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CurlyJulie81 01-24-2013 02:48 PM

I have to choose between definition and volume
Any other spirally(but fine) 3bs deal with this? Either I can have volume at the roots and crown, or I can have the lovely spiral defition that I'm known for. Seems that I can't get both unless I finger curl ALL of my hair. Boo to that.

kathymack 01-24-2013 03:32 PM

Curl type really shouldn't enter into it. Not sure why you should have to choose between the two?? Maybe you're not using the right products/techniques.

Korkscrew 01-25-2013 02:58 AM

Just a few things that can dramatically affect hair volume IMO:

Hair type (how tight your curls are - do they tend to grow out or down?)
Amount and weight of the product left on the hair
Styling technique/s
The weight of the hair itself

To the first point, you have lovely curls that look springy in your sig pic, a great start :D

To the second point, you could try slightly cutting back on the amount of LI conditioner or styler you use, or try more light-weight LI products - it's obviously a balancing act to try and hit that "sweet spot" you're looking for btw. definition and volume. Also, mousse works well for some people, if you haven't already tried that.

To the third point, have you tried things like "plopping" w/a micro-fiber towel, or using a diffuser for drying your hair (upside down, for optimal volume), or the the "pixie method" of diffuse drying? Also, some people dry their hair with clips at the crown (while hair is wet) to create lift (more about an alternative to that annoying method below).

To the final point, about the weight of the hair itself: cutting the hair relieves the strands of length, and therefore weight. It results in curls that spring up more. Strategically cut layers that include the areas around the crown and of the hair framing the face can really help give a great sense of volume, plus it's a lot less of a hassle than that clipping method (clipping it up while it's wet).

Calendula 01-25-2013 09:26 AM

Julie, yes, I have exactly the same problem. Your hair in your photo looks startlingly similar to mine!

My main issue is root volume, so I'm experimenting with clipping. Different kinds of clips, different placements.

Korkscrew has good suggestions.

CurlyJulie81 01-25-2013 01:34 PM

Thanks ladies. It is the strangest thing- my curls don't form lovely spirals when I clip the root. My hair is too fine for plopping to do much good- it screws up the curl pattern. I do scrunch dry with a t-shirt and I can get great volume and bounce in the body part of my hair with what I'm using now, but not at the roots. :( Grr!

I have used mousse before(typically HE Totally twisted or set me up) but it tends to make my hair feel dry.

Thanks- I'll keep trying new things and hoping I find something magical and wonderful! :)

PS- I should also note that my curls are just horrid in the winter. In the summer, they LOVE the humidity around here, and spring to life without much work at all! I have tried DT, PT, less, more of almost everything in the winter. My hair just seems to be unwilling to compromise.

Korkscrew 01-25-2013 03:36 PM

The plopping thing doesn't work for me either. Sounds like your hair loves moisture and dislikes arid weather. When weather is arid, there are several products that are generally to be avoided (anti-humectants like glycerin, mineral oil or honey, which can dry out the hair more), so you may want to make sure you carefully evaluate your winter routine w/that in mind. Frequent DTs in winter are great too.

I take it you're not interested in cutting layers then. The look isn't for everyone lol ... plus for some it can be high maintenance.

But, not saying this is definitely the case, it could be the "cure" to your root volume issue won't be solved by chasing after the "right" combo of products. Unless you want to tease your roots w/a comb, you may just have to accept that this is how your hair is at the length that it is. ... The sad alternative could be more aggressive styling methods (curl sets, a perm on top of natural curls (ick!), sleeping upside down ...). I can just tell you, as someone who has also chased after root lift, the only thing that worked for me, w/limited hassle, was to cut my hair shorter in certain areas.

CurlyJulie81 01-25-2013 08:10 PM

The reason I won't cut more layers into my hair is because I need my hair to be able to be pulled back. I'm an equestrian and also play in a wedding quartet- can't have those curls popping in front of my music!! I do think that I'll just have to stick with my definition and pineappleing at night. At least my night pineapples give me a BIT more lift than normal.

