5 Easy Steps To Quickly Detangle Type 4 Hair Before Cleansing

5 Easy Steps To Quickly Detangle Type 4 Hair Before Cleansing

Alright guys, so today I thought about bringing you some detangling tips for type 4 hair. Now, I don’t like breaking hair into hair types cause I feel that’s not the most important characteristic, however, I feel that when it comes to how easy or difficult detangling your hair can be, hair type can make a difference.



Type four hair is tightly coiled and has an “S” or “Z” shape, but it can also have difficulty clumping together (no defined curl pattern) without the help of some styling technique and product. Additionally, shrinkage can be insane for this hair type, sometimes above 75%, meaning your curly hair gets really intertwined and detangling can become a real challenge for these ladies making the need to embody the patience and serenity of Mother Teresa of Calcutta a real necessity.


I have given a few tips here on this blog about detangling, but I have to admit that these are more geared to my own type 3 hair. Not wanting to leave any of you out, in case my tips weren’t enough or didn’t fit your situation, today I’m writing this post for chicas with type 4 hair. However, if you’re a type 3 gal and feel these tips will also help you come on a join the party, the more the merrier! Hopefully, these tips will slice your detangling time in half and your patience won’t be dented.


As with everything in life, people will do the same thing differently and with detangling type 4 hair, the same thing applies. However, I have noticed throughout my “natural hair education” that there is a predominant pattern on how type 4 hair can best be detangled. The information compiled here can also be applied to extremely tangled or matted hair. Interested in having a few more tips? Yeah, why not!? Ok, let’s get started then.




Yes, water is what our curly mane craves for and it’s the first thing you’ll want to reach for in your pre-cleansing detangling session. While there is some discussion on whether detangling is better done on wet or dry hair (more on this on an upcoming post) in this instance and for the purpose of detangling type 4 hair, you only need to dampen your hair. Why? Well, because it will help your hair to become more pliable and manageable avoiding stressful hair pulling and unnecessary breakage.


Although water is the main star in this first step, there are some variations you can make here. You can spritz your hair with plain water or you can do the following mixing combinations. Just remember that this solution will be watery.

  1. Water + Vegetable Oil
  2. Water + Aloe Vera
  3. Water + Conditioner




Sectioning your hair is an unavoidable practice in any natural hair regimen, you need to do it to cleanse, detangle or style your hair. Now that you hair is damp it will be easier to separate your hair into four or more parts, so you can work on each section separately. As you are parting your hair, you can gently pass your finger through your hair and remove any shed hairs (this is totally up to you).


Some people like to start with this step and then spritz their hair with water, but I believe doing it this way will avoid hair breakage.




In this third step, you need to apply a product on your hair that will provide slip and facilitate detangling. As with step number one, you can use different things to do this as long as they’ll help melt the knots and tangles on your hair. Apply working section by section.  You can use:

  1. Detangler like Shea Moisture Extra Moisture Detangler.
  2. Vegetable Oil or Oil Mix (similarly to the ones you use to pre-poo or seal your hair).
  3. Conditioner like Tresemme Naturals.
  4. Vegetable Oil and Conditioner Mix.
  5. Vegetable Oil + Conditioner separately.


With option number five you don’t mix them together to apply on your hair. No. You apply the oil first and then your conditioner.


Once you finish applying the conditioner to a section gently start detangling your hair from tips to root. Don’t forget that while transitioning to natural hair your demarcation line, as well as the ends of your hair are the most fragile and easiest parts to break, therefore, you need to be gentle when detangling. Use your fingers or wide tooth comb, alternatively, start by finger detangling and finish off with the comb (some people like to use a Denman brush) to make sure there are no knots and tangles left. Remove all shed hair.




Now that your hair is all detangled, twist it or braid it to keep it from clumping again and forming new knots and tangles. If you don’t want to do braids and twists, you can use hair clamps to keep your hair sectioned and tangle free.  You have now officially detangled your type 4 hair! Quite simple isn’t it? Here’s is a small video from GlamorousLife328 showing you her detangling process.

You can now head over to the shower and continue with your washing routine tackling each section at a time. Alternatively, you can take this opportunity and cover your hair with a plastic cap for 30 minutes and do like a mini pre-poo/conditioning session for 30 minutes, and then wash your tresses as usual. Your hair will thank you for it!


What techniques do you use to detangle your hair?

Share your tips with others below!

Featured Image Credit: Hawkrising_ The natural (license).

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