Don't know what to do anymore

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  • 1 Post By lolo918

I apologize in advance for this long post.
I'm so beyond frustrated with my hair. There's a lot of things that are making me mad so I'll just list them.
1. I still don't know if something is working for me, even though I know what moisturized hair is suppose to look like.
2. Tangles. Lots of tangles.
3. My ends
4. Breakage/split ends
5. Heat damage
6. Retaining length

Here's a short background on my hair:

My hair was natural up until 5th grade summer until my mom permed it. I started pressing my hair in 6th grade. I got a weave for half of 6th grade because the perm broke my hair off, the weave really helped it grow. Then after 6th grade I just got it straightened every 2 weeks up until September of 2013. I've gotten a couple trims thought the years, so I'm not 100% sure my perm is gone yet. Right before I started my journey, I got my hair cut from APL to shoulder length because over the summer I was blow drying my hair once or two times a week :/ and I shampooed my hair with a clarifying shampoo EVERY TIME and all of that really broke off my hair.I'm pretty sure this summer is what caused my heat damage. My mom and grandma tell me my hair has progressed because I got my hair cut to shoulder length in August, straightened for homecoming in early October, and straightened again for Thanksgiving in November they said my hair had grown so much! It was basically back at APL, just a little above. BTW, I didn't want to get my hair straightened in November -_- my parents forced me because I was going to Alabama for thanksgiving with my grandparents.

I've been doing the Aphogee 2 min reconstructor for a month now, and this is my 3rd time this month testing it and every time I didn't notice major curl clumping, less tangles, less breakage. I compared 2 hair balls from this time: one from before I applied the treatment & one after I did some light finger detangling (the smaller one is from before, larger is after -_-) I'm pretty sure if I did a more serious detangling session I would've lost more hair but I was already in the shower for over 30 minutes and I'm not trying to raise my parents water bill.

I want to cut off all my damage but I'm not sure I can retain the length, since I have so much breakage and my ends always tangle. I only started my journey in September but I've seen other people who have been doing it for the same amount of time and there hair has shown major improvement! I don't know what else I can do, I don't know what I'm doing wrong so I can fix it. I just want to give up, I feel like what I'm working for isn't going to happen.

I still don't have a set wash routine which makes me mad even more. Whenever I detangle in the shower then apply my DT, then rinse it out later I feel like my hair tangles back up. My ends love to tangle on themselves. Whenever I see some pieces of damage that need cutting I cut them. I just did an all over trim last week and I'm going to do another in 2-4 weeks.

I feel like I put enough moisture because my hair doesn't feel dry all the time. But if anybody has suggestions on this too I'd be happy to take it. I'm going to see how I really feel about the aphogee once I've finished it. But if anybody has any suggestions I'd be happy to look into them.

Here's a list of the things I use more frequently just so you can see what I use:
SM curl enhancing smoothie, cantu leave in repair cream, coconut oil, shea butter, eden bodyworks jojoba monoi, aphogee 2 min reconstructor, Aussie moist conditoner, HE hello hydration conditioner, suave tropical coconut conditioner (cowash)
Attached Thumbnails
Don't know what to do anymore-image.jpg  
Started my journey September 8th, 2013
High Density, 4A Curls, Fine-Medium Strands, Normal- Low elasticity, LP- porous
Current Hair-length: APL (straight)
Hair-length Goal: AP length when curly
Still trying to figure out my curly hair needs & regimen
"Confidence Is Beautiful"

Last edited by Zippytatiana9; 03-29-2014 at 01:27 PM.
Have you had a hair analysis done yet? That sounds like it might help you a lot.

I wasn't clear on this, but you should probably be doing a deep treatment after the reconstructor. I haven't used that particular product, just the 2 step treatment though so I'm not sure about it. The 2 step treatment has the protein step, then a moisture step in it. It was okay, but I prefer homemade gelatin treatments on my hair.

I'm not sure if it would really help but, I do have fine textured strands, that I believe are low porosity. The first four products that you list, along with the Aussie moist are too heavy for my hair to use in the styling process. The moist is ok when I switch through it for cowashing. Right now my conditioner that I'm switching it with is Suave naturals Everlasting sunshine. I'm not sure what I will end up going with next- I've liked Tresemme naturals moisture even after the reformulation. I started following the curly girl method in November and stopped using the leave in cream- before that I was having a lot of problems with hair that was difficult to get to nice second day hair. It would be sort of soft until it dried, but then the next day would be so brittle and tangled.

