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Old 07-20-2011, 09:50 PM   #1
 
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Default Some general hair help, pretty please?

Hey everyone! My name's Ada. I've been stalking these boards for a while now and have picked up some awesome advice from doing so (thank you!). Now, however, I'm thinking I might need some advice of my own.

My hair is a mix of 4a and 4b, I think--maybe 4b, mostly. HIGH porosity (as in it sometimes sucks up product so fast you can't even tell any was in there). It's pretty short (a medium-sized afro but it shrinks to a TWA) but there is a lot of it and it's very thick. I deep conditioned today and detangled with the conditioner still in my hair. Here are the results:




All put together.



Now I'm not sure if this is a "normal" amount or not for this head of hair.





I looked at some of the strands and a lot of the hair was plain old shedding, but some of it was breakage. A teensy bit of that is also snipped, knotted ends (the very, very ends). This is after probably a week or so of not detangling, too, so I might be worried about nothing. Should there be less though? I mean... my hair still feels pretty thick now, but I'd hate to hinder its health/growth because I'm unknowingly losing too much hair. I was trying to be gentle as I combed through but I still heard some snapping/rubber band-like sounds. Blah.

Also, I think a lot of the loss was from tangling. I saw that a lot of the strands had sort of wrapped around each other. Like a shed hair would tangle around an attached hair and I'd have to snip it. Does anyone have advice on keeping tangles to a minimum? Twisting helps a little sometimes, but doing it every night it such a pain. It takes me at least an hour or so. I can't do a small amount bigger twists because my hair is too short. Should I be detangling more? Or are there other methods for keeping short hair detangled?

I have quite a bit on my mind but I'll stop here for now since I've been going on for a while. I'd really appreciate ANY advice you all have to offer. Thanks so much for taking the time to read this!
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4a/b hair, very high porosity, prone to tangles. A little past TWA.

Working on finding a better way to retain moisture and find a good moisture/protein balance.

Goals: strong, pretty, healthy hair. Finding products that I can be SURE are working.

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Old 07-20-2011, 10:13 PM   #2
 
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You may need a protein treatment but it looks like normal shedding if you see the bulb on the ends when examined u know the little white hair follicle?
Hmmm ends trimmed?
How's your diet? Vitamins etc.
Hope thus helps...

A curl pattern 2 die 4!!!
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Old 07-20-2011, 10:43 PM   #3
 
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Thanks so much for the reply, NaturalSassE! Yeah, when I looked at the strands some of them were shed hairs with the bulb, but there were also some broken and tangled ones. Just pieces of the hairs.

I've been thinking about a protein treatment. I'm a little nervous about protein. Treatments I've tried pretty recently are the Aubrey Organics GPB and the Cherry Lola, but I'm not sure how strong those are compared to others. Do you know of any good ones? As for trimming, I usually only trim the ends when they NEED to go. I have some hair scissors for this but I don't really know how to do a general trim. The last stylist I went to "specialized" in natural hair and ended up treating my hair pretty poorly, in my opinion, so I'm a little leery of salons.

And I could probably stand more vitamins. I eat pretty well but there are probably some nutrients I'm missing out on. And I admit I have the worst memory for taking vitamins.
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4a/b hair, very high porosity, prone to tangles. A little past TWA.

Working on finding a better way to retain moisture and find a good moisture/protein balance.

Goals: strong, pretty, healthy hair. Finding products that I can be SURE are working.

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Old 07-21-2011, 08:10 AM   #4
 
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Hi. What type of conditioner are you using when you detangle? Are you using a conditioner that gives you good slip? You have to really take your time when detangling to ensure you get minimal breaks (aim for none). In between when you aren’t wash n go styling, are you continuing to moisture your hair?
Trimming isn’t bad for your hair, it will help for it to grow and remain healthy. As NaturalSassE said vitamins are a good helper. I tend to forget my vitamins as well. I have a suggestion to help you remember. Place them on or near your tooth brush and have a small zip lock bag of them in your purse/car. I was also thinking of protein, but you do want to be careful to not disrupt your PH. I couldn’t give you any fool-proof suggestions so I won’t. Good luck and let us know how things progress.
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Old 07-21-2011, 09:40 AM   #5
 
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No one can tell you how much hair is too much hair to lose when you detangle. Everyone's head is different. If you want to have an idea of what is normal for you start collecting your hair at the end of a detangling session for a few weeks. Throw the stuff in a small baggie, date it and mark it with what you did to your hair and even the products used. I started doing that this past May and it works for me. I know the amount of hair I would lose in the past was straight up abuse. Another thing how are you moisturizing your hair? And are you sealing?
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Old 07-21-2011, 10:02 AM   #6
 
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I'm really appreciating the replies, everyone. Thank you!

