Newbie on Information Overload

Settle in kids. It's gonna be along one!

Ok I'm newly embracing my hair's natural curl pattern. I actually think this started because I was looking for a way to heal my hair from recent highlights that were done on my hair. My ends aren't split but they are definitely damaged! Anyhoo, I have decided to embrace my hair's natural pattern (but am partially "cheating" because I just bought a bunch of products and can't bring myself to throwing them out).

So here is my issue(s): I've pretty much determined that I have 2a at best at my canopy and 2b or even 2c throughout the rest (except for underneath which seems to be pretty straight again) (I'm hoping with time and getting my hair healthy that the curls will begin to form better). I'm fairly certain that I have high porosity, fine texture, thick density, and low elasticity. I am kind of on a budget (plus I'm gun shy on spending a ton of money on more hair products that in a week I may find are exact opposite of what I need (like I just did). I just dumped a bunch of money in Pantene products thinking they would be the moisture answer I needed (but based on my self assessment I need protein, not moisture). I last shampooed 2 days ago with Pantene (I know!) Weekly deep cleanse with mosa mint oil and conditioned with Pantene (again I know!) Ultimate 10 BB conditioner, followed by Pantene ultimate 10 BB cream and then mousse (Suave captivating curls) or gel (Garnier curl spray gel) then plopping. I have since bought Suave naturals coconut conditioner and cowashed with that yesterday and today. Also in my reading discovered I needed protein so I bought VO5 kiwi conditioner (to use as a leave in maybe?). But then read that the Suave coconut has protein in it. See where I'm starting to get into trouble?

I'm trying to figure out what my routine should be. I like low maintenance and affordable. I don't know what I should be using and when (my ADHD brain needs something fairly solid). I've searched this forum but when someone posts a similar question the answers quickly fade into either another person saying "hey me too!" or someone with a totally different hair type sharing their routine or someone saying "you have to figure out what works for you." I would love to figure out what works for me but I need a solid starring point! If I could get a basic order of operations, I could then start tweaking what would work for me.

Can anyone help me?!? Pretty please? :)

New and Confused in Toledo


  • chupiechupie Registered Users Posts: 5,280 Curl Connoisseur
    Well for one thing if you switch to just co-washing anything with silicones that are not water soluble (say PEG by them) you are going to get silicone build up. Many wavies need at least low poo. If you have anything there with silicones in the first third of ingredients it will probably weigh you down. Your pattern sounds pretty typical of a lot of wavies. The canopy thing is soooo typical. Some people end up getting more wave eventually but in many those areas just stay 2a. I do recommend trying coconut oil pre poos. Just pull it through all the hair til you look a little "haven't washed in a while". Wear overnight and wash. It helps porous hair a lot and helps soften hair. Most of us also need a gel for max hold and for those frizz prone to help with that. About the only strong hold ones left are Biosilk Rick Hard Gel, LA Looks Sports Extreme and LA Looks Mega Hold.

    Next to products technique is important. You can click in my sig to see wavy styling techniques. Also look up ThPolishedCurl, JustCurly, Waterlily716, TheWavyLibrary on YouTube for great tutorials.

    Remember weather and climate affect hair. So it'll overall take a couple of years to get a grip on how all things work together but most people see a significant change in about 5-6 weeks and then again around 5-6 months.

    A good cut helps tremendously. Check your area for a *good* Deva or Curly Hair Artist guild stylist. Check the salon finder here or Google Curly Hair Artist for a list of those folks. If there is one of those people near you don't even hesitate a road trip. Everyone I've seen or know some wavy who got a cut by them are worth their weight in gold.

    Try not to change a million things at once. I personally think it's worth it to at least put away your silicone products for now. You might become modified and use some at some point but it really helps to get a hold of what your hair does sans silicone. Remember ones that say PEG or ok to try. Ingredients ending in -xane -one and -Conol are cones. There are a million of them.

    I found it extraordinarily helpful to keep a picture journal noting what I used in each, especially in the beginning. There is at least one app to help with that or use an Instagram account or something. It really helps to be able to look back and see "what did I use that day".