With the other products, I get this coated feeling on my strands. If I hold them up to the light it kind of looks like lint pieces on my hair, and it doesn't feel right, or lay right. Pretty much any oil heavy products causes my hair to be more tangled- I don't have the same problem with heavy humectant products (honey, glycerin, aloe juice/gel, etc), or products heavy in slippy ingredients (stearyl alcohols, capric acids, etc). I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE coconut oil applied as an overnight pre-poo treatment- it cuts down on a lot of tangles for me personally. I'm also loving flaxseed gel in my styling process. I use it mixed with a tiny bit of oil, conditioner, and honey. I tried it with aloe vera gel and another gel I have, but I didn't like it. I got the recipe from the science-y hair blog done by IAgirl. I HAVE to mix my products together before putting them in my hair to get my best hair. Layering is just too much for my strands. She (iagirl) is also where I got my gelatin PT recipe from.

I also get lots of tangling (even right after treatments) when I need a trim- sometimes this is true even when there doesn't "appear" to be any damage on my ends. Your hair IS longer than mine- do you wash in sections or at the very least put it in sections after detangling but before rinsing out conditioner? I have low density of strands, that are slippery when wet, so sections to wash are problematic. However, if I apply conditioner then detangle, and twist sections I don't have tangle problems. I rinse out the conditioner, then put on a t-shirt for a bit before applying my stylers and arranging my curls. Another method I do is mixing my styler before I shower, putting it in the shower, and applying after I rinse out my conditioner. Then I loosely twist up my hair, and put on my t-shirt while I get dressed and ready for work. Right before I leave I take out the twists, and arrange the curls. Either way gives me good results. So this is sufficiently long winded- HTH! Good luck!
3C/4A, fine texture, low-medium density, and low porosity?
CG since November 2013.

Pre-Poo: Coconut Oil overnight, or a greek yogurt mixture
Shampoo: Curls Cleanser and/or clarifier
Conditioner: trying out different Suave Naturals conditioners and GVP's leave-in conditioner at the moment
Styler: iagirl's super smooth flax curl cream. <3
PT: iagirl's gelatin treatment 3-4 times a month
DT: conditioner or yogurt base with honey and oil if the conditioner has none.
Yeah i got an analysis a couple weeks ago. I'm going to pay more attention to see if the products do sit on my hair when I twist my hair tomorrow. When I shampoo I don't section, when I condition and detangle I do part it but I probably have to more sectiosn
Started my journey September 8th, 2013
High Density, 4A Curls, Fine-Medium Strands, Normal- Low elasticity, LP- porous
Current Hair-length: APL (straight)
Hair-length Goal: AP length when curly
Still trying to figure out my curly hair needs & regimen
"Confidence Is Beautiful"
Your hair might be different from mine though- it was just a thought. I haven't done a hair analysis yet, but I plan on getting one in April. Did you get any particular ingredients suggested? Also- which analysis did you get?
3C/4A, fine texture, low-medium density, and low porosity?
CG since November 2013.

Pre-Poo: Coconut Oil overnight, or a greek yogurt mixture
Shampoo: Curls Cleanser and/or clarifier
Conditioner: trying out different Suave Naturals conditioners and GVP's leave-in conditioner at the moment
Styler: iagirl's super smooth flax curl cream. <3
PT: iagirl's gelatin treatment 3-4 times a month
DT: conditioner or yogurt base with honey and oil if the conditioner has none.
I got the Goosefootprints one on Etsy, it was really informative and it helped a lot. She does give you recommendations and if you don't understand what it means she breaks it down in another document she sends you. She also has a list of products that she recommends on her blog
Started my journey September 8th, 2013
High Density, 4A Curls, Fine-Medium Strands, Normal- Low elasticity, LP- porous
Current Hair-length: APL (straight)
Hair-length Goal: AP length when curly
Still trying to figure out my curly hair needs & regimen
"Confidence Is Beautiful"
Oooh- I'm planning on getting that one when she starts taking orders again in April. I was browsing her etsy page today and realized that she is iagirl! I already use her protein treatment and flaxseed curl cream, and am in LOVE!

Sent from my SCH-I200 using CurlTalk App
3C/4A, fine texture, low-medium density, and low porosity?
CG since November 2013.

