Summer is in full swing, which means you and your hair may soon be diving into a pool, taking a dip at the beach, relaxing in the sun or kicking back on a hot summer night. Detangling your hair the right way can help prevent breakage and thinning and preserve and promote thick, healthy locks. Here are just a few ways to do it, from the folks at Madison Reed.
Use a wide tooth comb.
The way you comb your hair can make a world of a difference. A regular comb has teeth that are thin and close together, and can separate tiny groups and individual hairs from each other. For straight hair that is dry, a regular comb is perfect. For hair that is wet and tangled? Not so much. A wide tooth comb has teeth that are both wider and thicker, with more space between each tooth. Using a wider tooth comb can gently detangle hair since the teeth can comb through the hair more lightly, and minimizes ripping hair from the scalp.
How to use it: Use gentle, light strokes when combing your hair out. A wide tooth comb is especially great for wet hair, because that is when it’s most prone to breakage. Start by holding your hair mid-shaft and combing from the bottom of your hair. Work your way toward the top of your head.
Try a detangling spray.
Whether you woke up with a cowlick or spent the afternoon in a chlorine-filled pool, a gentle detangling spray can make your life much easier. It can release tension and knots from the bottom of the hair—which, when combed through, can cause breakage. You can use it on either dry or wet hair, and keep your tangles at bay with a spritz or two.
How to use it: You can either purchase a detangler at any drug store (a chemical-free one is best) or you can make your own by filling a spray bottle with one-half Madison Reed Nourishing Color-Enhancing Conditioner and one-half distilled water. Shake the mixture together, and use the spray on wet or dry hair. The conditioner is perfect for colored hair, provides UV protection and restores elasticity for those harsh summer conditions.
Towel it dry (the right way).
Sometimes you’re in a rush, and when you come out of the shower, you might speedily rustle up your wet hair in a towel. Although that might speed up the process and feel nice on your scalp, it’s not the best for your hair. In fact, it creates tangles and breakage from the scalp. Since your hair is most sensitive when it’s wet, it’s important to pay careful attention to it while towel drying.
How to do it: A good way to avoid tangles is to take the extra time to pat your hair when you towel dry it. First, squeeze all of the excess water from the hair (this might take a bit of time so patience is best during this process). Next, wrap your hair in a towel, and leave it on while you put on your skincare, makeup, and get dressed. After about 20 minutes, the towel will have absorbed most of the moisture from your hair, leaving it all set for a quick blow dry!
Braid it before bedtime.
Our hair gets most tangled in two scenarios: right out of the shower, and when we sleep. As we toss and turn in bed and switch positions during rest, our hair starts to get convoluted into different shapes and ties knots on its own. This happens because we keep our hair loose. Need some simple ways to keep it from getting tangled at night?
How to do it: The best way to keep your hair from tangling at night is to braid it or french braid it at night before bedtime. You can even put in some leave-in conditioner or detangling spray beforehand to wake up to gorgeous waves. If you don’t want the waves, you can tie your hair directly on the top of your head in a very loose bun. The bun will keep your hair from your face and all in one place! Just make sure the bun is in a very loose knot, so you don’t wake up with dents in your hair.
Sleep on a silk or satin pillowcase.
Another reason your hair tangles at night? The surface of your pillowcase creates too much friction, causing it to tangle. If the pillowcase is made with cotton or flannel, the surface is rough enough to tie your hair in knots. To combat the friction, try a silk or satin pillowcase, which is softer and smoother to the touch, and will let your hair glide on the surface, rather than rub.
Where to find it: This pillowcase can be found on any large retailer or home & bath website. If you’re purchasing silk, make sure it’s 100% silk. If it says “facial beauty,” that’s even better! If you’re looking to purchase a satin pillowcase, just check if it’s soft and silky (it’s all about the texture).