Gel...Am I doing it wrong?

AcanthaAcantha Registered Users Posts: 12
I've been trying to use gel (DevaCurl Ultra Defining), and it's not going so well. My hair looks curly and frizz-free, but is also SUPER voluminous (not something I need!). I could deal with that but it feels disgusting. It's stiff and sticky.

I'm putting gel on after I get out of the shower and plopping with a microfiber shirt. After I take it off, I use a diffuser to dry it out.

Comments

  • rbbrbb Registered Users Posts: 4,355 Curl Connoisseur
    have you tried curl junkie pattern pusha?

    3a, some 2c & 3b, medium texture, porosity normal, low elasticity :-(
    washing/cowashing, conditioning, protein tx: curl junkie products
    leave in:curl junkie conditioners and treatments as leave in
    styling: curl junkie 
    sealants - jane carter nourish & shine
  • AcanthaAcantha Registered Users Posts: 12
    No, I'm new to all of this. Deva is the only gel I've tried. I wanted to get some Sweet Curls FSG, but the owner was hospitalized so that was put on hold.
  • SereneCurlsSereneCurls Registered Users Posts: 1,145 Curl Neophyte
    Are you applying the gel to dripping wet hair? Have you tried applying a bit of leave in conditioner under the gel? Have you tried scrunching your hair once it's completely dry to get rid of the crunch?
    3a, dense, fairly coarse, normal porosity and elasticity, just below shoulder
    Low poo: Giovanni 50 50
    Co-wash: aia, suave coconut, salon care
    R O: Tresume Naturals, gvpcb
    L I: KCKT, gvpcb
    Stylers: cjpp, re : coil, kccc, brhg
    Oils: coconut, argan
    Experimenting with: curls rock amplifier, pantene mousse
  • SereneCurlsSereneCurls Registered Users Posts: 1,145 Curl Neophyte
    Sorry for the second post. Can you describe how much gel you've been using and how you apply it? Are you scrunching it into your hair, applying it in sections, or something else?
    3a, dense, fairly coarse, normal porosity and elasticity, just below shoulder
    Low poo: Giovanni 50 50
    Co-wash: aia, suave coconut, salon care
    R O: Tresume Naturals, gvpcb
    L I: KCKT, gvpcb
    Stylers: cjpp, re : coil, kccc, brhg
    Oils: coconut, argan
    Experimenting with: curls rock amplifier, pantene mousse
  • Morgan_AdcockMorgan_Adcock Registered Users Posts: 2,573 Curl Neophyte
    I've found that the crunch scrunches out of the DevaCurl Ultra Defining Gel extremely easily, with no stiffness or stickiness. The volume is a plus for me, but I realize that it isn't for everybody. So I wonder if you're SOTCing (scrunching out the crunch after your hair is totally dry), but acknowledge that it may not be the best gel for someone who wants less volume, not more.
    Peace,
    Morgan

    Baby Fine 3B, low porosity, normal density and elasticity
    CGing since July 2008
  • sixelamysixelamy Registered Users Posts: 4,157 Curl Novice
    What other products are you using with it? I assume the volume would come from glycerin, if you are having higher dew points right now. I've been using glycerin since our dews changed and I have tons more volume.
    2c-3a - med-coarse - normal-high porosity - high density
    :bunny:
    NP/LP: CJ Daily Fix, KMF Whenever / Giovanni TTTT
    RO/LI: Aussie Moist, CJ Argan & Olive Oil, Hask Keratin Protein
    DC/PROTEIN: KC Stellar Strands / CNPF
    STYLER: CJ Curl Queen
    COLOR: henna, amla & indigo
    :thumbdown:: glycerin in high/low dews, polyquat-10 & 11, parabens
  • AcanthaAcantha Registered Users Posts: 12
    It's very, very humid here. Generally cool, but humid. Dew point was 51*F today (what does that even mean?).

    Yes, I am applying gel to wet hair. Should I dry it off some first? And leave in some conditioner? I try and not touch it while it's drying.

