serious help needed with moisturizing

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  • 3 Post By naturaldoll

this is my first time posting and i've been reading this site for a while now but i've reached the point of desperation.

i have hair that's a little bit curlier than 3b. i've gone through very short periods of straightening various times in my life, (like a few days for a special occasion), and the last time i did it was around two years ago.

for some reason, my hair is extremely dry and brittle whenever it dries. i have to drench it in product after product, but nothing works. the only thing that worked for me a bit started to cause bad breakouts, so i had to stop using it. i've even been using coconut oil different ways for the past 6 months or so, and it hasn't done anything. IT'S DRIVING ME INSANE.

when i step out of the shower, my hair barely takes any time to dry. it feels like straw as soon as i shake off the excess water. the back barely even curls anymore and is way shorter than the front—i think it's the most damaged part. i stopped using shampoo regularly almost a year ago because i realized how drying it was. i've tried cowashing, the CG method, going without washing for a while, coating it with tons of different products and coconut oil, an olive oil deep condition, a coconut oil deep condition, and absolutely nothing works, and it's like my hair refuses to produce any natural oils.

it won't absorb any moisture, either.

i love the way my hair looks when it's half dry and hanging down, and i wish i could find a (preferably) natural moisturizer that would last longer than an hour and really help my hair to look nice and healthy again, even if it's not. i don't want to keep caking my hair in greasy "moisturizers". it makes it look dull and gross and none of them work anyway.

long story short, i am DESPERATE for a way to restore moisture. i know i sound frantic, but i'm so frustrated. my hair is so incredibly dry that i can't do anything with it. it's just straw, actual straw. i want something that can moisturize and help weigh my hair down at the same time, but nothing too heavy. i want something that will stretch out my hair a bit (because when it's half wet it looks wavy and a lot longer/nicer) and make it softer.

i know my hair can look pretty and i know that it's possible for me to like it with moisture. i don't want to hate my hair forever. it's damaged, but it's not like i can cut it off, you know?

i know this is really long...can anyone give me any suggestions?

Last edited by curlyqss; 01-05-2013 at 08:54 AM.
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 939
Look, damaged hair can't be repaired. If it's to the point where it's not responding to band-aid type treatments you have one of two options. You can wear your hair damaged or cut it off. Nothing is stopping you from cutting it off, but you and your personal standards of beauty.

Also I'm hearing a lot about moisture, but damaged hair generally requires protein treatments. It's a common misconception that all dry hair is damaged. Some people, such as myself, just have dry hair and scalps. It's sounds like you naturally don't produce much oil and that your hair is damaged. Balance the moisture with protein. If nothing works my best advice is cut it off.
yep,i was going to give you the same advice jessie did...
try a protein treatment, and follow it with a deep conditioning treatment, see how it looks then.

I moisturize my hair with a cg friendly conditioner, usually i don't rinse it out conpletely and as soon as i am out of shower i apply some more of it. Then I seal the moisture in with a mix of (whipped) sheabutter,olive oil, avocado oil and voila my hair is shiny and moisturized

it even feels softer after i startet using this procedure...you may want to try different things out. But if really nothing helps, i'd cut it off if i were you...

Sent from my GT-I9000 using CurlTalk App
i can't cut it off...i'm 16 and way too attached to it. it's not like cutting it off is going to cause healthy hair to magically take its place, so why can't i just keep the possibly damaged hair and make it look nice?
I agree with the previous replies. Cutting off damaged hair while taking good care of your hair allows the new hair to grow in healthy and stay healthy. I know it can be a frustrating process, but hair grow back. I had extremely damaged hair just a few years ago and decided to cut it into a curly bob and take care if it so it grew in better. And it did. Now my hair is both long and healthy. More hair isn't necessarily better if it's in really bad shape.

I can't overemphasize how important protein is for damaged hair. Even if your hair is just high porosity naturally (which it might be) the protein helps to fill in some of the spaces in the hair and helps the moisture retain better. Some people just need lots of protein and lots of moisture for their hair to look and feel its best.

