PDA

View Full Version : Chemically dry hair should be brushed while wet



Sylvanas
May 15th, 2010, 11:14 AM
Or so this Norwegian article about how to brush your hair says: http://www.klikk.no/mote/skjonnhet/article574717.ece

I've added the link so those who understand Norwegian can read it, but for those who don't, I'll do my best to translate.


Brush while the hair is wet

Hair is at its weakest when it's wet, and therefore many people will tell you not to brush until it's dry. However, this is not true for all hairtypes.

If the hair is chemically dry, it should be brushed while wet, with a deep-treatment hair mask or a leave-in product applied. Chemically dry hair is crispy(porous), and will break if brushed when dry.

I'm not sure what to make of this. On one hand it makes sense, cause if the hair is wet and slippery enough, I can slide a comb through it no problem. No matter how carefully I brush when my hair has airdried, there are still a few tangles, and the brush only glides through easily after I've already brushed it to get the tangles out.

It would be interesting to hear your opinions and thoughts on this, as I've never heard anyone mention brushing while wet as the best and least damaging option.

Burgundyhair
May 15th, 2010, 11:43 AM
I always use a wide tooth comp or my denman when my hair is wet and full of conditioner. I don't touch it other wise. I also finger comb/detangle when wet only.

I have curly and porous hair. Double whammy!

Quixii
May 15th, 2010, 11:53 AM
I don't know about chemically dry hair, but a lot of curlies only brush/comb when wet/with conditioner because combs or brushes rip apart curls, which probably causes more damage than detangling while the hair is wet and straight-ish.

Sylvanas
May 15th, 2010, 12:11 PM
Yes, I've read that most curly girls (and gents) brush while wet, as brushing while dry is almost impossible for some, and ruins the curl pattern for others. I've just never heard anyone say "I do this because it's less damaging", it's always more along the lines of "I know brushing while wet is bad, but it's the only way I can get a comb through my hair".

I've decided to experiment with this a bit, and see what happens if I stick with wet combing for a longer period of time. Maybe I can end up saying "I brush while wet because it's less damaging" :D

I'm very interested to hear from people with different hairtypes. The article said it's not the best option for everyone, so I'm guessing there must be people who feel brushing while wet does nothing for their hair.

Underlig
May 15th, 2010, 12:23 PM
I comb my hair when it's wet with conditioner in it. It's not because I can't comb it otherwise, I can and I do. And I wouldn't really call my hair dry either. It's just one of those things I prefer to do. I guess maybe it feels like the conditioner coats all my hair better if I do? Either way, it does eliminate the tangles I'd have when it dries, even though they're not many either way.

Nera
May 15th, 2010, 12:59 PM
Definately makes sense to me! I always brush my hair when wet, and i have dry porous hair.

Snowcold
May 15th, 2010, 03:12 PM
I always brush when wet, my hair just dries so much prettier when doing that. Besides, it never caused me any damage. It causes me more damage to dry the whole tangled thing and then brush it! Ouch!

And yes, my hair is chemically died, so that could be it.

SimplyViki
May 15th, 2010, 03:14 PM
What do they mean by "chemically dry" hair?

Sylvanas
May 15th, 2010, 03:29 PM
What do they mean by "chemically dry" hair?

I assume they mean hair that is dry due to chemical damage, as opposed to virgin hair that is a bit on the dry side naturally. They did specify "chemically dry" in the article, but I'm not sure if it's really that different from naturally dry hair :confused:

Kathie
May 15th, 2010, 03:32 PM
I wouldn’t! My bleached hair is kind of stretchy when wet. If I brushed it would stretch and break... The mental image sends shivers down my spine. Its much stronger when its dry.

Overall it doesn’t get brushed much- just combed with a wide-tooth comb.

Sylvanas
May 15th, 2010, 03:38 PM
I wouldnít! My bleached hair is kind of stretchy when wet. If I brushed it would stretch and break... The mental image sends shivers down my spine. Its much stronger when its dry.

Overall it doesnít get brushed much- just combed with a wide-tooth comb.

The same is true for me, but if I make sure it's completely covered in conditioner or a hair mask, I can comb through it without any trouble. It won't stretch then. If I were to just comb while wet after rinsing the conditioner out I'd probably just end up snapping the hair.

Have you tried combing it with the conditioner on, and if so - did it still feel more fragile than when dry? :)

FrannyG
May 15th, 2010, 03:44 PM
This must be a hair-type thing. The bottom 6 inches of my hair is more chemically damaged and porous than the rest of my hair, and there is no way that I would have less breakage if I brushed or combed my hair when wet, even if soaked in conditioner.

When I first joined LHC my hair was also damaged and porous. One of the biggest changes I noticed in my hair was lack of breakage after I stopped trying to comb my hair with conditioner in the shower.

My hair used to be very thin at the ends when it was this length. Combing only when dry has helped keep my hair fuller and with less taper due to breakage.

