Suffering from Rat Nests Please help!

I have 2c hair type -- So I believe. I have been suffering for months from large rat nest knots that magically appear out of no where and turning my hair into a hot mess. I was told by one hair dresser it was because I needed a hair cut, yet when I got my hair cut, my hair continued to knot up. I went to a Devacurl hair specialist, and she told me I needed more moisture -- Great. So I proceeded at add more moisture to my hair, yet when I go to comb it out it still proceeds to be a big mess of a blob of hair.

Today after I put Deep conditioner in my hair, I let it sit for quite some time before I tried to comb it out. Yes, it was still a big blob, and right then and there I almost took the scissors to my hair and lopped it all off.

I love my hair, but enough is enough.

What am I doing wrong? After I combed my hair today, I put more deep conditioner in it, and let ti sit. I intend on washing it out again in 30 minutes.
Sounds like a protein issue to me. Try increasing moisture and eliminating protein for now.
remember, with all advice or suggestions for your hair, YMMV!!
My hair:
2b wavy, medium texture, low porosity, med-high density. Protein finicky.
My routine:
Cleansing: DCNP, every 4-5 days (occasionally use CJ cleansers).
RO: CJSC, occasionally use JCDC
LI: KCKT or CJSL
Gel: KCCC, CJCIAB for 2nd day hair (sometimes third)

Heat is my friend: warm water rinses, steam caps, and diffuse dry. I love CLU cloths and my Denman.
Bad tangles can be the result of a few different things (or any combination):
Needing a trim- split ends cause more tangles and yanking at tangles causes more split ends. It's a vicious cycle
Using a product your hair doesn't like- have you determined your hair properties (texture, porosity, etc)? These can make a huge difference in the products that will and won't work for your hair. Then there are some ingredients that some people just find to be a problem for their hair for no real reason: polyquats, glycerin, magnesium sulfate, to name a few. Try to note if your hair tangles more or less with certain products and compare ingredients.
Plain old friction- are you pineappling or using a satin sleep cap or pillowcase at night?
I'm not sure if you're following CG or not, but one thing I've observed with my own hair is that I can use silicones in my styling products without any issues, but when my cleansers or conditioners contain silicones my hair feels much drier and is definitely more prone to tangles (I'm modified CG, so I do still use silicones and sulfates on occasion).

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3a/f/iii
Modified CG since 11/5/11
CLEANSE: VO5 Vanilla Mint Tea Clarifying, DevaCare No-Poo, CHS Treatment Shampoo
RO: DevaCare One Condition, SS Caitlin's Conditioner, Mop Top Daily Conditioner
LI: SS Repairing Protein Treatment, CHS Silk Leave-In
STYLE: Re:Coil, Curl Keeper, Deva Ultra Defining Gel, Curls Rock Amplifier and Strong Hold Mousse, Sweet Curls Elixirs Okra Gel and Hard Hold Gel, SS Curl Enhancing Jelly and Firm Hold Gel
I have fine textured hair with what I believe is low porosity. I say "Believe" because I did the test for it, and it showed to be low, but my hair absorbs products like a sponge. I'll probably try this test again tomorrow.

Right now I'm using the following products : Deva One Condition, Curl Junkie Hibiscus &Banana Deep Fix Moisturizing Conditioner, Rusk Calm Cream detangler, and Deva No-poo shampoo.

..I have no idea what Pineappling is. I tend to tie my hair up when I sleep, and sometimes I use a satin pillow case. I should get a sleep cap.

I no longer use Sulfates, as I've always noticed a difference when I use them and when I don't.


Okay, looked up Pineappling. No I don't do that, but now I'll have to give it a try!

Last edited by robyn.foster; 11-05-2012 at 03:57 PM. Reason: Pineappling
The only product I'm not familiar with is the Rusk Detangling Cream- have you verified that it's silicone free? If your hair soaks up products, especially heavier products like oils or butters it sounds more like a higher porosity. But just in case it is low-porosity, my one suggestion would be to use heat for your DTs to help your hair better absorb the moisture.

