may-09-ymib-keeping-your-natural-hair-detangled1

By Christi­na of The Mane Objec­tive

When it comes to nat­u­ral hair, there are few things more cum­ber­some, time con­sum­ing, frus­trat­ing, and painstak­ing­ly slow than detan­gling. This is espe­cial­ly true for tran­si­tion­ers. Despite it being the bane of my (and every­one else’s) exis­tence, detan­gling is an inte­gral part of the nat­u­ral hair reg­i­men. Detan­gling serves three crit­i­cal func­tions:

1. Pre­vent mat­ting in hair, which can lead to unwant­ed locs.
2. Remove shed hairs that cause tan­gles and knots. Shed hair tends to wrap itself over, under, around and through­out the rest of your hair that’s still chillin’/attached to your scalp (in grow­ing or rest­ing phase).
3. Allow the hair and scalp to be ade­quate­ly cleansed. If your hair is mat­ted up it is more dif­fi­cult to cleanse; and even more dif­fi­cult for your scalp to be accessed for cleansing/clarifying.

When it comes to detan­gling prod­ucts, I break them down into two cat­e­gories: pre-wash and mid-week. Here are my top two picks for each:

Pre-Wash

Pre-wash detan­glers are those I like to use after I pre-poo, but before I wash my hair. I’ve tried quite a few prod­ucts in this cat­e­go­ry — rang­ing from Coconut Oil or Curl Enhanc­ing Smooth­ie to Infu­sium 23. How­ev­er, what seems to work best on my pre-wash days are con­di­tion­ers with plen­ty of slip.

#1 Pick: Tresemme Split Remedy Conditioner

To me, this con­di­tion­er is the slip­peri­est of the slip­pery. Tre­sem­me doesn’t even pre­tend to try to make this stuff thick and goopy — it prac­ti­cal­ly oozes out the bot­tle at the slight­est squeeze. It is super slip­pery, and has a pleas­ant smell. Need­less to say, I don’t rec­om­mend this pro­duct for its intend­ed use. Just in case you are curi­ous, it does “mend” split ends tem­porar­i­ly. But they go right back to split­ting unless you reg­u­lar­ly con­tin­ue to apply the con­di­tion­er. The best way to cure split ends is to get rid of them. Addi­tion­al­ly, this isn’t a great co-wash­ing or con­di­tion­ing pro­duct — too many sil­i­cones and not enough moisturizing/softening agents to be effec­tive. Even in spite of all that, I’d detan­gle my hair with this stuff any day.

#2 Pick: U R Curly Quinoa Protein Conditioner

I can’t say enough about this conditioner.…except that I’m hav­ing theeeeee hard­est time find­ing where to pur­chase more of this stuff local­ly. I ini­tial­ly received a full-size bot­tle of this con­di­tion­er in my Novem­ber Curl Kit for review on Black Girl with Long Hair. And I must say, I was skep­ti­cal at first. Quinoa? Word? Then I read the ingre­di­ent list.… men­thol? Like, as in Vicks Vapo Rub? But when I read what the bot­tle said it would do, my inter­est piqued. I will go into fur­ther details about the ingre­di­ents and what­not in a post soon, but suf­fice it to say that this pro­duct eased its way up the lad­der past plen­ty of nat­u­ral sta­ples. I mixed it with water in a spray bot­tle to detan­gle my hair. It is great for co-wash­es and con­di­tion­ing, and the men­thol actu­al­ly works to cre­ate a cool­ing sen­sa­tion on the scalp…but  more on that lat­er. What I liked best about U R Curl’s Quinoa Pro­tein Con­di­ton­er is how it helped keep my hair detan­gled after I washed it. Usu­al­ly, I do mid-week detan­gle ses­sions so my week­end detan­gles aren’t so ter­ri­ble. But with this stuff, by mid-week all I need­ed was a lit­tle bit mixed with water in a spray bot­tle and a few fin­ger rakes through.

