From: Ericka (22.214.171.124)
In Reply to: Re: Denise---a question about TR-damaged hair posted by Denise Kingsley on November 13, 2006 at 8:21 pm:
Sorry this is so long but this is everything i know..
Anyway, back to right after TR--as days went on, my hair looked dryer and more frazzled and strange compared to even the day I left the salon. I didn't wash for 6 days after TR. (I can do this--it's so dry. I always could.) The natural oils from not washing gave it some sheen, and I used some hair gloss as well, but it was still rough and dull mostly and I started to notice what already looked like some breakage that was not there the first and second day. Most of it seemed to be about a third to halfway down the hair--so I now had these hairs on the surface that were a third or half as long as the rest of my hair, and those hairs stick out at odd ziggy bent angles. I feared these were BROKEN hairs, and have since concluded I was right.
After the first couple washings, I was panicked. I thought it looked awful. I generally had a lot of bent-looking hairs sticking out out all over my head now--the shorter, broken ones. A fuzzy surface all over. VERY dry dull, no shine. It was stiff, hard, and not combable or brushable, and the hair right at the scalp felt like steel wool. The roots and"sideburns" felt like straw.
I contacted my stylist and she was concerned and surprised, but at first did not seem to grasp how bad it was. She said for hair like mine it would be expected that I would need to be smoothed with an iron and with product to keep it from being "flyaway." She suggested a routine of serum, blowdrying with a brush, then ironing and then more gloss. Aside from the fact that I did not do TR so that I could spent tons of time blowdrying and then ironing--the point of TR from what i can see is that if done right, you DON'T have to do all that styling routine just to get it looking decent--aside from that, she did not at first grasp how terribly damaged it was (brushing while blowdrying would break every hair on my head at this point, and it is far worse than "flyaway"). She also did not understand why the ends would be in better shape than the top half since the ends had been in so much worse shape. To me it seems obvious that because she processed the ends less time--which she did because she was worried about them--that was probably why they came out okay.
I explained that I had a halo of fuzzy short wiggy hairs, of all lengths, that stick out all over. That it looked fried, *extremely* dull, completely devoid of any moisture, looks like it will never shine again, FEELS *AWFUL* to touch, can't get fingers through it, has weird crimps and frizzies (e.g. it is NOT straight; i DO have to keep ironing spots that crimp and wave).
She then sent me a refund and apology. I did appreciate this a LOT.
What works best right now is to blow dry cool or air dry, using a thermal heat protectant (btw, all my old favorite curly-hair products, like leave-in conditioners, styling creams, and mousses, are worthless right now--my best tools currently are just a silicone-based oily serum and a "dry" oil) and a bit of gentle low-heat ironing with a high-end tourmaline-ceramic iron if I want it straighter. It is still REALLY hard to comb when wet (hard, stiff and SUPER tangled!) and looks pretty weird in places when wet--still spiral-y rippled DNA-twist-like crimps and micro-kinks in many skinny bunches of strands. Still fuzzies on top (which I can smooth flat with enough oil/serum). The ends and back still feel the best!
At times--after sleeping,particularly,or sweating//exercising--chunks of it still get bizarre (crimpy, wiry, rough--this smooths out with next wash if I use nice smoothing products). Always when it air dries, a lot of it--mostly the top half to two-thirds (ends continue to be smoothest!) and particular the middle third of the hair and toward the front--has an unnatural-looking tightly-wavy bad-perm-crimp look to it. It must be ironed to get that out. If a piece gets wet again--say, from washing my face--that piece or strand will get the little micro-bends again. It can be ironed out. It has to be,to look normal. But the natural state now is micro-bends, Not normal curls, not the old curls.
A word to the wise to anyone who reads this--I got lucky it wasn't worse, but it IS as they say. You mostly do get what you pay for in TR and EXPERIENCE IS THE KEY. STYLIST IS KEY. it's been said enough but let me add my voice to the chorus.