Just need a nudge in the right direction...

StrangelyStrangely Posts: 6Registered Users
:hello2:
This is my very first post here, and I am in need of a little push to get the ball rolling and help my hair be the best it can be. I've been reading over this website for the past few hours and have processed a lot of information, but putting it all together in a manner that will help my hair is the hard part.

From what I have gathered, I am a definite 2a (possibly 2b with encouragement - I haven't attempted to push it too much) that has not been giving her fine hair the protein it needs. I also know my hair is easily overloaded with protein, so walking that line is a balancing act for sure.
I am currently using Yes To Cucumbers shampoo on my scalp because it is silicone and sulfate free and my hair seems to do well without either of those. I use Suave Daily Clarifying shampoo when I need to clarify... usually no more than once a month since I don't put a whole lot of product in my hair. I am also using Suave Naturals "Everlasting Sunshine" conditioner from the ears down. My post-wash routine is nothing more than to plop my hair in a t-shirt for about 30 minutes then allow it to completely air dry. Every so often I will use a bit of Nightblooming Panacea on my ends (found on Etsy) but that's never any more than once a week.
Oh! And it's probably worth mentioning that I have been using Henna on my hair for about a year now. I use Red Raj from Hennasooq and do root touchups only. I've noticed no loosening in my wave pattern since using this henna, which is something I know a lot of people seem to experience.

I guess I just need to know where to go from here as far as maintenance goes. My hair is pretty healthy and is box dyed from about chin length down (my hair is waist length.) I have been growing out the box dye for over a year now and very rarely see split ends.
I would like to know what products one might recommend for someone in my situation with my hair type. My fine hair gets oily quickly and needs to be washed about every other day. I also try to stay away from silicones since they weigh my hair down a lot.

Can anyone recommend any lightweight shampoos that are effective?

How do I keep a good protein balance in fine hair? Would DIY home treatments be effective for me (mayo, eggs, avocado, and things of the like) or is there a store-bought product that would work better?

I'm sorry if this is jumbled.. I'm just learning and am pretty lost at this point and overwhelmed by all the information. So if you are able to get anything out of this post and give me some advice, kudos to you! lol. Thank you for your time. :) I'm loving this forum!
2a / medium density / fine / low porosity
Still working on a solid hair care routine!

Comments

  • SereneCurlsSereneCurls Posts: 1,145Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    Welcome. It sounds like you're already off to a great start. The proteins found in things like eggs won't really help the hair too much since their molecules are too large to penetrate. What you're looking for is hydrolyzed protein, perhaps see if your conditioner has any. A couple suggestions, if you live near a Sally's they sell colorful neutral protein filler, and you can add a bit to your conditioner to give your hair a protein treatment. A home made option is the gelatin protein treatment found on the science-y hair blog, which a lot of people use with success. I don't have fine hair, but hopefully that gives you a couple of ideas.
    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
  • Firefox7275Firefox7275 Posts: 3,750Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    Welcome!

    Henna can change the hair's response to hydrolysed protein, the results are unpredictable. In theory you'd need more protein on your dyed and oldest hair, but many of us need a balance between that and conditioning/ emollience (more correct description than 'moisture', since protein IS moisturising used in moderation).

    My hair likes hydrolysed protein best in the form of a leave in conditioner or intensive conditioner rather than a hard drying type treatment, and it takes far more in summer than winter.

    The foodstuff you mention are not a source of hydrolysed protein. Egg protein is far too large to penetrate or stick to hair, avocado oil is a source of penetrating fatty acids, mayo a source of poorly penetrating polyunsaturated vegetable oils and vinegar which can chelate or smooth the cuticle. The only rich food item is gelatin: see Sciencey Hairblog for recipe.

    Nightblooming's Panacea contains butters which can build up and increase friction, watch for this. Are you from LHC or UTT by any chance?
    2a-2c, medium texture, porous/ colour treated. Three years CG. Past bra strap length heading for waist.

    CO-wash: Inecto coconut/ Elvive Volume Collagen
    Treatments: Komaza Care Matani, coconut/ sweet almond/ fractionated coconut oils, Hairveda Sitrinillah
    Leave in: Fructis Sleek & Shine (old), Gliss Ultimate Volume, various Elvive
    Styler: Umberto Giannini jelly, Au Naturale styling gelee
    Flour sack towel, pixie diffuse or air dry.
    Experimenting with: benign neglect
  • StrangelyStrangely Posts: 6Registered Users
    Hi Firefox! Yes, I am a member at LHC (Shutterpillar).

