I always looked at people with curly hair like my kids have and thought, damn, they’ve got it easy. Detangling with those loose curls is a breeze compared to my coarse, Brillo pad hair. My mother was the first person to make the Brillo pad comment and it has stuck. I am scarred. But anyway, I just figured people with curly hair had the best hair. But as I’ve grown, I’ve realised my hair is great in it’s on way and something to be proud of.
When I had my kids, I thought there loose curls would be a breeze. But I was lulled into a false sense of security with them as the older 2’s texture became tighter and with my eldest, she has become tender headed too. The curls I thought would be easy to deal with have become more tightly coiled but not quite like mine. So my original thoughts of having it easy have gone right down the toilet. I never would have imagined that my type 4 hair would be easier to deal with than theirs.
So something I said I was going to sort out ages ago is now on the cards. Finding the ideal way to detangle hair. Now one technique does not fit all in this natural hair community but I’m pretty sure if I can detangle my girl’s hair without her crying, that method should translate to mine, and her brother’s hair quite easily. She is the biggest challenge, the longest, curliest and most sensitive head in the house. If it works on her, it’ll work on anyone…in theory.
I guess a good place to start, is to figure out why hair tangles in the first place. To defeat your enemy, first you must know your enemy. There are a few reasons why your hair tangles. I would imagine not carefully taking your hair down from a style, rubbing your hair together and smushing all the strands together – like when shampooing our hair but mainly due to having damaged hair. “Those pesky tangles are caused when the outer layer of your hair, aka the cuticle, becomes damaged and opens up. Unlike a smooth, closed cuticle that’s healthy, the open layers of the cuticle become snagged on each other, resulting in tangles and knots in your hair.” I think this is proven because freshly trimmed hair is so much easier to manage than hair that has been left for a while. But if you keep trimming your hair to get rid of the tangles, you’ll be losing a lot of length which is okay if you’re maintaining a certain hairstyle but not good if you are trying to grow out your hair or just don’t have the time (if you do it yourself) or money (if you pay someone else to do it) to constantly trim. Not to say I don’t believe in the power of trims, I really do. But between trims or if you’re avoiding trims there must be another way.
If you Google detangling or have been doing some research into it, you’ll realise by now there are a million ways to do it and even the same technique can be done in several ways. You can detangle with your fingers or others trust a Denman brush. Some like a wide tooth comb and other’s are some way able to pull a fine tooth one through their tresses. Some do it on dry hair and some do it on wet hair exclusively. Some swear by detangling sprays and lotions but I’ve never had any luck with them.
And that’s what I want to look into now. All that hair you see at the top of this post, I want it to be curly, detangled and easier to work with.
I think these are the neatest styles I’ve ever accomplished on the kids’ hair but I was still fighting tangles and it makes it harder to style and harder to take down. I still can’t bring myself to blow dry their hair which would probably solve some of those problems but I don’t want to possibly cause heat damage so I have to work with their hair in the state it naturally comes in. I’m sure you don’t need to have super stretched hair to have sleek styles but it helps. And if it’s not stretched, it should at least be as tangle free as it can.
I’ll be trying various detangling methods over the coming months to see what works best for my family and seeing if I can find a one size fits all approach for the 4 of us (if it exists). This is going to be fun…
Let’s keep growing together!
xx Lee xx
How do you detangle your own or your little ones hair? What tips are you willing to share?! Just asking for a blog!
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