ATLANTA — ATLANTA—Bedhead is real, it is horrifying, and the search for answers has led many people to silk or satin pillowcases.

It’s no doubt happened to you. You hit the pillow looking like Sleeping Beauty but wake up looking more like Cruella De Vil.

A viewer messaged 11Alive’s Why Guy on Facebook to ask if silk is actually helping in preventing a wild case of bedhead, and if so, why?

Asbery Wilkerson, chairman of the cosmetology department at Atlanta Technical College, says a silk pillowcase can reduce “conflict” while you sleep.

“Your hair is covered in cuticles that are like fish scales, or bark on a tree,” says Wilkerson. “When the cuticle layers are raised, that’s when you have conflict.”

Wilkerson tells us that when you treat your hair with certain chemicals, the cuticles of your hair can lift and separate from the hair shaft. Shampoo that’s high in PH can cause the cuticles to lift.

If you sleep on a cotton pillowcase, the rough surface can pull at those open cuticles. It allows moisture to escape, leading to dry, brittle hair and bedhead.

The smooth surface of a silk or satin pillowcase lessens the conflict. There’s no tugging on the cuticles, allowing them to close without going wild.

“Sleeping on a silk pillowcase helps reduce breakage and frizz,” says Erin Walter of Probeauty.org. “Silk doesn’t rough up your hair like a traditional cotton pillowcase.”

You can find silk or satin pillowcases for reasonable prices. If you don’t want to go that direction, you could always wear a silk or satin scarf to bed.

Or, maybe you like waking up in the wild.

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