No one wants crunchy hair! We all wish for soft, shiny, healthy hair. Unfortunately, there are quite a few ways in which we can unintentionally create dry crunchy hair ends.

And depending on why you have these crunchy hair ends, you’ll have to look at different methods for fixing it. Let’s go through them!

Disclosure: Some of the links below are so-called provision links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I can earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

Crunchy hair after swimming

Image of a woman wearing a black, extra large swimming cap with room for long or thick hair

If your hair starts feeling extremely dry and brittle after going for a swim, you are probably dealing with crunchy hair from chlorine. Unfortunately, chlorine has a strongly drying effect on hair. And guess where you see that effect most? That’s right, in your sensitive hair ends!

Once that has happened, you’ll need to make sure to moisturize, moisturize, moisturize your hair. For that, you can use aloe vera gel on your hair, do a deep conditioning treatment, try the LOC method, and use hair oils.

For the next time you go swimming in chlorine water, it’s even better to be prepared. Give your hair an oil mask before, using a sealing oil rather than a penetrating one. Wearing a “hair-fitting” swimming cap like this one* can also help you in preventing your hair from getting this crunchy in the first place.

Crunchy hair after bleaching

We all know that bleaching is bad for hair. It is one of the best-known causes of hair breakage. But why exactly is your hair crunchy after bleaching?

Well, bleaching structurally damages your hair. Imagine your cuticle having “holes”, making its surface rough to the touch. This change in structure also makes it more prone to breaking. The second reason why your hair is crunchy after bleaching is that bleaching is extremely drying. So now you are dealing with changed porosity AND dryness.

Image of a package for a protein hair mask

This means you need to add moisture and protein to help your hair deal with the fallout from bleaching. Keep in mind that you cannot repair the damage, you can just lessen its impact! One way to do that is to do one of these protein treatments at home. You can also treat your hair with coconut oil, as one of the benefits of coconut oil is helping your hair retain protein while moisturizing.

Related: How to make a homemade hair mask for dry hair

Crunchy hair from too much protein

Unfortunately, there is also such a thing as too much protein on your hair! If this is you, then your hair will not only be super crunchy, it will also feel weirdly stiff. No elasticity at all.

Image of dry, tangled hair that could benefit from a coconut oil treatment, a wooden comb stuck in it

If you haven’t changed anything in your hair care routine but your hair is suddenly super dry and brittle, check out these tips on how to handle protein overload. You might be able to fix your crunchy hair by simpling switching to protein-free hair products for a while!

Crunchy hair from products

If you follow the curly girl method or simply use styling products, you’ve probably encountered crunchy hair due to products.

With the curly girl method, crunchiness can even be desired, if we’re talking about the gel cast after plopping. To get rid of it, simply scrunch your curls until the hardness disappears. If that doesn’t work for you, find a non-crunchy hair gel like the one below.

If your hair gets crunchy from styling in general, you’ll also want to look at your products. Unfortunately, trying to achieve a certain hold often also means crunchiness. You might have to test out different products to find the right balance between hold and hair softness for you.

Non-crunchy hair products

To help you get started in using products that won’t leave your hair crunchy after styling, I’ve done my research and now have two recommendations for you to try!

Non-crunchy hairspray

Image of a can of the TIGI bed head hairspray

Finding the best non-crunchy hairspray is hard for two reasons:

  1. Most of the time, non-crunchy also means no hold. But that’s what we want hairspray for!
  2. It’s really hard to find a hairspray that works for all kinds of different hair types and textures.

But, what can I say? I’ve found the best possible combination of all these criteria: the TIGI Bed Head Masterpiece Shine Hairspray (Original Version).* This is a hairspray that won’t leave your hair crunchy unless you put too much. And still, it offers hold for both fine and thick hair.

Ready for styled yet touchable hair? Order it here!*

Non-crunchy hair gel

Image of Aunt Jackies flaxseed gel

If you’ve ever checked out my list of curly girl-approved hair gels, you won’t be surprised to see this product here. It is my absolute favorite hair gel I’ve ever tried!

It leaves my curls moisturised, yet shapes them, without leaving them sticky whatsoever. Even if I’ve put a lot of gel, I can crunch out the hardened gel cast easily. What’s left are shiny, bouncy curls.

Of course, you could always make your own DIY hair gel (without gelatine), but that takes a little time. Either of these two gels won’t leave your hair crunchy!

Get Aunt Jackie’s don’t shrink gel here!*

Crunchy damaged hair

If none of these other reasons for your hair’s crunchiness fits, your hair is probably simply damaged. Unfortunately, you don’t have to bleach your hair to harm your cuticles. Every mechanical stress our hair endures will chip away at its structure. Over time, this can lead to it becoming brittle.

If it’s mostly your ends, and none of the above tips worked for you, you can simply go for a trim. After that, you want to make sure you avoid these hair care mistakes going forward to stop your hair from getting crunchy again in the future!

*These links are so-called provision links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I can earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.