    I think I may be applying too much gel. I can't tell how much there is once it's on my hair. And there are chunks that don't get any gel, too. I have a lot of hair and I try and finger-comb to distribute it evenly, but that's obviously not working.
  • SereneCurlsSereneCurls Registered Users Posts: 1,145 Curl Neophyte
    It's possible the gel you're using doesn't agree with the dew point. 51 is pretty high, it could definitely cause frizz. Two possible things you could try :leave in a bit of conditioner before applying the gel. If that doesn't help, perhaps buy a cheaper gel to experiment with. Herbal essences set me up works well for me in humidity, or Aussi instant freeze is another similar one. If the issue persists with more than one gel and while using a leave in, then your technique might need some changes.
    3a, dense, fairly coarse, normal porosity and elasticity, just below shoulder
    Low poo: Giovanni 50 50
    Co-wash: aia, suave coconut, salon care
    R O: Tresume Naturals, gvpcb
    L I: KCKT, gvpcb
    Stylers: cjpp, re : coil, kccc, brhg
    Oils: coconut, argan
    Experimenting with: curls rock amplifier, pantene mousse
  • chupiechupie Registered Users Posts: 5,280 Curl Connoisseur
    Acantha wrote: »
    I've been trying to use gel (DevaCurl Ultra Defining), and it's not going so well. My hair looks curly and frizz-free, but is also SUPER voluminous (not something I need!). I could deal with that but it feels disgusting. It's stiff and sticky.

    I'm putting gel on after I get out of the shower and plopping with a microfiber shirt. After I take it off, I use a diffuser to dry it out.

    And here I would kill for that! I think it looks great.
    2a medium porous, You can see my wavy tutorials here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLy8bclCLgER5N_uVYSYZNxhBHSXAW40OQ and my wavy blog is The Wavy Nation http://wavynation.wordpress.com
  • chupiechupie Registered Users Posts: 5,280 Curl Connoisseur
    Acantha wrote: »
    I've been trying to use gel (DevaCurl Ultra Defining), and it's not going so well. My hair looks curly and frizz-free, but is also SUPER voluminous (not something I need!). I could deal with that but it feels disgusting. It's stiff and sticky.

    I'm putting gel on after I get out of the shower and plopping with a microfiber shirt. After I take it off, I use a diffuser to dry it out.

    OK, I am just trying a sample I got of Ouidad Curl Quencher Gel. It leaves my hair very soft but it is also not a very hard hold. Maybe you would like something more like that. I have not found another product besides flax seed gel (something to really look at. It's great. Make it or by Sweet Curls on Etsy) that feels as nice. I have such a loose wave I really need to combine it with a harder hold gel, but for a nice soft wave, I am finding it is really nice. Also the Ouidad Texture Taffy. It leaves my waves with some definition but very soft and touchable.
    2a medium porous, You can see my wavy tutorials here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLy8bclCLgER5N_uVYSYZNxhBHSXAW40OQ and my wavy blog is The Wavy Nation http://wavynation.wordpress.com
  • AcanthaAcantha Registered Users Posts: 12
    chupie wrote: »
    Acantha wrote: »
    I've been trying to use gel (DevaCurl Ultra Defining), and it's not going so well. My hair looks curly and frizz-free, but is also SUPER voluminous (not something I need!). I could deal with that but it feels disgusting. It's stiff and sticky.

    I'm putting gel on after I get out of the shower and plopping with a microfiber shirt. After I take it off, I use a diffuser to dry it out.

    OK, I am just trying a sample I got of Ouidad Curl Quencher Gel. It leaves my hair very soft but it is also not a very hard hold. Maybe you would like something more like that. I have not found another product besides flax seed gel (something to really look at. It's great. Make it or by Sweet Curls on Etsy) that feels as nice. I have such a loose wave I really need to combine it with a harder hold gel, but for a nice soft wave, I am finding it is really nice. Also the Ouidad Texture Taffy. It leaves my waves with some definition but very soft and touchable.

