How To Get Rid Of Fairy Knots Once And For All

Let’s set the scene; it’s wash day, and you’re trying to finger detangle your newly cleaned tresses. Every once and a while (or maybe a little more often than that), your fingers stumble across a frustrating finding, a small knot at the end of some of your strands. You’ve got fairy knots. 

What Is A Fairy Knot? 


Trichonodosis (or fairy knots) are created when the ends of your hair tangle up on themselves. Instead of knotting with another strand, they create a self contained knot. While all hair types experience single strand knots, they are most common with coily hair such as 4b or 4c hair. Once the hair strand knots, it’s impossible to undo. So unfortunately, the answer to “how to get rid of fairy knots” is to cut them off. But before you throw up your hands and surrender to the fairy knots, here’s a list of five ways you can prevent them. 

Keep Your Hair Moisturized

First and foremost, keeping your hair moisturized should be a top priority for multiple reasons. In the case of the dreaded fairy knot, keeping your hair moisturized makes it less likely to tangle in general. Dry, damaged hair is where knots thrive. So getting ahead of it with a solid moisture routine is a must. 

Seal Those Ends 

This tip is closely related to the last one; when your ends are moisturized, they’re less likely to tangle into knots. By sealing your ends, specifically with a heavier butter or cream, it weighs the ends of your hair down and creates a slick protective barrier, thus preventing the strands from tangling around itself. 

Keep Your Hair Stretched

As much as we all love a good wash and go, unfortunately they create the ideal environment for fairy knot formation. When your hair shrinks, the coils overlap and intersect. So single strand knots are pretty much inevitable, especially if you’re already prone to them. We suggest stretching your hair after washes. Stretching prevents your ends from tangling up. 

You could go for twist or braid outs, african threading, bunning, bantu knots. The options are endless. 

Try Finger Detangling

If you don’t do this already, we highly recommend you incorporate finger detangling into your routine. For one, combs and other styling tools sometimes have a tendency to make damage worse. And it’s that damage that makes fairy knots more prevalent. Finger detangling is a more gentle process. It also allows you the change to undo some potential knots before they tighten to the point of no return. It takes a little longer but with a little patience, you can do it! 

Protective Styling

When in doubt, don’t wear your hair out! Braid it up, twist it up, bun it up, whatever it takes to keep your ends tucked away and safe. If your ends are protected, they can’t create knots. Remember to avoid tight braids that can cause tension and breakage on your edges and nape. Also, remember to take down your style gently and within a reasonable timeframe so you can effectively condition and cleanse your hair.  If you’re not sure what protective style you want to try, take a look at this article: 10 Stunning Protective Hairstyles You’ll Want To Try This Year. 

Do you have any other tips on how to prevent fairy knots? Share some in the comments. 

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