Pre-Poo: Coconut Oil overnight, or a greek yogurt mixture
Shampoo: Curls Cleanser and/or clarifier
Conditioner: trying out different Suave Naturals conditioners and GVP's leave-in conditioner at the moment
Styler: iagirl's super smooth flax curl cream. <3
PT: iagirl's gelatin treatment 3-4 times a month
DT: conditioner or yogurt base with honey and oil if the conditioner has none.
You won't regret getting it I promise! and did you see some improvement after you used the protein treatment? I was going to try it next weekend.
Started my journey September 8th, 2013
High Density, 4A Curls, Fine-Medium Strands, Normal- Low elasticity, LP- porous
Current Hair-length: APL (straight)
Hair-length Goal: AP length when curly
Still trying to figure out my curly hair needs & regimen
"Confidence Is Beautiful"
Not drastic, but I've been doing them since November or December. I have noticed over time that my hair is more elastic and is getting easier to care for. The PT use also coincides with when I started the curly girl method though so I'm not sure which is contributing the most.

Sent from my SCH-I200 using CurlTalk App
Zippytatiana9 likes this.
3C/4A, fine texture, low-medium density, and low porosity?
CG since November 2013.

Pre-Poo: Coconut Oil overnight, or a greek yogurt mixture
Shampoo: Curls Cleanser and/or clarifier
Conditioner: trying out different Suave Naturals conditioners and GVP's leave-in conditioner at the moment
Styler: iagirl's super smooth flax curl cream. <3
PT: iagirl's gelatin treatment 3-4 times a month
DT: conditioner or yogurt base with honey and oil if the conditioner has none.
ok thank you
Started my journey September 8th, 2013
High Density, 4A Curls, Fine-Medium Strands, Normal- Low elasticity, LP- porous
Current Hair-length: APL (straight)
Hair-length Goal: AP length when curly
Still trying to figure out my curly hair needs & regimen
"Confidence Is Beautiful"
You've gotten some excellent advice. I'd just like to add my particular agreement to a very few things.

One is that when my hair gets particularly tangly, that's a sign that I really need a trim. I had been growing my hair since I started doing CG, but still getting it cut at intervals, and by the time I had the last haircut, I had apparently managed to get it past what would have been terminal length due to its fragility by babying it along. I liked having it long for the first time in my life, but I was sure not enjoying my hair. Okay, so I proved to myself that I could do it, but when I managed to get myself into the chair of the right hairstylist, I was so ready to give it up that I asked him to cut it even shorter than he initially suggested (as my best long hair length). I haven't regretted that for a moment.

Another is the value of using coconut oil as a pre-poo treatment. It really is amazingly helpful. It cuts way down on tangling. Coconut oil can also help protect the integrity of your hair when used before chemical and heat processing.

Also, IAgirl's gelatin protein treatments really are the best! They're cheap, easy to do, and effective.
Peace,
Morgan

Baby Fine 3B, low porosity, normal density and elasticity
CGing since July 2008
Yes, I'm another one who get horrible tangles when I need a trim. I have the last five years seen like 4 split hairs I think. Even when I've had a cut every 9 month at most. Still, even if I formally don't have the type of damage you can see with the naked eye it still tangles up badly at the ends when it needs to get cut, and it is really the only way I used to see that it was time. Now I have also learnt to look for that "fried" look at the ends, which usually starts right before the tangles get super-bad.
CG since 8th of September 2013 - learning in progress!

3a/m/iii - waist length wet
Cleanser: Naturelle Volumizing
Conditioner/LI: Garnier Respons Avocadooil and Shea Butter, Schwarzkopf Gliss Ultimate Volume Conditioner
Styling: Eldorado Hairgel Strong
I just attempted to do IA girl's PT and I think I did something wrong. I followed the directions: 1/3 cup of boiling water, I packet of gelatin, I added olive oil, and 5 drops of apple cider vinegar. I don't think I mixed it well enough or the water wasn't hot enough because as I'm stirring it the gelatin is sticking to the pot. Also right after I made the gelatin I went in the shower and immediately shampooed, I go to pick up the gelatin and it's solidified. Is this suppose to happen?
Started my journey September 8th, 2013
High Density, 4A Curls, Fine-Medium Strands, Normal- Low elasticity, LP- porous
Current Hair-length: APL (straight)
Hair-length Goal: AP length when curly
Still trying to figure out my curly hair needs & regimen
"Confidence Is Beautiful"
You should mix it together outside of the pot- it sounds like it finished the initial cooking process. I usually boil my water in a kettle, and put the gelatin and other ingredients in a separate container. A few times it's all been in a measuring cup but then I had to transfer it to my old hair dye bottle. So now I pour the water into the measuring cup and the rest of the ingredients into the hair dye bottle; after that I pour the correct amount of boiling water into the dye bottle before I apply it.
3C/4A, fine texture, low-medium density, and low porosity?
CG since November 2013.

