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How to Prevent Hair Tangles in Fine, Straight Hair While Sleeping

June 15, 2022

4 Min read

We all know the sinking feeling of running late and realizing you never dealt with that giant tangle on the back of your head. Do you violently brush it out and lose half your hair? Or do you throw your hair up in a tragic bun? Don’t settle just yet, there is a third option! Knowing how to prevent hair tangles starts with understanding why we wake up with messy hair in the first place. A few culprits could be: 

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  • You’re going to bed with wet hair!
  • Your hair is rubbing against your pillowcase at night, causing friction and tangles.
  • Your hair isn’t contained, which allows it to twist up in all directions. 
  • Your hair is dry or damaged and susceptible to matting. 


Why does it matter? Well besides saving you a bunch of time and stress in the mornings, knowing how to prevent tangles means less untangling, which can easily cause split ends and hair breakage. Brushing contributes to a whole lot of hair damage, so the less the better.

How to prevent hair tangles at night

1. Completely dry your hair before bed

Water molecules are attracted to themselves, so it makes sense that wet hairs would cling to each other. If you’ve ever come out of a shower or pool without brushing, you know that your hair seems to twist itself into impossible knots. Add in the fact that your hair rubs against a pillow at night? Your strands don’t stand a chance! Speaking of which, hair follicles are weakest when wet.That means that any friction generated against the pillowcase can do more damage on wet hair than dry hair. Not to mention, your hair could dry in some crazy shapes!

2.  Brush through your hair with a soft brush

The best way to prevent tangles at night time is to get out any preexisting ones. As mentioned, brushing your hair can contribute to breakage and split ends, so switching out a plastic bristle for a softer bristle can lessen the intensity. Soft bristle brushes, such as a boar bristle brush, are especially good at distributing oils from your scalp through your ends, so this method comes with the added bonus of extra shine and natural hydration. If tangles are really bad, refrain from hacking away at them with any kind of brush. Gently pull strands out of the tangle with your hands until you get to a point where you can brush it out. Always start brushing from the ends of your hair and work your way up, that way you don’t push tangles downward into one giant, monster knot.

3.  Put your hair in a braid or loose bun using a silk scrunchie

The biggest reason why our hair mats up at night is simply that it’s left loose and not contained. Tying your hair up in a way that doesn’t interfere with the way you rest your head is the easiest and most effective way to prevent tangles. Braiding is a great option, and the waves the next morning are either a pro or con depending on what look you’re going for. If you want to keep things straight, throw your hair up in a loose bun on the crown of your head. Anything lower might be uncomfortable to sleep on. However you contain your hair, make sure you use a silk scrunchie to minimize possible breakage from a tight hair tie.

4. Sleep on a silk pillowcase

While you’re getting silk scrunchies, try out a silk pillowcase as well! Smooth surfaces mean less friction, which means less tugging and twisting hair. Synthetic fabrics, and even cotton, are rougher on hair which can contribute to frizziness, damage, and yes, those tangles. Benefits of a silk pillowcase also extend to your skin for the same reason (less tugging) so this tangle prevention technique is actually doing double work.

5. Make sure your hair is properly moisturized

Because dry or brittle hair tangles easily, one of the most basic tricks to prevent tangled hair at night is to use products that strengthen and moisturize your strands. And what’s better for your hair than a custom haircare routine formulated by specialists to address your unique needs and goals? That’s a rhetorical question. Using haircare like Prose means you can fortify your hair for whatever the night time brings, and wake up with healthier hair every morning.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lee Phillips is a freelance New York based storyteller across mediums. With a BFA in writing from The New School, Phillips uses language to convey her personal truths and imagine new worlds in fiction, poetry, screen writing and non-fiction. Her non-fiction can be found in office Magazine, CryBaby Zine, Period Space, Chanel Void, Editorial Magazine, 10011 Magazine and includes editorial work for brands. Her creative writing is published in Unvaeled Journal, Rookie Magazine, and her poetry book, “Nowhere Words,”  published in September of 2020.  In all of her work, she believes in creating content that engages viewers through shared experience and authentic narratives, rather than elitism or insecurity. Follow her instagram @c.har.lee for more.

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