Does anyone with loose waves find clumps DON'T work for them?

Like Tree23Likes

I'm 2A-B depending on the day and I've always aimed for clumps because I thought the only other option was stringy hair.

Today I had my first Deva cut (which was awesome btw) and I was explaining my hair woes to the stylist. The stylist was asking what my goals are, what I usually do, etc and I explained that I try to encourage clumps but that they never turn out quite right.

She told me that she thinks clumping generally works best on curls and that often if wavies try to clump too much it can look like wavy hair that is trying to be curly. She said that curly hair clumps into nice chunky ringlets but waves sometimes clump into just thick sections of slightly waved hair. That was exactly what I'd been experiencing!

So she went about styling my hair and said that as a loose wavy I should aim for softness and volume. At the end, I had nice big beachy waves that were neither clumpy nor stringy. Just lovely, soft, natural waves.

I must say I've never aimed for that but I think I strongly prefer it. Anyone else find this to be true?
2A/B. Mix of fine, medium, and coarse (mostly medium). Dense. Mix of normal and high porosity.
Dry climate.


Ooh can I see a pic!? I find I like it as long as it doesn't look stringy. Too many clumps are not good for my hair either.
chupie likes this.
2a-2bFii NP?

Low poo: Deva Low-Poo, Jessicurl GLS, Moroccanoil Volumizing Shampoo, Aveda Be Curly
Condish: Cure Care, Redken Body Full, Deva One C, and Jessicurl Aloeba
LI: Aveda Be Curly Style Prep <3
Products: Deva FFVF & Jessicurl Spiralicious (LOVE), TRESemme Curl Boosting Mousse
Hairspray: Aussie Sprunch, TRESemme Curl
locking Spray
Experimenting with lots of products in my cabinet...


My hair loves protein, plopping, and diffusing! Trying to find a way to style and air dry.


There's a bit of frizz because its monsoon season and the dew point is like 70
2A/B. Mix of fine, medium, and coarse (mostly medium). Dense. Mix of normal and high porosity.
Dry climate.



Last edited by kaykre; 07-11-2013 at 05:46 PM.
Yeah, I think I can relate to that. If my hair clumps they are HUGE and just bumpy. I am indeed finding smaller strand clumps...strumps .... work better. And I do, when and if it gets stringly looking, comb it out and then it looks like a roller set, which is fine. (Lucky you on a Deva cut! I really would like to try that, but when mine is longer I think I will go for long layers. I suspect it will work better....maybe...ugh. Cutting decisions are an issue for me.)
Yeah, I think I can relate to that. If my hair clumps they are HUGE and just bumpy. I am indeed finding smaller strand clumps...strumps .... work better. And I do, when and if it gets stringly looking, comb it out and then it looks like a roller set, which is fine. (Lucky you on a Deva cut! I really would like to try that, but when mine is longer I think I will go for long layers. I suspect it will work better....maybe...ugh. Cutting decisions are an issue for me.)
Originally Posted by chupie
I actually didn't get much off... She dusted the ends and cut the individuals waves that were layers... I already had layers but she cut them so the waves laid better
2A/B. Mix of fine, medium, and coarse (mostly medium). Dense. Mix of normal and high porosity.
Dry climate.


So pretty! That makes a lot of sense. I always use KCCC to make my hair super clumpy, and it looks really ringlet-y and curly for a while, but then the curls droop and drop. I'll try aiming for the beach wave next time! What products did you use?
2c/2b with some 2a, coarse, dense, thick, low porosity
Growing out a CL bob. Currently at APL.
CG again as of 7/20/12


Cleanser: BRÖÖ Smoothing I.P.A. Shampoo
RO: Trader Joe's Nourish Spa Conditioner
LI: Kinky-Curly Knot Today
Styler: Beautiful Curls Gel for Wavy to Curly Hair

all-natural products, light moisture, humectants, argan oil
silk protein, synthetic ingredients, heavy oils/products, cowashing
Me me!!!!!!!

I have no idea how to style unclumpy (I was actually going to start a thread about this myself) because most of the techniques on this board are for encouraging clumps!

I like my clumps sometimes, but not always, and I really want to know how to acheieve an alternative! When my hair is super clumpy I generally lose volume... a BIG bummer for me. (I actually started a thread about this... I'm struggling! Definition vs. volume)

BTW I think your hair looks great! Did she suggest any ways to style unclumpy?
fine - low/normal porosity - medium density - normal elasticity.

Currently using:
Cowash: Cure Care diluted with water 1:1
RO: Cure Care, V05 Kiwi Lime
Styler: UFD CM (old formula), FSG + CNPF
PT: IAgirl's gelatine

Experimenting with: no guar hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride, gelatin gel

Recent findings: my hair likes Cure Care diluted with water as a cowash; does NOT like guar h.c.!

iherb discount code: CFN646
I started aiming for smaller clumps about a year ago. There are a few things that seem to work for me, in terms of technique. First, I try to stick to thinner gels. No Eco Styler for me. I also use a combo rake and scrunch technique- I've found that the raking breaks up the clumps, and with a strong hold gel I can still scrunch back my curls. The last thing I just noticed last week- I've been experimenting with applying product to less than soaking wet hair and the results have been fantastic.