Mid-Week

Although pro­tec­tive styles are awe­some, my hair gets tan­gled in them any­ways — espe­cial­ly with buns. To pre­vent an utter­ly abysmal sit­u­a­tion at the end of the week, usu­al­ly around Wednes­day I do a quick fin­ger detan­gle with a light pro­duct. Light detan­gling prod­ucts are also good for tran­si­tion­ing from a pro­tec­tive style to prep­ping for a braid/twist/bantu knot out. Light detan­glers will give you enough slip to effec­tive­ly detan­gle with­out the heav­i­ness of oils or con­di­tion­ers. Addi­tion­al­ly, they leave your hair damp, at most.

#1 Pick: Kinky Curly Knot Today

If KCNT dou­bled the size of the bot­tle and left pric­ing the same, I would nev­er use anoth­er detan­gler in my life. But the price point for such a small bot­tle makes this an every once in a while pur­chase for me. Even though a lit­tle goes a long way, my new nat­u­ral hair is super thick/dense and swal­lows this stuff whole. Even still, it’s my #1 because of it’s ver­sa­til­i­ty, light-weight for­mu­la­tion, and water­less make-up. It’s a detan­gler, light con­di­tion­er, hair refresh­er, detan­gler, and more. Because it doesn’t con­tain water, it won’t damp­en the hair. Plus, the smell is adorable.

#2 Pick: Target Up & Up Hair Detangler

Ran­dom, right? The sto­ry here is, I need­ed a quick and light detan­gle for putting my hair into two french braids. I ran to Tar­get, in search of Kinky Curly Knot Today. They were all out, and I didn’t have time to go to anoth­er store. So I chanced up on this stuff on the baby aisle…of all places. My log­ic was that, if it’s safe enough for baby/kid hair, then it should be fine for me. While I am still break­ing down all the ingre­di­ents exact­ly, the active ones are essen­tial­ly slip-pro­vid­ing agents found in most con­di­tion­ers, and sil­i­cones. It detan­gled, and didn’t weigh my hair down. At $1.34 for a 10oz bot­tle, how could I not include this lit­tle gem?

What do you think should be on this list? What are your favorite detan­gling prod­ucts?

Christina Patrice

Born, raised, and liv­ing in Los Ange­les, Christi­na is BGLH’s res­i­dent tran­si­tion­ing expert and pro­duct junkie. In addi­tion to lov­ing all things hair, she is a fit­ness novice and advo­cate of wear­ing san­dals year-round. For more infor­ma­tion on tran­si­tion­ing, nat­u­ral hair, and her own hair jour­ney, vis­it maneobjective.com. Or, if you like pic­tures fol­low Christi­na on Insta­gram @maneobjective.

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54 Comments on "4 of the Best Detangling Products for Natural Hair"

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Alexis

I love Tre­sem­me con­di­tion­ers! When I used to straight­en my hair I used the heat pro­tec­tion con­di­tion­er alongside their heat pro­tec­tion spray. LOVE them!

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[…] Detan­gling con­di­tion­ers […]

Sarah

Hi Ladies, I rec­om­mend pure coconut oil as a nat­u­ral detan­gler. I usu­al­ly detan­gle my hair mid week. I apply the coconut oil to my end first and work my way and detan­gle from the bot­tom up and then add a lit­tle bit more of the oil to my entire hair and either put it in a bun or a braid. Coconut oil has tru­ly improved my hair and has stim­u­lat­ed growth bet­ter than any­thing. I high­ly rec­om­mend it!!

Charlotte

I need a lit­tle help. I would like to know which of the­se, besides Knot Today, does NOT con­tain glyc­er­in? I don’t like the size of Knot Today, I would use it up too fast and I can­not get it near­by. I real­ly need to try stay­ing away from glyc­er­in because I think my hair might hate it.

