There are several ways to go about fixing matted hair on a doll. Which one you use and when largely depends on the age of the doll.
The method on an antique vintage doll will be different from that of a modern doll.
Some methods available for Barbie dolls also have specific procedures to go by. Keep reading this article for further pertinent information.
This is a great method. You can take a wet hairbrush or comb and apply a brand of human hair conditioner to it.
Then, use the conditioner to gently comb out the mats. A wet brush is best because it minimizes the tearing of the doll’s hair.
For some humans, a comb is often better for detangling hair than a brush.
This can apply to doll hair as well. You may have to dip the comb in the hair conditioner more frequently.
However, a comb is less likely to tear out the hair than a brush.
Whether you use a brush or a comb with the hair conditioning solution, do not forget to use plain water along with it.
It is generally easier to get the mats out of doll hair when it is wet as opposed to dry.
What do we mean by this? If the doll’s hair is completely matted, it is better to untangle it a little at a time. It’s better for the doll’s hair and your sanity.
If your hands get too tired, you will rush through the process and only do more damage to the hair. Be patient and you’ll see the best results.
To untangle modern doll hair, you can use a fabric softener. What you want to do is the following:
- Completely soak the doll’s hair in the softener
- Use the fabric softener while you comb out the hair
- If you lack fabric softener, Dawn dishwashing liquid should work well
- Make sure to rinse out the hair thoroughly
- Be certain you are being gentle throughout the procedures
- Proceed to brush the doll’s hair
This is another way to do it if you would rather not use your fabric softener.
Most people have some conditioner available or can buy some at the store. Use the following procedures to untangle or smooth out doll hair.
- Remove all clothes from the doll
- Completely soak its hair in the conditioner
- With the conditioner still in the hair, use a comb to untangle it
- Start at the bottom of the hair and work your way up
- Repeat the above-mentioned steps until hair is completely free of mats
- Thoroughly rinse out the hair conditioner
- Allow the doll’s hair to dry for a while
- Put its clothes back on
Technically, the same methods should work on the hair. However, due to the value of antique dolls, it would be best if you took them to a professional vintage doll expert.
There are such people who are experienced in any type of old doll repair or care. Take a look on the internet for a professional doll person near you.
If you do take the doll to a professional to have the matted hair straightened out, expect to pay for the services.
The amount of the fee will probably depend on how matted the hair is.
If the doll is valuable enough or has sentimental value for you, it is well worth the cost to go to a pro.
Matted hair on Barbie dolls
Believe it or not, Barbie doll hair can get matted too. Instead of throwing it in the trash and buying a new one, you can fix it.
With the price of those dolls these days, this is a blessing. So, what do you do?
How to fix matted Barbie doll hair?
Here are some easy steps to detangling your Barbie doll’s hair:
- Remove the doll’s clothing so that it doesn’t get damaged
- Put just a little water on the hair, being careful not to soak it
- Use human hair conditioner on the tips of your fingers and gently work it into the doll’s hair
- Take a comb and carefully untangle the hair, beginning at the bottom
- Continue dipping the comb in water and work it further up into the doll’s hair
- Once the hair is tangle-free, allow it to dry for a while
- After the doll is dry, put all its clothes back on
Note: it is better to use a comb than a brush because it won’t rip the hair out so easily.
This is also fixable. It usually cannot be resolved by simple brushing or combing. Once again, a human hair conditioner comes to the rescue.
The method we are about to discuss will also extend the life of the doll.
Please note that the following instructions should be used by an adult only.
After removing the doll’s clothes, soak its hair in boiling water.
A little hair conditioner in the water will also help. Then follow the same instructions as untangling the hair.
This hair fixing routine can also be applied to the tails of My Little Pony or similar toys.
Here are two reasons why detangling the doll’s hair is better than throwing the doll away:
- The doll is a family heirloom passed down from a great-grandmother. It may or may not have a terrific monetary value, but its significance is priceless.
- The doll belongs to your daughter. It is her favorite toy, and she adores it.
Most of the doll hair you will come across is synthetic. It is possible to own an antique doll that has human hair; however, this is rare.
If it is synthetic, follow the steps we have laid out to remove the mats. Remember, it IS synthetic hair. It will not grow back as human hair will.
So preserving it is important.
If the hair is very fine, it might be tricky to detangle. Of course, your doll is not a living being.
Therefore, it will never grow back either if it is cut or ripped out. It is possible to get the matting out with any of the procedures we described.
However, if it is made with human hair, we strongly recommend a human hair conditioner in lieu of a fabric softener.
It is not advisable. Doing so could cause it to become matted or frizzy.
Nevertheless, while you are busy around the house, your child might decide to wash the doll’s hair in your bathroom sink.
If this happens, tell the child to let the hair dry completely before playing with it again. Hopefully, this will keep the hair from tangling.