I often come across wom­en who tell me they can’t keep their hair in its nat­u­ral tex­ture because it’s near­ly impos­si­ble to comb and can be very painful. “Oh, my hair breaks combs” they tell me. Then they ask me “How do you comb your hair?” My respon­se is sim­ple, “I don’t comb my hair” (not unless I absolute­ly have to, which isn’t often).

I mean are you kid­ding me? You expect me to wake up every­day and try to fight a comb through this mane? No way! Not unless I want to go bald!

So you don’t comb your hair at all?
I remem­ber I nev­er combed my hair dry when it was in a TWA (teeny weeny afro), I co-washed few times a week and then applied a leave-in con­di­tion­er pri­or to comb­ing. On days that I don’t wash my hair, I would sim­ply spritz it with water, apply a leave-in (e.g. Gio­van­ni Direct Leave-in Con­di­tion­er) and then comb. To me, this was the only rea­son­able way to glide a comb through my strands in a pain free man­ner.

How to real­ly comb your nat­u­ral hair with­out pain 
Many black wom­en are used to apply­ing just any type of grease on their dry hair pri­or to comb­ing, because they believe it makes their hair soft­er and easy to comb. I use to try this method and the only result I got was an oily and dry head of hair!

Tools Need­ed: Spray Bot­tle, Wide Tooth Comb

Prod­ucts Need­ed: Rin­se out con­di­tion­er

So, if you are tired of fight­ing a comb through your hair and want to decrease break­age and elim­i­nate pain, make sure to prac­tice the­se 5 steps.

1) Wet Hair in the show­er and then apply a mois­tur­iz­ing con­di­tion­er (e.g. As I Am Coconut Co-Wash Cleans­ing Con­di­tion­er)

2) Allow some min­utes for the con­di­tion­er to work it’s way through each strand, then comb (using a large tooth comb) con­di­tion­er through the hair in small sec­tions, start­ing from the ends to the roots.
3) Rin­se out con­di­tion­er, wring out water in hair and let it dry to about 50–60%, make sure water isn’t drip­ping from your hair
4) Apply a leave-in con­di­tion­er and then seal this in with a hair but­ter or oil
5) Now you can comb your hair using a large tooth comb. Make sure to take your time and comb in small­er sec­tions start­ing from the ends to the roots. Style as you wish

Ladies, how do you comb with­out pain?

Adeola @ The Mane Captain

A Toron­to based nat­u­ral hair blog­ger. Born & half raised in Nige­ria, and now cur­rent­ly resid­ing in Canada. To keep busy, I fre­quent my local library where I go to bor­row non fic­tion books, par­tic­u­lar­ly per­son­al and spir­i­tu­al devel­op­ment books. I also orga­nize Toron­to nat­u­ral hair events, attend mee­tup groups and I’m work­ing hard to be a poly­glot.

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7 Comments on "How to Comb Kinky, 4C Hair Without Pain"

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E.C. from D.C.

I usu­al­ly fin­ger comb but I might pick up a wide tooth comb/large tooth comb soon.

C2C

I need to find some great detan­gling prod­ucts because my cur­rent method is awful. It lit­er­al­ly takes me 2 days to detan­gle (about 16 hours). I cause it on myself, though. I let my hair dry and don’t ful­ly rin­se all of the con­di­tion­er out, which caus­es exces­sive knots and tan­gles. Going to wash it by the end of the week. Wish me luck!

Ugonna Wosu

Best method for me. Sec­tion hair. Use spray bot­tle, with most­ly water, some oil, some con­di­tion­er inside. Spray each sec­tion you’re about to detan­gle, to the point of drenching/dripping. That’s usu­al­ly about 6–8 sprays for me, then comb from the bot­tom up. My hair needs to be wet.

Kaila Smith

As I Am Coconut Co-Wash Cleans­ing Con­di­tion­er is LIFE! I brought that with me when I moved to Chi­na and I’m sooo glad I did! It def­i­nite­ly makes it eas­ier when it comes to detan­gling 4c hair

V.M

In the show­er, with lots of water and lots of con­di­tion­er. Grow­ing up, my hair would break combs too when my moth­er was comb­ing it. But that’s because she was being so damn rough, and comb­ing my hair dry. *sigh* If only they knew then what we know now…

Alexious Johnson

I no longer comb my hair!! Not even in the show­er for the past year, I exclu­sive­ly use my fin­gers!!! I have noticed that my hair has become sig­nif­i­cant­ly more dense as a result…

MrZazzles

I sham­poo week­ly and cow­ash as need­ed, which is about once or twice a week, depend­ing on pro­duct build up. I use a widetoothed comb dur­ing the final rin­se, under the show­er water. After that, I use my fin­gers to fluff. I do just enough to keep out tan­gles and that’s it. So I guess I only REALLY comb from ends to root 2–3 times a week. Works for me.

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