How to prevent hair from knotting
Knotted and tangled hair looks messy and is difficult to comb out, and it can lead to a great deal of breakage. Many things can cause tangled hair, including particular hair styles and heat products. Knots can also occur in the shower or when you dry the hair. Tightly curled hair is even more prone to knots, and it can also be difficult to keep long hair tangle-free. There are ways to remove knots once they form, but if possible, it’s always best to take preventative measures that will stop knots before they form.
Preventing knots when grooming
- Brush your hair before you wash it. Always use a wide tooth comb or a paddle brush with plastic tipped bristles, and comb through the hair before showering. This will help stop the hair from tangling when you wash it. As a general rule of thumb, do; not comb or brush your hair when it is wt since wet hair is more prone to damage and breakage.
- Shampoo properly. Wash your hair by focusing your shampooing on the scalp, rather than the hair.
- Condition after you shampoo. After you shampoo, work a conditioner into your hair with your fingers and remove any tangles. When you have removed all the knots, gently comb through with a wide-toothed comb.
- Dry your hair gently. Instead of wrapping, twisting, or rubbing your hair, gently squeeze it with a towel to get out the excess moisture. It’s also best to avoid heat products, such as blow dryers and flat irons, which can dry out your hair and leave it prone to damage and tangling.
- Moisturize hair regularly. Healthy and moisturized hair is less likely to knot and tangle, so along with regular conditioning, try a weekly hair mask or deep conditioning.
Preventing knots throughout the day
- Tie your hair up when you’re being active. If you’re playing sports, swimming, or exercising, prevent your hair from knotting by wearing it in a braid, ponytail, or bun. The less your hair moves around and the less it gets matted with sweat and dirt, the more likely you are to be able to brush through it when you’re done.
- Protect your hair in the wind. Whether you’re going for a summer drive with the windows down or if it’s just a windy day, wrap your hair in a scarf, cover it with a hat, or wear it in a protective hair style to stop it from blowing around too much. Not only will the wind ruin your hair style, but it will also blow your tresses into a tangled mess.
- Care for your hair when you sleep. While cotton is a popular choice for bedding, hair can catch on cotton pillow cases as you sleep, and this can create knots. Instead, look for a polished cotton pillow case, or a smooth fabric such as silk.
- Work in small sections. Tie or pin up the majority of your hair, and leave a small section of hair free. Once you detangle that section, start a new bun or ponytail to keep the detangled hair separate, and move on to a new section of tangled hair.
- Finger comb your hair. On the first section of hair, start near the tips and run your fingers through your hair to remove knots and tangles. Combs can actually make knots tighter, so untangle what you can with your fingers first.
- Apply water and conditioner as necessary. When you encounter particularly nasty knots, apply some watered down conditioner to the area. Let it sit for a couple minutes, then go back to detangling with your fingers.
- Repeat with a comb. Once you’ve removed all the knots you can with your fingers and can easily run your fingers through the entire length of your hair, gently comb through the same section with a wide-tooth comb. Like before, start at the bottom and work your way to the top.
- Use a needle on tough knots. If you come across a knot that you can’t loosen with your fingers or the comb, insert the needle of a safety pin into the center of the knot and move it around to loosen the knot.
- Trim the knot as a last resort. In case you come across a knot that you absolutely cannot remove with conditioner, your fingers, the comb, or the safety pin, you may have to trim it off. Use sharp barber scissors, and make sure you remove as much excess hair from the knot as you can before making any cuts. Try to work the knot down toward the tip of the hair as far as you can to minimize the amount of hair you have to trim.