Having naturally curly hair can be such a blessing. But at the same time, it can also be a curse. While our natural curls boast volume, thickness, and a beautiful style that we love to rock everyday, it can also be fragile and more prone to unwanted knots and tangles. There will be days when it seems like you follow your regular routine to a tee and, for whatever reason, your curls just refuse to work with you. We get it!
We all know that curly hair can be wild and unpredictable, but the one thing we can always count on is its tendency to tangle.
Whether they form overnight or during the day, knots and tangles cause our curls to break and become matted, leaving our hair - not to mention ourselves - feeling seriously deflated. If that wasn’t enough for us to have to deal with, detangling our curls can be super time-consuming, not to mention painful.
If you’re experiencing more tangles than ever before, you might find yourself falling out of love with your locks. But what if we told you that you can detangle your tresses with ease just by using the right tools and having some professional detangling knowledge?
At LUS | Love Ur Self, we’re here to share everything you need to know about how to detangle curly hair while preventing any future damage. Ready to find out the best way to detangle hair? Let’s dive in!
How Often Should You Detangle Curly Hair?
We hate to break it to you, but there’s no simple answer to how often you should be detangling your curls. Many curly girls wait until wash day to do a full detangling. This allows them to better preserve their wash-n-go style and to not break up any curl clumps throughout the week.
For those that have a more frequent wash day cycle or a looser curl pattern, they might decide to dry detangle nearly every day. It’s totally up to you!
Don’t be afraid to experiment and see what works best. Your curls are unique, so it’s important to treat them that way.
Wet Or Dry Hair For Detangling?
When it comes to managing our curly hair, we often hear that a brush or comb should never be run through dry tresses. But contrary to popular belief, dry detangling can actually be safe if the right tool and technique is used! Our curls are actually at their strongest when they're dry, so giving them a once-over with the right type of brush or comb can help to prep them before you shampoo. On the other hand, if your hair is excessively dry, detangling it without any sort of lubrication can cause the ends to chip away.
For most curls, starting with damp hair is often the go-to method. Moisture will make your strands softer and easier to work through, meaning you can really get to work through those knots without too much tugging and pulling. That being said, remember to be gentle! As we mentioned before, your hair is more prone to breakage in this state, so be careful with those brush strokes.
For extreme tangles that conditioners alone can’t tackle, applying a repairing oil, like LUS (Love Ur Self) Elixir Oil, can make the world of difference. Before you jump in the shower, add a few drops of oil to the palms of your hands and work it through your hair. Whenever you come across a tangle, use your fingers to gently free your curls. Be careful not to pull too hard, though - you don’t want to break your hair or cause any damage.
Your Guide To Detangling Curly Hair
Now we’ve taken a look at how often you should detangle curly hair and whether you should do so wet or dry, it’s time to get into the nitty-gritty of it.
We know how tempting it can be to brush or comb downwards from the top of your crown to your ends. But if your hair is feeling knotty, this will cause your curls some stress, not to mention unnecessary pain (we’ve all been burned by a bad brush experience!)
Wondering how to untangle curly hair pain-free? Here’s a quick guide that’ll save you time and energy.
Start With The Ends
We hear so many people saying that they start brushing their hair at their roots. But if you have curly hair this is a huge no-no. Likewise, we’re always asked how to brush curly hair.
No matter what your curl type is, you should always start with the ends in mind. Not only does starting at your ends feel nicer on your hair, but it also reduces the amount of strain you put on your scalp when detangling.
Another key tip here is to hold each section of your hair as you’re working your comb or brush through. This’ll reduce any potential tension and ensure that you’re not pulling your hair so tightly that it snaps and falls out.
Our founder does a great job demonstrating this here!
Once you’ve detangled your ends, you can begin to work your way up through your mid-lengths until you reach your scalp. By the time you reach the top of your head, the full strand should be 100% tangle-free.
Use The Right Tools For The Job
Did you know that the tools you use can massively impact how easy it is to detangle your hair and how your hair feels post-detangle?
Whether you have wavy hair or tight coils, a wide-tooth comb could be your ideal tool for getting through your tangled mane. Start from the bottom of your hair and very carefully make your way to the roots. Take your time and let the comb do its job! And as always, be gentle as you work through tight knots.
Using your fingers to detangle your curls is also a popular choice among curly girls. Finger detangling requires patience and gentleness as you’ll be working through knots strand by strand with nothing but your digits. This method is super beneficial because it’s less likely to cause breakage, as you can feel out the knots and avoid snapping them. So, if you’re all for a gentle approach that’s more likely to keep your hair healthy, finger detangling is a great option.
Have you come across our Detangle & Style Brush yet? It's designed to make detangling a breeze. With over 400 uniquely positioned bristles with varying lengths, its patented technology gives you a pain-free experience when detangling wet or dry hair. Plus, you can use it to evenly distribute your styling product on wash day, boosting definition and enhancing your wash day results!
If you’re not certain about which tool to try first, try starting off with a wide-tooth comb. If you’re still finding the process to be a hassle, you can always experiment with a vent or wet paddle brush and see how it goes. And if you’re looking to give your curls the royal treatment, then finger-detangling is the way.
Use Products That Make Detangling Easier
The right amount of slip can turn your detangling experience from ‘scream’ to ‘serene’. A little curly lingo: If you didn’t already know, “slip” refers to how slippery a product can make your hair.
Before you detangle wet hair, you should apply a conditioner that adds tons of slip to your hair – enough that it’s not only easier to comb through but much faster too. Our silicone-free conditioner, for example, is like buttah and gives amazing slip when activated by water.
Take Your Time
Detangling your hair isn’t a sprint - it’s a marathon. When it comes to learning how to comb curly hair, it’s best to keep in mind that to achieve gorgeous, shiny, and tangle-free curls, you have to be patient and take your time.
We know that detangling can feel as though it takes forever, but like with anything, if you give your curls the time and care they need, they’ll repay the favor. If you rush, you risk skipping sections as you brush, which could see you leaving some knots fully intact and suffering the consequences later on.
Aftercare With Hair Serum and Styling Products
If you thought that detangling your hair stops after conditioning and working your comb through, think again. Post-washing and conditioning your curls, you need to treat them to a little aftercare, too.
Make sure to style with products that are good for your curls and won’t dry them out. Our All-in-One Stylers and Irish Sea Moss Gel both support hair health and are free of harsh chemicals. And, if you're finding extra knots and tangles due to dried out ends, opt for a Split End Mender that will boost hydration and suppleness, making the hair easier to detangle and less prone to breakage and knots!
You Can Brush Curly Hair Too
There is no one way to detangle your curls. In fact, in an average wash routine, you may find you mix and match all different types of detangling techniques to style your hair, depending on the look you're going for.
Sometimes tangles are unavoidable – just remember to be patient and gentle with your hair. We’ve all become frustrated from time to time, but with the right tools, you can detangle like a smooth operator.
So, next time you feel like pulling your hair out, please stop eyeing the scissors! Take a minute to breathe, grab this trusty tangle guide, and smooth it all out. You got this!