Curly/long hair in a 2 year old

E - posted on 08/27/2010 ( 13 moms have responded )

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My 2 year old was born with a full head of hair, and as it keeps growing, the challenge to comb it increases! She cries every time, detangler barely helps, changing hairbrushes does nothing to help her and I hate to see her crying! Any ideas?????

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Alyssa - posted on 08/27/2010

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I myself have naturally curly hair and so do both of my parents. My mother never brushed my hair. Curly hair is a nasty thing to tackle. And even now 20 years later, I don't touch my hair with a brush. I use a wide tooth comb to get any snarls out (only when its wet), use a moisture enriched conditioner in the shower and then another before I put a comb to my hair. If your daughter has the curly hair I do, she's going to need the moisture. Curly hair is naturally VERY dry.

I would give up on the brush and switch to a wide tooth comb. I know its not the same but its what curly hair needs. Brushing makes it worse... Using products that are designed for curly hair (shampoo, conditioner, leave-in, anti-frizz, mousse, gel, etc) is your best bet but I would hold off until she's a little older and her hair stronger. But something with added moisture certainly can't hurt right now.

As for baths, I know it would through off the routine entirely but its much easier to manage curly hair in the morning after you get up than trying to make something of after its been slept on. Sometimes you can revive curls but it depends on how prone they are to frizz.

Best of luck with her curly hair. It'll be more expensive, but getting products that are for curly hair is better and healthier for her hair in the long run. And curls that are taken care of are absolutely gorgeous!

[deleted account]

have you tried whilst its still soaking wet? My 2year old son has longish curly hair and the only way I can tame it is if I get a water spray bottle and wet it it allows me to get the comb through to then allow it to curl properly (and to make sure its tidy) hope that helps some xx

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Roxanna - posted on 09/02/2012

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Before I begin, is the child biracial? I am, and I have tight, nappy frizzy hair. Doing my hair was a nightmare because back then they did not have the products they have now. When i was a baby, my hair was soft until I was six years old and then Mommy did something and messed it all up!

Because of my history with hair, I was very quick to introduce the hair dryer to the girls when they were born. My oldest had some nappiness and frizz to her hair an infant, her Dad is Panamanian Black, I just used the same prduct on her that I have used for years. It is called "Blue Magic" from Queene Helene. It is heavy on lanolin to make the hair soft, but it is best for people of mixed heritage (african descent).

Both my girls did not inherit the difficult hair that I have, but you CAN blow dry curly hair with a diffuser and then plait the hair, satin pillow is a great idea, too!

Sarah-Anne - posted on 02/23/2011

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do her hair while she is sitting strapped into a highchair eating breakfast. even better if you can give her a bath/shower before she eats, so her hair is wet. or spray it down to almost dripping. the highchair makes it so she can't escape and the food is another distraction. if you let her watch any tv, now would be a good time. i only use a comb, never a brush, as it causes frizziness and more tangles. the first few times will take a while, but the more you do her hair, the more she'll get used to it and the faster you'll get. i started combing my daughter's hair and putting it in ponytail/pigtails/braids etc since she was 3 1/2 months. she still occasionally fights me, but for the most part accepts getting her hair done every morning (every other if braided). She will be 2 in mid-March, has strawberry-blonde wavy hair down to the bottom of her shoulder blades. it would probably be almost to her butt if i hadn't trimmed the ends every few months.

Jenn - posted on 02/23/2011

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I have curly hair, as do both my daughters. The key is to not wash every day, maybe just every two days, if not longer (especially in fall/winter). Curly hair needs its natural oils in order to remain healthy and flexible. I put Johnson&Johnson cream detangler on while their hair is slightly more than damp. Let that soak in, then run my fingers through their hair. For knots, I hold the piece of hair tightly in my hand close to her head which allows me to tackle the knot itself with a wide tooth comb which results in less head yanking.

Never blow dry curly hair. Allow it to dry naturally. If you need your child's hair to dry faster, use a cool setting close to their scalp. If the detangler doesn't seem to give the hair enough weight, just a dab of Garnier Fructise hair creme seems to do the trick.

Renae - posted on 02/23/2011

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PS - your head and scalp do get used to being pulled on when you have long thick or curly hair - its impossible to hurt me now, but I remember it hurting as a kid. She will get used to it. Also hold the hair as tight as you can so you aren't pulling on her scalp and comb in small sections. I find that letting it dry naturally causes less knotting than blow drying (plus, it takes 2 hairdressers 1.5 hours to blow dry my hair and it is only a couple inches past my shoulders now - so imagine how long it would take me to do!). This means though that you cant wash her hair at night because it wont dry by the morning, it has to be washed in the morning so it can dry by the time she goes to bed.

Renae - posted on 02/23/2011

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I have long thick hair. Lather it with conditioner and comb it in the bath while the conditioner is in. Dont pile it up on top of her head to wash it as this causes knots. If you comb it morning and night and keep it in a pony tail or plait it should not become knotty, only one or two knots in it. Also you know to comb from the bottom right? You comb the knots out of the bottom inch of the hair first, then comb the bottom 2 inches and slowly work your way up to the head, never start combing at the roots with long hair as it causes tangles.

Katie - posted on 02/23/2011

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Is it long enough to put in a plait yet? my girls curly hair is always worse when she wakes and no time to brush it so I put frizz ease in at bath time then comb and plait while wet and leave over night. it stops it getting too tangeled up in bed.

Maura - posted on 08/30/2010

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I recommend that you do not brush or comb her hair. Let it go natural and don't wash every day.

Lucy - posted on 08/28/2010

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Hi Lisse.

My 4 year old daughter has very thick, tightly curly hair as well. After a process of trying everything, I found a few things that help.
- Use a comb rather than a brush.
- Use normal, adult conditioner, but leave it in. when you wet it to brush through the next day it reactivates the conditioner making it easier to get through.
-Plait her hair when it's just been washed and let it dry naturally.
-Only wash hair in the morning, not at night, as sleeping on wet hair makes it more tangly.
-Get her a satin pillow case! I know that sound weird, but it really helps!

Lindsay - posted on 08/27/2010

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my daughter has curly hair too.. its very difficult to get her to stay still to brush her hair so i tried letting her do it herself she brushes my hair then hers.. then i have to brush it again n i tell her easy n she lets me.. its always hard wit curly hair but it will get easier

E - posted on 08/27/2010

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Theresa, I tried both... the conditioner only works the day I wash her hair, after that, is back to the horror....and I have tried adult and children products with her.... it drives me crazy because I don't know what to do, my hair is moslty straigh and she got the curls from her dad's side, and when I asked them, they game me the "it's a girl thing" answer......

Theresa - posted on 08/27/2010

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A leave in conditioner after bathtime. Also using adult conditioner helps tons.

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