    I am *definitely* going to order some stuff from Sweet Curls as soon as she's back on her feet.

    It looks okay, really. I mostly hate how it feels. I'll try leaving in some conditioner next time.

    Any tips for applying gel? Should I dry my hair off some before?
  • PerriPPerriP Registered Users Posts: 6,613 Curl Neophyte
    I use UDG. I put some one c in my wet hair then wrap a t shirt around my head (upside down). That blots a good deal of water. Then I add the gel. My hair is fine thin density, shoulder length and I use a blob of gel that covers the part of my palm that can be cupped. It looks like a lot but my hair sucks it right up. I run between palms, smooth hands over my hair then Scrunch up. I do plop for a little after that then diffuse
    I SOTC while diffusing (I diffuse to about 80% then do other things then finish it off). Then I put a tiny amount of UDG on my hands. Just make them shiny and Scrunch that through
    Modified CG since Dec 2011
  • chupiechupie Registered Users Posts: 5,280 Curl Connoisseur
    Honestly you just have to experiment. Another thing you can try is applying wet. Then add some more when just damp after scrunching or plopping. Kind of like the smasters technique.
    2a medium porous, You can see my wavy tutorials here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLy8bclCLgER5N_uVYSYZNxhBHSXAW40OQ and my wavy blog is The Wavy Nation http://wavynation.wordpress.com
  • Morgan_AdcockMorgan_Adcock Registered Users Posts: 2,573 Curl Neophyte
    51ºF is not a high dew point. It's a moderate dew point, and glycerin should not be an issue in moderate dew points.

    I think the problem is that this is a gel better suited to lower density and/or finer hair. Mine is both, and I do well with it in all dews, and like the fact that my hair tends not to compact as much with DevaCurl Ultra Defining Gel as it does with many others.
    Peace,
    Morgan

    Baby Fine 3B, low porosity, normal density and elasticity
    CGing since July 2008
  • Morgan_AdcockMorgan_Adcock Registered Users Posts: 2,573 Curl Neophyte
    I suspect that you would have more volume, not less, if you apply the gel to drier hair. You would also need to use more gel in order to distribute it better, and since you don't like the feel of gel, that probably wouldn't be something that you'd find appealing. Part of the beauty of only using water soluble hair products is that water helps to distribute them well throughout your hair, so that you don't need as much product.

    Also, if you're having difficulty with poor product distribution, that generally means that you need to squish it in better. It should sound like you're walking through mud, when you squish the gel into your hair, and sound like that in all the different sections.

    I really didn't like using gel before I started CGing. I hated the way it felt, wet and dry. Nobody had explained to me that I was supposed to scrunch out the crunch once my hair was completely dry, so it was quite a revelation when I read that in Curly Girl: The Handbook (also available here). It became easier to deal with the feeling of the wet gel on my hands once I knew to do that, but initially I just used aloe vera gel, which I was used to from using it on burns.
    Peace,
    Morgan

    Baby Fine 3B, low porosity, normal density and elasticity
    CGing since July 2008
  • wavydazewavydaze Registered Users Posts: 2,065 Curl Novice
    First off, your hair is soooooo pretty!

    Your hair looks healthy, wavy and natural/productless, which is a lot to achieve in the first place so please enjoy it! I personally don't think it's too voluminous at all. If you're unhappy with the type of volume you're I'd recommend clipping at the roots (to even out the volume) and maybe getting a reshaping eventually by a curly specialist (dry curly trim).

    AFA the gel... hmmm I don't know what would be causing the stickiness. Sorry I don't have experience with UDG.
    2bc/ f / ii. low porosity roots + normal-high porosity shaft where bleached. normal elasticity.

