Dry Hair Creates Single Strand Knots, Tangles and Fairy Knots

05/22/2013 | By | More

Have you noticed tiny knots at the ends of your natural hair? Why do those horrid little knots in just one strand of hair often appear? How did they get there? We know for sure that we didn’t do it! Oh, yes a little fairy must have. Their small enough for one to have been guilty of such an act!

If you’ve experienced these common irritants, you’re not alone. These tiny knots are known as “fairy knots”, because of how small they are. Fairy knots are knots that appear on single strands close to the ends of natural hair. They can be caused by frequent wear of free styles, such as braid outs, twist outs, and fros. They are also caused by other factors such as failing to seal your ends at night, using a comb in dry natural hair, etc. Some even say that these little knots are “split ends.”

Fairy knots are a natural occurrence in naturally curly/kinky hair. They are caused by the hair having a tight curl pattern which results in the hair wrapping around itself resulting in a tiny single strand knot. The following can help alleviate these pesky single strand/fairy knots from appearing:

  • Moisturize and seal your ends every night with Shea butter, mango butter, Jojoba oil or a whip of butter and oil
  • Don’t ever comb dry natural hair; comb only when your hair is very wet and saturated with a good conditioner that provides “slip”
  • If your hair tangles and knots easily, wear protective styles frequently
  • Always tie your hair down at night with a satin scarf or bonnet to prevent matting and tangles
  • Condition frequently – every time you wash


These  tips will reduce the frequency of fairy knots. Natural hair wearers will still get single strand knots from time to time because of your hair’s natural curl pattern.

If you see these knots appear in your hair, just take a pair of hair shears and cut them out. It’s best to do it once you notice them at the ends because if left untreated the hair will continue to knot up from the ends up, causing what could become some severe breakage.

You can Also Include These Styling Tips

  1. Clean out combs and hair brushes weekly with hot water and antibacterial soap;
  2. Detangle gently with a wide tooth comb, starting at the ends and working your way up the strand;
  3. Continually rid hands of shedding hair during styling (have paper towels on hand to remove hair);
  4. Scoop out the amount you think you need for single use of styling products or butters with a clean spoon, and put it in a separate container. This keeps your primary container of product free from hair and bacteria which may be transferred into the container from your fingers.

By following these last tips during styling removal of excess hair will help you to further avoid single strand knots, or fairy knots!

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Category: Styling

About the Author ()

Blogger, writer, relationships/dating expert, fitness trainer and natural hair enthusiast since 1997. Sharing information from grandmomma, books and scientific journals, as well as my personal discoveries and experiences with natural hair as we journey from relaxers, flat irons and weaves together.

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