    Thank you both of your for the info about the food items! I'm glad I didn't waste an avocado on my head - they are far better eaten. ;) I don't believe there are any proteins in my conditioner. After some quick research it looks like there may be some protein in Suave Natural's coconut conditioner, so perhaps I should switch to that one as a leave-in? Does anyone have any other suggestions for good (preferably inexpensive) conditioners with proteins?

    Looks like I should also do some research on how to go about using a conditioner as a leave in. I've never done that before and am worried that it might weigh down my hair since it's fine. Even water based products (mousses and such) tend to leave it looking limp. Maybe I'm not using them right?
    2a / medium density / fine / low porosity
    Still working on a solid hair care routine!
  • StrangelyStrangely Posts: 6Registered Users
    Would it be beneficial to try to CO wash with Suave Naturals Coconut? I tried CO washing about a year ago and it lasted for a couple months but I eventually gave up because I felt like my hair looked limp and flat. I was cowashing with Vo5 conditioners. Maybe I was doing it wrong?

    I also don't want to waste my full bottles of YTC and Suave Naturals conditioner that I just begun using. I was using both the Tea Tree Tingle shampoo and conditioner from Trader Joe's, but wasn't a fan of the "tingle" part of it. lol. So I branched out to try something new. I did like that shampoo and conditioner, though! They didn't seem to make my hair feel flat.

    The YTC is alright, but I have noticed it makes my hair become oily quickly. I can usually go every other day without washing, but upon using YTC, my hair will look oily by the end of the day. :(

    Does anyone have any washing suggestions? Both technique or products I could try? I'm sorry this is so jumbly... there are so many products and techniques... I'm just at a loss for where to begin.
    2a / medium density / fine / low porosity
    Still working on a solid hair care routine!
  • geekrockgirl85geekrockgirl85 Posts: 170Registered Users
    I think trying to cowash is a great idea... especially since you already have a shampoo on hand as backup. I'd put the YTC aside for now, since you're noticing a grease problem when you use it, but it's great to have for hair "oops"es, and if you decide after trying again that strictly cowash isn't your thing. Plenty of people do cowash *most* of the time and low-poo to clarify, as well, so don't think you have to go one way or the other.

    The Suave one is fine to keep using as a cowash and/or leave in; I don't think that variety has protein, if that's what you are looking for, but you can supplement it with some liquid protein filler from Sally's, or just alternate its use with a more protein-rich conditioner. (or, do protein treatments, like the packets at stores, or you can mix up the one on Science-y Hair Blog... plenty of options!)

    There are a few parts of the cowashing technique that I will say I personally had trouble with when starting out:

    1. The actual scrub. You don't need to be harsh or overly vigorous, but you do need to give yourself a VERY thorough scalp massage with the pads of your fingers. If you're used to shampoos sudsing up or their chemicals doing part of the work for you, there's a chance you didn't clean thoroughly enough the last time you tried, contributing to your limpness. I spend 10+ minutes *just* washing and conditioning my hair now, when I used to finish a whole shower in less time.

    2. There are steps you need to take other than just washing! Supplementing with a rinse-out and/or leave-in conditioner, and using a styler, are important parts of the ideal cowash process.

    I was wary about all the extra "stuff"; I have fine hair too. But I get lots of frizz, fuzz, and tangle, so adding a thick rinse-out was a lifesaver for me. You might not need that part, but keep it in mind if you're noticing your hair still misbehaves as you're changing your routine around. As you're getting out of the shower, scrunching in a lighter conditioner for leave-in (like the Suave) should add extra moisture without gunking you up.

    As far as stylers, mousse has never worked for me. It relaxes and flattens my curls, and makes my hair kind of stringy. Gel has been much more kind. :) And really, any brand will do as long as you read those ingredient labels closely too.
    2c. present color& past heat damage, fine, low-density, high porosity, happy with some protein. re-CG as of 5/2014. Wash:V05 PFS or KLS, RO: (trying to use up my stash; so it's always different!), LI: Cure Care, DT: SM Smooth & Repair Hair Masque, Style: Ecostyler Olive Oil / La Bella Lots of Curls gel
  • StrangelyStrangely Posts: 6Registered Users
    GeekRockGirl - Unfortunately I don't have a Sally's near me. :( My options are limited to Target and a couple chain drug and grocery stores (Kroger, Walgreens and CVS.) There is also an Ulta and Body Shop, but those a bit of a drive. We have a Trader Joes and Whole Foods as well, both of which are about a 20 minute drive.

