HELP a newbie with "mushy"/undefined curls and new gels!!

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I love having visual aids! Your undefined/mushy pic looks a lot like my hair lately. Our properties are a little different, but I had started to come to the conclusion that I was over-moisturized and in need of more protein as well. Our situations are a little different in that I realize some of my issue is from my lack of using any type of gels at this point as I am still trying to figure out which I should try, but I was having a lot more definition not long ago and I think I just got too much moisture. It helps to see the pic because even though I thought that could be the issue there were times I wondered if it was dry because it looks so "dry" by appearance even though it feels soft enough. And it gets frizzy which makes it feel a little less soft than it is too. Anyway, thanks for this thread and I will keep trying to up my protein and look for a good gel or something for me.
My Hair:
2c
Fine, low porosity, med/high density
BSL - going for mid back to waist

HG: currently
just washing with a low poo that contains protein (Alba Naturals Coconut) and using Suave Naturals Coconut as both a RO and LI. No stylers right now, but this gives me pretty good curl, definition, low-ish frizz, and it feels and looks good. Also an occasional PT (liking the Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula which has cones) seems to be key for me.

Modified CG since February 2013

Glad this could be of help to you awelcome! Yeah, it took me awhile too to come to the conclusion that my hair was "mushy" in the first place b/c of the frizz, and how it looks dry as you mentioned. I love visuals too! So much easier to understand what people mean then!!
CG since June 2012
2c/3a mix
High Density, Normal-High Porosity, Medium/Coarse Thickness
Cleansers: DevaCurl "No Poo", Suave Natural Conditioner
LI: One Condition, GVP Conditioning Balm
Stylers: SM Smoothie, DC Arcangel

{Looking for advice on what works well-products or tips/tricks- from similar curly girls!}

Joy, Love, Peace, Freedom: this is the Shalom Life I am called to by God. What beauty.
I did a PT I found at Target today called Palmer's coconut something (had been waiting since it had a cone I realized after getting it) and my hair seemed to really love it. After that it was already curlier, but the way I styled it that day left it frizzy and undefined still. Then I cut my hair a little, and ended up rewashing using a bit of suave naturals coconut which I haven't used before as a quick RO/Detangle and then a little more to leave in and suddenly my curls are tighter, bouncier and more defined again! Just gotta work on the back but I think that PT was a good fit for me.
My Hair:
2c
Fine, low porosity, med/high density
BSL - going for mid back to waist

HG: currently
just washing with a low poo that contains protein (Alba Naturals Coconut) and using Suave Naturals Coconut as both a RO and LI. No stylers right now, but this gives me pretty good curl, definition, low-ish frizz, and it feels and looks good. Also an occasional PT (liking the Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula which has cones) seems to be key for me.

Modified CG since February 2013

I did a PT I found at Target today called Palmer's coconut something (had been waiting since it had a cone I realized after getting it) and my hair seemed to really love it. After that it was already curlier, but the way I styled it that day left it frizzy and undefined still. Then I cut my hair a little, and ended up rewashing using a bit of suave naturals coconut which I haven't used before as a quick RO/Detangle and then a little more to leave in and suddenly my curls are tighter, bouncier and more defined again! Just gotta work on the back but I think that PT was a good fit for me.
Originally Posted by awelcome
Might be the coconut oil as much as/ more than the protein content, coconut always makes my hair curlier and bouncier. If I've found the right product the silk protein is two further ingredients below the fragrance, there doesn't seem to be much present. There are three silicones in it not just one, silicones are suffix -cone, -conol and -xane.
2a-2c, medium texture, porous/ colour treated. Three years CG. Past bra strap length heading for waist.

CO-wash: Inecto coconut/ Elvive Volume Collagen
Treatments: Komaza Care Matani, coconut/ sweet almond/ fractionated coconut oils, Hairveda Sitrinillah
Leave in: Fructis Sleek & Shine (old), Gliss Ultimate Volume, various Elvive
Styler: Umberto Giannini jelly, Au Naturale styling gelee
Flour sack towel, pixie diffuse or air dry.
Experimenting with: benign neglect
It is likely the same... and yes it has three cones. The silk protein is lower, but there is hydrolized keratin up fairly high on list, just before the coconut oil. I wouldn't attribute any positive reactions in my hair to the coconut oil because my hair seems to actually hate coconut oil. I have used it as DT before and had poor results, and it doesn't leave my hair softer or curlier.

The specific name (and I was going to make a separate post later to see if anyone else tried it before) is Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula with Vitamin E. Then it says deep conditioning protein pack. with coconut milk, keratin, and silk protein. So three different proteins.

I use a low poo pretty much every day so I am not too concerned about the cones if it does this well with my hair.
My Hair:
2c
Fine, low porosity, med/high density
BSL - going for mid back to waist

HG: currently
just washing with a low poo that contains protein (Alba Naturals Coconut) and using Suave Naturals Coconut as both a RO and LI. No stylers right now, but this gives me pretty good curl, definition, low-ish frizz, and it feels and looks good. Also an occasional PT (liking the Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula which has cones) seems to be key for me.

Modified CG since February 2013

It is likely the same... and yes it has three cones. The silk protein is lower, but there is hydrolized keratin up fairly high on list, just before the coconut oil. I wouldn't attribute any positive reactions in my hair to the coconut oil because my hair seems to actually hate coconut oil. I have used it as DT before and had poor results, and it doesn't leave my hair softer or curlier.

The specific name (and I was going to make a separate post later to see if anyone else tried it before) is Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula with Vitamin E. Then it says deep conditioning protein pack. with coconut milk, keratin, and silk protein. So three different proteins.