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 can't cut it off...i'm 16 and way too attached to it. it's not like cutting it off is going to cause healthy hair to magically take its place, so why can't i just keep the possibly damaged hair and make it look nice?
Originally Posted by curlyqss

I think people are overlooking the obvious. What is your diet like? A healthy diet = healthy skin = healthy scalp = enough sebum to nourish and moisturize your hair day in and day out. How much water do you drink a day? 8 glasses sounds like a lot but I've been doing that since I was eleven years old and my skin is very healthy. So is my scalp now that I'm CG and not stripping it daily with detergents or smothering it with silicones. (I also moisturize it once every two weeks or one with coconut oil per waterlily716's wonderful suggestion. Winter on the west coast is so dry.) Second you need protein because your hair IS protein. That will fortify it and keep it strong. I'm not saying you should go out and eat a ton of hamburgers or red meat because that indeed might make things worse. I mean lean fresh protein like chicken breast or fish (no more than two servings a day) or eggs, cheese, skim milk, whey protein, whole grains, beans, seeds and nuts. Lastly you need lots of veggies and fruits for the vitamins. A, C, E and the B ones. If applying moisturizing products topically is not working, I think there must be some sort of deficiency. I saw a child with hair much the same years ago an it turns out her household pantry was full of junk food and she hadn't seen a vegetable her entire life! That was very extreme because she was a kid you know and they tend to be resilient. But this may not be the case with you. You might have a great diet and something else may be at play. It's just where my mind went.
I agree with the previous replies. Cutting off damaged hair while taking good care of your hair allows the new hair to grow in healthy and stay healthy. I know it can be a frustrating process, but hair grow back. I had extremely damaged hair just a few years ago and decided to cut it into a curly bob and take care if it so it grew in better. And it did. Now my hair is both long and healthy. More hair isn't necessarily better if it's in really bad shape.

I can't overemphasize how important protein is for damaged hair. Even if your hair is just high porosity naturally (which it might be) the protein helps to fill in some of the spaces in the hair and helps the moisture retain better. Some people just need lots of protein and lots of moisture for their hair to look and feel its best.
Originally Posted by Corrina777
Yes, Corrina beat me to it! Try a whey protein shake if nothing else. Few frozen berries, a little skim milk (or almond which is my favorite), some yogurt, maybe a banana... all in the blender and presto! Delicious drink for the gal on the go. Replaces a meal too when you're busy.
The diet was a good suggestion because at 16, with your last straightening session 2 years ago, I wouldn't think you had damaged hair. Do you color or are you a swimmer?

Along with the protein suggestions, try a commercial deep conditioner rather than the oils - I like SS Deeply Decadent.
High Density, High Porosity, Medium Texture, 3B with some kink

DT: SS DDMT - HG
Lo-Poo: No Preference
Co-wash: CJ Smoothing Conditioner
RO: CJ Strengthening Conditioner - HG
LI: CK Satin Roots
Styler: CK Coil Jam
Other Likes: Castor Oil; CK Twist Whip, MD CSC
Dislikes: Wheat Protein; Aloe LIs or Stylers

I had issues with dry/damaged hair in high school. Like you, I didn't want to chop it off so what I did was cut it as much as I could handle and treat it from there. I used lots of deep and leave-in conditioners. Also, I followed up with trims every three months. Within a year, my hair was much better and healthy. Take baby steps and it will get better after a while.

3a/3b curls.
Medium texture, medium porosity, and extremely protein sensitive.
Moderate CG? No harsh sulfates, limited 'cones.
Poo: L'oreal Ever Sleek
Condish: GVP Conditioning Balm
Deep Condish: L'oreal Ever Pure
Styling products: Bumble & Bumble smoothing creme, Not Your Mother's Curl Creme, and Giovanni gel.
There are other ways to damage besides straightening. Did you use permanent dye? That can raise porosity as well as lead to dryness. How often do you blow dry? That can also damage. You mentioned you use CO. It turns my hair into a dry brittle horrible tangled mess. Also I have had to do some cuts a few times after protein overload. It took weeks of intensive dc's to recover.

