgin hair, I think, "Gee, I hope that works out!" Because I know for me it sure didn't.

Misti
July 2nd, 2011, 08:50 AM
Your hair is gorgeous, Peashy!

lillylonghair
July 2nd, 2011, 09:14 AM
I didn't read all of the posts but first of all your hair is gorgeous!

Second,I read that you've never tried aloe. I think you HAVE to try doing SMTs. I feel that yourhair would really love it and it would bring out any wave you have. In case no one has mentioned doing SMTs yet, it's basically a wonderful treatment invented by on of the ladies here at LCH. I believe there is a thread on it with recipes. Basically you mix one part cheapie no-cone condish (like sauve or vo5) with equal parts honey and aloe. I do this all different ways. I might add a little oil to it and use it as a pre shampoo treatment or stick to the original recipe,shampoo and then let sit on my hair in the shower and just rinse.

whitestiletto
July 2nd, 2011, 09:39 AM
Sounds like you are suffering from a major lack of SLIP.

I think you should try the SMT for sure, and maybe get a leave-in conditioner that has aloe and glycerin in it. Glycerin and aloe are both really slippery substances. My hair is fairly coarse at the moment (due to bleaching and dye) and I find this product (http://www.amazon.com/TIGI-Planet-Leave-Conditioner-Cherry/dp/B002UD52IU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1309617503&sr=1-1-catcorr) adds significant slip to my ends, and as a bonus it totally smells like sweet almond oil.

You said your hair is heat damaged and it's only been heat-free for a couple inches of new growth. It will likely take a long time to grow that out, and you will have to continue to do maintenance trims on a regular basis until the damage is all gone. Lots of girls on here describe the process of slowly removing damaged length while growing out healthy hair, and how as the undamaged hair gets quite long, and the damaged ends have been around for a few years, there starts to be a stark difference between the too. IMO you are experiencing the long-term effects of heat damage on fine hair.

whitestiletto
July 2nd, 2011, 09:47 AM
In your photo I can clearly see a change in the hair texture a couple inches from the crown, probably corresponding to the heat damage...

And I think your hair might get wavier than you imagine if you shampoo less and do other curly girl methods, though it can take some time to come out of hiding and the damage will not encourage it.

Peashy
July 2nd, 2011, 10:05 AM
Thanks for the replies, it is really encouraging to have someone say your hair is nice. I'm usually just being told to cut it to get rid of the damaged / split ends :(

@lillylonghair The picture was taken this morning after I used Joice K chelanting shampoo only (no conditioner) yesterday. It does have more shine in real life than is visible in the photo. I haven't tried aloe or even SMT - which is something I have been meaning to do for while now so I think I will start there. I'm just really confused with conditioning as it seems to leave my hair looking weird, like the strands stick together more rather than being seperate and floaty. It used to be ok when I used dryers, straighteners etc but now it seems to be too stringy and greasy looking with conditioners :(

@whitestiletto Yes there is a lot of damage on my hair, which I never used to realise was this bad because guess what? I straightened them out :( It looked beautiful when heat styled and so I never worried about how bad it was when left naturally. I am glad I have found LHC so I can try and get my hair back, I feel so awful thinking of all the ways I have mistreated it.

Regarding the straightness v waves, I am thinking of what it was like BEFORE the dyes, heat damage and dare I admit to a perm I had many years ago. If I am truly honest it has to be more than ten years since my hair has been completely natural, and I was using a blowfryer even before then :( This is going to take some real work :(

Idjit
July 2nd, 2011, 11:32 AM
If you have fine hair and you say that conditioner makes it feel more limp, then you may want to try a protein treatment. A cheap and easy protein treatment that I like to use is here http://www.naturallycurly.com/curltalk/2/116257-pt-recipe-promised.html
It really helps to perk the hair up and make it feel thicker as well as behave better.

lillylonghair
July 2nd, 2011, 12:24 PM
I think you might like a no cone conditioner like Sauve then. And if you water it down with aloe (The kind that is just plain,no colorings or anything) you might really like that.

jojo
July 2nd, 2011, 12:47 PM
Why would you want to cut your hair? its beautiful. Please don't go for a bob, no offense to anybody with a bob but I really dislike them, they remind me of motorbike helmets. Maybe a teeny trim and no more, you have really beautiful waist length hair. I haven't read the other replies but id say leave it be.

MrsGuther
July 2nd, 2011, 01:33 PM
I say think long and hard before you chop all that hair!!! Wait 2 weeks at least before you do anything!!

dmarie16
July 2nd, 2011, 09:15 PM
Gorgeous hair Peashy!!! Try regular trims and keep trying all the great recommendations given to you here at LHC. Your hair is much too pretty to cut.