Have you tried sealing with an oil after applying your leave-in? People have lots of different favorite oils for sealing- my personal favorite is one of the more controversial ones- I apply baby oil to my underlayer, which is where oil tend to have the most issues with tangling. This one step has made a huge difference for me.

I suspect that you will also need to continue working on finding the right protein/moisture balance, but it could be that you need more of both (my hair absorbs moisture best when it's got lots of protein as well). Hair that it fine in texture and/or higher in porosity tends to like protein, although some hair might be picky about the specific types it likes. You might also want to try some other products besides Deva- I like Deva products, but I know they can cause problems for some people. A great moisturizing conditioner you can try is GVP Conditioning Balm from Sally's. For extra slip, add a bit of oil.

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3a/f/iii
Modified CG since 11/5/11
CLEANSE: VO5 Vanilla Mint Tea Clarifying, DevaCare No-Poo, CHS Treatment Shampoo
RO: DevaCare One Condition, SS Caitlin's Conditioner, Mop Top Daily Conditioner
LI: SS Repairing Protein Treatment, CHS Silk Leave-In
STYLE: Re:Coil, Curl Keeper, Deva Ultra Defining Gel, Curls Rock Amplifier and Strong Hold Mousse, Sweet Curls Elixirs Okra Gel and Hard Hold Gel, SS Curl Enhancing Jelly and Firm Hold Gel
I just went through this and am still dealing with it - but I had to eliminate ALL protein - throw everything out and start over finding out what my hair can handle.

I had to get a major cut.

I'm still learning.

Deva would kill my hair - every single product eventually dried me out or created rat's nest hair.
3b/fine/normal porosity/normal elasticity

LOVES behentrimonium methosulfate
(don't ask me to pronounce that!)


Want to grow it long again!
And simply want to figure out this hair of mine!
It can be very frustrating, but that's why understanding your hair properties is so important. For someone with medium-coarse textured hair protein could definitely increase tangles, but for someone with highly porous hair protein will reduce tangles.

Sent from my BlackBerry 9800 using Tapatalk

3a/f/iii
Modified CG since 11/5/11
CLEANSE: VO5 Vanilla Mint Tea Clarifying, DevaCare No-Poo, CHS Treatment Shampoo
RO: DevaCare One Condition, SS Caitlin's Conditioner, Mop Top Daily Conditioner
LI: SS Repairing Protein Treatment, CHS Silk Leave-In
STYLE: Re:Coil, Curl Keeper, Deva Ultra Defining Gel, Curls Rock Amplifier and Strong Hold Mousse, Sweet Curls Elixirs Okra Gel and Hard Hold Gel, SS Curl Enhancing Jelly and Firm Hold Gel
It can be very frustrating, but that's why understanding your hair properties is so important. For someone with medium-coarse textured hair protein could definitely increase tangles, but for someone with highly porous hair protein will reduce tangles.

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Originally Posted by Corrina777
That is me! Even products with a little protein dry out my hair and causes it to tangle. Knowing your hair properties makes choosing products a lot easier.
3b/c, medium-coarse, low porosity, high density
HG: Jessicurl Too Shea and Kinky Curly Curling Custard
Shampoo: nonsulfate shampoo and Suave Naturals sulfate shampoo when needed
Alright, I'll try a few different things. I do find that Deva products are working better than my previous products. So, maybe I'll try adding a little oil in with the mixture, the satin pillow case/cap, and a hair cut asap.

As for Silicone in products, is there a thread somewhere or information to tell how a product has silicone ?
Alright, I'll try a few different things. I do find that Deva products are working better than my previous products. So, maybe I'll try adding a little oil in with the mixture, the satin pillow case/cap, and a hair cut asap.

As for Silicone in products, is there a thread somewhere or information to tell how a product has silicone ?
Originally Posted by robyn.foster
There is on the newbies thread. Anything ending in cone. There is another one but I don't remember it right now.
3b/c, medium-coarse, low porosity, high density
HG: Jessicurl Too Shea and Kinky Curly Curling Custard
Shampoo: nonsulfate shampoo and Suave Naturals sulfate shampoo when needed

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