As I explained in a previous post, I’m on a mission to de-bulk my wash and go, and I will be documenting my attempts and the results in a series of blog posts. This post documents attempt #1 which started out with some issues that I tried to turn around.
The Desired Results (Pictures)
These are the results I’m trying to achieve but am having trouble replicating:
Left alone to dry, my hair looks nothing like it does in the pictures above. If I let my hair air dry without any product or handling, then it dries in a SUPER shrunken cottony afro that shrinks up to my ears. This despite the fact that when straightened, my hair is just about bra strap length. Yes, I get super duper shrinkage. 😀
I am having trouble replicating the wash and go above because for some strange reason I didn’t leave detailed notes as to precisely how I handled my hair. I only noted the products used: Shea Moisture High Porosity Moisture Correct Masque (used as a detangling cowash), Shea Moisture Manuka Honey Milk (the leave-in from this line), and Bronner Brother’s Firm Hold Curling Gel. I did make ONE NOTE ABOUT HANDLING: I noted that I tension blow dried the hair once it was completely dry.
Right now my goal is to accomplish similar results without having to tension blow dry: Sometimes tension blow drying yields great results, other times I get misshapen hair with the curl pattern ruined in some spots.
I’ve decided to dig in my heels, patiently research and trial ways to achieve a debulked wash and go, and document my progress and results carefully. So far I’m having a BLAST learning and trialing.
Products, Tactics, and Methods I Tried for Attempt #1
For attempt #1, I tried the banding method in the video below and I tried a new gel. Altogether, I used the following products:
- Cleanser: Soultanicals Soulvedic Shampoo Bar (discontinued)
- (Deep) conditioner: DevaCurl Decadence One Condition
- Detangling leave-in: Jane Carter Curls To Go! Untangle Me Weightless Leave-In
- Gel: Hairizon You Go, Curl! Gel
- Oil: Avocado Oil
- Finishing spray: Jane Carter Curls To Go! Shine On Curl Elixir
I washed my hair twice with the Soultanicals Soulvedic Shampoo Bar. This shampoo has TONS of incredible ingredients, and I usually really love washing my hair with it. However this time around, post-wash my hair felt coated. (And not in a good way. )
I next deep conditioned with DevaCurl Decadence One Condition under heat for 45 minutes. Strangely, afterwards my hair felt even more coated. In the mirror I could see water just sitting on top of my hair instead of absorbing into it (see photos above). That is a characteristic of hair with low porosity (what I call “lowpo”), but my hair has medium to high porosity (what I call “hipo” or “highpo”). Apparently, the cleanser and/or conditioner left such an amount of residue on my hair to cause my hair to behave like “lowpo” hair!!!
I forged on. I tried applying the Hairizon You Go, Curl! Gel to the back left section of my hair, but my hair was too tangly and the process began creating single strand knots (SSKs). My strands were literally sticking together and grabbing at each other like VELCRO hooks and loops.
It was bad, you guys! I had to snip out some tangles and knots. 😦
After struggling with a few sections, I suddenly remembered that for some reason I had really enjoyed my first-time use of the Jane Carter Curls to Go! Untangle Me Weightless Leave-In I recently purchased. I couldn’t remember the reason, but I grabbed it anyway and began using it. Almost instantly the reason came back to me: This stuff is SUPER, SUPER, SUPER DUPER, SUPER DUPER SLIPPERY. It is probably the best detangler I have EVER used, and that is saying a WHOLE LOT.
I was able to completely eliminate the knots and obvious mechanical damage my hair had been experiencing just moments before. Drawback: The Jane Carter Leave-In may have had a drying effect on my hair, I can’t tell. My hair was in such a strange state when I applied (acting all lowpo-ish), that I don’t want to attribute any dryness to any particular product I used.
Anyhow, I was really relieved, you guys! That Jane Carter Untangle Me Weightless Leave-In saved the day!!! No knots and tangles formed while I was using it (unlike they had been without it), and my hair stopped behaving like velcro. 😀 Phew!
In summary, post-wash product application on the majority of my hair went as follows:
- Jane Carter Curls to Go! Untangle Me Weightless Leave-In
- Hairizon You Go, Curl! Gel
- Avocado oil
Lastly, for each section, I banded it just as the lady did in the video above. Then I donned my slap cap for a few hours to let it air dry. It dried MUCH faster than my hair usually dries, which was a pleasant surprise.
I liked it, but I wasn’t wowed like I was with the original de-bulked wash and go I achieved. I don’t know quite how to explain it, but early on I got the feeling that this wash and go was unstable. LOL. The hold just seemed precarious or something. And sure enough, about 4 hours later things were looking frizzy and generally awry. I grabbed my trusty ponytail holder and pulled my hair back into a cute ponytail. (It looked cuter in real life. 😛 Trust me! 😀 )
What I Learned
I can’t be sure about anything I noticed during this wash and go, because as I noted above, my hair was acting strangely. This was likely because my cleanser and deep conditioner — for some reason — left residue/coating on my hair that had my hair acting like velcro (strands were super clingy).
Still, this is what I learned:
- I learned that that Jane Carter Leave-In ROCKS as a detangler. Man! Next level performance, for sure.
- And then I had this HUGE EPIPHANY: Once all product is applied, if I gather and pull back my hair that is in the middle of the back of my head . . . as if to pull it away from falling forward toward my ears . . . my hair looks less bulky off the rip. INTERESTING!!!
- I don’t know if wet banding works well on my hair. (I usually band my ALREADY dry hair overnight for elongation and style preservation.) Wet banding might work better with a gel that works better on my hair, I’m not sure.
Conclusion and Next Attempt . . .
I told myself I would give every attempt in this series at least 3 tries before abandoning it. But I can’t, you guys! I’m not going to give up on the gel or wet banding, but I’m not going to use this particular product combination again.
Next time, I’m going to chelate my hair, try a side part, and try the LGF method (leave-in, gel, foam) that I shared in the first post of this series.
Until next time, thanks for visiting, and many blessings!