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 started aiming for smaller clumps about a year ago. There are a few things that seem to work for me, in terms of technique. First, I try to stick to thinner gels. No Eco Styler for me. I also use a combo rake and scrunch technique- I've found that the raking breaks up the clumps, and with a strong hold gel I can still scrunch back my curls. The last thing I just noticed last week- I've been experimenting with applying product to less than soaking wet hair and the results have been fantastic.
Originally Posted by Corrina777
Thinner clumps is very different from "soft waves" or unclumpy though. I achieve thinner clumps the same way you do (raking in, applying to nonsoaking hair, protein also tends to break up my clumps a little more). Thinner clumps mean more volume for me but it also means my hair is more... see-through? I actually prefer bigger clumps if it weren't for the loss of volume.
fine - low/normal porosity - medium density - normal elasticity.

Currently using:
Cowash: Cure Care diluted with water 1:1
RO: Cure Care, V05 Kiwi Lime
Styler: UFD CM (old formula), FSG + CNPF
PT: IAgirl's gelatine

Experimenting with: no guar hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride, gelatin gel

Recent findings: my hair likes Cure Care diluted with water as a cowash; does NOT like guar h.c.!

iherb discount code: CFN646
I started aiming for smaller clumps about a year ago. There are a few things that seem to work for me, in terms of technique. First, I try to stick to thinner gels. No Eco Styler for me. I also use a combo rake and scrunch technique- I've found that the raking breaks up the clumps, and with a strong hold gel I can still scrunch back my curls. The last thing I just noticed last week- I've been experimenting with applying product to less than soaking wet hair and the results have been fantastic.
Originally Posted by Corrina777
Thinner clumps is very different from "soft waves" or unclumpy though. I achieve thinner clumps the same way you do (raking in, applying to nonsoaking hair, protein also tends to break up my clumps a little more). Thinner clumps mean more volume for me but it also means my hair is more... see-through? I actually prefer bigger clumps if it weren't for the loss of volume.
Originally Posted by wavydaze
To soften the look of clumps (what I think you're talking about), best bet would probably be a lighter hold product and/or some very careful finger combing post-SOTC. Looking at the picture above, I see smaller clumps, but they are less defined than many of the pics I see, and look similar to the results I get if I use a light hold gel.

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 know what she means. I get Medusa-noodle-head from loads of certain gels when aiming for clumping, others can give me horrible tiny stringlets when wet that join together into soft bouncy ringlets when they dry. I've been wondering if it's film formers that work best for me, not mega hold at all.
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
To soften the look of clumps (what I think you're talking about), best bet would probably be a lighter hold product and/or some very careful finger combing post-SOTC. Looking at the picture above, I see smaller clumps, but they are less defined than many of the pics I see, and look similar to the results I get if I use a light hold gel.
Originally Posted by Corrina777
Hmmmmmm.... I think I've tried this with SS CEJ and I didn't quite like the results. Maybe I should keep working on it!
fine - low/normal porosity - medium density - normal elasticity.

Currently using:
Cowash: Cure Care diluted with water 1:1
RO: Cure Care, V05 Kiwi Lime
Styler: UFD CM (old formula), FSG + CNPF
PT: IAgirl's gelatine

Experimenting with: no guar hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride, gelatin gel

Recent findings: my hair likes Cure Care diluted with water as a cowash; does NOT like guar h.c.!

iherb discount code: CFN646
Most recently, I found Mop Top Light Hold Gel gave me softer definition, but I've also gotten similar results with Curl Keeper used alone with LI.

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
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 939
Obviously this isn't something I can achieve myself, but I love the less producty wave look. It just seems more natural and nicer. I know the look preferred/aimed for here is more noodley, but I support the volume.

I really like her hair.


*I had to grab this picture from the site. Everyone wants wavy hair, so almost all the google pictures are fake wavy hair.
heyho, dusalocks and wavydaze like this.

