How To Prevent Single Strand Knots
Single Strand Knots or fairy knots are one of the most frustrating challenges a natural hair wearer will face. These micro knots plague anyone with naturally curly hair – the curlier the hair, the more prevalent the single strand knots. As such, if you have tightly coiled 4C hair, it’s it almost guaranteed that single strand knots will be part of your day-to-day goings on with your hair. This is not to say that other curly hair types do not experience single strand knot – in fact this could not be further from the truth.
Why Do We Get Single Strand Knots?
Single strand knots are an inherent characteristic of curly hair. Due to the nature of curly hair, it has the tendency to coil around it self causing a micro knot to form on a single strand of hair.
10 Ways to Prevent Single Strand Knots
The first thing to accept is that single strand knots will occur if your hair is coily. It is just part and parcel with curly hair territory. There are some methods however that can be used to help minimize single strand knots. Keep reading…
- Cut them out – Single strand knots if left unattended, can potentially cause more damage to your hair, by causing snags and stress points in your hair. Cutting the single strand knot out is the surefire way to get rid of them. As you come across a single strand knot, just nip it out with a sharp hair scissors. You can also use the Search and Destroy method to get rid of the little nuisances.
- Unravel them – this is not for the faint of heart as it requires an incredible amount of patience and preciseness. I’d rather just cut them out, but if you have time on your hands, feel free to unravel them.
- Stretch your hair – Shrinkage is a recipe for single strand knots as it allows the hair to intertwine on itself. By minimizing the shrinkage you can help minimize single strand knots. Stretch you hair by twisting, braiding or blow drying so that your hair does not have the opportunity to coil around itself.
- Minimize wash and gos – While wash and gos are superb for the TWA, as you hair grows, wash and gos become the playground for single strand knots as they allow the hair to shrink, tangle and knot. Sorry ladies but your wash and go must go if you experience excessive tangling and knotting from wearing them.
- Shampoo and detangle properly – Don’t attempt to wash your hair as one big mass. Separate your hair into four sections, twist each section and shampoo each section separately. Detangling will allow you to remove shed hairs and tangles. Be sure to use a conditioner suitable for your hair type that has lots of slip such as SheScentit Avocado Conditioner. Detangle in small sections using a wide-tooth comb.
- Moisturize – Dry hair in my experience is another breeding ground for single strand knots. Ensure that you are using a water based moisturizer daily followed by an oil to seal. Suitable oils include avocado oil, coconut oil. Adjust your moisture regimen according to the seasons – for example in the dry winters you will need a moisturizer that packs a greater punch than in the summer months which can be very humid. Lastly, don’t forget your daily dose of water. This is not only important for your hair but for your skin and bodily functions too.
- Trim as often as needed – Often times natural hair wearers don’t feel that it is important to trim their ends. This could not be further from the truth. You don’t need to have a set schedule for trimming but be able to recognize when those ends need to go! Rough cuticles and split ends encourage single strand knots. Trimming can help ensure your cuticles are smooth and less likely to single strand knot.
- Wear protective styles – The less your hair is exposed, the less likely it is to single strand knot. Buns, bantu knots, braids, twists, cornrows are all great ways to protective style your hair.
- Wear a TWA – If you have had it with the single strand knots, you can opt to wear a shorter hairstyle. Short hair is usually not long enough to wrap around itself. I never experienced single strand knots when I was sporting my TWA.
- Protect Hair While Sleeping – Going to bed on loose hair is a recipe for matted knots in the morning! Be sure to twist hair into sections and wear a satin wrap or scarf to bed. You can also choose to use a satin pillowcase to protect your hair from friction.