SimplyViki
May 15th, 2010, 03:46 PM
Well, there might be something to it. I'm not sure. I've always combed with conditioner in the shower, but lately it's been more difficult - the tangles aren't falling out as easily, and it seems to become even more tangled sometimes. I'll end up with knots and have to pull them apart with my fingers. Incidentally, the damaged/dyed bits of my hair are growing out, too, I've got a significant amount of undyed hair now, so maybe that hair's raising a ruckus in protest when I comb in-shower now. :shrug: Who knows? I'll probably have to give up shower combing sometime soon, at any rate.

Kathie
May 15th, 2010, 03:48 PM
Have you tried combing it with the conditioner on, and if so - did it still feel more fragile than when dry? :)

Iíve combed it in the shower a couple of times to work the conditioner through Ė very gently though.
I donít know if it felt more fragile- but I have noticed that when hair it wet its harder to coax it into a particular direction i.e., straight back from your crown to the nape of your neck, because of the weight of the water in the hair (does that make sense :confused:). So when I feel a little resistance i.e., an indication that damage could occur if Iím too hasty, I slow down. When its dry and lighter, I donít really have that problem. So then it feels stronger/safer.

breezefaerie
May 15th, 2010, 04:07 PM
I second Franny ... combing when dry has worked for me.
I'm not sure how brushing would do for my hair as I don't brush at all. I would say if it works for your hair type, then do it. Just depends on how your hair responds.

ravenreed
May 15th, 2010, 05:10 PM
I comb/brush my hair before getting in the shower and then again after while it is still pretty wet. I am much more careful than I use to be with it, but I still do it. Any tangles that sit in my hair until dry would be there forever.

Sylvanas
May 15th, 2010, 05:54 PM
This must be a hair-type thing. The bottom 6 inches of my hair is more chemically damaged and porous than the rest of my hair, and there is no way that I would have less breakage if I brushed or combed my hair when wet, even if soaked in conditioner.

When I first joined LHC my hair was also damaged and porous. One of the biggest changes I noticed in my hair was lack of breakage after I stopped trying to comb my hair with conditioner in the shower.

My hair used to be very thin at the ends when it was this length. Combing only when dry has helped keep my hair fuller and with less taper due to breakage.

It's kinda cool to see how big the variations are when it comes to what works and not, even for people with very similar hairtypes. I've noticed that my virgin hair (well, roots) does not benefit from the same treatment my damaged length craves, and vice-versa. Maybe some of the cases of damage from wet brushing/combing could simply be a result of doing it wrong (not accusing you of that, I just mean in general, so please don't be offended)? Having the wrong type of comb, not enough slip in the specific conditioner used, just not having patience to do it gently, etc?


Well, there might be something to it. I'm not sure. I've always combed with conditioner in the shower, but lately it's been more difficult - the tangles aren't falling out as easily, and it seems to become even more tangled sometimes. I'll end up with knots and have to pull them apart with my fingers. Incidentally, the damaged/dyed bits of my hair are growing out, too, I've got a significant amount of undyed hair now, so maybe that hair's raising a ruckus in protest when I comb in-shower now. :shrug: Who knows? I'll probably have to give up shower combing sometime soon, at any rate.

That's interesting. Do you reckon the type of damage has anything to do with the end result of wet brushing? I mean, you can have hairstrands that have expanded due to damage, you can have ones that are all thin and frail, split ends, and so on. One of my theories is that very damaged hair soaks up a lot more of whatever you put on it, and conditioner would make it more slimy (in lack of a better word), and therefore easier to comb? Soaking up conditioner sounds all well and good, but because it's so porous, the hair will not retain the much needed moisture of the conditioner very well (especially cone free ones). If you rinse for too long, that could make dried hair hard to comb because of the dryness still being an issue. I have noticed that with virgin hair I only need to use a tiny bit of conditioner, but after I bleached it a few times it was literally soaking it up.


Iíve combed it in the shower a couple of times to work the conditioner through Ė very gently though.
I donít know if it felt more fragile- but I have noticed that when hair it wet its harder to coax it into a particular direction i.e., straight back from your crown to the nape of your neck, because of the weight of the water in the hair (does that make sense :confused:). So when I feel a little resistance i.e., an indication that damage could occur if Iím too hasty, I slow down. When its dry and lighter, I donít really have that problem. So then it feels stronger/safer.

It does make sense, but for me my hair stays as it is after it's dried. If it dries in a center parting I can forget about making a sideparting unless I put water in it again. This is the same regardless of the condition of my hair, as it has always been like that. I find it hard to even make a parting when wet, unless I use conditioner on the roots as well. It feels like the comb is doing a lot of damage if there's no added slip factor.

Flynn
May 15th, 2010, 05:57 PM
That makes sense to me: if it's very brittle when dry, brush it when it's full of a lubricant -- water and conditioner, so the strands slide past each other.

