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Thread: Tangled Ends on French Braids

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    Member eternallyverdan's Avatar
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    Default Tangled Ends on French Braids

    I've been trying to expand my horizons and do styles other than braids and infinity buns, so I set out to learn how to French braid my hair.

    The braiding part isn't the problem-- I can do it no sweat. But every time I gather new hair and cross the strands my ends tangle so badly that I have to go down and unknot them between each cross. I get distracted and lose track of where I am in the pattern, and I have to use my free hand to go all the way down the length of my hair and pull the sections apart. I've tried it wet and dry, and with products ranging from pure aloe to Michael Frieda cone-fests, and I've had no luck. Anyone have some advice for me?

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    Silicone Proponent SimplyViki's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tangled Ends on French Braids

    I have the same problem, but probably not quite to the extent you do (I think it gets worse with length!)
    What sometimes seems to make it better is to run my hand down the length of the section I'm separating out, before I've gone to cross it over into the braid. It might kind of throw off your pattern at first, but if you get in the habit of doing it that way, you'll establish a new rhythm, and hopefully less tangles. Hope that helps/makes sense.
    Note: My starting length of APL is from long before I'd ever heard of the LHC. That's just when I started consciously growing my hair out again.

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    Member blondecat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tangled Ends on French Braids

    I too have the tangles problem when Im french braiding. I sympatise, but, alas have no advice.

    I'l be reading this thread too, in hope.

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    Probably writing :) Unnamed's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tangled Ends on French Braids

    Quote Originally Posted by SimplyViki View Post
    What sometimes seems to make it better is to run my hand down the length of the section I'm separating out, before I've gone to cross it over into the braid.
    Yep, try this. Otherwise I give up after the first couple. Separating (ie, make sure the section isn't trying to take along any other hair with it) before moving anything/actually adding the new hair in anywhere else helps. And separate the very fist section from the rest, too, as long as each section within that. Separate everything. The more separating I do the better.

    That said: Still have to go down and unbraid the ends periodically (but that's just going to happen, I think, regardless), but there's generally a lot less actual knots knots.

    This might be easier on wet/very damp hair--or, well, on my hair I think it's quite a bit easier. It's one of the times my hair is slickest, I think. For one mine is just slicker when wet I think, but possibly partially also due to that I put a bit of conditioner then a few drops of oil on when my hair is wet (just the 'ends'/length) just every day (and so it'd be there when I braid, which is usually wet or damp); so that could be something to try if you've not tried that.

    Trying to think...oh, and if you've not tried a Frenched Dutch braid (sometimes called an inside out French braid I think) might want to alternate tries with that if the regular French isn't cooperating and you want something else to try that's similar (the side sections just go under the middle strand instead of over). It might be easier than a regular French braid, and it might be harder--that kinda varies from person to person I think.

    ? F i/ii

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    Quack, quack! nowxisxforever's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tangled Ends on French Braids

    I have the exact same problem, and I don't have much slip at all in my hair... I gave up on french braids a long time ago because of it.
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    Member LeaM07's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tangled Ends on French Braids

    I have the same problem, and have the best luck when my hair is freshly conditioned and still pretty damp after a shower. I use coconut oil on the length for extra slip, and fully separate each piece as I move it (as explained above).

    I'm still not great at it, but it's one of those things that takes lots of practice.

    Good luck!

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    Member eternallyverdan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tangled Ends on French Braids

    I see what everyone means about seperating after each strand, and that's what I do, but my hair tangles as I go down the length to seperate it, so by the time I've reached the end I've got a little knot that I have to untagle... every time I make a new strand.

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    Member Fairlight63's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tangled Ends on French Braids

    I also have the same problem with my hair tangling when braiding it. I wonder if it is the texture of the hair that causes it to happen. I have real fine -dry - thin - hair - can be kind of frizzy if I don't put oil on it.
    When my daughter was young, I would French braid her hair for school & I didn't have any problem with her hair tangling. Her hair was entirely different than mine. She had very thick, straight med. texture, she also had never colored it. I think that is one reason why my hair is so dry is because of the coloring that is left on about half of my hair. When that all gets cut off, I hope that it won't be so dry & will be easier to manage.

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    Mistress of Cyrulea JamieLeigh's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tangled Ends on French Braids

    I used to have that problem too, when I first learned to French braid, about 14 years ago when I was in school and last time I was able to sit on my hair. I finally got enough practice at it that I could hold all three strands in one hand, separated, while I ran my other hand all the way down my length when I was separating out a strand to weave into the braid. If you haven't tried oiling the ends yet (like, maybe the last foot or so), maybe that would help them separate more easily? Otherwise, I'm afraid it all just comes down to practice and juggling, lol.

    ETA: I should also add that the dirtier my hair, the better the braid and easier it is to . It tends to stick together like crazy when it's freshly washed, and up to two days afterward.
    Last edited by JamieLeigh; June 26th, 2009 at 07:50 PM. Reason: see my ETA
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    sugar spun sister Teazel's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tangled Ends on French Braids

    This very problem is why I failed at french braiding for so long. Now I run my fingers down the strand each time I separate it out, which helps but doesn't entirely get rid of all snarls. Sometimes I stop and comb a section. The best thing is to get DH to stand guard, gently sorting out tangles as they occur.
    From Hip to Ankle and now back to Classic.

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