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Controlling Flyaway Hair from Static Electricity

by Ron Kurtus

Some people suffer from flyaway hair, caused by static electricity. Flyaway hair is when your hair literally stands on end and goes in all different directions after combing it.

The problem is caused by a combination of over-drying the hair and the collection of electrical charges after combing the hair. This problem can be reduced by treating your hair or eliminating the static electricity that causes the hair to get electrically charged.

Questions you may have include:

This lesson will answer those questions. Useful tool: Units Conversion

Cause of problem

The cause of flyaway hair is that the materials involved become charged with static electricity.

When your hair is dry, especially after washing it and using a hair dryer, the various strands of hair may stick up and spread apart when you try to comb it. The reason is because the dry hair tends to collect positive (+) electrical charges when combed with a plastic comb. The individual hairs have a collection of positive charges on their surfaces, such that the hairs repel each other. The more you comb, the greater the charges and the worse the problem.

Even dogs can get flyaway hair

Even dogs can get flyaway hair

Flyaway hair occurs most often to people with fine, straight and dry hair. Those with thick stands, curly or oily hair seldom have problems with flyaway hair. Often, washing your hair too often with shampoos that strip the hair of its natural oils can not only be damaging to the hair but can also make it prone to flyaway hair.

One other cause for flyaway hair is wearing a hat or cap made of wool, acrylic or polyester materials. They generate static electricity when rubbed on human hair.

Controlling problem

The best way to overcome flyaway hair is to prevent the cause of it, which is overly dry hair that is combed or brushed with a static-creating object. Plastic combs and brushes with bristles made of certain synthetic materials do wonders in creating static electricity in your hair.

If you have problems with flyaway hair:

Avoid stripping natural oils from you hair with a harsh shampoo or too much washing. Perhaps use a conditioner to moisturize your hair.

Do not over-dry your hair with a hair dryer. The best type of hair dryer to use is an ionic ceramic hair dryer. That type of dryer takes out the static charges as well as dries without taking out too much moisture.

Use a comb or brush that does not cause much static electricity. Hard rubber or metal combs work well. Brushes made of natural fibers should work. You need to experiment with what works for you.

Avoid using gels, because they can actually dry your hair.

If you wear a cap or hat, look toward cotton products.

Other methods may help

Other, less desirable method to overcome flyaway hair include:

Some hair stylists suggest passing an unscented anti-static dryer sheet over the top of your head to reduce flyaway hair.

You can use a small amount of hair spray.

Rubbing a very small amount of hand or facial moisturizers through your hair can help.


Flyaway hair is an annoying effect from static electricity. Flyaway hair is when your hair goes in all different directions after combing it. They are caused by rubbing the various materials together when they are very dry. This problem can be reduced by treating your hair or by eliminating the static electricity that causes flyaway hair.

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Resources and references

Ron Kurtus' Credentials


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