Finger Detangling – How To Go Comb Free For Natural Or Relaxed Hair

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERAI am the ultimate minimalist. If I could find one product that washed, conditioned and styled my hair all in one I would be a happy girl.

While you may never be able to have just one product in your bathroom cabinet for your entire regimen you could at least work on eliminating a few tools such as the comb and brush.

Finger detangling has been all the craze in recent years because of its proven track record of helping women retain more length and reduce breakage caused by using combs and brushes on fragile strands.

The point of detangling is obviously to remove knots and release shed hair so that you can avoid breaking and snapping caused by your hair strands mixing and mingling each other.

There are two options, dry detangling or wet detangling. Both are equally effective and even though Alma has done an experiment on her own hair to show that wet detangling works better for her, you will have to decide which is best for you.

If you have natural or relaxed hair and you want to transition to finger detangling, here is how:

Dry Detangling Natural Hair

Dry detangling natural hair is time consuming, lets just put that out there from the start, so if you have little time this might not be the best choice. Really the only way to get it done thoroughly and with as little breakage as possible would be to work in very small sections.

The next step is to literally go through the section with your fingers patiently and separate strands removing tangles and releasing the shed hair very slowly.

If you find yourself battling a huge knot or a tangle don’t hesitate to add some oil or conditioner to the section to help provide some slip. Once you have finished the section twist or braid it so that it remains detangled and move on to the next.

I find that doing this with a hot cup of cocoa while watching a good movie instead of in front of a mirror is best.

About Petra

Hi I'm Petra Lomax , a staff writer and editor for . I am Jamaican born and raised and moved to the United States in my early 20's. I have a BA in Political Science and International relations as well as an MBA and a Masters In Project Management. I love travel, culture and anything that has to do with creative media and business.


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  • I’m going to try this because me and combs don’t get along at all, they always break in my hair even the metal ones…

  • I tried.

  • This is me

  • No, I use a paddle brush and twist out usually. The thought of uncombed strands bugs me.

  • I always comb …it makes It more manageable

  • I have to comb my hair

  • This is so me

  • I finger detangle and use a fine comb at the ends

  • I have to comb. I just don’t trust finger detangling for my hair.

  • My hair breaks a lot cz I overdo it. My curls just get so tight! This is why i’ve decided to keep braiding it.

  • A wide tooth comb has always been my go to.

  • Yes I use my fingers and occasionally a Denman. Combs are for parting :)

  • Lol! Sista girl I know the feeling!!!

  • Definitely. It’s probably the best way to detangling my thick natural hair. Separates my curls easier with less yanking. But I also use a big tooth comb also after sometimes

  • type 4 hair and then some detanglers,denemen,brushes,wide tooth,fine tooth,picks,detangeling comb dont work no matter what i still have knots breakage ,comb out in shower,with shampoo,with conditioner,rinse out,leave in cheap products,expensive products help me please

    • Never ever try to detangle wet hair. That makes it worse. If you have tons of breakage you have dead hair you need to say goodbye to. My hair doesn’t get very tangled but when I take braids out I use a mixture of one part acv and the parts water. Spray liberally and detangle in sections. I also just switched my shampoo to Elucence Moisture Benefits and it’s the holy grail for me. I also don’t use brushes, only a wide tooth comb. For reference a pic of my hair

    • thanks your hair looks great. i think i’ll get a good professional trim

  • I start by using my fingers to detangle. Once I apply the Wen Anti Breakage Serum I’m able to use a wide tooth comb. My fingers work best for my transitioning hair.

  • LoL. Finger combing will do nothing for me…I have to untangle with a wide tooth comb

  • Yes…..

  • I recently started finger detangling my relaxed hair in the shower and at first I was skeptical. I tried it and I think I will leave the combs for parting and styling. I love it. The article is right, the water stream works wonders. I lose so much less hair when I wash now. Mechanical damage from combs is real.

  • I have alot of breakage but cant i solve it without saying goodbye to my hair like u Said Chavon

  • I have been finger detangling for the past 4 weeks…haven’t used a comb, brush, nothing. I have noticed a HUGE difference in the health of my hair…especially less shedding and more length retention…it takes a while to get used to but give it a try. I have 4a hair with tiny spiral curls all over my head which would cause the combs/brushes to to rip out my hair.

  • And i finger detangle in sections while my hair is wet to provide slip

  • There is nothing wrong with her hair ….

  • Love this hurr!

  • How you detangle your your hair Optional .i always
    start for the nape of the head with small parts combing hair down .This way work well on all hair texture. Finger or comb

  • Did anyone else scream at the sight of her brushing out these amazing curls???! Gorgeous.

  • I don’t use combs or brushes, just my fingers and my hair has grown faster than in the past. My hair doesn’t tangle too bad and I have very curly hair. Don’t know if I can avoid combs/brushes when my hair grows longer though,.

  • Yes, but I still use a wide tooth comb. Since I’ve been detangling, I don’t lose any hair, just shedded hair..

  • omg that’s how I feel after washing my hair Tiersa NonReplaceable that’s how I broke the comb

  • i always fingercomb the girls hair. I hate tears.

  • I would use a detangler and conditioner with a wide tooth comb. Start at end, not at scalp.

  • Be gentle most of all. It really hurts alot if you are rough.

  • i always comb my 4c hair with no problem my hair #manageable

  • 4abc here. I’ve recently started what I call an “intensive” finger detangling process. I used to do a light finger detangling followed up with a tangle teaser but over time I was starting to see more breakage than I cared for. The new process is going well so far.

  • I finger detangle my hair and my daughter’s hair. I’m still in the TWA stage but my daughter’s hair is down her back. I’ll most likely continue. It really helps my curls pop also.

  • i must comb my hair. finger combing doesnt do it for me

  • Finger combing, wide toothed comb, then regular comb

  • Use your fingers, along with black Jamaican castor oil and it will detangle and moisturize successfully.

  • Finger comb..not an option, detangler juice & wide tooth comb.

  • I use my fingers…no combs!

  • I finger detangle first before washing. Then after my deep conditioning with my hair still saturated in conditioner, I comb thru with a wide tooth shower comb and follow up with the Denman. (Hair sectioned of course)

  • You take your time combing her that’s how

  • I use luster pink hair lotion! Take time comb hair in section my result is fluffy soft hair

  • Finger Comb:) When I finger comb it’s easier to detangle(beautiful textures detangling leave in) there’s more growth & there’s shedding but it’s minimal.I use a comb(wide tooth) hair is everywhere and it sets me waayyy baaaack.Diff strokes for diff folks:)

  • Put. Foot of natural hair more frizzy. Lol because mine more like carpet!!

  • I have 4c hair and have not used a comb in a year. It takes a little patience, but rly works.

  • comb your hair wet :)

  • Getting it Right…..

  • The only time I use a comb (wide only) is in the shower when my hair is conditioning and wet. Then after the first day of wash and go I finger comb a little each day to separate the curls.

  • NO combs for me. My hair HATES them. Even when i start from the ends. (4b)