During my journey to what is now my 17th month of transitioning, there have been several occasions where I have experienced what I like to call the triple d’s: ‘Dreaded-Detangling-Days’, which fell upon me earlier on in my transition. I’m sure I’m not alone in experiencing this so I know you recognise that feeling of having every nerve in your body being worked beyond belief. Yes – it IS that serious!
When you are transitioning, detangling requires that extra bit of care as you try to avoid breakage at the demarcation line (where the new growth and relaxed ends meet). Although using methods such as; finger detangling, can help to prevent that dreaded ‘snap’ sound, it can also be time consuming. Now that I have come to know my hair better, I have chosen a few tips that I have incorporated into my own hair care methods that allow me to still finger detangle, but have reduced the amount of time it takes to do so:
Avoid wash & go’s I found this out later on in my transition. The times where I had washed my hair and allowed it to dry loosely or, tied it up in a pineapple while it was still wet, would lead to disaster. You see; the relaxed ends of my hair would become matted together as my hair dried, which meant that I would be left with a head full of knots by the time wash day arrived. Not cool. So what can you do instead of a wash & go? For me, the best option is to dry my hair in around 5-6 twists/braids instead.
Flat Twists Throughout the week I put my hair into 5 flat twists every other night/2 nights to stretch out my hair, which has significantly reduced the amount of knots I encounter. The nights I don’t feel like re-twisting, I leave my hair up in a bun so that my relaxed ends are not left out to knot together while I sleep.
Creamy Conditioner Having a really thick and creamy conditioner on hand is a must for a smooth detangling session. It helps your fingers or/and wide tooth comb to glide through the hair easier and help loosen any knots. After trying a few different products, Tresemme Naturals Nourishing Moisture Conditioner, is the business in my book! This combined with ensuring that your hair is drenched in water, will aid you in getting the best detangling session.
Stay Moisturised Keeping your hair moisturised throughout the week will help in preventing the relaxed ends of your hair from knotting together. Make sure you find a product that will help you in avoiding dry hair, as hair can become very fragile and prone to breakage when it is detangled in such a state.
Pre-Poo Sometimes it can help to prepare your hair for your detangling session by pre-pooing the night before. I separate my hair and spray it with water, then use either Vatika, Amla or Olive oil on my hair to twist each section until I end up with 5 or so twists in my hair, then put on my shower cap. This leaves my hair nice and soft by the time I’m ready to wash my hair, which helps with detangling because my hair is already sectioned off.
So these are just a few methods that have helped me to avoid a bad detangling session, and they have taken my detangling time down, prevented those sore arms and most importantly; looked after my hair. I hope that they may be of some use to you if you ever find yourself in the same boat!