Tuesday, November 1, 2011

How to Detangle Doll Hair

For the last several months, my sister Melissa and I have been getting together most every Friday afternoon to work on crafty things while the children are napping. We've accomplished quite a few projects, including a ruffle shirt using this tutorial!

Isn't that cute? Too bad Melissa got to keep that one! :)
I’m going to try to post some of the projects we’ve accomplished on our "Friday Craft Dates" to keep track of what we’ve done, and to prove to my friends that I really do make a bunch of the stuff I “pin” on pinterest.com! :) But for now I’m just going to throw out there the weirdest project we’ve done to date: untangle doll hair! Yup. You read that right!

Meet Josiah:

SHE has been Brooklyn’s doll for over 2 years. Before you comment that Josiah is a boy name, I'll assure you that we are aware of that fact. Almost every person Josiah gets introduced to has tried to convince Brooklyn to call the doll “Josie.” But Brooklyn is adamant -- Her name is Josiah! (It helps that she has a good friend named Josiah, and a cousin Josiah… both boys, by the way!) Anyway, Josiah is a well-loved dolly, and over the years, her hair has become quite disheveled.

Melissa and I tried to find some help on the internet to fix her hair, but we couldn’t find much help. I had previously tried just brushing the tangles out of the doll’s hair, even using a hair detangler spray, but it just pulls the hair right out of the head. Not good! A friend had told us to try baby oil... she had heard somewhere that it worked. But we couldn't find any tutorials "out there," so we came up with our own method.

1. Undress the doll and wrap it in an old hand towel to protect the body.

Meet the master beautician!
2. Take your baby oil, and pour a decent amount onto the doll hair.


3. Massage the oil onto every strand of hair, and let it sit for about ten minutes.


4. Comb the oil through the hair. Try to brush from the ends to the top to avoid pulling the hair out of the scalp.


5. Take gentle shampoo (we used Johnson's Baby Shampoo), and lather it in the hair.


6. Carefully rinse the shampoo and oil out.


7. Brush the hair smooth. It should be pretty easy! Cover the doll body with a plastic bag to keep the water from dripping all over it.




8. From the brushing, some hair will be longer than others, so a slight trim may be necessary.


9. Dress the doll and surprise your little girl with a baby that looks good as new! 

BEFORE AND AFTER:

To be completely honest, after a week or two, Josiah's hair was again standing on end. HOWEVER, since the treatment, my daughter can easily brush through it with a comb, and it lays flat again. It isn't oily at all, but somehow the baby oil treatment continues keeps it from getting tangled and knotted up. 
I call this a success! Not our usual type of project, but a fun one none-the-less! And it sure made Brooklyn a happy little "mother." Hope it helps other moms of girls with crazy-haired dolls!

48 comments:

  1. Wish I had known that trick for my dolls! Some of them ended up in the trash their hair was so awful...

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  2. This is so cute, and great to know! Thanks for sharing, Jenni and Melissa!

    Nicole Raflik :)

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  3. My little boy seems to be more drawn to bald baby dolls but I'll definitely be forwarding this on to my friends with doll hair troubles of their own. Thanks for working out the details and sharing it with us.

    Found you on Frugal Girls . . . enjoy the HUGE blast of traffic. :)

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  4. Thank you! Thank you, thank you, thank you! ;) I HATE trying to get tangles out of doll's hair.

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  5. going to try this on the 5000 barbies that belong to my 4 girls!!!!

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  6. That is so great! Glad you did make your own tutorial.

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  7. Our Mom was using baby oil on our Crissy dolls' hair over 30 years ago. Works great :)

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    1. That is so cool!!! I had no idea this trick has been around that long!

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  8. Wow. That is amazing! My girls has a TON of dolls with hair like that! I am def. going to do this on all of them!! Thanks for sharing this! It is soooooooo helpful! I can't wait to do this on the girls Dora dolls & Barbie Hairstyling dolls!!

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  9. I read another trick that also works, or at least it did for me -- fabric softener. Work it into the hair, comb through and rinse. Haven't tried baby oil. My daughter is too old for dolls and all the grands are boys, but when a girl comes along I'll remember this tip!

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  10. Wish I had known that years ago1 My duaghter is grown now and is pregnant with a boy so I still can't use this tip yet!

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  11. First, you are adorable!! Thanks for sharing. My kids are all a lot older, but I checked it out, wondering if it would work on Halloween wigs. We are going to have to give it a shot.

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  12. I love this tip!!! My little girl will too!! I'm so glad to visit your blog and am now your newest follower! I'd love to have you visit and follow me, too sometime soon!!!

    Aimee @ ItsOverflowing.com

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  13. Love how your tee came out! Thanks for linking back! I pinned it under my board "they used my tutes" (and your doll hair trick...AWESOME! Too bad I don't have girls!)

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  14. Thank u for your tip and thank u for your statement of faith in JESUS

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  15. Awesome, thanks so much! I just tried this and it has made my daughter's doll's hair much better. (Coming to you from Pinterest)

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  16. Thanks for sharing the babydoll hair treatments! Our Rapunzel doll is in a much needed salon visit!

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  17. I found that after the hair is dry put baby powder in the hair it will keep the hair from clumping up so quickly.My daughter has an american girl doll that we had trouble with and this worked great on her hair.

