A Downy Dunk is a method of attempting to repair or clean a doll's hair with fabric softener. It is called such because a very well-known brand of fabric softener is Downy.

Reasons for a Downy Dunk

Many dolls have rough, dry hair through improper hair care; this is an attempt to restore some of the original luster to the hair and make it smoother. A Downy Dunk can also attempt to remove foul smells such as cigarette smoke.

Downy dunks are a last-attempt to repair damage before rewigging; most damage can be prevented with proper hair care and braid spray use.

Downy dunks should not be attempted on curly haired dolls such as Just Like You 26; the curls will be straightened out and will be nearly impossible to recreate. Also be warned that textured hair will lose significant amounts of texture.


A large shallow container such as a casserole dish and a ladle are needed. The dish is filled with a shallow amount of unconcentrated fabric softener. The doll (which should be wrapped to prevent getting eyes and body wet) is laid next to the container so that the hair is soaking in the fabric softener. The liquid is poured over her head so as to absorb as much of the softener as possible and get it where it's not soaking. After this, the hair is rinsed completely and dried. Some take an additional step of using a ceramic straightener or steam iron over the hair on a low setting to smooth out the texture.

Steps with images can be seen here.