How to Untangle Matted Hair

By Julia Barrus

Anyone who has ever had hair longer than five or six inches knows the pain of matted hair. Unless you enjoy the bohemian chic look of dreadlocks, you may have to struggle at one time or another with some mats and not the kind you sit on during yoga. Follow these steps to become mat-free the next time a hairstyle goes wrong.

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Is this you, mon?
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Spray first

Step 1

Spray your hair with some sort of detangler for maximum effect. You can actually get matted hair free without detangler, but it needs to be wet. Use water if you must.

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Comb gently

Step 2

Start breaking up the matted hair with the comb using a gentle picking motion. Sometimes it helps to start at either side of the mat and work your way toward the middle (the thickest part).

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Brush away

Step 3

After you've broken up the mat some, brush the hair with a brush. Start by gripping the hair about 1/2 inch from the scalp and pulling it taute so it doesn't break off. Then, brush away and attack that matted hair.

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It should be breaking free

Step 4

Your hair should be breaking free by now. Use the detangler again if it has not and repeat Steps 1 through 4. Keep a grip on the hair close to the scalp, whether combing or brushing, so as to protect it from breakage. It's normal to experience some breakage, but you want to prevent the whole mat from breaking off with all of your hair.

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Beautiful hair is yours

Step 5

Enjoy gorgeous mat-free hair. Remember to use a leave-in conditioner after washing your hair and never sleep with your hair in a pony tail or a braid. People create dreadlocks by making braids and purposely combing against the braid, so any type of styling that includes this sort of combing will result in a mat.