How to Keep Synthetic Hair Tangle Free

by AmberMurray ; Updated September 28, 2017

Synthetic hair contributes to wigs, hairpieces, and extensions at a low cost. However, caring for your new hairpiece or extension is a little different than caring for human hair, especially when it comes to detangling and styling. Without proper care, that lovely style will be a tangled mess. There are a few techniques to keep that hair wearable for a long time.

Add the appropriate amount of wig shampoo or mild detergent (specified on the bottle; usually one to two caps) to the basin of cool water. Gently submerge the hairpiece, swishing it slowly and dunking it up and down. Don't rub or scrub, or you'll end up with a tangle beyond saving. You can let the piece soak in the cool water for a few minutes, then rinse gently.

Dry your hairpiece, first by holding it over the basin and letting the water drain, then by setting it on a wig form or Styrofoam head and letting the hair sit at room temperature until it is completely dry. Put a few towels under the form to catch the drips. When drying your wig, you can gently blot the hair with a towel, but don't rub or squeeze.

Spray a good coat of wig sheen spray over the fibers once the wig is dry. This product is silicon based, and will make the hairs a bit more slippery and easy to comb.

Use the wide-toothed comb if your wig is a straight or wavy style and, starting at the bottom, gently begin to comb. Work your way up the hairpiece, teasing out any tangles and smoothing the hairs down. Use the wide-toothed comb to groom a curly, short piece as well, reshaping the curls around your fingers as you go. Work on small sections at a time. For a final finish, you can use your fingers to arrange the curls.

Wash the synthetic hair gently with mild shampoo, and use a natural-hair-safe silicon spray, if your synthetic hair is attached to your head in loose extensions. Gently comb or finger brush synthetic hair extensions into place.


  • Synthetic wigs can be reset or restyled by spraying them with setting lotion, rolling them, and letting them sit under a dryer on very low heat, or simply at room temperature until they dry completely.
    Never attempt to comb through spiral curls or dreadlocks of any length. This will destroy the curls or dreads. A qualified wig resetter is the best option for restyling these pieces. If you find a tangle that is completely set in, you can cut into the mat, holding the scissors vertically. It may only take one snip to make the mat removable with the comb.

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About the Author

Amber Murray is a graduate of Old Dominion University's English Department and a former teacher, who left the classroom to homeschool her children and pursue writing. She has published editorials, theater reviews, and celebrity interviews over the last 4 years.