More than 6 months Matted Hair, More than 1 day Detangling
How to Untangle Severely Matted Hair
If your hair becomes hopelessly matted, try a deep conditioner or moisturizing oil before you resign yourself to a short hairstyle. After leaving these hair treatments in for an hour, or even overnight, your hair should be easier to untangle. Combing it out can still be tedious, but much less painful and more effective than combing without hair treatment.
Choose a hair treatment.Ordinary conditioner is worth trying if you haven't already, but if your hair is severely matted, you may need to resort to another option. Deep conditioners are great at restoring moisture to your hair and making them easier to untangle, while detangling conditioners are meant specifically to add more slip to your hair. Coconut oil, olive oil, or Moroccan argan oil can be used instead, and may be especially useful for afro-textured hair. If you dislike the feel of oil in your hair, you can try a hair detangling spray.
- While some people use mayonnaise, this may cause an unpleasant smell and is less effective than other options.
Wet your hair slightly.Dampen your hair with a spray bottle of water, or briefly holding it under a shower or sink at low water pressure. Most hair treatments are meant to be applied to damp hair, but if you let the hair become dripping wet, it may be more susceptible to breakage.
Rub the treatment into your hair.Take a handful of the chosen treatment, or use up to two handfuls if you have hair that grows past your shoulders. Apply the treatment thoroughly to all parts of your hair, including the ends. Rub it in to each section of your hair separately, rather than across your entire scalp at once, to avoid tangling your hair further.
Wait while the treatment works on your hair.If using ordinary conditioner, it will finish moisturizing your hair within a few minutes. Coconut oil and similar oils should be left in for at least 30 minutes for maximum effect, but no longer than 2 hours. Deep conditioners vary as shown on the packaging instructions, but are typically left in for at least an hour, and may be left in overnight for extreme cases.
- To keep your hair tidy and out of way, wear a plastic shower cap, or a plastic bag fastened with a hairband. Optionally, a tight-fitting hat over the plastic may help hasten the process.
Untangle the easiest knots with your fingers.Once the hair treatment has had time to take effect, attempt to gently pull apart the tangled sections of your hair. Small knots or loose mats can sometimes be pulled into smaller, separate tangles from the root side of the knot, nearer to your scalp.
- Don't expect to fully untangle your hair during this step. If you feel tension, stop and try a different tangled area.
Use a wide toothed comb.A comb with sturdy, widely spaced teeth is essential for combing out severe tangles. Fine combs and brushes are likely to meet too much resistance, forcing you to either pull out clumps of hair, or stop brushing.
- Be sure to pick a comb that doesn't have teeth so wide that smaller tangles slip through.
Comb the ends first.Always comb tangled hair starting near the ends. Place the comb a few inches (several centimeters) from the end of the tangled hair, and brush downward. Repeat until that section of hair is free of tangles, then move the comb slightly higher up. Repeat until the entire length of your hair is combed. For long or thick, severely matted hair, this may take an hour or more.
Hold your hair higher up to prevent pain.If you have a sensitive scalp, hold a section of your hair as you brush it. Grasp a portion of hair about the thickness of a marker or glue stick between your fingers, and give it a half-twist to keep the comb from pulling directly on your scalp. Comb this portion of hair beneath your hand, moving your grip higher once the hair below it is successfully untangled.
Apply additional conditioner or oil if necessary.Apply a drop of conditioner or oil to a tough knot and rub it in with your finger. This will help lubricate those hair strands further, reducing the amount they cling to each other.
Thin stubborn mats with scissors.If a mat of hair refuses to come apart despite all your efforts, you may need to thin it out. Open a pair of scissors and hold your hair tight with your other hand. Run the bottom blade of the scissors along the underside of the mat, then gently tug at your hair to remove loose strands.
- If it has been weeks or months since the last time you combed your hair, cutting mats out may be your best option, as you can spend hours detangling with no results.
Finish with a fine-toothed comb or brush.Use a wide-toothed comb until the severe mats and tangles have been straightened out. Switch to a fine-toothed comb or a brush to remove any small knots that may remain.