I use a low poo pretty much every day so I am not too concerned about the cones if it does this well with my hair.
Originally Posted by awelcome
Interesting: I must be looking at old formulas, can't see any listings with hydrolysed keratin! It's good they have added that and higher up too - the old formula is keratin amino acids which are water soluble and too tiny to remain in or on the hair. The protein in coconut milk will likely not penetrate at all, it's too large a molecule.

Some people find coconut oil in moderation/ within a balanced formula behaves very differently to straight oil, much the same as ingredients like aloe vera I guess.
2a-2c, medium texture, porous/ colour treated. Three years CG. Past bra strap length heading for waist.

CO-wash: Inecto coconut/ Elvive Volume Collagen
Treatments: Komaza Care Matani, coconut/ sweet almond/ fractionated coconut oils, Hairveda Sitrinillah
Leave in: Fructis Sleek & Shine (old), Gliss Ultimate Volume, various Elvive
Styler: Umberto Giannini jelly, Au Naturale styling gelee
Flour sack towel, pixie diffuse or air dry.
Experimenting with: benign neglect
once I get the kids to bed I will make a post about it and list out the ingredients so I am not hijacking her thread so much lol, sorry!
My Hair:
2c
Fine, low porosity, med/high density
BSL - going for mid back to waist

HG: currently
just washing with a low poo that contains protein (Alba Naturals Coconut) and using Suave Naturals Coconut as both a RO and LI. No stylers right now, but this gives me pretty good curl, definition, low-ish frizz, and it feels and looks good. Also an occasional PT (liking the Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula which has cones) seems to be key for me.

Modified CG since February 2013

I thought I would follow up and let you all know how things worked out for me in case anyone ever is wondering. I got the LALSG, and my hair definitely likes it. I have defined curls once again, YAY!!! Thanks so much for your advice everyone! However, if I try for 2nd or 3rd day hair, my roots start looking like they are greasy, but they aren't when I touch them. This only happens on 2nd/3rd day hair when I originally used the LALSG. I don't know if this is common or not for others. My curl pattern is also a lot less curly when I use LALSG, but I have still been using the SM Smoothie so perhaps the combination is too heavy for my already long weighed-down hair.

I think I'm going to try the LALSG without the SM Smoothie for awhile to see if it makes a difference in the curl pattern and appearance of greasiness. I might also try the biosilk rock hard gelee and see how that works for me. In the end, I will probably go back to the deva Arcangel, because so far it's worked better than anything else!!!

I'll try to remember to post again after results of trying the others in case anyone in the future reads this thread trying to find the solution to the same issues I have.
Originally Posted by shalomcurls
Dude, 2C high five. Your hair looks a lot like mine, pattern wise. It's super pretty. Is it possible you actually have fine/normal hair instead of course/normal? Overconditoned and protein craving are traits of fine hair. I know when I first got here I figured my hair was course/normal, but it's actually fine. That helped me realize I needed to incorporate protein, and I figured out that many of the products that work for me are probably partly working because of the protein.

Another thing is could the fluffy hair also be weather related? I spend winters in Kentucky, and I get some great, defined hair. Then I come to the deep South for the summer, and the humidity makes me hair bigger and puffier. My hair can get a bit undefined and my second day hair isn't as good. If you're using a humectant like glycerin or honey, that might be contributing to your overconditioning problem. glycerin is hard to avoid, but you can try to lessen it's use to see if it works. I don't notice a big difference, but some people have.

I would totally try a protein treatment if your hair is still digging the protein. The gelatin one on this site is cheap, easy, and pretty great.

Also, if you don't normally clarify, you might need a clarifying shampoo. At least when I tried the IC gel, it had cones in it? I don't know if they've reformulated since then, but it might be worth checking.
Fine Texture, Normal Porosity, Normal Elasticity. Dyed to brown a few months ago.
Lowpoo:
Trader Joe's TTT Shampoo
Rinse Out:
Yes to Carrots, AOHR, Aubrey Organics Rosemary Peppermint
LI: Yes to Carrots
Stylers: Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie, LA Looks Sports, Suave Professionals Captivating Curls Whipped Mousse
Shalom, have you tried the SheaMoisture Coconut/Hibiscus Milk rather than the Smoothie? SheaMoisture Organic Coconut Hibiscus Curl and Style Milk - NaturallyCurly.com It also has silk protein, but no glycerin unlike the smoothie and is lighter. If you're having problems with overconditioning/product weigh down this may be a better fit for you in terms of a leave-in or pre-gel product.

Milk formulation:

Nucifera (Coconut) Oil*, Isopropyl Myristate, Sugar Starch, Silk Protein, EssenQal Oil Blend, Melia Azadirachta (Neem) Seed Oil, Caprylyl glycol, Sorbitol Esters, Algae Extract, Hyssopus Officinalis Extract, Salvia Officinalis (Sage) Leaf and Equisetum Arvense Extract, Daucus Carota SaQva (Carrot) Seed Oil, Lonicera Caprifolium (Honeysuckle) Flower (and) Lonicera Japonica (Japanese Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Tocopherol (Vitamin E).


The Smoothie is much heavier and is full of butters, oils and other emollients. It does have silk protein in it but all the butters/oils/emollients/humectants may be undoing what the silk protein in it is doing... does that make sense?

Smoothie formulation:

Deionized Water, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Cocos Nucifera Oil (Coconut), Macadamia Ternifolia Seed Oil, Persea Gratissima Oil (Avocado), Vegetable Glycerin, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Silk Protein, Ammonium Salt, Melia Azadirachta Seed Oil (Neem), Daucus Carota Sativa Seed Oil (Carrot), Sorbitol Esters, Panthenol (Pro-Vitamin B-5), Caprylyl Glycol, Essential Oil Blend, Lonicera Caprifolium Flower and Lonicera Japonica Flower Extract (Honeysuckle and Japanese Honeysuckle), Tocopherol (Vitamin E)

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