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[…] 4 of the Best Detan­gling Prod­ucts for Nat­u­ral Hair […]

blb1980

What about leave in con­di­tion­ers? I have not been using those late­ly but not sure which ones are the best…

Ms.Ellison

Im about 7 months post so to pro­tect my hair for leave in I like the detan­gler by mizani and the cream of nature agron strength­n­er

imani

My bes detan­gling rou­tone is VO5 detan­gle n shine spray.I sat­u­rate my hair,put on a plas­tic cap& ter­ry tow­el for abt 30 min . I think the nat­u­ral heat bet­ter acti­vates the ingre­di­ents than if I just sprayed & went straight to detan­gling. After I wait, the wide tooth comb almost glides thru my hair with few tan­gles! Then I sep­a­rate my hair into parts & sham­poo. Works for me& I see a lot less break­age.

Kishia

I like the Hel­lo Hydra­tion from Her­bel Essence. It works won­ders for my hair, I don’t even have to brush real­ly hard when I use it. Thank you for the oth­er sug­ges­tions, I might need to branch out.

Annetta

Hands down…Biolage Detan­gler and Light Con­di­tion­er.

Curlygirl 26
I use Nutress Instant Con­di­tion­er and Stop Break Hair Enhancer which are both incred­i­ble detan­glers and super afford­able — like under $5 a bot­tle (the instant con­di­tion­er is slight­ly thick­er where the stop break is more watery). They both have most­ly the same ingre­di­ents but they works so well and leave my hair incred­i­bly soft. The prob­lem is I went and let a big mus­cle bound styl­ist rip my extreme­ly healthy hair out with a pad­dle brush one day when I was des­per­ate and it wasn’t detan­gled and I was just pray­ing I had some of that stuff in my… Read more »
Chibuzo

Can’t for­get about the Tre­sem­me Nour­ish­ing Mois­ture Con­di­tion­er! Detan­gles like nobody’s busi­ness :).

Ms.Ellison

Love it, and love that they have it Sallys yeah

Ms.Ellison

I love trese­mee mois­ture con­di­tion­er of course I add, pure argon oil, pla­cen­ta uot oil treat­ment from sallys, and avoc­do and mac­dama­ian put it and my hair is like but­ter

Ayo

I’d like to add Soul­tan­i­cals’ Man­go Dip Detan­gling Slip and Knot Sauce Coil Detan­gler to the list! HG Detan­glers right there! :o) http://www.soultanicals.com/hair-care/
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Dennise Hackett

I’ve had a hor­ri­ble time with keep­ing my hair detan­geled. So much that I would just cut the knots out some­times. I start­ed using this pro­duct called Hair Tease about 6 months ago and I love it! My hair is much more man­age­able after I wash it and it doesn’t break off when I comb it. It’s pret­ty much replaced my reg­u­lar con­di­tion­er. I haven’t seen my hair this healthy since I was a kid. You can check it out here… http://www.thehairtease.com

Dee

I am a huge fan of KCKT, although like Christi­na, I have to treat it as a once-in-a-while pur­chase because bud­get-wise, it’s too expen­sive to become a sta­ple for me. But I love how it gen­tly detan­gles and nour­ish­es my hair with­out weigh­ing it down.

anonymous

I con­stant­ly strug­gle with this, my hair is always in need of detan­gling even straight after it has just been detan­gled! Its real­ly dis­heart­en­ing as it meeans that its almost impos­si­ble to retain length and even blowdry­ing it straight is way too much has­sle and makes its too dry to man­age at all. I think I need help or a hair trans­plant — its that thick kinky coily type hair that just wont be tamed!

Stace

May­be you have hard water…boil two large pots of water and let them cool and use that to do your wash­es. I had a sim­i­lar prob­lem.

Casey

When my hair is tan­gling real bad even after I detan­gle it’s because it’s not clean. Re wash it.

z

Just curi­ous is BGLH Store still up and run­ning to buy prod­ucts?

Black Girl With Long Hair

Unfor­tu­nate­ly no :( We had a good run but things became too time inten­sive, so we shut down the store in late sum­mer.

Belle

I can’t even detan­gle my own hair after I wash it because I’m natural…So now what I have to do is get it done pro­fes­sion­al­ly at the local salon. They use some of the prod­ucts that you list­ed in your video and then they give me a nice blow out. As you can see in the video they do a very nice job :D

B

Next time clean your room before mak­ing a video for the whole wide world to see!!