Pre-Poo: Coconut Oil overnight, or a greek yogurt mixture
Shampoo: Curls Cleanser and/or clarifier
Conditioner: trying out different Suave Naturals conditioners and GVP's leave-in conditioner at the moment
Styler: iagirl's super smooth flax curl cream. <3
PT: iagirl's gelatin treatment 3-4 times a month
DT: conditioner or yogurt base with honey and oil if the conditioner has none.
Thank you! I was thinking yeahhh don't put this on your hair because you did something wrong lol
Started my journey September 8th, 2013
High Density, 4A Curls, Fine-Medium Strands, Normal- Low elasticity, LP- porous
Current Hair-length: APL (straight)
Hair-length Goal: AP length when curly
Still trying to figure out my curly hair needs & regimen
"Confidence Is Beautiful"
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 1,073
The one thing that jumped at me from your signature is that you use Suave Tropical Coconut for co-washing... If you're still using it stop immediately, when I began CG a long time ago the only COs w/out cones I had were a couple of Suave's and oh boy, did they cause my then damaged hair to tangle something awful! I still remember one day in particular when I couldn't get my wide-tooth comb through the horrid tangles I ended up with, it seemed like the more CO I put on my hair trying to undo the knots the worst they got so I stepped out of the bathtub, wrapped myself in a towel and went to the kitchen to get a lime to squeeze some juice and put it directly on my head to break up that gummy mess.

I later realized that Suave is very heavy handed with the fatty alcohols and somehow in their formulas they can cause "instant" buildup. So , I immediately went and got myself a "natural" CO, Avalon Organics Lavender, and that did the trick. But I also found another inexpensive CO that became my staple co-wash until the company changed the formula and added mineral oil (which is why I can't recommend it now).

If you want to use an inexpensive CO for co-wash, get one of the V05's instead and add your own oils to them as most don't have any. I've made it a rule to "enrich" all my COs, even the ones that say they have an oil or butter, because I know the manufacturers skimp on them. So to the Silky Experiences Shea Cashmere I add some melted shea butter and it detangles my hair very well even after coloring my hair (which roughens the cuticle a lot).

Always follow a protein treatment with at least a moisturizing leave-in rich in oils, but here's another tip: oils like olive and coconut - among others - penetrate the hair but do NOT seal, so your hair could look/feel great the first day but be dry the next. For hair like yours a heavier oil like castor (or one of the "butters") is the ideal thing to "seal" the moisture in.

HTH!
Really? I didn't know that, I'm running out of it right now so I'll buy V05 next time
Started my journey September 8th, 2013
High Density, 4A Curls, Fine-Medium Strands, Normal- Low elasticity, LP- porous
Current Hair-length: APL (straight)
Hair-length Goal: AP length when curly
Still trying to figure out my curly hair needs & regimen
"Confidence Is Beautiful"
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 1,073
It is unfortunately true! When I was a regular here from '02-'06 you won't believe the amount of people I saw having problems with CG only due to some Suave CO or another. I don't want to completely knock them because I still use one on occasion and people with softer water and or different hair might react differently, but I wouldn't recommend it for regular use for anyone whose hair tangles easily.

Try getting 2 kinds of V05, one with protein and one without (I think the Tea Therapy ones don't have any). I would particularly recommend the Silky Experiences Shea cashmere and if you already have shea butter melt about a teaspoon and add it to it (tops a little tricky but you can pry it off with the handle of a spoon) and shake very well. If you don't have any, some ethnic beauty supply stores have these tiny containers for $0.99 that are perfect for people like me who don't use a lot of it.

Last night I colored my hair again and washed the dye off with my "enriched" CO, and then after rinsing it out I put on some extra as leave-in (that gave me a light hold), I then "pineappled" my hair (it's longer than in that pic) and today when I "fluffed" it with my fingers I had great curl formation and shine so I think this is going to be my fave leave-in from now on.

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