Thank you!! msgiblet, SoaringSiren and iwantcurls! Your comments just made my day! :-)
My routine is changing all the time as I search for local products in here Italy. I seem to be settling on a few things.
I co-wash with a pretty natural and very cheap conditioner. It has coconut oil in it, the rest is non descript. Rinse that out and I condition with a heavier conditioner. I leave that one for about 5 minutes. There are two conditioners I like most and sometimes I mix them. One has flaxseed oil in it and the other has honey in it. Both with real simple bases - neither has protein. I pass a wide tooth comb through with the conditioner.
I quick-rinse that out and do a ACV rinse dipping my ends right into the cup of ACV-water mixture before pouring the rest on my hair. I do a super quick rinse out of that.
Then I take about 5 sprays of flaxseed oil in my palm, rub together and then pass over the dripping wet ends. I do another swoop under the shower just to keep it dripping wet.
From there I add my styling product - I want something that gives me good "slip". I am trying to find something close to CK ingredients over here. I have found about 4 different ones that work about the same. They all have hydroethylcellulose and glycerine in various degrees and some holding ingredients. In the last picture I used Biopoints modelling fluid for blondes.
I learned on a Canadian site (darned if I can find it now) that to get good clumps it helps to use a fine toothed comb. So that is what I do. Ya really need good slip and lots of product (kinda like is shown for CK on their site but more gently!). Hair is really dripping and soaked. When I comb I start with the lower back and split the clumps into smaller sections with my fingers and then throw them back out of the way. When I do the top comb sections upward I clip those as I go (focusing clipping on the upper back area because I tend to get a "great divide").
Then I scrunch in some gel. The one I used in the picture is Cliniques "strong control gel". I don't use much of this because it has such strong hold. Absolutely no raking. Then I turn upside down and swing a bit so my curls can find space and do their thing. This whole styling part takes me about 5-10 minutes to do. It gives me more control than if I just apply products after rinsing up side down.
I let the whole thing sit a bit but sometimes I lightly plop while getting dressed. Plopping tends to give me zig zags so I loosely
plop with a MF turban without buttoning it which would be too tight. Then I partially diffuse upsidedown.
Air dry the rest of the way, remove clips carefully and then scrunch out the crunch.
I think what has really been helping me lately has been to do an AVC rince each time I co-wash (about 2-3 times a week) rather than every now and then. I have such hard water it seems to be necessary. And I just discovered scrunching in gel. Before I would just put it on top of the modelling fluid. I think doing that weighed down my curls. I have also be upping the oil treatments and that has really made a difference.
Gee, this was long! Sorry! It isn't as complicated as it might seem.
Edited to add: Sorry about the no face on the one pic. I do not white out my face in my folki but this site is public and wide open to the whole world.