Lexa

Shea Mois­ture Purifi­ca­tion Masque and, my new love, L’oreal Cre’me cleanser. This stuff cleans­es your scalp and hair. It mois­tur­iz­ers, detan­gles and leaves your hair extra soft.

SuSangFroid

I swear by Feli­cia Leatherwood’s detan­gling brush … Nev­er thought I’d actu­al­ly look for­ward to wash days.

z

You know that you can get that brush also at http://www.horseloverz.com for $1.55 a piece. It’s the same brush but at a cheap­er price, not pay­ing $7.00 or $10.00 that some peo­ple were charg­ing oth­ers to buy from them.

To shop ~ http://www.horseloverz.com/Braiding-and-Mane/601833-Detangler-Brush.html

Mochacurls

I’m tran­si­tion­ing and hen­na (wit coconut milk) has been a life­saver! It helps pre­vent mat­ting and ssks. I also love Qhemet’s cocoa detan­gling ghee and Trader Joe’s nour­ish­ing spa con­di­tion­er. Some of my best pur­chas­es IMO!

Renada

The Detan­gler by Paul Mitchell and Kinky Curly Knot Today are my two must haves. Can’t live with­out them.

CharliGirl868

I live by KCNT con­di­tion­er as a detan­gler because I have seri­ous tan­gle issues and I also use Tre­sem­me Nat­u­rals con­di­tion­er with coconut oil and jojoba extract, unfor­tu­nate­ly, I can’t find that par­tic­u­lar pro­duct local­ly, so I have to order it from Target.com. It is the bomb.

Kayla

I always detan­gle my hair with oil, not con­di­tion­er. Does any­one else do the same? I think I’m going to try using con­di­tion­er to see if it would speed up the detan­gling process.

Caramelcurl

I pre­poo with coconut oil and fin­ger detan­gle dur­ing this time, then I sham­poo, rin­se, then con­di­tion. I detan­gle with a wide tooth comb with the con­di­tion­er in and it’s easy breezy.

Shahidah

I’m try­ing to find a way to use the rest of my KCKT because i find it to be incred­i­bly dry­ing to my hair. I’ve mixed it in a bot­tle with PLENTY of water, aloe vera juice and coconut oil and it helps but I’m think­ing of get­ting rid of it alto­geth­er. Any­one have any sug­ges­tions or had sim­i­lar issues with it being a dry­ing agent in their hair?
Oh, and for detan­gling I’ve been using Tal­i­ah Waa­jid detan­gler. AWESOME STUFF

Toni

I’m tran­si­tion­ing and I’m not impressed with the KCKT either. I’ve tried it straight and in the Kim­may­tube mix (minus the JBCO) and both ways caused me to have dry, dull hair. I am start­ing to think that my hair does not appre­ci­ate the aloe vera juice. The Tal­i­ah Waa­jid seems to work bet­ter for me as well.

M

Final­ly, some­one else who is not in love with KCKT. I total­ly agree with you. KCKT is dry­ing to my hair too! I’m on a mis­sion to find a mois­tur­iz­ing leave-in con­di­tion­er and detan­gler. Cur­rent­ly I use Mane & Tail’s spray detan­gler with almond oil and it works pret­ty well.

Shahidah

Well M I guess we are the only two. Must be hair twins. After I get rid of this I will nev­er buy a pro­duct from that line again! I mixed it with water, aloe Vera juice and grape­seed oil. It’s okaaaaaay but still not what my hair needs. It will do till the stuff is gone

Khadija Jones

To get rid of your KCKT, try this recipe for a mois­ture rich leave in…
Mix KCKT, Aloe Vera Juice, Jojoba and Jamaican Black Cas­tor Oil. AWESOME!

Shahidah

I’ll try the cas­tor oil in the mix. Thanks I tried this after I read your post

shiningsolace

I use Luv Nat­u­rals “Don’t Be So Clingy” hair detan­gler and Qhemet Bio­log­ics “Cocoa Tree Detan­gling Ghee”. Both of them are very good at detan­gling my hair, which I do before I shampoo(while I’m pre-poo­ing).

