Question for the curlies with low porosity!

I have low prosity hair. Medium density, bra strap length, type 3c and 4a. My question is how do I get my hair products and oils to absorb in my hair. It simply sits on top of my hair leaving a white residue. And when it dries it feels brittle and ashy looking. It's originally jet black (box dyed). I tried using Cantu products bc they are silicone and sulfate free. But as always it just sits on my hair. Any advice?

I scrunch my stylers in while my hair is still wet, after squeezing as much water out in my bare fists as I can. I wait until my hair takes them up, and my hair starts to feel just wet again. At that point, I use a smooth surfaced towel to scrunch squeeze excess water out. I let my hair dry overnight while I sleep, in what I consider an advanced plop (positioned as if plopping, but without the towel/T-shirt/scarf), with a towel over my pillow. I've never noticed residue on my hair.

I use a combination of styling products (some cocktailed, i.e. mixed) in layers. First I apply any curl activator. (I used to mix this with a dab of Giovonni Direct Leave In before I started doing the baptismal/sprinkle rinse.) Then I mix Curl Keeper, DevaCurl B'Leave In, and my gel du jour (almost always DevaCurl Ultra Defining Gel and/or Kinky Curly Curling Custard). Other times all I use is Jessicurl Rockin Ringlets Styling Potion (or homemade flaxseed gel), usually, but not always, mixed with a small amount of Jessicurl Confident Coils.

Baby Fine 3B, low porosity, normal density and elasticity
CGing since July 2008
I'm still working on this, because I only just realized I'm probably lo-po, but I think what I've figured out is that my hair defies much of the common wisdom for curls. Applying tons of product to soaking wet hair is a recipe for will sit on top, not absorb, cause insane dull bushiness, and flake off. From what I've read, this is characteristic of lo-po hair, because when it's saturated with water it cannot absorb anything else, and even under ideal conditions it can only absorb so much.

After a fair amount of research, I'm having more success starting with damp hair and then applying a really pretty small amount of LIGHT styling product until it seems fully absorbed, then scrunching with a t-shirt to get out any excess product, then sealing by just lightly coating my hands with oil and running them over the surface. (Lots of lo-po info out there says to do LCO--liquid, cream, oil--instead of LOC.) I am not using gel lately, because I've noticed that a layer of gel seems to seal my hair so thoroughly that I won't be able to refresh for second-day hair. It seems counterintuitive to use so little product--my hair can be SO dry and bushy--but I can't really argue with the results.

For refreshing, the 50/50 olive oil and water spray that I was already using seems to work pretty well--unless I've used gel previously--and it does seem like steam from the shower sort of preps my hair to accept it. Again, it seems counterintuitive--steam causes frizz!--but I am told with lo-po hair you have to work to lift that cuticle if you want to get moisture back in there. It does frizz in the shower but calms down again with the OO spray.

So my advice is, troll the lo-po boards--there is a good one on CurlyNikki--and don't be afraid to try things that seem completely wacko based on what you've learned.
Type 2c: coarse, high-density, low porosity (so it would seem)
Avoiding protein and glycerin; going for soft, non-crunchy, frizz-free waves
CO & RO: Tresemme Naturals Moisture
Sealer: Olive oil
Leave-in/Styler: Kinky Curly Knot Today
DT: olive oil and honey
Thank you both! I will try the lco method


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