Detangling curly hair can be an entire process that can take hours depending on how tangled your hair is. Dry hair, coily hair, fine hair tend to tangle easier than hair that is thick or has a looser curl pattern. If your hair is taking hours to detangle, then this blog post is going to be exactly what you needed.
When should you detangle curly hair?
Detangling curly hair is a question of how often you wash your hair. You’ll want to detangle your curls every time you wash your hair and before you do a new style. For example, when I wear my hair in a wash-n-go, I wash my hair once a week and detangle my hair when I’m in the shower. However, those times I put my hair in twists, I will wait to wash my hair in 2 weeks.
If your hair is fine and prone to tangles, then you might want to wash and detangle your hair more often. Curly hair can also benefit from combing through it and then removing any tangles with your fingers.
Detangle wet or dry hair?
Some curlies prefer to detangle their hair when it’s dry vs detangling it when it’s wet. If you are part of the dry detangling camp, there are a few things to keep in mind:
- You can snap your hair when detangling it while it’s dry.
- Be very gentle when you’re detangling dry curly hair.
- Use your fingers or a shower brush to reduce snagging.
I prefer to detangle my hair when it is sopping wet in the shower. Although our hair is at its weakest state when it’s wet, it is also more malleable and will detangle easier with less breakage.
Do's of detangling curly hair.
When it’s time to detangle your hair, you’ll want to follow these steps to avoid breakage. Remember to take your time and be gentle with your strands.
- Use a detangling brush that was designed specifically for curly hair or a wide-tooth comb.
- Use a conditioner with a lot of slip. The slip will loosen the tangles and make it easier for your brush or comb to glide through your hair.
- Completely wet your hair with conditioner when detangling curly hair.
- Section your hair. I like to put my hair into 4 sections.
- Working section-by-section, take your first section between your fingers.
- Hold at the root of your hair. Start detangling from the ends working your way up until the section is tangle-free.
- Repeat step 4 through each section.
- Rinse your hair thoroughly.
Don't do this when you're detangling curly hair.
Wash day can be an entire process and we might want to rush through some of it. Detangling should not be one of them. You want to take your time so you don’t tear your hair’s strands.
- Don’t rush through detangling your curly hair.
- Avoid starting from the roots, you’ll be pushing the tangles down to the ends of your hair which is already very fragile.
- Don’t over-pull your hair. Place your hair into smaller sections as needed
Having curly hair can be both a blessing and a curse. There's no way around it. If your hair is curly, it will always get tangles in it in some way or another. The problem with this is that it can also lead to single strand knots or fairy knots. Single strand knots are also a byproduct of split ends. If your hair has a lot of these knots, then it’s time for a time.
If you find that your hair is very knotty, then it can also be dry. Be sure to use the proper moisturizers for your hair porosity and type to keep your hair hydrated. Moisturized hair doesn’t tangle as easily as hair that is dry and brittle.