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Post in Best Hair Ever

Thick Coarse Long Hair

I have tried several hair products and nothing is able to tackle my hair. I have long hair, it reaches the tips of my shoulder blades, it is quite coarse, and it has two different textures [the upper bits being between wavy and straight, and the undercoat is curly/wavy(but it is stretched out because of my length) and coarse], as well as frizzy. It has split ends as well as a ton of dandruff. It might be damaged, I don't know. I've never met anyone who has similar hair to me, and I can't find any shampoos, conditioners, or products to take care of it. I found a treatment shampoo that takes care of my dandruff, but for everything else I'm at an impasse. I need some advice on what shampoos and conditioners might work for me. Also, do you know if thick almost "double coated" hair is common?

Re: Thick Coarse Long Hair

I've the exact same hair type down to the dandruff.  Catwalk, a salon brand, has a fantastic moisturizing shampoo/conditioner line called Headshot -- usually comes in pink bottles -- that my coarse hair drinks up.  If you style your hair at all (which I myself am too lazy to do), my sister swears by Bedhead's After Party to impart some shine and take care of frizz.  My stylist has used it when I get blowouts done and my hair is so smooth and shiny afterwards.

Re: Thick Coarse Long Hair

Thanks! I will check that out. Do you know where it's available to buy?


Re: Thick Coarse Long Hair

Bed Head products are pretty easy to find -- I know my local Ulta stocks them -- and Catwalk products should be available at most salons.  There's a Lord's and Lady's salon chain location near me that carries the Headshot shampoo/conditioner in massive sizes, so that's where I purchase, but I know they're available online as well.

Re: Thick Coarse Long Hair

I'd go to the salon & get a good hair cut & deep conditioning mask. Since hair is dead, you can't "fix" split ends. 

What are you trying to get out of your hair products... straight hair, manage curls... 

During the winter I get the oil/dry scalp build-up & the Bumble&Bumble tonic lotion helped clear it up quickly

For frizz I like to use Argan Oil when my hair is damp, before I comb it out.

I also use Alterna's Dry Mist on my dry hair when my ends need a little refresher 

Re: Thick Coarse Long Hair

From what you've stated, here's what I can gather and share:


Info on your hair:



-Wavy/straight top layers

-Wavy/curly bottom/under layers


-Split ends



For starters, curly or wavy hair tends to be drier in nature compared to hair that is just straight. Factor in the length of your hair and dryness can definitely be an issue. You scalp naturally provides and gives off oils you produce, which keep your hair hydrated; however, when your hair is especially long, it takes longer for that oil to travel from your roots to the ends of the shafts, causing issues like dryness, frizz, and even damaged/split ends because the ends aren't getting the nourishment they need. Curly and wavy hair require more moisture to preserve and maintain shape and overall smoothness in texture; however, the wrong type of moisture (heavy moisture) weighs strands down and makes curls and waves limp and lifeless.


Since your hair type varies from straight/wavy to curly/wavy, it's possible the mix in textures is pulling oils from your scalp too fast, causing dryness, leading to your dandruff. Though dandruff can be caused by various reasons, it can more than often be treated with a shampoo containing zinc or even a homemade apple cider vinegar rinse. It's also possible that it's just a mild case of dry scalp as dandruff refers to the actual overproduction/rapid exfoliation and shedding of skin cells on the scalp, regardless of conditions or time frames. Shampoos like Neutrogena's T/Gel (zinc) and T/Sal (salicylic acid) work to clear dry skin and keep your scalp's health in balance, Head & Shoulders work with the use of zinc, and Redken's Dandruff Control Shampoo uses zinc and botanicals to rid dry flakes and soothe your scalp. For the DIY treatment, mix equal parts apple cider vinegar and water and either pour or mist onto the scalp and put on a shower cap or towel and let it sit for 10-15 minutes. The ACV will work by balancing out the pH levels of your scalp and help to rid your scalp if the dandruff is caused by a fungal condition. If you go the route of using a shampoo, keep it localized on your scalp alone rather than distribute it from your roots to the ends of your hair.


Now, as for the straight/wavy/curly portion and frizz, it's important to know what will enhance and what will worsen the condition of your hair. For starters, sulfates can be a curly or wavy haired girl's worst enemy. Sulfates are lathering agents/soaps that provide the nice visual of bubbles, but in over abundance can dry out hair and zap moisture from much needed hair types like yours. Try finding a low lather or sulfate free line to go with. Several brands cater specifically to curly hair such as Ouidad, Deva Curl, Redken Curvaceous, Bumble & Bumble, and Carol's Daughter Hair Milk. This lines will have the proper balance of hydration needed to infuse hair with moisture to improve shape, manageability, and help with frizz control.


