However, matted hair must be detangled to prevent split ends, hair that snaps easily, hair breakage, or even severe hair loss. In this article, I will share the correct ways to detangle dry hair.
How to Detangle Dry Natural Hair
1. Spritz your hair
A spray bottle is a natural hair tool that every natural should have. Fill your spray bottle with 80% water and 20% natural hair oil of your choice, or use only water.
To start the detangling process, spritz your entire hair with the spray bottle. Use your palms to massage the liquid into your hair to ensure full coverage.
The water (and oil) provides your dry hair with moisture, making detangling easier. Be careful not to make your hair too wet. Wet hair is weak, and detangling it can lead to more tangles, hair breakage, and even hair loss.
2. Section your hair
Once you have dampened your natural hair, the next step is to part it into sections. This makes it easier to detangle than trying to detangle all of your hair at once.
If you have fuller hair, divide it into 8 to 10 sections. If your hair is less full, divide it into 6 to 8 sections.
3. Apply conditioner or detangler
Begin by using your conditioner (if it's your wash day) or detangler and work it into sections of your hair. This is another reason parting your hair into sections is important as it ensures even coverage of the conditioner/detangler. If you were to apply without sectioning your hair, some parts may get the conditioner/detangler while other parts may miss out.
You may be wondering why you need to apply conditioner or detangler to your hair after applying water and oil to moisturize it. Shouldn't your hair be moisturized enough for detangling?
Spritzing your hair with water alone (or with 20% oil) will not provide your hair with the slip or long-lasting moisture it needs. To test this, try detangling a section of your hair after spritzing it with only water. You will notice that your hair snaps and makes an accompanying snapping sound when you try to detangle it.
Scientifically, our hair has a PH level of 4.5 to 5.5, whereas water has a higher PH level of 7, which means it is not acidic enough to be used as a lone moisturizer. However, conditioners and detanglers are formulated with the right PH level (between 4 and 5) to match that of our natural hair. This is why they provide our hair with enough moisture, slip, and shine.
When you apply conditioner or detangler to detangle your natural hair, you will notice that your hair does not snap or break easily.
4. Use a comb or finger-detangle
Once you have applied your conditioner or detangler to the first section of your hair, the next step is to detangle. It is best to start with finger-detangling before using a comb.
Finger-detangling involves using your fingers to brush through the tangles in your hair. This allows you to feel the tangles in your hair and gently remove them.
We recommended that you start detangling from the ends of your hair and work your way up to the roots. If you detangle from the roots first, you may encounter knots at the ends of your hair. This makes it difficult to comb through them, and yanking them out can cause split ends and hair breakage.
After finger-detangling, you can use a wide-tooth comb to detangle each section. Using a comb with smaller teeth can cause your hair to break and develop split ends.
Also, ensure that your comb does not have any broken teeth. Using a comb with broken teeth can lead to hair breakage and even cause you pain.
5. Wash or style as desired
If it's wash day, you can go ahead and shampoo your hair. If it's not, you can style your hair as desired.
When detangling, remember that patience is key. Take your time to detangle any knots in your hair, and don't rush through the process.