Thanks for making me feel like I wasn't a weird freak! My hair is very sensitive. I'll take all of your suggestions in mind!

Laney1 01-28-2013 12:01 PM

I sometimes use the "hand" shaped diffuser that I got from Deva curl. You can put it up in your hair and it will give a little more height at the roots.

ltdeforrest 01-31-2013 02:01 PM

My hair looks a lot like yours, except mine is a little more on the 3A side. I really don't have the volume to get more root curl because my hair is fine and a little on the thin side. My hair is quite protein sensitive and needs TONS of moisture! I find that my hair perks up when I use One and Only Argan oil Hydrating Mask as a rinse out in the shower (Sally's Beauty Supply). I can't use it more than a couple times a week or I get over-proteined though. I do clip my hair while it is drying some days, but I have do it very carefully. I aim the pointy end of the clip towards my head. I place it a little farther down the hair strand in the clump and kind of "push" the curl a little higher up on my scalp and clip it there so the root poofs up a little bit. That is the only way I manage to get any root lift at all. I leave the clips in while I do other morning prep tasks and take them out right before I leave for work. Sometimes I will leave them in my hair until I get to work since I drive there with the heat on (only for about 20 minutes since I live pretty close). I get better curl definition when my hair is longer. Too many layers makes it seem even thinner. I hope you find a technique that works for you!

CurlyJulie81 02-08-2013 11:03 PM

ITDE- thanks, lady! I've never thought about "boosting" my roots by clipping further down. I'll have to try that technique out. And yes, more layers take away from the definition for us super fine curlies. I've been pineappleing at night and it seems to make the process SLIGHTLY easier in the mornings. :)

sinistral55 02-12-2013 09:49 PM

I have the exact same problem; it's a constant battle between the two. But i need layers because my hair has no 3A at all and it def gets wide and triangle-y without layers.

I'm sure I can make a lot of improvements re: products but I really just can't spare the $ at all. Right now the product that's been working best for me is Cantu Shea Butter Leave-In conditioner in the big jar, sealed with an oil.

Paul Mitchell Foaming Pommade works for me too but can get a tad too crisp (incidentally, I'm not fully CG so some of the stuff I mention has cones) Like the OP, mousse is drying for me.

Doing the curly shuffle helps, esp after it's dried. I usually have to shuffle 2-3 times during the workday. If I fuss with it too much trying to get root volume, I risk all-day frzz. If I don't fuss enough, it's totally flat.

Sent from my LG-L38C using Tapatalk 2

SereneSunshine 02-15-2013 02:54 PM

@Korkscrew, REALLY great suggestions, thanks. Especially good point: "Strategically cut layers that include the areas around the crown and of the hair framing the face can really help give a great sense of volume." I plan to get a trim soon and want a few pieces of hair around face and crown to be cut short for volume.

ltdeforrest 03-05-2013 11:30 PM

Okay, my hairdresser did put a few strategic layers in my hair a few weeks ago when I saw her. They are mostly in front, framing my face. It looks great, but now I've really had to step back on some of my heavier stylers and I can't pull it back very well anymore. I have also had to back off on my protein and keep up my moisture products. I am now experimenting with a lighter styler all over (Mop-C shaping serum) but I can't use it alone because I get too much frizz in the canopy. I'm still trying to figure out what to use on top. I don't need a ton of hold, but I need some or my curls get completely frizzy. Back to the drawing board I guess....

Korkscrew 03-06-2013 07:34 PM


Originally Posted by SereneSunshine (Post 2120516)
@Korkscrew, REALLY great suggestions, thanks. Especially good point: "Strategically cut layers that include the areas around the crown and of the hair framing the face can really help give a great sense of volume." I plan to get a trim soon and want a few pieces of hair around face and crown to be cut short for volume.

Thanks! I hope you really enjoy the cut you're getting soon :headbang:

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