I'm currently 7 months post relaxer, but around months 4 and 5, I also experienced extreme protein overload... my hair became so knotted and brittle... it literally broke whenever I tried to finger comb. Right now both my relaxed hair and natural roots are soft and moisturized and this is what I do:
I clarify with Tresemme Natural shampoo (black bottle with purple lettering). You will only need a little because it is can be drying. http://i.walmartimages.com/i/p/00/02...60_500X500.jpg
then I shampoo with Elasta QP Creme Conditioning Shampoo. This cleans my scalp without stripping it. I purchased it at Walgreens for about $3.50.
I condition with Shea Moisture Deep Treatment Masque. (it comes in a jar and has a dark yellow label) My hair was extremely dry so it did not take long for my strands to absorb this. A little of this also goes along way, but I'm really heavy handed when applying conditioner.
After I apply this on my line of demarcation, my relaxed hair, and ends I put a plastic cap over it for about 20 minutes, then I detangle with this comb that I bought from CVS with the conditioner still in my hair: http://www.cvs.com/CVSApp/images/fs/...7410813385.jpg
after i rinse my hair, i usually gently comb through again, just to make sure all the tangles and shed hairs are removed, then let my hair air dry. I no longer have knots or breakage.
i hope that made sense, but if it didnt, please don't hesitate to ask me to explain it better! good luck on your natural hair journey!