I have never had one knot strands, at least not yet. But if I do get one, I may first try to saturate it when water and conditioner and try to undo it. But since I have never had one, I don't know how feasible this is. I only use my fingers to comb my hair. To answer your question for me trimming or cutting is a last resort thing. I did big chop a year ago and am trying to see how long my hair gets (4a)!