Inimitable, I usually use V05 (the tea therapy line now) and Tresseme Naturals when I detangle. I think I get pretty good slip from those. I need to start keeping my Knot Today in the shower so I can remember to use it for that, too, because I think it would help. This time though, I detangled with my DT--Aubrey Organics HSR and a mix of a few things. Now that I think of it, I added some honey to attempt making the conditioner better, which might not have been so good for combing.

And I'm constantly moisturizing, but moisture retention seems to be the problem. I usually spritz with a combo of water, aloe juice, a leave in (shea moisture milk) and a few drops of oil, then go over with a little bit of a thick leave-in (shea moisture smoothie). My hair generally feels moisturized for a little bit but it always seems to inevitably get drier than I'd like. Addressing one of tae082's questions, I usually seal, but lately I've been wondering if it isn't so great for my hair. I've tried many different oils and the result is usually the same: soft, moist hair for a little bit that ends up turning dry and rough. I've been experimenting with less sealing (I used to do it daily) to see if it actually helps. Any thoughts on this?

And I like the ideas here--both about how to store the vitamins and keeping the hair! I'll try both of those out.
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4a/b hair, very high porosity, prone to tangles. A little past TWA.

Working on finding a better way to retain moisture and find a good moisture/protein balance.

Goals: strong, pretty, healthy hair. Finding products that I can be SURE are working.

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Old 07-21-2011, 10:32 AM   #7
 
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Have you tried Oyin's bsp? Sometimes that is the only thing my hair likes to seal with. Sometimes liquid oils make it feel dry. Also what oils have you tried? There are a lot and maybe you haven't found what works for you yet. When I used that shea moisture milk last yr it caused crazy build up on my hair. It was really dry and the cowashing was not cutting the mustard, I needed to clarify.
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Old 07-21-2011, 10:48 AM   #8
 
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Nope, I haven't tried anything from Oyin yet, but I've heard good things about the products--especially the BSP and the Hair Dew. I'd like to be able to get something on the ground, but I'm not opposed to ordering if it's for something really nice. And as for oils, I've tried coconut, olive, avocado, castor, sweet almond, jojoba... the castor oil, I notice, makes my hair feel really soft, but maybe I was overdoing it. Maybe weekly sealing instead of daily sealing would help?

And I kind of suspected that build-up might have been the culprit for how my hair usually feels. I'm using the SM style milk (diluted) along with the curl enhancing smoothie, so maybe both of those at once is just too much. Since my hair seems to like the smoothie a little better (in small amounts), I'll try experimenting more with that.

Just out of curiosity (nosiness), which moisturizers have been working pretty well for you?
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4a/b hair, very high porosity, prone to tangles. A little past TWA.

Working on finding a better way to retain moisture and find a good moisture/protein balance.

Goals: strong, pretty, healthy hair. Finding products that I can be SURE are working.

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Old 07-21-2011, 11:11 AM   #9
 
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I use the Hair Dew, Qhemet brbc and I am a huge Curl Junkie fan. Have you tried oil rinsing? It is my new love. It makes detangling on my hair super easy and that means less time and less breakage.
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Old 07-21-2011, 12:00 PM   #10
 
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The Hair Dew and the BSP sound yummy--I might have to order up some samples on pay day (PJism, ugh ). I think I've tried oil rinsing once and I don't really remember the results. It's pretty much like a pre-poo, right? Which oils do you use?
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4a/b hair, very high porosity, prone to tangles. A little past TWA.

Working on finding a better way to retain moisture and find a good moisture/protein balance.

Goals: strong, pretty, healthy hair. Finding products that I can be SURE are working.

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Old 07-21-2011, 12:25 PM   #11
 
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I'm no expert since I just started doing this. However oil rinsing is when you shampoo (or use a cleaning conditioner) your hair,rinse, add oil, rinse or not add conditioner and detangle. The first time I did this I really liked it and I didn't pre-poo with oil. Now the last time I did this I pre-pooed and I am loving. My hair happens to love oil so my hair is not greasy. I use a mix of castor, avocado, coconut and olive. You know you really need to just play around and you will find what works for you. That is something I think a lot of newbies miss. I've been natural since '03 and have had plenty of set backs.
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Old 07-21-2011, 04:04 PM   #12
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ada-marie View Post
Thanks so much for the reply, NaturalSassE! Yeah, when I looked at the strands some of them were shed hairs with the bulb, but there were also some broken and tangled ones. Just pieces of the hairs.