    When you scrunch in a leave-in, do you do so on sopping wet hair before plopping it? I guess what I am trying to ask is if the wetness of your hair matters too much.

    I think what I am going to start out doing is to go out and get the Suave Naturals coconut conditioner and use that to CO with, then use my current Suave Naturals (eternal sunshine) as a leave-in. I'll go from there and see if I need to add a rinse-out or subtract the leave in.

    As far as gels go... my hair has a tendency to form octopus-like tentacles and look a bit stringy when I use gels and things of the sort. Is there a way I can avoid this? A method that I can adopt that will leave my hair looking less stringy and more soft and flowy? Also, if I am using a CO conditioner with proteins, would it be advisable to stay away from gels that contain them? I've noticed my hair can overdose easily both ways (moisture or protein,) so it's worrisome for me. I see a lot of people have good results with the LA Looks gels, but the ones on the CG list all seem to have proteins.

    Thanks again for the help! You have no idea how much I appreciate it!
    2a / medium density / fine / low porosity
    Still working on a solid hair care routine!
  • chupiechupie Posts: 5,280Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    The way to avoid stringiness IMO is to get water in there. Use gel on quite wet hair and don't over scrunch getting the excess water out. Instead of quick towel scrunching over and over, try gathering a section in your towel or Tshirt and scrunching to the top and squeeze and hold it there for like 20 seconds. You can even pump your hold a few times IN PLACE and then carefully let it down. Do that all the way around. You can pixie diffuse a little to set the cast and airdry the rest of the way or if you think there is enough bounce already let it completely airdry.
    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
  • CGSince2002CGSince2002 Posts: 1,073Banned Users
    Hi there and welcome!

    The avocado would not be a waste, if you read again what Firefox said it is that the fatty acids are penetrating, which is a good thing; the vitamins and minerals in it may also be of benefit at least to your scalp.

    The amount of protein in most COs is not significant enough as to cause a real problem, I'm afraid sometimes people confuse plain ol' buildup with protein overload. And in my experience, very often and quite ironically, keratin is the most troublesome protein when overused, and I suspect wheat too, but silk and collagen are probably "kinder" in that respect. IMO it's good to rotate types because they all offer different benefits to our hair; for example, keratin strengthens and helps with breakage whereas collagen increases elasticity and silk protein softens/smooths the hair, but most do help with moisture retention.

    Since your hair is quite long you'll need to keep in mind that you are dealing with different porosity. Your ends, because they're older and color-treated, will be much more porous than the rest, so that's the part that needs more TLC. So, you may want to not use PTs on your entire head every time, but do them on the ends only about every other time. It may also be good to add a bit of oil to your LI when you reach the ends, at least every now and again, and if your hair doesn't like that now, just wait till the cold weather returns, then it will really appreciate oils, however, just a tiny bit now may help keep those ends moisturized.

    How you apply your products, and more importantly the styler, determines whether you get clumpy or stringy hair, so I recommend that you check out the sticky about Techniques in the General Discussion forum for ideas that might help you. But I must say that colored hair, in general, does not clump as well as virgin hair does.

    Oh, and take it easy, Rome wasn't built in one day. :smile: Before you know it you'll understand your hair's needs better and translate them into what to use and when, and hopefully, it will all become just routine.
    Joined Curltalk 1st time in early '02 shortly after starting CG. I'm a non-practicing Cosmetologist.
    Hair: color-treated, mostly 3A.
    CO-wash: VO5 K&L
    RO: SpaHaus Salon w/OO, VO5 Shea Cashmere, W.R. Trop. Coconut, Daily Defense Moisturizing & others.
    LI: Beautiful Curls w/Shea Butter & C.O., Hollywood Beauty OO Creme, VO5 K&L, Aveda Be Curly Curl Enhancer.
    Gels: LAL Wet Look, ORS Lock & Twist.
    Oils: Jojoba, EVCO & Africa's Best Ultimate Herbal Oil

  • StrangelyStrangely Posts: 6Registered Users
    Thank you, Chupie! I will try that. :)

    CG2002 - I did not mean avocado would be a waste altogether, but as an element to add protein to my hair.
    Thank you for the advice and reassurance. I actually have no scientific diagnosis of my hairs porosity, I just did the bowl of water test. I tested my length and my root area, and both seemed to stay floating. However, you are probably right since my roots have a harder time taking color than the rest of my length. So my measurement in my signature is probably irrelevant.

