Many of us have had the experience of sitting in-between either our mother’s, aunt’s, grandmother’s, or even babysitter’s legs to get our hair “done.” And, for most, the experience was not always a pleasant one.
There is an easy way to make the experience of detangling/washing a child’s hair a pleasant one. The very first thing to do is set aside time. It is the first, essential step to styling hair in general. When you set time aside, you will not have to rush through the process, which means less breakage and a better overall experience.
Next, make sure you have all of your tools ready. This is a simple but important step because, as we all know, it is hard enough to get a child willing to sit down so you can style their hair, and if you are not prepared and have to keep getting up to look for tools the child is going to get up as well and this will prolong the process.
Tools you will need:
- Wide-Tooth Comb (some may prefer a brush like the Denman)
- Spray Bottle (filled with water and/or essential oil or leave-in conditioner)
- Plastic Hair Clips or Elastic—no metal bands.
I find that the best way to detangle natural hair is to do so when it is wet. If the hair is dry, use the spray bottle to wet sections before combing. Also before wetting, first use your fingers to smooth out previously braided or twisted hair and to work out knots.
Start detangling from the back of the head and work your way up. Remember, always start from the ends and work your way to the roots, while firmly holding each section of the hair with one hand as you gently detangle with the other. This way the child will not feel their hair being pulled while you detangle—this will also cause less breakage. After each section is detangled, either braid the section or separate using the plastic clips or elastic bands.
To make the experience more enjoyable and less stressful, find ways to keep the child entertained while they are getting their hair detangled and/or styled ,i.e. put on their favorite DVD, ask them to read you a book, or get them to tell you a story or about their friends at school. This will keep their mind occupied and off of the detangling/styling process, and before they know if you will be done.
If you follow these steps, and feel free to tweak them by adding your own tools or ideas, the detangling process will be a great experience for you as well. You will be surprised how eager the child will be when you tell them it’s time to get their hair “done.”
Check out the video below to see the steps in action!
– Laquita Thomas – Banks