How to Untangle Matted Hair

December 2, 2021

Untangling matted hair can be a long and uncomfortable process. Curly and straight-haired, short and long-haired, and men and women alike are prone to getting matted hair without proper care. And no, matted hair is NOT the same thing as tangled hair!

Matted hair is a combination of both attached and shed hairs that can become entwined and tangled into tight, net-like knots. They are much harder to detangle than regular tangles, but it’s important to untangle your tangled hair before it becomes matted. Once your hair does become matted, you’ll have to follow a specific process to untangle it. Though most people will choose to cut it or seek professional care, it is possible to detangle it yourself at home.

Take a look at the step-by-step process on how to untangle matted hair:
Detangling Spray. Choose a product, specifically a detangling spray, to put into your hair. This will massively help you detangle your hair, especially if you have coarser or longer hair! Some people may also choose coconut, argan, or olive oil as a detangler — this is fine; however, if you prefer not to have oil in your hair, a detangling spray will still be perfect.
Dampen Hair. Start to dampen your hair with water. You can use a spray bottle or briefly leave your hair under the shower or sink at low water pressure. Don’t get it soaking wet– just damp. After your hair is dampened, apply your hair treatment.
Massage Hair. With the water and detangling spray in your hair, start to massage the products into your hair. Take your time to saturate your hair, which should begin to loosen as the product gets into it. After the product is really in your hair, leave it in your hair and wait. This could be anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours — just read the instructions on whatever product you’re using so you don’t leave it in for too long.
Pull-Apart/Loosen. Your hair should be deeply moisturized at this point, which means it’s time to start loosening your matted hair. Using your fingers, gently pull apart your hair. Go from the tip to the root, working in sections to get the small and large matted parts.
Comb. Using a sturdy, wide-tooth comb, start to comb out your hair, starting at the tip and working towards the scalp. At this point, if your hair is not detangling, you may need to thin out your hair with scissors.
Rinse! Once your hair is untangled, rinse out the product with water, and voila! You’re done!

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