Last edited by Jessiebanana; 07-11-2013 at 10:46 PM.
dresdendoll: she used devacurl low poo, one condition, ultra defining gel, and set it up and above.

wavydaze: she didn't really aim to break up clumps she just didn't so anything to really encourage them, iykwim.... Basically, she low pood and and conditioned me upright then used her hands to scrunch out a tiny bit of water (I usually apply to soaking wet but she saids water can pull down waves). Then she squeezed and scrunched the gel in my hair section by section... She kind of grabbed sections vertically and squeezed then did a traditional scrunching method.. Then blotted with microfiber and scrunched in a bit of pomade (this seemed to make it dry not crunchy yet gave hold). Then she clipped me and put me under a dryer. When she SOTC, she gently fluffed my hair.

corrina777: do you do the ouidad rake and shake?

firefox7275: I get the medusa noodle effect. I don't think my hair has enough curly to clump into the nice thick ringlets (well, except for the odd ringlet I sometimes get in the under layers). What stylers are film formers? Also, what are your thoughts on Rockin Ringlets? I see it in your signature and have been thinking of trying it.

jessiebanana: I agree... I notice the goal for most wavies here is the clumpy noodle look. For me, I can coax my hair into clumpy curls but within a few hours they fall into weird clumpy waves and its not pretty. The girl in the picture has gorgeous hair...,really makes me want to grow mine.
Firefox7275 and dresdendoll like this.
2A/B. Mix of fine, medium, and coarse (mostly medium). Dense. Mix of normal and high porosity.
Dry climate.


Yes, I definitely find this! It's why I don't use gel anymore - the clumps formed/held with gel fall apart over the course of a day. It felt silly and I want to work with my actual pattern, rather than create a slowly crumbling facade every day.
Kaykre- I don't use the Ouidad rake and shake, but it's probably similar. Their technique involves applying gel to small sections of hair and is way too time consuming for me (I'm pretty lazy about the time and effort I'm willing to put into my hair). Basically I apply LI and/or curl cream while my head is upside down (primarily smoothing/raking, with maybe a quick scrunch at the end). Then I flip right side up and apply my gel in a total of 5 small blobs. First blob is smoothed over the canopy because this seems to help prevent wonky part issues, especially on days when I diffuse. Then I divide my hair into 3 sections- left, right, and back and apply the gel with combo rake/scrunch, with my focus on making sure that the gel is well distributed (I have thick hair, so it's very easy to miss spots). After I finish all the sections, I flip my head upside down again and use a very small amount of gel and scrunch to reshape curls. Then I plop while I get dressed, and if I feel like my hair is very heavy (with water and/or product), I use the same flour sack towel to gently scrunch out some water when I take down the plop. Then I do a quick check in the mirror to make sure nothing looks really crazy, might do an extra scrunch or adjust my part if I need to. Unless I diffuse, my total active styling time is under 5 minutes, and this was still the case even when my hair was longer.

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
firefox7275: I get the medusa noodle effect. I don't think my hair has enough curly to clump into the nice thick ringlets (well, except for the odd ringlet I sometimes get in the under layers). What stylers are film formers? Also, what are your thoughts on Rockin Ringlets? I see it in your signature and have been thinking of trying it.
Originally Posted by kaykre
Hydrolysed protein and mucilage extracts (okra, flaxseed) are some of the main film formers we use. Aloe vera can be a film former, also some of the ingredients in Kinky Curly Knot Today - but AV doesn't play nicely in all dew points and KCKT is pH 7 so I can't say how they work as styling aids. I *think* xanthan gum is, there is also sclerotium gum but that is more used in skincare AFAIK.

I really did not like RR the first few times, decent clumps broke up into stringlets and I didn't feel curl boost where I needed it either. I liked it MUCH better when I tried again without any gel over the top for a casual look. Also liked the effect of conditioner only styling with loads of a protein rich conditioner - that is why I am coming round to the idea that plenty of true conditioner (cationic surfactants, fatty alcohol) plus a film former and not hard hold products work better for my hair type.
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
others can give me horrible tiny stringlets when wet that join together into soft bouncy ringlets when they dry
Originally Posted by Firefox7275
Tell me MORE!
dusalocks likes this.
fine - low/normal porosity - medium density - normal elasticity.

Currently using:
Cowash: Cure Care diluted with water 1:1
RO: Cure Care, V05 Kiwi Lime
Styler: UFD CM (old formula), FSG + CNPF
PT: IAgirl's gelatine

Experimenting with: no guar hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride, gelatin gel

Recent findings: my hair likes Cure Care diluted with water as a cowash; does NOT like guar h.c.!

iherb discount code: CFN646
oh, wavydaze, that made me giggle. Yeah, I've also had gels dry completely different than they looked when wet. Aussie Instant Freeze was one. Looked lank and stiff when crunchy and then ringlety and soft once I SOTC. Too bad it still left my hair feeling crunchy even post crunch.
wavydaze likes this.
3A - C, HP, ME, HD. (Coarse, High Porosity, Medium Elasticity, High Density.)

CG since Nov. 2012

Poos: SM Moisture Retention + Yucca Baobab, TJ's Tea Tree Tingle
Condish: TJ 'sTea Tree Tingle*, SM Moisture Retention* + Curl & Shine + Yucca Baobab, Yes to Blueberries
Stylers: KCKT*, SM Curl Enhancing Smoothie* + Curl & Style Milk*, KCCC*, FSG*, CJ Pattern Pusha, Curl Keeper
Sealers: Jojoba* or Grapeseed* oil

* = HG

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