your hair sounds like mine in lower dews - either stringy from too much product, or very dry hair around my face.
in mid to high dews i love my hair -- i use cj aloe fix gel as a leave in, no other leave in or styler, love my hair with it!! i use a rinse out conditioner, mostly cj deep fix as a rinse out, but it could be a lighter one, too, then rinse it completely, then smooth/scrunch in the aloe fix gel in dripping wet hair while still in the shower. give it a try when the dew points are higher.

+1 on a protein treatment -- my hair is usually better when i do do one, altho my texture is medium.

i love short hair cuts, the only problem for me is when i get sick of it and want to grow it out, hate that phase. honestly, i have not had my hair really short since i've gone cg so i have no idea what it would be like.
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3a, some 2c & 3b, medium texture, porosity normal, low elasticity
washing/cowashing, conditioning, protein tx: [I] curl junkie products
leave in:cj conditioners and treatments as leave in
styling: cj aloe fix gel, cj pattern pusha, cj honey butta leave in, cj cccc, cj ciab.
sealants - jane carter nourish & shine