The staying power of fairy knots

I give up.

Fairy knots — which are tiny single strand knots — are supposed to be a part of my life. I am convinced I have tried all types of things to get rid of these buggers and even after I trimmed a good chunk of my hair, they are still there, dammit!

Right now, I have a pretty strong regimen and I’ve been wearing protective styles, for the most part, since November. So why am I still finding fairy knots?


I know that I don’t have the patience to do the search and destroy method: finding the knots and clipping them one by one. It’s the burden we coily, kinky and nappy chicks must face. I don’t know what else to say but: I’m not trimming my hair because obviously trimming doesn’t help them situation, it only makes me another inch away from my goal — fully shoulder length by fall and being well on my way to armpit length by spring 2011.

Have any of you found the secret to preventing fairy knots? If so, can you please share? I’m desperate here!


7 Comments Add yours

  1. Hi there,

    I had them so bad at one time. Nothing and I mean nothing prevented them.

    I started coating my hair in castor oil and sealing my ends in castor oil after every wash and during every styling session and they are dramatically reduced.

    This would probably weigh down thinner hair types but my thick hair eats it up.

    At the time I was having the problem during the warmer months the regimen I followed was cowash, condition, apply kinky curly knot today leave-in, apply castor oil, apply moisturizing styler, braid/twist to set in style while sealing ends with castor oil.

    My regimen changed slightly when it got colder but the knots are still very minimal. My current regimen is cowash, deep condition with elucence moisture balance conditioner and avocado oil using gold ‘n hot heat cap for 30 minutes, apply kinky curly knot today leave-in, apply qhemet biologics heavy cream mixed with hydrating balm, braid/twist to set in style while sealing ends with castor oil.

  2. Moni says:

    Not allowing my hair to shrink drastically reduces them for me. I wash either in sections or in braids/twists. When I’m washing in sections (4), I wash one section, then immediately braid that section and move on the the next one. When re-doing protective styles I’ll take down one braid/twist then immediately redo it so that a large amount of hair isn’t staying loose and wet for too long. Finally, when wearing out styles, I make sure that my hair is fully dry before I take it out, and moisturize every night or every other night so that its always moisturized, which also prevents it from tangling.

  3. urbansista says:

    Thank you ladies!! The fairy knot business was starting to drive me INSANE! I don’t know how people sit there with a scissor and cut them off. I so can’t be bothered.

    I am definitely going to start washing in sections and coating my ends in castor oil. I already moisturize daily and seal with oil — but I don’t think my oil is heavy enough.

    Another question: do you deep condition every time you wash your hair?

  4. I absolutely hate fairy knots, those little buggers are annoying. I don’t have a solution, since I still get them, but I share your pain!

  5. I use to do be loyal to the ol’ shake-n-go-fro and I constantly had knots at the ends.

    I ended up getting my ends trimmed and started a regimen of using beeswax to do two-strand twists/twist-out. This drastically reduced the knots.

    I think the reason for the improvement is two-fold:
    1) I think letting the hair dramatically shrink like that gives it too much opportunity to tangle
    2) I think the beeswax coats and moisturizes the strands (I’m sure castor oil or olive oil would do the same).

    As for conditioning every time I wash… well, I consider my daily moisturizing to be a form of ‘conditioning’ for my hair. So, no, i don’t go out of m way to do any particular conditioning when I wash once a week. I’d say I ‘condition’ my hair almost every day by adding olive oil to it and sometimes “bagging” it at night.

  6. Angel says:

    I had them in the beginning when I first went natural and I was co-washing. I do not co-wash, but use a sulfate-free shampoo, DermOrganic or Nature’s Natural 6 N 1 shampoo. I always condition with a heating cap and I love Jane Carter’s Wrap n Roll as it detangles and smooth. I do not like her replenishing conditioner as that tangles my hair back up. I upped my oil treatments, every day, castor, avocado, olive oil to masage my hair or an aloe vera mist. I two strand twist my hair. I do not have the fairy knots anymore — Thank God, because natural hair is supposed to mean Healthy Hair! If you have Knots, something in your current regime is unhealthy for your hair.

    I know I was co-washing and also using some kind of gel that made my hair hard, which I do not do or use anymore.

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