Not quite new, but in desperate need of help!

jessica.milljessica.mill Registered Users Posts: 2
Hello all! I've been following your wonderful site for around four years gaining wonderful insight and growing as a product junkie every day. I joined about two years ago in order to get the full benefit of the site, but I've always been able to find the answers to my questions without posting until now. Today I desperately needed to login and post to get some answers to my questions, but while I remembered what my username was I could not remember my password and the site kept giving me a funny error when I tried to change it. So, then I tried logging in using Facebook, and it worked but I think it created a new profile. :( I don't know what to do about that...

As I mentioned, I have been following for around four years. During that time, I've tried many of the methods described on the site. I tried going CG, I tried all natural products several times, and I have tried countless different types and kinds of hair products! The problem with all that is that there was nothing wrong with what I was doing with my hair-except that what I was reading was telling me it was bad. My hair was happy and beautiful! I used sulfates and silicones, and discovered after much trial and error that my hair looks best when I wash it every day with a mild creamy shampoo, condition with a light conditioner, and style with tressemme flawless curls mousse. I have used that mousse for years, and it still makes my hair the happiest!

I have a lot of 3a hair, but I think it's fine, and the CG method always made it ridiculously oily and gross, and if I go more than a day without washing my hair my scalp is unbearably itchy! I understand there's supposed to be an adjustment period, but why change my method when my hair is healthy and happy?

Now on to my current problems. Around a year ago, I started struggling with horrible breakouts or infected hairs on my scalp. At the same time, my hair also started being so oily that I didn't need to use conditioner. I use 2in1 shampoo and conditioner instead and this seems to work well. However, nothing I have tried has helped the breakouts. I have been to the doctor who prescribed rounds of antibiotics and said I would probably have to struggle with it the rest of my life :sad7:. The antibiotics do clear it up, but as soon as the round is over it comes right back. I began experimenting with my hair products to see if it was something I was using on my scalp causing the problem. That didn't do anything but cause my hair to look awful! Remember how much my hair loves tresemme mousse?

About a week ago, I decided maybe I just couldn't use any products on my hair. As you know, I can't leave my hair curly and put no products on it. So, I've been straightening. My hair looks really pretty straight. Strangely, it's not as hard to straighten as it used to be either :-?. Also, in the week I've been straightening it, my scalp has cleared up. Yesterday, I innocently sprayed a tiny amount of heat protection spray stuff on my ends to protect my hair, and today- a head full of painful bumps!

I don't mind straightening my hair sometimes. It is cute, but it makes me very sad to think of never being able to wear my hair natural again. I've always embraced my natural texture. I ordered some curlformers to see if they would work without product, and that way I could at least have some curls albeit not truly natural.

Sorry for the very long first post, but I'd like to be able to wear my natural curls still. Can anyone suggest a remedy to the problem? Could you suggest any products that might not break out my scalp? (I've tried natural gels like KCCC, and it was too heavy...) I don't need lots of moisture in my hair, but I do need hold. The only thing I've tried that treats the bumps besides antibiotics is rinsing my hair with ACV. Again, sorry for the long post, but I've exhausted all my personal resources, and I really need some help. I appreciate any advice anyone can give me. Thanks so much in advance!


  • SandiSandi Registered Users Posts: 364 Curl Neophyte
    If your hair is fine ---and it sounds like it is--- your hair is at great risk of over-conditioning. Also, you mentioned that CG has made your hair oily. What products were you using? If they were heavy products, you might just need to switch to something lighter and/or combine that with a low-poo/ACV rinse when you need it (quite a common regimen).

    Since you mentioned that ACV rinses work for you, I would try implementing that into your hair routine. The next steps are just figuring out your hair properties.

    It might be a stretch for me to say this, but I know you hair will get better once you get to know it. I thought I would never be able to wear my 3c hair natural (I actually went from around a 3a to a 3c upon puberty), but after embracing it and really trying my hardest to accommodate its needs, it really became beautiful. Yes, my hair is like a spoiled child.

    P.S. KCCC is actually one of the "heavier" gels, especially if you use what could be considered a "normal amount." "A little (like... really little) bit goes a long way" is the mantra for most KCCC-using curlies. I use CHSCK (Curly Hair Solutions Curl Keeper), which is really light and watery. But it also has glycerin, which a lot of curlies stay away from..
    Hair Type: 3c/4a, Coarse, Med-High Density, Med-Low Porosity
    Curly since '09
  • jessica.milljessica.mill Registered Users Posts: 2
    Thanks for your reply. I couldn't tell you what all I've tried! I know that co-washing doesn't work for me, or I haven't found a conditioner that worked well for co-washing in my hair.

    I have tried several low-poos, but they all seemed to be more harsh and drying in my hair than the sulfate poos I use. They left me with a need to use a great deal of conditioner to even run my fingers through my hair, and the conditioner weighs my hair down and makes it oily too quickly. I have used two of the burt's bees low poos, the kiss my face whenever low poo plus several others... Those all made my hair feel like straw! Plus I was afraid to use the tressemme mousse my hair loves so much when using the low-poos, so it didn't end up looking very good.

    I haven't come across anything my hair is sensitive too as far as glycerin or anything like that. It's my skin that seems to be reacting badly to things... breaking out, getting too oily. I know I can't use things loaded in oils, but there are some oils like tea tree, or peppermint that my hair and skin like. My hair LOVES coconut oil, my skin hates it.... My hair loves aloe vera, and it loves the apple cider vinegar. My skin also reacts well to a watered down solution of the ACV.

    As far as the KCCC, I never could find a happy medium with it. I tried very little, and it didn't control my hair enough. I tried varying amounts and it was too heavy for my hair and scalp.

    I've thought of using shampoo bars, but I don't know much about them. I don't know if my hair would like them or if they'd be too stripping like the low-poos. I also don't know if I'd be able to use the mousse my hair likes so much! I'd be happy to just have my scalp cleared up, but if I can't use my mousse I'll have to find another styler. I'm not sure what it is about the mousse my hair likes so much!

    Thanks again for the information, and I'm open to any and all suggestions. I'll try anything at this point.
  • SandiSandi Registered Users Posts: 364 Curl Neophyte
    Firstly, I feel obligated to tell you that low-poos are often more drying than sulfate-poos. This is due to the fact that sulfate-poos often have silicones in them to make them less drying.

    I would say, go ahead and try shampoo bars and other low-poos---each low-poo has been very different on my hair, as well as other conditioners. You really never know what your HG is; you just have to try and find it based on hair properties.

    The fact that your hair likes coconut oil, one of the lighter oils, kind of affirms my idea that your hair is fine. Aloe vera (pure), by the way, can doubly serve as a gel, so I would look into that :)

    On a personal note, Burt's Bees low-poos killed my hair. It took me two deep treatments to recover from them....

    So that's probably not the best standard to hold low-poos too... :pale:
    They have a soap-like ingredient only second to sodium laureth sulfate....
    Hair Type: 3c/4a, Coarse, Med-High Density, Med-Low Porosity
    Curly since '09
  • GretchenGretchen Administrator Moderators Posts: 10,840 Curl Virtuoso
    Welcome, Jessica!

    Gretchen co-founder

    You are beautiful!

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