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    1. I did this toady and it worked great! Thank you! I even blogged about it for you.
      http://mandy-workathomeadventures.blogspot.com/2012/01/detangle-baby-doll-hair.html

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  18. Will this work on fashion (Barbie) dolls with that plastic hair too? What about using mineral or cooking oil instead (I don't have any baby oil)?

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    1. Baby oil is pretty much mineral oil with fragrance so that should work just fine. I'd probably skip the cooking oil though.

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  19. spray detangler also works... Store brand over name brand works better.. maybe b/c it has more oil in it??

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  20. Thirth seven years ago I did this same thing to my daughters Velvet doll. She still has the doll and the hair still looks great. It was just some thing I tried and it worked. Carol W.

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  21. I used to get dolls at yard sales, clean them up (I didn't know about the baby oil. I used fabric softener) then i made them an outfit and gave them to a santa for the needy group that recycled used toys. I enjoyed it.

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  22. I too wish I had known this trick 20 years ago with my daughter's binful of Barbies! Will have to try it on the granddaughters' dolls. : ) Thanks!!

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  23. THANK YOU!! I buy dolls and repurpose them by making vintage-style pillow dolls and selling them to supplement my not so much income! I have a tubfull of dolls I haven't been able to reuse because of the hair issues. Up till now I have been hiding the mess under bonnets and braids and poytails but this will give me so many more options! Again, HUGE THANK YOU!

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  24. Thank's so much for the info. I've been thinking of trying to selvege some much loved dolls from the thrift stores and give them to those who would like a doll, the hair has always held me back from dong this.I'm anxious to try this out.
    Thank you for sharing your faith in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. May God's blessings be with you and your family.

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  25. Thanks for all your kind comments! I'm glad this is helping a world of disheveled haired dolls! :-) And I love the idea that several of you had for using this tip to fix old dolls up to give away to needy children! How fantastic!

    AuntieD -- Not sure if cooking oil or mineral oil would work. Experiment on a dolly you don't care much about, and then let us know! :)

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  26. going to try this on my daughter's my little ponies. She's not into the barbies yet and all of her dolls have the painted on hair. :) Thanks a bunch!

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    1. Hmmm.... little ponies.... good idea! We have a few that could be tamed a bit!

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  27. I also use old barbie dolls and make crochet outfits. I have found that using a genuine boar bristle brush(gently end to scalp) detangles and gets the hair very shiny looking. I wish there was a place where I live where they would take these recycled barbies and give them to a little girl in need. Does anybody know where I may send them? please email me dcastillias@yahoo.com Thanks!

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    1. Donna, contact your local EMA office and or Red-Cross...they help the victims of storms all over the USA and I am sure they have some place in need right now or will have in the future. Or you could try a Children's Hospital to give to some of their smaller children that need something to smile about or maybe a Ronald McDonald house.....the possibilities are endless!

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  28. I was looking for something like this. My daughter has a giant Rapunzel Doll and her hair is one giant knot. I am going to try this and let you know if it helped.

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    1. My daughter just got that same doll for Christmas! I think she'll need this treatment once a month... that hair is so crazy long!!!

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  29. I'm SO glad I found this! I still have my doll from my childhood and now it's my 1 year old daughters, well the almost 21 year old doll had hair that could only be described as nappy spider dreadlock pigtails. I used this method a few hours ago and her hair is so pretty now :) her hair will always be hard to comb, but this helped SO much! I wish I could show a picture! Thanks!

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    1. Aw! I wish I could see a picture! So happy it made your doll pretty!

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  30. Try fabric softener. That's what I used (on a very old doll). It seems to have tamed the hair overall. http://www.saraeileen.blogspot.com/2009/02/hello-dolly.html

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  31. My box of naked, rumpled barbie dolls thank you!

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    1. haha! Thanks for the laugh, kittyjo. :) My daughters' barbie dolls always end up naked and rumpled as well!!

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  32. just found this page today, July/2012. was so thrilled to see it. have a question tho. can i use this method on Babrie's hair? my 4 granddaughters have Barbies all over the playroom that need some help.

    can't wait to get at them w/ your method. thanks so much, Agnes.

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    1. I haven't tried it personally, but I would think Barbie hair is the same as doll hair. A few others have commented on this post and said that it worked on their Barbies, so I'd think you'd be safe!

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  33. You're brilliant! Wish I'd known this when my kids were little.

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  34. Thanks so much for this. I'm planning to give my daughter my favorite childhood doll for Christmas, but she need some HELP first. Can't wait to try it.

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  35. Thank you so much. I scout out garage sales and second hand stores for dolls (lots of them have "bad hair"). I then clean them up, knit or crochet an outfit and give them to kids who need them. I love doing this and now I can make their hair nice....usually I just do what I can with the hair....put in ribbons etc. or make a nice floppy hat..LOL.
    I CAN't wait to try this...I'm thinking all the kids are saying Thank you also.

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    1. That is awesome! What an excellent idea for loved dolls.

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  36. Wow! Wish I'd known this about 35 yrs ago when my two daughters had dolls!! Going to try it with my granddaughters doll though! Thank you, x

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  37. I wash my doll hair with any kind of shampoo, rinse, then rinse with fabric softener. I always do this with the head down feet up so water does not soak into the scalp. If you don't do it this way eventually mold will form inside the head and possibly get into the eyes. Also, I hang the doll by her feet and let the hair dry.

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