Flynn
May 15th, 2010, 05:58 PM
I’ve combed it in the shower a couple of times to work the conditioner through – very gently though.
I don’t know if it felt more fragile- but I have noticed that when hair it wet its harder to coax it into a particular direction i.e., straight back from your crown to the nape of your neck, because of the weight of the water in the hair (does that make sense :confused:). So when I feel a little resistance i.e., an indication that damage could occur if I’m too hasty, I slow down. When its dry and lighter, I don’t really have that problem. So then it feels stronger/safer.

Really? I find exactly the opposite! I have difficulty even changing my part when it's dry...

Probably has something to do with very wavy vs fairly straight hair behaving differently when dry...

SimplyViki
May 15th, 2010, 06:01 PM
That's interesting. Do you reckon the type of damage has anything to do with the end result of wet brushing? I mean, you can have hairstrands that have expanded due to damage, you can have ones that are all thin and frail, split ends, and so on.*snip*
No idea. :shrug: It could just as easily be that my hair is just getting to be a bit longer than I'm used to working with in the shower now.

lemonlife
May 15th, 2010, 06:25 PM
I use a rake comb through conditioner when my hair is wet, mainly so it won't dry into a snarl. But, I have lost a lot of hair in the past year. So, I might just stop that & stick with combing my dry hair with a wide tooth comb.

spidermom
May 15th, 2010, 06:25 PM
My personal rule is don't brush wet hair. Period.

Sylvanas
May 15th, 2010, 06:38 PM
My personal rule is don't brush wet hair. Period.

That might be a good rule for quite a lot of people, but did you decide due to having experienced damage, or do you just think it sounds like a bad idea?

FrannyG
May 15th, 2010, 07:02 PM
It's kinda cool to see how big the variations are when it comes to what works and not, even for people with very similar hairtypes. I've noticed that my virgin hair (well, roots) does not benefit from the same treatment my damaged length craves, and vice-versa. Maybe some of the cases of damage from wet brushing/combing could simply be a result of doing it wrong (not accusing you of that, I just mean in general, so please don't be offended)? Having the wrong type of comb, not enough slip in the specific conditioner used, just not having patience to do it gently, etc?

No offense taken. However, I do CO and I use high-slip conditioners and I also have a lovely seamless wide-toothed comb that I used to use when combing my hair in the shower while the conditioner was in. My hair was just loaded with conditioner, so that wasn't the problem, nor was the comb. I can also tell you that I am and always was very careful, patient and gentle with the combing.

It just doesn't work for me. If there's one thing I've learned at LHC it's that everyone's hair responds differently to just about everything. Even two people with virtually the same hair may have vastly different experiences with different products and hair care.

While it may work for some of you, I am happy with the thicker ends that I have since combing only when my hair is dry, and I will not be changing that anytime soon.

I should also add that I gently finger comb when my hair is 95% dry, and then I use a seamless wide-toothed comb very gently once my hair is dry. I've never had tangles or felt pulling or breaking.

Sylvanas
May 15th, 2010, 07:20 PM
It just doesn't work for me. If there's one thing I've learned at LHC it's that everyone's hair responds differently to just about everything. Even two people with virtually the same hair may have vastly different experiences with different products and hair care.

While it may work for some of you, I am happy with the thicker ends that I have since combing only when my hair is dry, and I will not be changing that anytime soon. [Snip...]

That is so true what you said about everyone's hair responding differently. What looks the same doesn't have to be the same. There are also many factors that can influence the end result, like having hard or soft water. We should all do what we feel is best, regardless of other people not having success with the same method.

I'm asking all these (annoying) questions because I'm trying to see if there's really a pattern when it comes to who it works for. I'm also curious about why there is, according to the article, a difference between chemically dry and regular dry hair and how they respond to wet combing.

FrannyG
May 15th, 2010, 07:48 PM
That is so true what you said about everyone's hair responding differently. What looks the same doesn't have to be the same. There are also many factors that can influence the end result, like having hard or soft water. We should all do what we feel is best, regardless of other people not having success with the same method.

I'm asking all these (annoying) questions because I'm trying to see if there's really a pattern when it comes to who it works for. I'm also curious about why there is, according to the article, a difference between chemically dry and regular dry hair and how they respond to wet combing.

Actually, your questions aren't the least bit annoying. I think that you'll never get a conclusive answer on this though, due in part to some of the factors you listed above. Water varies so much from place to place. Hard water in some areas is higher in certain minerals than others. Some may be heavy in calcium, some in iron some in whatever. Some water contains more chlorine, some less. Even all soft water is not created equal. Then of course there are environmental factors to consider.

Living in an area that is damp and rainy in spring and fall or humid in the summer is much different from living in an arid climate. Even longitudinal location needs to be factored in. There are simply too many variables to list, really.