On another note and continuing with the frizz matter, you might be on the look out for an excess in silicones or dimethicones in your hair products. From shampoos/conditioners to styling products, an excess build up of S/D can also lead to more problems with frizz. Though they help seal in beneficial ingredients and smooth the cuticle of your hair to calm frizz, too much can form water impervious barriers to form around hair which will eventually lock out conditioning ingredients and dry out strands. Try being attentive to what you're using or use a clarifying shampoo once a week to remove excess build up. Living Proof is a great line that helps combat frizz with polyfluroesters rather than S/D and waxes. Be aware of the types of alcohols used as well!


The trick is to know which alcohols are good and which are bad. Ethanol, SD alcohol, alcohol denat, propanol, propyl alcohol, and isopropyl alcohol are all drying in excessive use since they help to cut down dry time.


Good alcohols are emollient and help to smooth hair's surface and include lauryl alcohol, cetyl alcohol, myristyl alcohol, steraryl alcohol, cetearyl alcochol, and behenyl alcohol.


My hair is thick, wavy, and to my hips. I currently use Redken's Curvaceous shampoo/conditioner (the conditioner can be left in), Living Proof shampoo/conditioner (I'll use this about once a week just for extra smoothing/taming benefits), It's a 10 Deep Conditioning Mask (packed with hydrating fruit oils and humectants, applied at the ends of my hair), and AG Curl Trigger Spray (after washing sometimes to give a bit more shape to my waves).


You might also find some of these links helpful from other curly/frizzy haired users:

Re: Thick Coarse Long Hair

This is really great information, thank you.

Re: Thick Coarse Long Hair

I would like products that hydrate and defrizz. Some drugstore brands make me sneeze, so less frangrace and perfumes added to a product, the better. I wash my hair everyday because it gets icky feeling, and I just like washing it daily. 

Also, thanks to everyone, I will have to check out all of the recommendations! 

Re: Thick Coarse Long Hair

Look for products that don't list "fragrance" or "perfume/parfum" and if they do list added scents, be sure they fall lower or to the back to the line in terms of the listing.


There are natural fragrances included in products, so if you're not sure what exactly you're allergic or reactive to it's going to be tough to narrow down (be it natural fragrance or synthetic).


Start with lines that are geared toward wavy/curly hair, those will have the best balance of light weight hydrators that will pack a punch and give you the moisture you need without weighing down and altering the shape of your hair.


For curly/wavy hair, especially with flakes, you may be overwashing. Overwashing hair can strip hair of the actual natural oils you need to keep your hair and scalp in balance (this may also be why you have dandruff). If your hair/roots tend to look greasy, try using a dry or powder shampoo inbetween washes to absorb excess oil and keep the tops and roots of your hair fresh but not worry about stripping hair. If you do wash daily, try a conditioning wash, known as co-washes (Carol's Daughter Hair Milk line has one and Wen is another brand that has this). Co-washes are essentially shampoos mixed with conditioner, only they're more so formulated to be 1/4 shampoo and 3/4 conditioner, so you're not overcleansing, but also putting back into your hair what it needs, great for curly haired gals and guys.


Also, in one of the threads I linked below has mentionings of specialty shower heads which will remove mineral deposits from water which can harden and degrade the condition of your hair, which is also very beneficial for anyone who washes frequently as this will prevent build up on hair.


As for the split ends, I gave some info in the below thread for temporary fixes and conditioning products:


Honestly, a trim will be your best and actual fix since products can't permanently bind split hairs back together, though it sounds like no fun to lose an inch or two, not doing so will only prolong and increase the chances of further damage to travel up hair shafts. Try researching salons and stylists and find someone who is an expert in cutting curly/wavy hair. When hair is washed/wet it can shrink up and inch or two, so if your hair is sopping wet and you get 1 or 2 inches trimmed off by the time your hair is dry it might look like you lopped off 3 or 4 inches. Find someone who is well practiced and can handle your hair type, this way there will be a smaller chance for mishaps and know that if you get your ends razored or textured that may lead to damaged ends as well if not in the right hands as shears/scissors go against the grain of the hair shaft and if not properly sharpened or in the best condition, it can splay the ends of hair.

Re: Thick Coarse Long Hair

Thanks for the advice!


Re: Thick Coarse Long Hair

No problem!

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