Tired of Tangles: The Why, What, and How to Effectively Detangle Curly and Coily Hair

Tired of Tangles: The Why, What, and How to Effectively Detangle Curly and Coily Hair

Curly and coily hair is known for its unique texture and beauty, but it also comes with its own set of challenges, particularly when it comes to detangling. The key to maintaining healthy and manageable hair lies in using the right products and proper detangling techniques.

WHY does our hair tangle?

Before diving into detangling, it's essential to understand the nature of curly and coily hair. This hair type is often naturally more prone to dryness and tangles due to the many turns that the hair strands take as they grow. The turns in the curls can start to intertwine with each other as the hair grows, as well as with simple movements we make throughout our day. Then, as the hair naturally sheds and falls, the hair becomes trapped within, causing what I call roadblocks in the hair, making it harder to run our fingers or hair tools through our hair. This is why detangling is such an essential part of the hair care routine. Properly and consistently doing this will untwine the curls and release the fallen hair. This helps to prevent breakage as well as lessen how often the ends split.

WHAT Products are for detangling:

  • Detangling Conditioners: A good detangling conditioner, such as the Afro Unicorn Magical Tresses 123 Silky Wishes Detangling Conditioner, is the foundation of any detangling routine. Always choose products that are specifically designed for curly or coily hair. They often contain ingredients that help soften and loosen the tangles in the hair.
  • Leave-in Conditioners/Detangling Sprays: Leave-in conditioners are excellent for retaining moisture in the hair, which can make the detangling process smoother. They contain moisturizing ingredients and can provide extra slip, making it easier to comb through the tangles. These will often come in a light lotion or spray. They make the hair more manageable and should be used in between washes to keep tangles away.


    Try our Afro Unicorn Magical Tresses Frizzie Free and Shine Curl Refresher or the 123 Wishes Silky Conditioner as a leave-in to help restore and moisturize your curls.

  • Oils: Oils are thick and viscous, typically derived from natural sources like Almond, Grapeseed, or Jojoba oil. They are rich in fatty acids and are used to moisturize and nourish the hair and scalp. Oils, such as the Afro Unicorn Magical Tresses Bye Bye Dry Scalp Oil Serum, are beneficial for dry or damaged hair and can help with hydration, conditioning, and reducing friction which can contribute to tangles.

Top 3 Ingredients in Detangling Conditioners:

There are a few basic ingredients that are generally present in detangling products, but first, I want to focus on our special formulation.

  1. Rainbow Super Fruit: This is a magical combination of fruit extracts such as Raspberry, Papaya, Apple, and Kiwi, along with a few others. All of which are full of wonderful antioxidants that help to nourish our tresses, and each has a specific role to play. While there are 7 total that make up our, I want to focus on these four that matter to us most:
    • Raspberry: Nourishes and helps protect hair from routine damage.
    • Papaya: Strengthens and hydrates hair.
    • Apple: Promotes healthy hair growth.
    • Kiwi: Helps restore moisture and softens hair.
  2. Glycerin: Glycerin is a powerful humectant that helps the hair retain moisture. It also provides slip, reducing friction during detangling.
  3. Coconut Oil: Coconut oil is a popular choice for detangling conditioners due to its ability to penetrate the hair shaft, making it more pliable. It also helps reduce protein and moisture loss in the hair. It acts similarly to a shield to protect the hair strands.

You will find all of these ingredients in our 123 Wishes Silky Conditioner, making it the perfect detangling conditioner.

HOW to Properly Detangle Techniques:

  1. Start with Moisturized Hair: Detangle your hair when it's wet or damp. Apply a detangling conditioner or leave-in conditioner to ensure your hair is well-moisturized.
  2. Divide and Conquer: Section your hair into manageable parts. This prevents overwhelming yourself with a mass of tangles and makes the process smoother.
  3. Detangle in Small Sections: Working in small rows of each section ensures you give each part of your hair the attention it needs. Be patient and gentle.
  4. Use a Wide-Tooth Comb or Fingers First: Opt for a wide-tooth comb or your fingers to start the detangling process. Gently work through knots. Start at the ends and work your way up to the scalp to avoid unnecessary breakage and snagging.
  5. Use a Detailing Comb or Brush: This is a small comb or medium nylon-bristled brush with a rubber base. It usually has 3-9 rows of nylon comb-like teeth. While many are taught not to use a fine-tooth comb or brush on curly hair, it has been found that the teeth are much better at separating, detangling, and detailing curly and coily hair. It completely removes all of the fallen hair that has been trapped in the curls that a wide-tooth comb or fingers missed, especially at the scalp area, leaving the curls defined and perfectly shaped.
  6. Frequent Maintenance: Regularly detangling your hair prevents severe tangles from forming. This can be done during wash day every 1-2 weeks, with the recommendation being never to go longer than 2 weeks because this gives the hair more time to shed and get trapped, causing those roadblocks we mentioned before. We also recommend trying our daily nighttime routine using the Bye Bye Dry Scalp Oil Serum to continue softening and protecting your curls. The consistency of overall hair maintenance will make the detangling process much quicker and less painful.

Curly and coily hair is beautiful and diverse, but it requires specific care, especially when it comes to detangling. Choosing the right products with moisturizing and detangling properties is crucial, as is using proper techniques to reduce damage. By understanding WHY our hair tangles, WHAT top ingredients to check for in detangling conditioners, and HOW to properly detangle, you can stop being tired of the tangles and tackle them head-on, maintaining the health and manageability of your hair, and allowing its natural beauty to shine!

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