How To Detangle Matted Hair After Removing Braids

Many women believe that detangling matted and knotted hair after braids must be done at a salon or that there’s no way to avoid the pain commonly associated with it. This is actually not true. There are ways for you to detangle your matted home at home, pain-free. Keep reading to find out how.

The best way to detangle matted hair after removing your braids is to either use your fingers or a wide-tooth comb so as not to damage your curls or cause too much strain on your hair. If you get too stubborn areas, just add a few drops of a natural oil or spritz a mixture of conditioner and water to add slip to your hair so you can detangle it.

Keep reading to find out how to prepare your hair before you remove your braids, as well as how to deal with matted hair knots and tangles after removing braids!

How To Prep Your Hair Before Removing Your Braids

Removing your braids requires some serious energy and persistence because if you rush the process (and pull too hard on your hair) you risk hair breakage. 

Keep Your Braids Clean

As far as keeping your braids clean while they’re still in, hairstylists suggest that it’s imperative to prepare your hair before it is cleansed by using an antiseptic oil, similar to tea tree or peppermint, to relieve your scalp. After that, it’s recommended that you use a fine-tooth comb to get rid of any buildup of dandruff, flakes, or product development.

A fine-tooth comb such as a rat tail comb works best when removing buildup, especially if your hair is still braided, as you can use the tail to move in between the braids and get rid of any flakes that may be noticeable on the top of your hair shaft or between your braids. 

To get rid of build-up when removing your braids, hairstylists suggest applying some loose pressure or even washing hair gently with water to hydrate the hair that was concealed, before you shampoo. After that, take a wide-tooth comb and gently detangle from your ends to the roots of your hair, working towards the shaft of your scalp. As you detangle, you can go in and get rid of a ton of that dead hair and product development.

Using a wide-tooth comb to detangle will help you get rid of any dead hair and product development without damaging your natural hair or using too much pressure and gradually eliminates whatever dirt, grime, and dandruff need to be taken care of before you wash your hair so that you have no detangling issues.

Work your fingers or a wide-tooth comb through any knots and pull tangled hair apart. If you encounter stubborn knots and tangles, use a natural oil or sprits, a mixture of conditioner, and water on the affected areas to give them some slip so you can continue detangling. Try not to saturate or soak your hair now, and don’t be shocked if you happen to notice oily flakes in the product development.

Products To Help You Detangle Your Matted Hair After Braids

Using A Hair Conditioner

You can either put a drop of hair conditioner directly on the knots and tangles or you can opt for the less messy option of creating a mixture of conditioner and water in a spritz bottle and spritz your hair with the mixture to add slip whilst you detangle.

Any hair conditioner will do, however, one that is specifically made for tangles is ideal. Work the conditioner into the tangles and knots by rubbing it in with your fingers, being mindful so as not to pull on the hair as this may tighten the knots.

After that, take a wide-tooth comb or pick, and, beginning from the bottom of the knot, brush your hair strands out of the knot. Try not to move up the knot until you’ve gotten detangled the bottom part of the knot. Show restraint; it will take some effort and time to get through the knot. However, the conditioner will moisturize and hydrate the hair’s strands and make detangling the knot simpler than if you hadn’t added any conditioner.

Repeat this process with a brush that has finer teeth (bristles) to ensure the knot or tangle is totally gone.

Using Household Items

How To Safely Remove Dirt Build Up From Braids & Twists And Detangle Matted Hair

Now and again knots and tangles are brought about by something getting in the hair, similar to buildup from residue. If you happen to need to get out this sort of knot, first try taking a couple of ice cubes and getting the substance in the knot cold so that it can freeze. Disintegrate the substance with your fingers after it’s frozen and afterward use a hair conditioner to break up the rest and use a wide-tooth comb to get the knot out.

Mayonnaise, peanut butter, and vinegar can also help you to break up specific substances or dirt that get in the hair or can cut the dirty oil that might be keeping your hair in knots. All you need to do is rub these on the knot and tangles, leave in for a couple of moments, brush out the knot (leave the mayo or other substance you’re utilizing in while you work so it can continue to grease up and add slip to your hair), and afterward wash it out.

My personal favourite way of detoxing my hair to get all the dirt and grime and buildup out after having had my hair in braids for weeks, is an apple cider vinegar rinse. This is how:

Step 01: Remove your braids

Step 02: In a bucket or basin add 2 cups of water and 4 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar (adjust accordingly depending on how deep your bucket or basin is)

Step 03: Apply 5 drops of tea tree oil or rosemary oil to the bucket or basin and mix the mixture together

Step 04: Submerge your hair into the bucket or basin completely, ensuring that your scalp is also saturated (you may require some additional help)

Step 05: Let your hair soak for up to 3 minutes to cleanse your scalp and hair and soften any build-up that has matted your hair so you can easily comb it out. Sometimes the build-up will dissolve in the water

Pro Tip: You can leave your hair to soak for longer if you have stubborn knots and tangles, but ensure that you do not exceed 8 minutes. Also, thoroughly rinse your hair out with cool water to get the apple cider vinegar out, rinse it twice if need be.


Hey, I’m Jodie, the gal behind CraftyHairHacks. I have a deep passion for hair extensions, hairstyles, and almost anything that has to do with hair, which leads me to the writing and research I do for this website daily. Our site is still small, however, we’re pushing to get the best hair hacks out to as many as people as possible. ENJOY!

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