QueenJoey
July 2nd, 2011, 09:20 PM
Hair has nothing to do with femininity. Don't worry about that. Look at that Emma whats her name from the Harry Potter movies. She wacked her hair off, and no one is calling her manly.

Emma Watson. Yeah, she's a great example. She looks adorably girly with her short hair. I did love her with longer locks, though. But if I could pull of such a short style as gracefully as her, I probably would. Since I cannot, I'm sticking with my long hair which I actually love very much.

feralnature
July 2nd, 2011, 10:31 PM
Peashy, you have beautiful hair! I you simply must cut, do very small trims IMO.

Mesmerise
July 2nd, 2011, 10:57 PM
Picture, finally lol

Yemeni henna, clarifying chelating shampoo only - no conditioner. You can see a few bands where it has been tied up but besides those I think it is 1b as it is kind of straight, but not quite poker straight like pretty Asian / oriental hair.



Your description of your hair and your picture of your hair didn't match at all in my mind! Hehe... It is longer than waist in that picture, rather than BSL, and doesn't look like i thickness at all (have you accurately measured your circumference?). It also doesn't appear to be really super fine hair (although it's hard to tell in a pic... however I've seen many Fs who have totally baby fine hair...yours looks a bit more like mine which I call F/M).

As for the straightness... I'd tend to think it would be more of a 1c than 1b (especially if that is brushed hair in the pic... maybe a 1b/1c). Honestly, your hair looks very nice!

I would advise just doing regular trims and being oh so patient. I have a lot of hair damage to grow out (chemical damage plus heat damage) and the last time I used chemical dye/heat was 30th January this year... I know it will be a couple of years at least before it's looking the way it SHOULD look!

Darkhorse1
July 2nd, 2011, 11:23 PM
Your hair is gorgeous! If you find that conditioner weighs it down, you have fine hair. What you might want to look into are finishing rinses (many types here) or maybe wetting down and just using it on the ends? Also, look for water based conditioners/those made for fine hair.

I don't see too much damage to your hair---have you done any oiling? I found those saved my ends during show season/dryness due to being outdoors in the sun as I work with horses. I found olive oil worked better for me than coconut oil, so you may have to play around with certain products/hair care to see if it will help your hair.

I would also suggest, if you do want to cut, to go short slowly. Many hair dressers will tell you this too. There are many fun styles you can play with on your way to a pixie, and many, many gorgeous women with pixies, which include Halle Berry, and even Courtney Cox had many a short cut that was lovely.

Ermine
July 3rd, 2011, 12:27 AM
For the first time in YEARS I actually have hair long enough to be proud of. Every other time I tried to grow it long (prior to LHC) it would get so long and the hairdresser would convince me that if I cut a few inches off it would look better. After more blowdrying, straightening, dying etc etc it would grow back but be just as damaged, resulting in those few inches being cut off again.

Now I don't use any heat at all and have changed my hair routines considerably and don't even use a hairdresser (thank you Feye's method). It is finally long!! But I hate it :( I mean I really hate it. It's just frizzy and ratty. It is tangled as soon as it is brushed. I especially get lots of tiny knots in it that my tangel teezer or comb can't deal with, almost like when your finest necklace chain gets those knots which never come out. I cringe when I hear it snap despite all my greatest efforts. My hair is naturally fine and feels soft, it also now has great shine. But it's horrible to look at when left down and very difficult to work with. It breaks so easily. It's not what I pictured at all. I am really very tempted to pixie it to get back to 100% natural virgin hair and go from there. With the new know-how from LHC doing things right I am sure I would then figure out what is best for my hair and will see it really start to flourish and take shape. At present it just seems to get more tangly and frizzy despite henna, coconut oil and CO washing. I just don't know what to do with it.

I have never had very short hair before however and am really scared of not looking 'feminine'. Is there anyone who can give me any hints, tips or advice? Really need some words of encouragement right now. :pray:

The length of your hair has nothing to do with how feminine you are. This may sound cliche, but it's true: confidence is more attractive than any physical attribute. Personally, I've felt much more feminine since getting my hair cut into a pixie just because I liked it and it gave me confidence and fit my personality. So if you want it short, cut it short. Just make sure it's a style you like because it's a little harder to grow out layers gracefully than with long hair, and requires trims every few weeks to keep its shape. However, this is also a plus since it can only take a couple months or so of growing out to try different short styles.

Other things I learned from having a pixie cut:
- hair accessories and products pretty much replace different updos. When my pixie cut was short enough to defy gravity, I had a ton of fun spiking and flipping my hair in different directions, with the occasional faux hawk. So much fun. :) Also, I wouldn't have guessed, but having short hair led me to wearing more girly hair accessories, tons of flower clips and headbands with feathers, giant bows, the works. It's a great way to experiment.
- it puts more focus on your face, so make sure the cut flatters your face shape. Also, since your face will be more in the spotlight than ever, either keep your skin in great condition. It's also a good time to experiment with makeup if you like makeup. It seems short hair allows more more dramatic makeup styles since a lot of pixie cuts are more "edgy".
- it's nearly impossible for shorter pixie cuts to tangle (coming from someone who also has tangly hair)
- have fun!