I've been thinking about a protein treatment. I'm a little nervous about protein. Treatments I've tried pretty recently are the Aubrey Organics GPB and the Cherry Lola, but I'm not sure how strong those are compared to others. Do you know of any good ones? As for trimming, I usually only trim the ends when they NEED to go. I have some hair scissors for this but I don't really know how to do a general trim. The last stylist I went to "specialized" in natural hair and ended up treating my hair pretty poorly, in my opinion, so I'm a little leery of salons.

And I could probably stand more vitamins. I eat pretty well but there are probably some nutrients I'm missing out on. And I admit I have the worst memory for taking vitamins.
I'm not a natural but just eyeballing your routine it seems your hair may be wanting a leave-in with more humectants (glycerin). Especially since you say the moisture you get isn't long-lasting. Qhemet's BRBC is a good suggestion.

Go to Whole Foods for vegetable glycerin and add it to your spritz too. It'll help attract more moisture to your hair.
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HG's: CJ Daily Fix, Bobeam Cheris Hibiscus shampoo bar, KC Spiral Spritz, Knot Today, CJ Rehab, KBB LL Hair Mask, Cassia, KCCC, oil blend of Avocado, Camellia, Jojoba, & Meadowfoam oils

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Last edited by afrosheenqueen; 07-21-2011 at 04:07 PM.
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Old 07-21-2011, 04:19 PM   #13
 
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I believe thats normal for that length. I have the same or maybe alittle longer and mine does the same thing. It happens when I wet my hair or comb through it. I have always thought it was new growth but I asked to make sure, and everyone informed me it was normal. But to help out with your tangling, you might want to get a satin scarf or a satin pillow case. Your hair tangles when your sleeping at night, and when you go so long with out combing through it. Keep up with what you are doing and try not to go so many days with out combing through it and you should see better results. Hope this helps.
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Old 07-21-2011, 07:55 PM   #14
 
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People have different amounts of shedding so we can't say what's normal for you. I have a lot of hair and I'm a heavy shedder. I typically shampoo/condition one a week and cowash two times a week. I can finger comb two of those but if I don't do a good wide tooth or denman at least once a week, my shed hairs entangle with the the rest of my hair causing knots. Some people on the boards say they dentangle every day so you may want to look at how often you dentangle.

Moisture - how often do you cowash? in my hair's perfect world, it would be DRENCHED every other day but typically I do every third day. i've found spritzing helps but doesn't carry me threw the week. the longest i've been able to go without my hair revolting in thrist is four days. I'm trying to rock more rollersets so I'm experimenting at how to get around this.

And the SM line caused buildup problems for me too. I still love it but I have to stay aware of this.
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Old 07-23-2011, 09:51 AM   #15
 
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Thanks for the replies!

I just might have to try oil rinsing, tae. I always thought of it as just a pre-poo so I've never tried it the way you've laid it out. Sounds good though! I'll try it on my next wash. I've been natural for about a year coming up in August and I'm constantly going through trial and error, hits and misses, etc. I guess I'm just ready to have a good routine already! Lol.

Afrosheenqueen, that's a good suggestion. I'm always a little paranoid about humectants. The dew point here in Cincinnati is stupidly high, especially lately (it feels like a sauna out there!) so I'm worried that my hair could suck up too much moisture. Maybe that's not something I need to worry about, but I've heard that too much moisture can swell your hair? I'm not sure how true that is. I've got some glycerin though, so I can try to experiment with it. :-)

Natural bliss, I'm thinking more frequent detangling might help a little, too. I guess I just need to be a little gentler if I do. I sleep with both a satin scarf and a satin pillow case though. The scarf mats my hair down a little but it seems to help keep it all together.

Adthomas, my hair would probably prefer daily co-washing, but gets it maybe two, three times a week? I always try to get by on spritzing, too, but obviously it hasn't been working for me either, lol. And I'm beginning to wonder if that SM is just too heavy for daily use... Maybe it needs to come out of my spritz.

Thanks so much for the help so far, everyone! I know that no one can tell me all that I need to know about my hair. I guess I'd just panicked a little and wanted some input.
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4a/b hair, very high porosity, prone to tangles. A little past TWA.

Working on finding a better way to retain moisture and find a good moisture/protein balance.

Goals: strong, pretty, healthy hair. Finding products that I can be SURE are working.

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