Help overhauling my routine before I quit please!

I'm pretty much in tears here, absolutely HATE my hair the last few weeks.My problems are all a bit newbie, except I've been half heartedly at this for TWO YEARS so really should have made more progress!!!

Hair Properties
I *think* my hair is 2b, colour treated/ porous, neither coarse nor fine, can be really soft and glossy when happy, ends have had some serious chemical and mechanical damage, never flat ironed, bra strap length, recently trimmed, greasy roots. In the UK so don't understand dew points at all but it's nothing special.

Most of the time lately it looks like I brushed and/ or towel turbaned it, or am naturally a 1b - flat, stringy, vaguely wavy. Clarifying plus protein treating made that worse, deep treating for six hours has done absolutely nothing.

Products
Been sulphate free two years which is non negotiable - atopic eczema/ contact dermatitis - and mostly silicone free the same period.

Have mostly been using
Inecto coconut for CO-wash
Garnier Repair & Shine for leave in (same as Triple Nutrition, now reformulated with 'cones so have to switch)
Coconut oil for intensive - hope to reduce porosity
Komaza Care protein - occasional
White vinegar - dilute for occasional rinses
Boots purple gel - occasional, good curl if I use a crazy amount but very drying (need to switch)
Microfibre turban towel - modified plop.

Also own
Shampoo based on coco betaine - hair hates it so just for clarifying.
Curl Keeper - kills poofy flyaways, does not activate any curl unless I diffuse, makes my hair super soft but stringy
Rockin Ringlets - on order so not tried
Curls Milkshake - not rich enough
Curls Coconut Sublime - not rich enough.

Problem is gel sucks the colour off my hair and makes my hair so dry
which is the last thing it needs so I only use it when I need to look nice, would much prefer to use gel regularly. I also cannot diffuser regularly, I have a sweating issue so must air dry all summer. So I need products that encourage curl and don't weigh the hair down BUT are super moisturising.

Questions/ Problems
I'm happy with my CO-wash product, that's it. I especially need a gel that has firm hold and is moisturising at the same time, does that even exist?? I wonder if I need one with a low pH to keep the cuticle closed, wondering if that is why gel dries my hair out and leaches out the dye??

Technique wise I'm struggling too despite watching YouTube obsessively. Trying to rinse out only half of the rinse off conditioner, by the time my roots feel clean the ends feel stripped. If I scrunch in enough leave in conditioner for my lengths my roots end up looking filthy!

Tried working with much wetter hair which does give slightly better clumps whilst sopping wet, but those vanish the second I scrunch the water out or plop. Also the weight of the water pulls even more curl out and seems to leach product off the ends where I need it most. Basically I really don't understand how to get more product on the mid to ends of wet hair than on the roots??

Should I replace my microfibre turban towel? I'm open to that if I can get better curl or clumps.

Thanks for reading, sorry it is an essay.

Last edited by Firefox7275; 04-29-2013 at 05:09 PM.
Like you, I am a 1b/1c when I don't do anything with my hair. Being a "Wavy Imposter" is tough. I've had excellent results after learning my hair properties and going full CG. I recently had a big chop, so I am learning new techniques to enhance my hair's natural texture.

If I don't diffuse my hair, I will not (NOT) have anything beyond a 1c pattern. It sucks, but I've tried so many air drying techniques that never worked. Diffusing is my only option to get waves. Perhaps you are in the same club?

My hair craves both protein and moisture. As long as I follow up any protein with a rich conditioner, I can treat my hair with protein daily. Not very many people can do this, but my hair needs the support.

If you've used a conditioner with 'cones, you need to sulfate wash that out or you'll risk drying out your hair as it impedes conditioner absorption. My hair loves a sulfate reset every now and again (2-3 times per month,) but I have hard water.

You also may consider using a diluted Apple Cider Vinegar rinse every now and again. It resets the pH of your hair. My hair used to be 3" from my waist and I would mix 1/4 cup of ACV with 1 gallon of distilled water in a gallon pitcher and just dipped the ends of my hair for a minute or so. Don't rinse again or you'll lose the benefit of the ACV.

Hope some of this helps. Barely wavy hair is tough to deal with at times, but you can have the best of both straight and wavy worlds!! Happy experimenting to you!!
CG Journey Start Date: 08.21.12 Now modified CG
F/M texture, Med Density, Low/Normal Porosity, Hennindigo

Current Routine (Still working out the kinks):

Sulfate wash: CHSTS
Low-Poo: OMAO
CO-Wash: IEC, VO5VMT, TNRV
Rinse Out: YTCarrots, DLOO, Renpure Red, GVPCB
LI: YTCarrots, CCC
PT: NPF
Styler: AG:RC, KCCC, LALNC, FSG
Gel: BRHG+Biotera
Also, ditch using your microfiber turban as a turban. All that twisting is manipulating your hair away from its natural pattern. Just use it to scrunch the water from your hair. I also re-scrunch after applying my products with a soft, 100% cotton t-shirt. I get better clumps and waves that way.
CG Journey Start Date: 08.21.12 Now modified CG
F/M texture, Med Density, Low/Normal Porosity, Hennindigo

Current Routine (Still working out the kinks):

Sulfate wash: CHSTS
Low-Poo: OMAO
CO-Wash: IEC, VO5VMT, TNRV
Rinse Out: YTCarrots, DLOO, Renpure Red, GVPCB
LI: YTCarrots, CCC
PT: NPF
Styler: AG:RC, KCCC, LALNC, FSG
Gel: BRHG+Biotera
Check your ingredients. It could be the glycerin that's leeching the color out of your hair (in the gel.) There are a lot of gels that are glycerin free. My hair prefers the more natural products from the online, boutique type companies. I stay away from chemicals (don't have issues with glycerin), especially polyquats. While I'm told they don't build up, I find them hard to remove--my hair has frizz when wet if I use products that have them.

I used microfiber towels when I first started on nc.com. I found that they caused more frizz. While I use Curlease towel to wrap my hair while I dress and do make up and Curls Like Us cloth to scrunch out water, you can buy flour sack towels and 100% cotton tee shirts to remove water.

Have you watched the DVD that comes with the newer version of the CG book?? I could never use the copious amount of product they use; however, it really shows you how to handle your hair--gently.
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
after you rinse out half your conditioner, you say the roots are good, but the ends are stripped - normal reaction.
so, when you scrunch in more conditioner to leave in, ONLY SCRUNCH THE ENDS TO MID-POINT, don't go near the roots. it's how i often do it as otherwise it plasters the roots to my head.
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3a, some 2c & 3b, medium texture, porosity normal, low elasticity
washing/cowashing, conditioning, protein tx: curl junkie products
leave in:cj conditioners and treatments as leave in
styling: cj pattern pusha, cj honey butta leave in, cj cccc, cj ciab, lalsg. cj aloe fix gel is my high dews/summer HG!!
sealants - spiral solutions emollience butter, jane carter nourish & shine

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