    I'll check out the link you mentioned. I always assumed that colored hair was something that would be less cooperative than virgin hair, but since I plan to - at the very least - use henna on my hair as a tool for color, I suppose I'll just need to deal with it. However, I can assure you my hair will never be bleached. I tried that once years ago and never again. ;)
    2a / medium density / fine / low porosity
    Still working on a solid hair care routine!
  • Firefox7275Firefox7275 Posts: 3,750Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    Strangely wrote: »
    Hi Firefox! Yes, I am a member at LHC (Shutterpillar).

    Thank you both of your for the info about the food items! I'm glad I didn't waste an avocado on my head - they are far better eaten. ;) I don't believe there are any proteins in my conditioner. After some quick research it looks like there may be some protein in Suave Natural's coconut conditioner, so perhaps I should switch to that one as a leave-in? Does anyone have any other suggestions for good (preferably inexpensive) conditioners with proteins?

    Looks like I should also do some research on how to go about using a conditioner as a leave in. I've never done that before and am worried that it might weigh down my hair since it's fine. Even water based products (mousses and such) tend to leave it looking limp. Maybe I'm not using them right?

    You can definitely try the Suave Naturals as a leave in. Just apply to dripping wet hair concentrating on areas that need are most damaged/ least conditioned feeling. Then scrunch excess water out, either before you apply your styler or as you apply your styler (if you use one). Some of the conditioner will be lost at this point which is fine. You can even pre-dilute the conditioner with water to make it distribute even further/ stop it weighing your hair down.

    For me it makes a big difference how wet my hair is when I add the leave in, When wearing my hair straight-ish I've occasionally forgotten and applied after a towel turban. Cue unmanageable POOF/ FLUFF.

    I tend to suggest that people start off with a modest amount of leave in conditioner, then scale up each wash until they get to a point their hair looks and feels right to them. Some heads can take a metric ton of leave in, mine can being porous and colour treated. Others not so much.

    Strangely wrote: »
    Would it be beneficial to try to CO wash with Suave Naturals Coconut? I tried CO washing about a year ago and it lasted for a couple months but I eventually gave up because I felt like my hair looked limp and flat. I was cowashing with Vo5 conditioners. Maybe I was doing it wrong?

    I also don't want to waste my full bottles of YTC and Suave Naturals conditioner that I just begun using. I was using both the Tea Tree Tingle shampoo and conditioner from Trader Joe's, but wasn't a fan of the "tingle" part of it. lol. So I branched out to try something new. I did like that shampoo and conditioner, though! They didn't seem to make my hair feel flat.

    The YTC is alright, but I have noticed it makes my hair become oily quickly. I can usually go every other day without washing, but upon using YTC, my hair will look oily by the end of the day. :(

    Does anyone have any washing suggestions? Both technique or products I could try? I'm sorry this is so jumbly... there are so many products and techniques... I'm just at a loss for where to begin.

    A lot of fine hairs and wavies never take to conditioner-only washing, some do it part-time alternating with a gentle shampoo every second or third or fourth wash. very much YMMV.

    Some of the Yes To ... conditioners contain cetyl esters which are waxy, I had terrible build up from this ingredient when Garnier Triple Nutrition was reformulated a couple of years ago. That might be what is making your hair look oily?
    2a-2c, medium texture, porous/ colour treated. Three years CG. Past bra strap length heading for waist.

    CO-wash: Inecto coconut/ Elvive Volume Collagen
    Treatments: Komaza Care Matani, coconut/ sweet almond/ fractionated coconut oils, Hairveda Sitrinillah
    Leave in: Fructis Sleek & Shine (old), Gliss Ultimate Volume, various Elvive
    Styler: Umberto Giannini jelly, Au Naturale styling gelee
    Flour sack towel, pixie diffuse or air dry.
    Experimenting with: benign neglect

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