Help my 11-year-old with knotty, frizzy hair
Anyway. It's always, always been very knotty and very difficult to brush, even when straight out of the shower. We use only the Wet Brush-type brushes, and even then it's not easy.
Along with puberty has come some extra ringlet curls around her temples and extra frizz and breakage on top. I'm trying hard to help her get it right, but none of the products we've used seem to make any difference at all.
We've tried multiple leave-in conditioners, styling creams, detanglers, etc., plus gel or mousse. We've normally used Tresemme's moisture-rich shampoo and conditioner every other day, and sprayed with water and sometimes detangler and attempted to brush through on alternating days. (Those alternating days are the bad ones!! Getting through the knots is tough, and then it's always frizzy after the brushing.) I've seen the videos about not brushing hair and just finger-combing, but I can't even imagine! My kid would have matted hair in days if I did that. She's a knot machine.
I normally loosely braid her hair when it's still damp and that's how she sleeps, so it's easy to deal with on school mornings. I recently tried the "pineapple" instead and it wasn't as good. Also bought a satin pillowcase, so we'll see if that makes any difference... but I know it's not just about sleeping. Her hair knots up during the day, too.
Anyway. I just feel like no matter what products we use, her hair looks and feels just the same (unless we use oil near the scalp, and then it looks greasy). I haven't bought any expensive products up to this point, but I'm ready to try whatever it takes. She's in junior high now and I just want her to feel good about herself. I'm not so concerned about the length of her hair, which has frizz on top but still looks nice overall, but mostly the front of her hair, which just never looks right. It doesn't have any real pattern to it... just cowlicks and no obvious place to part. If I diffuse it on top, it gets frizzy and it I braid when wet, it's flat and weird. No happy medium. I'd love any and all advice about products, styling, etc.! Top picture is air dried, bottom is diffused.