This may sound hypocritical from a person trying to grow out her pixie cut, but I'm growing it out because I think I can do much better with long hair than I have in the past now that I've learned so much from LHC. But I wouldn't be surprised if I cut it back into a pixie cut after getting it to BSL or waist and keep it there for a while. It will also be an opportunity to start over with almost all virgin hair.

Peashy
July 4th, 2011, 03:50 PM
Well after all that I couldn't do it... I just couldn't cut.

I tried to just trim the weekend but still I couldn't even manage that. I know I need to get rid of splits and damage but I seem to feel guilty at the thought of getting rid of it altogether. I will try to baby it some more and micro trim more frequently - I WILL put scissors to hair, for the good of my hair. I do feel bad about my hair alot; there's not enough of it, it's not quite long enough and it's and nowhere near healthy enough - but I only have myself to blame. If I had put down the straighteners and dyes years ago I would have all that now. But I didn't. So now I just have to be patient and remind myself it wont happen in just 6 months - we're talking YEARS of damage, so years to fix.

I have an abundance of new directions to go in now - cones, no cones, AVG, camellia oil, SMT and Fox's Shea CT and to LEARN HOW TO DO AN UPDO and forget about it!!

Thanks for the support though, really...you have saved my hair. I would have been devastated if i'd cut it purely for spending too long moping in the mirror. Thank you all so much :flowers:

Misti
July 5th, 2011, 01:39 PM
I only have myself to blame.

Aww, Peashy, please try not to beat yourself up about your hair.

As much as we all love hair here...it *is* only hair. Heat and chemicals aren't evil. They aren't compatible with super long hair, but they are valid styling options as long as you intend to cut often enough to keep the damage in check.

You made one choice for a while, and now you're making another choice.

Yes, there will be a transition stage, but that's OK. Everything in life brings transition stages. :)

SpinDance
July 5th, 2011, 03:27 PM
...You made one choice for a while, and now you're making another choice.

Yes, there will be a transition stage, but that's OK. Everything in life brings transition stages. :)

That! We make choices, we make others. That's what we're supposed to do. Enjoy the journey of trying different things. It is slow and gives so many little pleasures. Successful updo's are a great thing. Which of course means there are more hair toys to covet and other things to distract us from whatever it is we don't like so much. ;)

Amara
July 5th, 2011, 03:58 PM
Thought I'd throw in my 2 cents... I was hating my two toned, damaged, split from very old dye jobs, etc. The virgin hair above was gorgeous and beautiful. I lived with it for a couple of years, growing longer and being patient, but then I decided a big cut was really what I wanted. Now I am starting from fresh, healthy hair. I miss my long hair sometimes but I really liked the change, and I LOVE having all of that BLEH gone. So, the big cut was right for me. I went to pixie, and I'm currently at a below the ear bob. My plan is to regrow to waist. :)

xoxophelia
July 5th, 2011, 06:51 PM
As far as the tangles go, now that you are have stopped doing many of the damaging things from the past, a few inches can make a big difference. I had previous damage as well and I did a knock out job of changing my habits so that I didn't have to go for a seriously short hair cut. In the end though, the damage is still there and does tend to get a little worse no matter what so I did have to cut a few inches pretty recently. I remembered how much of a difference even very small trims had made and I had done many 1" trims since joining LHC. So I figured I would go for 3-4". It worked.

If you haven't been trimming off the worst parts of the damage all along you may need more off than only a few inches but I would start around 3", do a deep conditioning treatment to pamper your hair, and then see how you feel about it. Even if it is not perfect, you can still trim more later so you don't need to do it all at once and go short.

Amara
July 5th, 2011, 07:05 PM
Well after all that I couldn't do it... I just couldn't cut.

I have an abundance of new directions to go in now - cones, no cones, AVG, camellia oil, SMT and Fox's Shea CT and to LEARN HOW TO DO AN UPDO and forget about it!!

Thanks for the support though, really...you have saved my hair. I would have been devastated if i'd cut it purely for spending too long moping in the mirror. Thank you all so much :flowers:


If you made a schedule for trimming would that help? Like, trim every 1st of the month, or every three months, or whatever, then pick a cm, or 2cm, or whatever... ? Maybe having a plan like that would help, too.. you mentioned having the "new directions" helped.

Baby your damage and love it for all its worth. :) There's somebody looking at you thinking, "I love her braid/color/length/waviness/straightness/whatever!"