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Update on the Knottiness

April 26, 2010

Remember a few posts back when I blamed my pashminas for the abundance

Me in a pashmina

of knots I was discovering at the back of my neck?  Well, my resolution was to give up my pashminas for a week to see if they were in fact causing the mess in the kitchen.  It’s been over a week now and while my neck is cold, Lola is *significantly* less naughty, er…knotty.

So, while I would love to just end it there and blame my addiction to cashmere neck gear for the knots, I can’t because I’ve thought of another factor that might be to blame.

Back in early February, I wrote a post on my discovery of my curly hair.  I attributed the arrival of these boing-boing curls to my giving up of combing my hair with an actual comb and only using my fingers to do the job of detangling.

I never liked the practice of combing through my hair:  it takes forEVER and I always feel like I’m snapping my hair off.  Plus I noticed that my hair doesn’t really get that tangled so why go through the trouble if I didn’t have to?  Long story short, I haven’t used a comb since January.

The issue is that combs aren’t just for combing through tangles.  They are key in removing shed hairs.  On average, a person loses about 100 strands of hair a day.  I have an above average amount of hair, so I shed way more than that.  If I’m not combing thoroughly and diligently, those shed hairs will just sit there and cause trouble.  What kind of trouble?  KNOTS.  And the truth is, I haven’t been too diligent about getting these shed hairs out.  Because I only co-wash my hair about once a week, that means that there are about 500 strands of loose hair chillin’ amongst the Lolitas and that just stuck, tangled, and knot up the healthy and not-yet-shedded coils.

Last Wednesday, during the Pashmina Fast, I decided to give Lola a good finger detangling and worked really hard to get all those shed hairs out.  The key to finger combing and detangling is to do it with a lot of conditioner and work your fingers through in small sections, from tip to the root.  While it may just be tempting to snap knots apart (you know what I mean because we’ve ALL done it), DON’T. That’s just breaking your hair and will cause more trouble in the end.  When I come across a tangle, I work a little more conditioner in there between two fingers and let it sit for a few seconds to let more product get in there and (for lack of a better word) lube it up.  Then I can just gently pull the individual strands out of the knot.  This takes patience, but it’s so much more gentle than combing.  I do this using a conditioner that has a good slip, like Trader Joe’s Tea Tree Tingle or Suave Natural Coconut Conditioner (both of these are great because all this finger combing requires a lot of conditioner and both of these are super cheap!)

So this past week, after my really good finger combing, focused on detangling and de-shed-hairing, I could INSTANTLY feel a difference.  My curls were more defined than usual, especially at the roots.  And since then, I haven’t had ANY knots.  Nada.  Zilch.  Zero.

So whodunit?  The scarves?  The shed hairs?  My guess is probably both.  I think that I can make a return to the scarves IF and only if I remain on top of getting those shed hairs out once a week.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. April 26, 2010 5:50 pm

    Girl…who you tellin’ about tangles…you are much more patient than me, though. I got a new Denman and called it a day.

  2. Fatemeh permalink
    April 26, 2010 9:14 pm

    So how do co-wash?

  3. Thiago permalink
    April 27, 2010 2:08 pm

    combs are evil

  4. May 2, 2010 6:47 pm

    I’m glad you found another potential reason. At least now those scarves won’t get lonely or your neck too cold.

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