Rinse your hair.Rinse out any hair treatments completely once your hair is untangled. If you have tightly coiled hair, and the severe mats have separated enough to allow you to part your hair, clip each section of hair to keep them separate, and rinse one at a time.
Use a leave-in conditioner.Leave-in conditioners can be left in your hair for many hours at a time. They keep your hair moisturized, minimizing fraying and frizzling that can occur when your hair dries out.
Brush your hair when it is damp, but not soaked.Too dry, and hair becomes brittle and hard to brush. Too wet, and it becomes weak and easy to pull out accidentally. Find the middle ground, brushing or combing when your hair is damp after a shower, but not dripping wet.
Loosely braid your hair before you sleep.If you wake up with your hair in a tangle, braid it before you go to bed to minimize the amount of tangling that can happen. Alternatively, you could put your hair in a bun.
Separate easily tangled hair before washing.If you have afro-textured hair, or another easily tangled hair type, part it into several sections, and clip them to keep them apart. Unclip these sections one at a time when washing your hair, and clip them back together before unclipping the next section. This reduces the chance of larger mats forming.
- A mild, low-sudsing shampoowithoutsodium lauryl sulfate is recommended for this type of hair.
QuestionHow do you get huge matted knots in the back that almost look like dreads?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerTry deep conditioner and follow the instructions in the article. Or, you could use vegetable oil.Thanks!
QuestionAre there any DIY things I can apply to my hair to make it less matted?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerUse olive, almond or coconut oil and rub it in your hair. This will make the knots ease down and will make your hair smooth. Brush your hair afterwards, then when you wake up wash it thoroughly with shampoo and conditioner.Thanks!
QuestionWhat can I do for hair that is matted on the back of the head?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerThere's something called the Wet Brush you might want to try -- you can get it from Bed, Bath and Beyond or online.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I untangle the under layer of my hair?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerUse a leave-on conditioner or hair moisturizer. Massage it into your hair and leave for 15 minutes. You can then bend over and brush the tangles out of your hair.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I untangle hair that has honey and coconut oil in it?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerI suggest soaking your hair in a bucket of warm water and using shampoo that is good for greasy hair. Next time you use honey I recommend mixing it well with the coconut oil and adding yogurt.Thanks!
QuestionI have long curly hair and when I brush it, it tangles up again and my hair dries out. What can I do to make my hair less matted and dry?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerFrom my experience, though it's more difficult, wait until your hair is nearly dry to brush it. When there's a lot of water, the hair is heavier and will fling about if you brush/comb It aggressively. So be calm, and take your time. Detanglers help, and leave-in conditioner can help with any dryness after it's all said and done.Thanks!
QuestionCan you use Infusium 23 leave in conditioner?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIt's not a heavy enough conditioner to work well for this. I recommend coconut oil or any similar oil or intense conditioner.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I untangle my hair that is matted and looks like dreads?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerBrush your hair out carefully using tanning oil. Use one with coconut oil in it and conditioner and follow the steps above.Thanks!
QuestionHow can I untangle really long hair at the back of my head?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerTry brushing with detangler. If you have severe matted hair try applying coconut oil.Thanks!
QuestionHow long will it take to get rid of badly matted hair?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerJudging by experience, probably a few hours. If I have a really bad knot, it can take that long or even longer.Thanks!
I have matted hair on top of my head what do I do?
How do you do it if it is right below your head?
- Try not to keep your hair styled in the same position for weeks or months at a time without combing or otherwise caring for it, as this could encourage more tangles.
- Oil and oily hair products help lubricate the hair strands, sliding them off of each other. If you want to use an anti-grease hair treatment, wait until after your hair is untangled.
- A good way to untangle matted hair is to simply find the main tangle, then slowly take small strands from the tangle until it gets smaller and smaller. This requires patience, though, and can be very time consuming.
- Oiling your hair twice a week helps prevent tangles.
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Video: EFFECTIVELY Detangle MATTED KNOTTED TANGLED Hair | Natural Hair Length Retention
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