How do I start?

Hello! I hope it's ok that I give a bit of backstory.

In Oct '11, after reading a lot on no poo, I decided to go for it. Took about 2 weeks to get over the hump, but once I did, no poo was smooth sailing for a month or two. I used baking soda and acv on my hair and would go 3-4 days between washes. Eventually though, I had a really bad build up on my scalp and my hair really started to smell. I began trying different things to cope, but in Mar '12, I gave up. Also during that time, I began to lose a lot of my hair.

That spring, I was diagnosed with severe anemia. That's under control now, and it looks like I've got some new growth. I really want to make sure that I am taking the best care of my hair, but I have absolutely no clue where to begin. I read a lot when I tried no poo, and I've been reading a lot now. I think I'm just completely overwhelmed at all of the options!

Since this last summer, I've been using DermOrganic conditioning shampoo and Fructis Triple Nutrition conditioner (not because I was attempting any specific method... that's just what I happened to buy) every two days, unless my hair looks super greasy in the morning.

So where in the world do I begin? Can I get started with just those products? I believe I'm a 2A? Porosity is somewhere between average and high I would guess. Hair is quite thin on top but a little thicker underneath, and it's fine. I have some pictures here.

Thanks for bearing with a completely confused and overwhelmed newbie!
Hi! I have not been doing this long but I just wanted to say I started by just watching every CG or CG method youtube video I could find and just .... doing it. Most people seem to feel the method/techniques are as or more important than product. I have very 2a waves too and have to work to get them stronger. about 3 weeks in they are getting better (at least for part of the day). But it takes practice. I"m also trying lots of different products but i believe it's true that HOW you do it is most important. And it doesn't come overnight, especially the weaker your curl, I think. ANyhow, that's my .02 on how to start. Read read read, view view view and practice.
Hi

Hope this helps...

Firstly I went through all my products for sulphates and cones....

Then I slowly phased out shampooing (using sulphate free shampoo)... So I never really had the lank greasy hair that a lot of CGs go through...
Hi Lindsay! I'm actually Lindsey, too, despite my username.

I would try a gentle shampoo that is free of sulfates and cones, and a good conditioner. I'm new to this but so far pretty happy with the shampoo I chose, Nature's Gate (I just got it because while at the store, I saw that it had no sulfates, cones, or parabens). I don't really want to do the absolutely no-poo approach because I've had bad experience trying it in the past, but I am definitely shampooing less frequently, because I believe I broke the detrimental cycle of sulfates and silicones, that were causing my scalp to be both greasy AND itchy/scabby. It was really ugly and smelly if I went more than 2 days without shampooing back when I was using (drugstore) shampoos and conditioners that had sulfates and cones. So, even though I don't have this whole "curly girl" thing down, and I'm still fighting frizz and texture issues, my hair and scalp already feel so much healthier than before.

I can't help but wonder whether maybe the frequency of the baking soda + ACV caused your hair to become brittle, but I could be totally off on that. Did you find that there was a medical issue (I know you said anemia...was that causing the hair loss or was there something that was causing both?)? In any case, I don't mean to pry, only hope for you that you are feeling better and that you'll be able to make your hair happy and healthy, too.

Have you considered getting a fresh cut? Sometimes that alone helps things feel fresh and healthy and good! But on the other hand, I know how hard it can be to find someone that will be on board with your desire to go natural and not use sulfates and cones in your hair. My previous experience with hair stylists has never included someone who encouraged me to get to know my hair for what it really was; my hair has ALWAYS been approached by stylists with the presumption that I *will* be straightening it, so they cut it with a style that would look good straight. I have an appointment with a guy who, according to the lovely internet, is familiar with cutting waves and curls, this coming Saturday, and I'm nervous (also because I always feel inferior at salons, since I don't spend a lot of time in them)! Anyway, I hope it helps me, and maybe a cut would help you feel like you are getting a fresh start.

Lastly, my hair looks a lot like yours, when I brush it out. Do you brush your hair (or did you, in those pictures)? My thought is that you will start to find more definition in your waves if you use a holding product like gel and then let it dry, and only scrunch out the crunch with your hands, not brush. You will see more wave clumping and I bet your hair will be wavier than you even realize! That is what has happened to me (I thought I was a 2A till I started trying some techniques I've read about here).

All the best to you, and it's nice to meet, if not my hair twin, my name twin.
Started embracing the 2b waves in March 2013. I can't believe how immediate the difference, when I stopped using sulfates! Now I need guidance on most everything else.
My best guess so far at my hair profile: 2b, medium porosity, fine and med width strands, low-to-med density, medium length.

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