Try skipping the leave-in. I know it's counterintuitive, but I'm saying. I'm new at this, but I have the same problem and got much better results just going right from rinse-out to gel. Here's right now (as in right this sec)--a lil' crunchiness from the gel, but I certainly would not say it feels like straw, and I'm literally ten feet away from the ocean right now. Nice and soft.
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Jessica
Type 2c: coarse, high-density, low porosity (so it would seem)
Avoiding protein and glycerin; going for soft, non-crunchy, frizz-free waves
CO & RO: Tresemme Naturals Moisture
Sealer: Olive oil
Leave-in/Styler: Kinky Curly Knot Today
DT: olive oil and honey