If your hair really is to the point of no return Your choice is you can either cut or learn to live it until it grows out. You might ask yourself what is more important to you health or length. I will say if you have a bunch of split ends i suggest you hurry up and cut because it will get worse.
i can't cut it off...i'm 16 and way too attached to it. it's not like cutting it off is going to cause healthy hair to magically take its place, so why can't i just keep the possibly damaged hair and make it look nice?
Originally Posted by curlyqss
Personally, I don't care to see long hair unless it's really beautiful--and I think very few people have really beautiful hair. When hair isn't fabulous, more of it is not better.

We're all being really hard on you. You may be able to get your damaged hair to be marginally better; however, chances are it's not going to look "nice." You should try to do PTs and DTs vigilantly to see if you can improve it. If not, your choices are to have have long hair that you hate or a cute, shorter style with healthy hair that looks great.
3a (Corkicelli), highlighted, fine, low porosity
modified CG, since April '07
CG since 3/11/08

SE PA

HGs: Anything Sevi; Curly Kinks Satin Roots, Curlycue ReNew and Coil Jam; homemade FSG and okra gel; soap bars; UFD Curly Magic (now Hello Curly Curl Stimulater); Botanical Spirits Jellies, CJ Repair Me, Marie Dean Leave Ins and Curl Creams
^^ this
baby, I understand, I truly do. I was 16 once (it really feels like just yesterday) and so was everyone here. I understand not wanting to cut it, it makes you feel more feminine long, your in high school, what will your classmates say? what will boys think?

here's the thing, if your hair is truly damaged (not 100% sure, but it sounds like it) you will need to cut it, no ifs ands or butts about it. and damaged long hair is not better than healthy short hair, in fact healthy short hair can be really adorable, while damaged long hair always looks a hot mess.

when I was your age, oh a decade back, I wore my hair relaxed. I had never been to a shop, my mother had been doing it since I was 4 amd she wasnt very good. I ended up with severely damaged, over processed hair. like it broke off in clumps whenever I combed, even if it wasnt tangled, and was always dry. it was uneven by INCHES, only shoulder length at its longest point, and I had no edges. but still, I was 16, I couldnt let go and have short hair! my sister's bestie was a hairstylest who said id only need to lose a couple inches, id still be chin length, a cute bob. but I couldnt! I stubbornly held on to my damaged hair for another year, until the girl just offered me a free relaxer and cut it without asking me one day (my mom put her up to it. momma wore her hair short, she thought I was being rediculous.)
by then id waited so long damn near all my hair was severly damaged and had to go. instead of a cute bob, I ended up with a toni braxton 90s era short cut (google it) I cried for days. but then I sucked it up, reminded myself that hair grows, and went to a beauty supply store. came out with a crap ton of skinny headbands, sparkley barrettes, mini butterfly claws, and lipglosses in new fun colors. and thanks to these accessories I looked fly girl, FLY. all I got was compliments.

try other methods for moisturising, hope that your hair is dry but not damaged. give the l.o.c method a shot (if you have a tighter curl pattern, what is your curl type?). but if all fails, accept that you have to rid your head of damage and do it. the longer you wait, the more time the damage has to travel up the hair strand. and like me that could lead to a shorter cut than was originally needed.

also just remember HAIR GROWS BACK, short aint permanant.
Sent from my LS670 using CurlTalk App
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Last Relaxer: February 14, 2011
BC: March 17, 2012
Porosity: Low to Normal
Curl Type: 4a/3c
Texture: Coarse
Density: Thick
Length:shoulder

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Last edited by naturaldoll; 01-06-2013 at 12:08 PM.

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