Anyone who’s grown up with natural curls knows how high-maintenance they can be, which is why knowing how to detangle curly hair is essential for anyone with body. The detangling process for natural, curly hair can be a taxing process on everything involved: your time, your comb, and your hair.
Tangled hair is not only frustrating, but it can be damaging too. When you detangle curls too quickly, too often, or too roughly, you can wreak havoc on your curls, which are quite sensitive at their core. Every twist and turn of the hair follicle is a point of weakness—so no matter what type of curls you have, from wavy to kinky-curly, your curls are not only more prone to knots but more fragile than straight hair as well.
The good news: There are ways to prevent knots and properly detangle the inevitable ones to prevent the damage they can cause. Read on for tips and curly hair products to use if you want to know how to untangle hair.
The Best Way to Detangle Curly Hair
You shouldn’t have to fend for yourself when it comes to knowing how to detangle curly hair. We’ll teach you how to restore curly hair and treat your unique curls with care by learning how to detangle curly hair the right way.
Step One: Unknot your Hair Pre-Shower
Extra time spent detangling your hair pre-shower will be well worth it and, ultimately, save you time post-shower. Detangle your dry hair first with your fingers. Then, use a wide-tooth comb or detangling brush to gently remove any remaining knots. For hair that’s extremely prone to tangles, detangling pre-shower with a product with a good bit of slip is a great way to make your hair more manageable.
Some call this pre-pooing: a pre-shampoo detangling process.
Simply apply a pre-poo or a hair oil such as our Moisturizing Shine Oil all over and let it sit for at least 5 minutes while you detangle before rinsing and washing your hair.
Step Two: Wash & Condition with Care
The right shampoo and conditioner will make detangling hair that much easier. When it comes to how to wash curly hair, you should always look for nourishing formulas that provide the hydration you need with the definition you want. Our Curl Shampoo & Conditioner do just that thanks to our Healthy Curl Complex. This luxurious duo is made to moisturize and detangle all types of textures while encouraging curl groupings.
Just follow these steps:
- Start by applying the shampoo to wet hair. Avoid creating more tangles by focusing the product on your scalp.
- Then, let the excess product cleanse your hair when you rinse.
- Next, reach for the Curl Conditioner, applying it from root to tip. A good slippery conditioner or deep conditioner is the best detangling assist.
- Begin to detangle your hair as you work the conditioner through, section by section. You can also use a brush, wide-toothed comb, or stick with the finger detangling method.
If you take this time in the shower to address those pesky knots and maintain a curly hair care routine, you’ll have to spend much less time detangling post-shower.
Step Three: Dry it Right
Don’t destroy all your hard work from your shower routine by wrapping your hair, turban-style, with a regular old terry cloth towel. This may not only stretch and break your strands, but also cause tangles.
Instead, opt for a gentler microfiber towel or gently squeeze all the excess water out of your hair and skip the towel altogether.
Step Four: Apply a Detangling Product
While we wish it were possible to simply walk out of the shower tangle-free, this isn’t the case for most people. But detangling wet hair can be simple when you have the right product on hand.
We’ve got three unique detangling products that do double duty, since they meet curl-styling needs as well. Choose one depending on your curl pattern:
- The Curl Enhancer for wavy hair
- The Curl Elongator for tightly-wound coils
- The Curl Definer for bouncy curls that are in-between.
These will provide the slip you need to run a comb through your hair and the grip you need to scrunch or spiral your strands. You’ll also boost your style with shine and smoothness too. Implementing the right products listed above into your hair care routine will make detangling a breeze.
Curly hair is fragile, and detangling can easily break those fragile bonds that keep it strong and long. So, always be gentle. That said, it’s much easier to detangle gently when your hair is wet and has product in it. While you may need to detangle dry hair from time to time, it’s best to avoid it, especially for those with highly-textured natural hair.
Detangling does require time, but that time will not only help the health of your hair but also help with manageability. And when you have the right products and tools on hand, it’s much easier than it seems. For more curly hair tips, learn how to sleep with curly hair. Sleeping on your curls the wrong way can often be a culprit of tangled curls.