I've been through the ringer lately with my hair. It's textured, fine, dry, and often over-processed. I've tried just about everything to revive it back to health. So when an email came through my inbox, one that warns about the dangers of combing your hair, I froze. Could this be the reason my hair continues to break? I thought as I read through.
As it turns out, there's absolutely a correct way to comb your hair and, as suspected, I haven't been doing it. You probably already know your hair is in its most delicate state when it's wet—that's why so many hairstylists warn against brushing it until it dries. But it's a part of my routine that I'm not quite ready to give it up. So what to do?
"It's vital to detangle from the bottom up, starting at your ends not your scalp. This is called the 'bottoms-up' method," says Fernando Salas, creator of White Sands Haircare. "When you comb hair from the bottom up, you are working with less surface area to untangle at one time," explains Salas. "Working in smaller sections like this is key. When you try to comb from the top down, think of how much hair you are attempting to pull a comb through at one time. It's not going to work."
For extra protection, make sure to pair this technique with a wide-tooth comb like Mason Pearson's Rake Comb ($35) and leave-in conditioner (these are our favorites) and invest in a protein mask to rebuild and a hydrating option to protect. When you comb, start at the bottom and work your way up—making sure to be extra gentle on your ends. That's where breakage comes from (believe me, I know).
FYI: Here's the truth about sleeping with wet hair.