    Currently using:
    Poo: Earthbath Oatmeal & Aloe
    RO: V05 Kiwi Lime
    LI: CJ Smoothing Lotion
    Styler: UFD CM, CJ PP
    PT: CJ Repair Me

    :thumright: hydrolized protein, jelly stylers
    :angry8: guar hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride, sulfates, jojoba oil
    Neutral on cones.

    iherb discount code: CFN646
  • WeathercurlWeathercurl Registered Users Posts: 228
    I don't think it's your technique. I can't use the Deva line at all. My hair feels sticky and horrible every time I try it. I can't remember why - maybe polyquats or cetyl esters? Anyway, a different gel may do the trick. The LA Sport gel is good. And BRSG, which I don't use because it reduces the volume too much for me. That one may be perfect for you.
    2b/2c ( weather permitting - 3a), fine texture but lots of it, colored and highlights, BSL.
    Experimenting w CG since Oct 2012

    Current rotation:
    cowash= TN
    AG Gel Mousse, LA Gel,
    DT = Coconut oil (love)
  • rbbrbb Registered Users Posts: 4,355 Curl Connoisseur
    my hair hates deva products also. immediate bad reaction, like 'bag over the head' level!

    3a, some 2c & 3b, medium texture, porosity normal, low elasticity :-(
    washing/cowashing, conditioning, protein tx: curl junkie products
    leave in:curl junkie conditioners and treatments as leave in
    styling: curl junkie 
    sealants - jane carter nourish & shine
  • WeathercurlWeathercurl Registered Users Posts: 228
    @rbb - I know. It's just awful stuff. I know many here love it, but it was instant hate between my hair and One Condition. The gel was not much better. My hair feels dirty and sticky from both and that's with only one use. And it's a shame because it smells so nice.
    2b/2c ( weather permitting - 3a), fine texture but lots of it, colored and highlights, BSL.
    Experimenting w CG since Oct 2012

    Current rotation:
    cowash= TN
    AG Gel Mousse, LA Gel,
    DT = Coconut oil (love)
  • rbbrbb Registered Users Posts: 4,355 Curl Connoisseur
    weathercurl -- when i first started cg in early 2006, i used deva products and my hair loved it. then in 2009 deva changed the formula, but they did NOT change the labels until they ran out of old labels, no way of knowing what you had. with the first wash my hair was horrible, 2nd it was a disaster and i realized it was something with the products.
    it turned out well for me as i found curl junkie and love the cg products so much more!

    3a, some 2c & 3b, medium texture, porosity normal, low elasticity :-(
    washing/cowashing, conditioning, protein tx: curl junkie products
    leave in:curl junkie conditioners and treatments as leave in
    styling: curl junkie 
    sealants - jane carter nourish & shine
  • AcanthaAcantha Registered Users Posts: 12
    I tried again, and it helped a little but my hair still feels weird. It also frizzed out while I slept. My hair is currently in a ponytail of shame.

    I'm going to return the Deva gel, and get something else. What is BRSG?
  • CallyCally Registered Users Posts: 58
    If you're getting too much volume(which I never take as a problem lol) try air drying instead of diffusing maybe?
    Fine 2c-3a Curls
    Normal porosity/ Medium density
    Henna over color-treated hair
    Not currently CG :(
    Poo: Pureology hydrate
    RO: Pureology hydrate
    LI: HSH Tri-wheat spray
    DT: Coconut oil
    PT: Henna/Cassia
    Styler: AG recoil/mousse-gel
  • WeathercurlWeathercurl Registered Users Posts: 228
    Cally has a good idea - I get way less volume air drying compared to diffusing. And I was trying to recommend the Biosilk Rock Hard Gel. It's expensive but has super strong hold. I don't like it because it reduces volume for me. Most gel does, but even when I scrunch the BRHG my hair stays flat. We are opposite hair twins. I love big hair! Lol - I can tell you all the products that flatten me out.

    And, from time to time, I do the jaw clamps of shame and clip back the front. It's ok - it's just hair. :-).
    2b/2c ( weather permitting - 3a), fine texture but lots of it, colored and highlights, BSL.
    Experimenting w CG since Oct 2012

    Current rotation:
    cowash= TN
    AG Gel Mousse, LA Gel,
    DT = Coconut oil (love)

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