Those unruly morning tangles in your little girl's hair might make for a comical Instagram moment, but the reality of dealing with the problem is far less appealing. Hair knots and bed head can be brutal to work out. She whines and cries, you struggle not to inflict pain while combing or brushing, and if you manage to get a secure ponytail in place before she leaves for school you consider it a good hair day. Life should be easier. Busy mornings should be less frustrating.
If you've struggled with your little lady's tangles for some time, you've likely tried many pricey products that claim to be the finest solution for tangles and bed head. What you'll discover from the list below is that you likely have ingredients in your bathroom cabinet right now that can help you create a successful and economical detangling treatment or two.
You can untangle your daughter's bed head without spending a fortune. Hair care experts have chimed in below to share their detangling treatments. And real mom tips, gathered via social media investigation, have been collected as evidence of their successes in the war on tangles.
- Work your way up. Beauty expert Cherie Corso, owner of G2 Organics, suggests that parents who struggle with their child's knotty hair should try to tackle the task in steps. “Start brushing from the bottom and work your way up toward the scalp." Trying to comb from the top down is a long and painful journey. Completing the chore in spurts can make it less painfulfor both parent and daughter.
- Go to bed with dry hair. If you shampoo your child's hair right before bedtime, make sure her hair is dry before she hits the hay. Going to bed with a wet head is likely to contribute to your child's crazy hair. Plus, if your girl is an active sleeper, you can bet her hair will be all the more tangled for it.
- Sleep softly. Your daughter's favorite pillowcase may be Wonder Woman, but you're better off reserving the superheroes for her sheets and giving her something a little more refined on which to rest her head. “Use a silk or satin pillowcase to prevent morning bed head," says Susan Renfroe, owner of Roots Southern Salon in Savannah, GA. Why? Cotton pillowcases absorb moisture, while silk and satin maintain the oils in your hair rather than sucking them out. And, more moisture means less frizz and minimal tangles.
- Brush wisely. You may reach for the nearest comb to attend to your daughter's tangles, but choose your detangling tools wisely. With two girls in tow, mom Samantha relies on the Knot Genie. The different lengths of teeth on this easy-to-hold brush bend happily, and gently untangle hair without creating strands full of static. Moms also cast their votes for The Wet Brush for their young ladies to avoid hair breakage and detangling pain.
- Spray Away. Johnson's No More Tangles Detangling Spray is popular among parents. “It's magic in a bottle for wet or dry hair," says dad Chris, whose young daughter's hair is happily tangle-free. Want to make your own detangling treatment? “Add water to conditioner and spray on while the hair is dry," says Corso. This should help your comb or brush glide through more easily.
- The braids have it. Mom of two curly girls and veteran hair-wrangler, Mary says, “Prevention! Loosely braid that hair before bed." To help your braided cause even more, “Apply coconut oil throughout the ends," says Renfroe. You may have a few wild strands to deal with in the morning, but that job is far easier to manage than an entire head adorned with tangles.
- Condition completely. Be mindful of the products you use on your daughter's hair. While you may not be in the gel stage yet, your choice of shampoo and conditioner can make a difference in how your girl's locks look when she wakes up every day. “We use lots of conditioner when we wash her hair," says mom Anne Marie of her young lady.
- Succumb. When you and your daughter are in no mood to fight the tangles, give in and work with what you have in front of you. “For my mop-top, long-haired daughter – if she lets me touch it – I do a messy bun," says Lauren, mom of two girls. And it helps to have a sense of humor about the nest of hair that greets you every morning. Another two-girl mom, Kelly says, “I often consider dreads. Why fight it?"