I'll start to answer a couple of your questions, and hopefully others will chime in also.
1) cheap curl-friendly towels = flour sack towels, found in the kitchen section of stores like Walmart, Target, etc. You can also use microfiber towels (which you can find in the automotive section, ha), or a cotton t-shirt. My favorite are flour sack towels - a bit absorbent but not so much that they give me extra frizz or pull too much product back out of my hair.
2) some degree of frizz might be inevitable right now in the hot weather (depending on where you live). But, some ideas that might help reduce it: do you use a leave-in conditioner? My favorite LI is actually Tresemme Naturals moisturizing, just a little blob raked through my hair after showering. Another popular one is KCKT. Also - sealing with oil can help a lot. Just put a drop or two in your hand, smear it between your palms, and scrunch (or rake) it through your hair. A little goes a long way - too much will mean almost no frizz but also like you dipped it in oil. So find a happy medium for yourself if you try this. You can try whatever oil you want... grapeseed, safflower, jojoba, olive, argan, sweet almond... Then after sealing you can scrunch in curl enhancer and/or gel, and style as you prefer (or let air dry).
3) do you know if your hair likes coconut oil? This is one oil that actually penetrates into the hair shaft. My hair loves it. I smear some through dry hair, and shower and use a low-poo followed by conditioner a couple hours later. It leaves my hair moisturized and with less frizz.
4) If you want to try a PT, you may want to try IAgirl's gelatin PT. It's a very strong PT, but awesome if your hair loves protein. I do this weekly or so. If you're not sure how your hair will react, try it on just a portion of your hair or use just 1/4-1/2 packet of gelatin first try.
5) Pay attention to ingredients in your products and keep track of what your hair likes / doesn't like. (It took me too long to figure out that my hair hates glycerin --> major frizz, but now that I've got that figured out, it makes finding products that may work for me much easier. Just as an example.)
Hope that helps get you started!