Niki

The Restora­tives con­di­tion­er line from Pan­tene is amaz­ing for detan­gling. Its a blue-pur­ple col­or which is fun too. I also find that sham­poo­ing with Abba Gen­tle Sham­poo helps keep my hair from tan­gling unlike oth­er sham­poos.

Ayo
I use Ter­ressen­tials Pure Earth Hair Wash in Laven­der Gar­den to cleanse and detan­gle my hair all in one step. The ben­tonite clay in it melts away knots. Anoth­er detan­gler I like is a yogurt pro­tein treat­ment. Get one of those small sin­gle serv­ing cups of Chobani 2% or full fat in plain or vanil­la and mix in about 1 tbsp of ACV and 1 to 2 tbsp of cas­tor oil. This also melts away tan­gles. Leave it on for about 20 min­utes but avoid let­ting the mix touch your scalp or the yogurt smell is hard to get out.
Tonisha

Suave and vo5!!!

DanielleToday

Oh yea, that’s all I use!

leslie

I use Trader Joes Spa con­di­ton­er to detan­gle and for co-wash­ing. The price is right, $2.99! I also keep Shea Mois­ture Restora­tive con­di­ton­er in rota­tion as well.

Nic

Aussie Moist con­di­tion­er !!! Best slip of my life. All my friends & I love it

Sam
Both of my kids have very curly hair. With my boy, I just gave up. The moment he sees a brush, he runs away. My daut­gher lets her day­care teacher play with her hair. The moment I touch her hair, she’s not a hap­py camper. But I do enjoy their messy curls. Their hair is such a big part of their per­son­al­i­ty. I’m sure my girl will love get­ting her hair lat­er. At this point, my morn­ing rou­tine is a bit short­er because I don’t have to fight with their hair. We’re out the door at least 5 min­utes ear­lier.… Read more »
Pseudonym

I sec­ond Aussie Moist!

Simoan

Curls unleashed (Organ­ic root stim­u­la­tor) No restric­tions mois­tur­iz­ing con­di­tion­er, and CHI con­di­tion­ers should top this list!

BriA

I use Yesto­Car­rots for detan­gling and have been for 2 years.…I might look up the U R Curly — pret­ty bot­tle lol

Rian

I was hop­ing this was a list of sil­i­cone free detanglers:(do sil­i­cones eas­i­ly wash away?

SJ

If you do use sil­i­cones to detan­gle, I rec­om­mend using them pre-poo. Sil­i­cones wash away with sham­poos con­tain­ing either sul­fates or Cocami­do­propyl Betaine. 

Detan­gling hair with water based prod­ucts are a no-no for my fine hair. I do a pre-poo hot oil treat­ment using coconut oil and olive oil and fin­ger detan­gle, or I just dab a small amount of shea but­ter mix on my fin­gers and go to work. Works like a charm, espe­cial­ly since month­ly hen­na makes my curls clump and super easy to detan­gle.

B

Tre­sem­me Nat­u­rals sil­i­cone free Mois­tur­iz­ing hands done the best, I use it for detan­gling & deep con­di­tion­er!

Dani

i prefer detan­gling my hair before sham­poo and will use wat ever deep con­di­tion­er i have (right now its Aubrey organ­ics hsr) how ever i recent­ly made a detan­gling cock­tail that instant­ly soft­ened my hair, the shed hair slip out and i could lit­er­al­ly feel the tan­gles melt away.
3 oz aloe vera gel/juice
1 oz veg­etable glyc­er­ine
1 oz coconut oil
1 oz olive oil
Idk wat makes it work but it makes my hair feel amaz­ing! And am sure you can use wat ever oils you like too

Jaida

I use VO5’s con­di­tion­ers. They’re extreme­ly cheap (less than $1) and they have tons of slip. I def­i­nite­ly wouldn’t use them to co-wash, but they’re per­fect for detan­gling.

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