    Good luck!
    2a medium porous, You can see my wavy tutorials here: and my wavy blog is The Wavy Nation
  • chupiechupie Registered Users Posts: 5,280 Curl Connoisseur
    Oh! And diffusing also helps a lot for most. But it needs to be pixie diffusing. You can youtube that term and find lots of demos.
    2a medium porous, You can see my wavy tutorials here: and my wavy blog is The Wavy Nation
  • Therese1Therese1 Registered Users Posts: 2,563 Curl Virtuoso
    Our hair sounds somewhat similar, although I think my hair may be low porosity rather than high. However, some of the high-porosity techniques help me, mainly using a sealant. I would recommend trying a few drops of an oil (I'm not sure what oil to recommend; I actually use a pomade, which has a mix of oils) as a sealant on your hair after you put in your leave-in (if you use a leave-in). Then you can continue with your styling products.

    Another thing you can try is to put a few drops of sunflower oil or coconut oil on your dry hair and leave it there for several hours as a pre-poo; I think this should help your elasticity. The longer you leave it on, the more penetration it can do. Some people find that coconut oil makes their hair crispy (it does mine); sunflower oil is a good alternative, as it penetrates the hair shaft almost as well.
    Low poo: Intelligent Nutrients (IN) Harmonic; Oribe Cleansing Creme
    RO: IN Harmonic
    LI: CJ Beauticurls; Jessicurl (JC) Gelebration Spray
    DC: JC Deep Conditioning Treatment; Weleda Rosemary Conditioning Oil
    Stylers: JC Confident Coils; IN Volumizing Spray; IN Perfect Hold Hairspray; John Masters Sea Mist; Bumble Bb. Gel; Kenra Firm-Hold Gel; Sevi Blue Yarrow Sea Salt Spray
    Low-porosity 2a/b baby-fine hair
  • BeinDebBeinDeb Registered Users Posts: 583 Curl Connoisseur
    If your hair is high porosity and fine, you will most definitely need protein. A once every week or two (to start with...see how your hair reacts) protein treatment, may help your curls get on track. Check out science-y hair blog (google it) under "recipes and projects" for the gelatin protein treatment. It's based on Knox unflavored gelatin (found at any grocery store for under $1). If your hair doesn't like it, you'll know right quick, as when you wash it out, it will feel like straw. Follow up with a good moisturizing conditioner - I like GVP(general value products) Conditioning Balm, which can be found at any Sally's Beauty supply. It's usually around $5. Or, also at Sally's in the coloring section, is a little bottle of protein goodness called Colorful Neutral Protein Filler. It's protein, and you can just add a few drops to the conditioner you're using to amp up the protein. I usually mix it in my hand prior to applying. I also use the Conditioning Balm as both a leave-in and a next day curl refresher. My hair (porous and fine) likes it that much.

    Porous hair loves and needs mositure. Conditioner washing may work very well for you. I alternate between conditioner washing and shampoo. If I do use shampoo, I will put conditioner on my ends, and then just wash my scalp with the shampoo.

    I know you said you wanted a basic order of operation. I highly recommend the original "Bible," written by Lorraine Massey - "Curly Girl, the Handbook." Massey is consider the God Mother of all our aspirations. It's available on Amazon, or you could probably get it at your local library. It will give you a solid understanding of what we're all trying to do. Basically, it's cleanse (with conditioner or lo-poo), condition, and gel.

    Bottom line? It is impossible to tell you exactly what to do. Everyone's hair is different with a distinct personality, as well as wants & needs that do tend to change as it gets healthier. It's very much a learning process - getting to really know and listen to your hair instead of trying to beat it into submission. Enjoy the journey, for it is truly an adventure. Listen to your hair. It will tell you what it likes and what it doesn't. As Chupie mentioned, a journal is of value, for it will not only chronicle your journey, but help to unravel the mystery of your hair. Happy trails!
  • Mamabear272Mamabear272 Registered Users Posts: 2
    I posted a reply earlier but now I don't see it. Thank you all for your advice. I definitely appreciate it! It seems I'm on the right track at least. I downloaded a sample of the Kindle version of the book. Maybe I'll purchase it or at the very least check my library. I didn't even think of that and I'm usually all about the library (that's how crazed this has me right now lol). Thank you all again! :)

Leave a Comment

BoldItalicStrikethroughOrdered listUnordered list
Align leftAlign centerAlign rightToggle HTML viewToggle full pageToggle lights
Drop image/file