Tangled Hair After Shampooing?

Reader's Query
Sheila asks:
My long hair fall up to my waist, but it is fine and straight. It gets tangled after a shampoo. It becomes difficult for me to brush or comb my hair while it is wet. What should I do?

hair in tangles

Straight hair tangles more than curly hair

Did you know that straight hair is more prone to tangling as compared to curly hair? Now many have this mistaken notion that curly hair gets into knots easily. But this is far from truth. True, curly hair might be a little bit difficult to comb especially with all that frizziness and ringlets. But it's a myth that curly hair mats more often. To debunk this myth, a study was conducted on 212 people by American Journal of Physics and it was found that straight hair tangles more than curly hair. As per the study, curly hair averaged about three tangles per head whereas straight hair averaged more than five tangles. Though the nature of curly strands is such that they cross each other more often, the angle at which they meet apparently doesn't cause  much tangling. On the other hand the angles at which the straight hair rub against each other leads to more tangles, more so if the straight hair is long, dry and fine textured. The explanation given is that since its cuticle is open and puffy, it sticks easily to anything.

Personality Traits of a person with thin, straight hair

This has got nothing to do with your problem but still I'd like to cite an interesting thing about thin and silky hair! Apparently women with thin, silky and delicate hair are likely to be sensitive and physically fragile. That's what physiognomy (face reading) for women suggests. (By the way, the rules of physiognomy are different for men and women.) I don't know how much of this applies to you.  On the surface, this 'face reading' thing might seem absurd & BS kinda thing and while it is true that no conclusive evidence has been found about links between facial characteristics and personality traits, you can't completely dismiss it's significance!  As a matter of fact, several shrewd physiognomists have accurately predicted the nature & personality traits of a person by just glancing at a photograph or by observing that person's facial features.

Tips while Shampooing to avoid tangling of hair

Without boring you further by dishing out more prosaic details about your hair type, let me try to find a solution to your actual problem.  Since you have mentioned that this tangling happens after you shampoo, I guess you are rubbing through your hair too vigorously and getting them into knots. So next time around gently massage the shampoo onto your scalp with your fingers. Avoid piling up your hair at the top of your head while washing. It's also a better idea to use a shampoo only on your scalp and the roots as anyway while rinsing it out the rest of your hair will obviously get cleansed - this  ensures that the ends aren't unduly dry. As for conditioner apply it using a wide-toothed comb or just your fingers. Begin by applying it all along your hair starting from the ends and working your way upwards but avoiding the scalp. Rinse it out gently all the while combing your hair with your fingers. Rinsing  with cold water helps close the cuticle and therefore a cold water last rinse is highly recommended. Now don't rub your hair vigorously with a towel as most people do for this definitely leads to snarls;, instead just blot it gently.

Now wet hair is said to very vulnerable and most recommend that you shouldn't comb wet hair. By following the above steps while shampooing, technically, you shouldn't get your hair in tangles. So you can safely comb your wet hair using a wide-toothed comb. However start from the bottom and  do it very gently. If you do find one or two knots, try to resolve them with your fingers or with a single tooth from your comb.

Other Tips:

* Always oil your hair the night before you shampoo. If this is not possible at least oil your hair an hour to two before you shampoo. Never ever shampoo without oiling your hair for you'll definitely end up with frizzy, tangled hair even if you use a conditioner. I'm telling you this from my  personal experience! Coconut oil and olive oil are perfect choices for  tangle-prone hair as these oils penetrate the hair shaft most effectively and are great hair-moisturizers. A deep-conditioning hair treatment at home once a week will also help.

* If you feel that your usual shampoo-conditioner combination isn't working for you, ditch it and go for a volumizing shampoo. A volumizing shampoo adds volume and movement to your thin and straight strands and minimizes the chances of tangles.

* Do not leave your hair loose when are you are going out on a windy day. Always tie it.

* Whenever you find that your hair is is in tangles, do not rush to untangle it by using a hair brush or simply by pulling at it forcefully. That way you will not only lose some hair but will also bruise your hair-shafts. As mentioned earlier, slowly try to remove the tangles using your fingers or a wide toothed comb. You can also spritz a detangler such as this  this, this or this on the knots and then slowly try to resolve them.  If expensive chemical laden detanglers are not your cup of tea, then go for homemade detanglers.

Homemade DIY detanglers: One such simple spray-on detangler can be prepared by mixing one part of your conditioner to three parts of pure distilled water and stored in a spray bottle. Alternatively you may prefer this aloe-based detangler - add 2 tsp of aloe gel, 2 drops of Glycerin, 2 tsp of apple cider vinegar to 1½ cup of water and use it as a spritz-on detangler. Another tip is to rub a few drops of baby oil between your hands and work it through damp hair. You can also rub half a cup of honey over damp tangled hair, wait for around 5 minutes and then wash it out. Cornstarch is also a wonderful detangler. Find more such recipes and tips for DIY detanglers here.

* Whenever you find your hair in knots, out of sheer laziness do not postpone its untangling for tomorrow or else you will end up with a bird's nest on your head. You will find it excruciatingly difficult to tackle it the following morning and will also lose lots of hair in the process.

* Your pillow case can also contribute to tangles. When you sleep on a cotton pillow, the constant friction between your tresses and the pillow cover could get your hair into a mess. So change to satin or silk pillow covers and you will notice the difference when you wake up with a neater head of hair. Another positive to using these satin pillow cases is that you won't wake up with creases and lines on your cheeks and overtime you will get fewer wrinkles too. By the way, this pillow claims to wipe out your wrinkles.

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  1. Kaveri10:36 AM

    you can also use something called *leave in conditioner* that you use after you shampoo and towel dry your hair. You just put some into your hand then rub it on. Dove and Pantene have good ones

  2. Apoorva10:37 AM

    use a conditioner. comb your hair when you are still in the shower with the conditioner in it. then rinse it out!! you can also get detangling agents but i dont recommend them, they leave a film of gunk on your hair.
    Also, when you are combing your hair, start combing from the bottom of your hair and work your way up. this stops you from ending up with a giant mass of knots in the end of your hair.

  3. Mine does that if i just wash it and don't use conditioner. Start using conditioner in every shower.

  4. Nandini10:40 AM

    while your hair is still wet and the conditioner is still in, brush your hair out very well. then blow dry it.


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