The 13 Best Detanglers of 2023 That Will Help Your Comb Glide Seamlessly

Your scalp will thank you

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Best Overall Detangler, Oribe


It’s never a fun moment when you run a brush through your hair, only to get it stuck to the point of no return like Mia Thermopolis in The Princess Diaries. Typically a good conditioner — and a whole lot of patience) will serve you well as you brush or comb through your tangles, but sometimes you need a little extra reinforcement to help save some time (and scalp pain). That's where detanglers come in.

Many celebrities incorporate a good spray detangler into their hair care routines. In a recent TikTok video, Selena Gomez revealed that she uses Unite 7 Seconds detangler in the morning. Other celebrities have gone so far as to create their own formulas (included in our list below!).

“The best way to detangle hair is to brush in small sections by starting at the end, then slowly and carefully making your way to the top,” celebrity hair stylist Andrew Fitzsimons tells PEOPLE. “This allows you to get rid of any tangles instead of being harsh on your hair, which would be the case if you went from root to tip.” 

No matter what your precious locks need, we’ve rounded up the best detanglers to help create nourished, shiny results. Here are the best 13 detanglers for every hair type and need.

Best Overall

Oribe Run-Through Detangling Primer

Oribe Run-Through Detangling Primer

Courtesy of Nordstrom

Who It’s Good For
  • This detangler is perfect for anyone who needs to untangle knots and wants conditioned, hydrated, and shiny hair.

Who It’s Not Good For
  • It works well on all hair types, so this would only cause hesitation for someone looking for a budget-priced detangler.

This all-around gem of a detangler works hard to smooth the cuticle of each strand leaving behind a silky and tangle-free mane. Specifically, the oil blend and amino acid complex join together to soften your hair which can help with separating knots and provides extra hydration for anyone experiencing dryness.

Working on all hair types and textures, this is a highly versatile detangler. It also aids with heat protection if you frequently use hot tools to style your hair. If you like a fragrance in your beauty products, the subtle notes of bergamot, jasmine, and sandalwood will be a symphony to your nose. Oribe Run Through’s detangler and primer is a great way to start your morning routine for protected, smooth, delicious-smelling hair with a glossy finish.

Price at time of publish: $39

Size: 5.9 oz. | Cruelty-free: Yes | Fragrance: bergamot, jasmine, and sandalwood | Best for: Detangling, dryness, heat protection, shine

Best Value

Paul Mitchell The Detangler

Paul Mitchell detangler, best detanglers

Paul Mitchell

Who It's Good For
  • This conditioning detangler is especially ideal for those with coarse or color-treated hair, but it works for all hair types at a great value.

Who It's Not Good For
  • It’s a conditioner and detangler in one, so it’s not ideal for those looking for a leave-in detangler.

Paul Mitchell is a name synonymous with haircare as this legendary brand’s namesake was one of the OG big stylists in the industry. This detangler offers up similar prestige while maintaining a low price point as a conditioner and detangler in one, saving you time and precious pennies, making this a great value. With a rich and nourishing formula, this detangler gets deep into your hair, separating strands while you shower so you can brush it more easily when you’re ready to style it. As a conditioner, this product is also well-suited for those with coarse and color-treated hair that needs a little extra TLC.

Price at time of publish: $15

Size: 10.14 fl oz. | Cruelty-free: No | Fragrance: Jasmine, rose and violet | Best for: Detangling, conditioning, UV protection, shine

Best for Heat Protection

Unite Hair Leave-In Conditioner

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Who It’s Good For
  • This is an ideal detangler to use on a regular basis, especially for moisture, smoothing out knots, and protecting your hair from styling tools.

Who It’s Not Good For
  • It might not be necessary for those who rarely or never use hot hair tools

Recently announced as part of Selena Gomez’s morning beauty routine, the Unite 7Seconds detangler is a crowd favorite with properties that make it ideal for heat resistance. The amodimethicone helps with thermal and UV protection while the rice protein strengthens your hair. Finally, panthenol adds moisture and a shiny finish. So if you frequently use hot tools to style your hair, adding this detangler to your regular routine can help protect your hair and prevent damage, dryness, and frizz.

Price at time of publish: $35

Size: 8 fl oz. | Cruelty-free: No | Fragrance: Unlisted | Best for: Detangling, moisturizing, thermal, and UV protection

Best for a Glossy Finish

LolaVie Glossing Detangler

LolaVie Glossing Detangler


Who It’s Good For
  • This vegan detangler is known for producing shiny, glossy hair, so it’s ideal for anyone who wants to improve your hair’s texture.

Who It’s Not Good For
  • It uses a lot of plant extracts and has a natural fragrance so if you prefer unscented products, this might not be for you.

Jennifer Aniston's "Rachel" haircut will forever be a legendary pop culture beauty moment, but beyond the shapely 'do, the actress has managed to continue to wow fans with her styles decade after decade. As a result, it's no wonder she’s sharing the wealth through her haircare brand LolaVie. A fan-favorite of the line, her plant-based glossing detangler is formulated with nourishing botanical extracts to hydrate your hair and help it shake off any knots and bunching with an enviable glossy finish to boot.

Price at time of publish: $26

Size: 5 oz. | Cruelty-free: Yes | Fragrance: Naturally-derived | Best for: Detangle, priming, protecting, smoothing, glossy finish

Best for Natural Hair

The Mane Choice Soft As Can Be Revitalize & Refresh 3-in-1 Co-Wash, Leave In, Detangler

The Mane Choice The Alpha Soft As Can Be 3-In-1 Revitalize & Refresh Conditioner
Who It’s Good For
  • This 3-in-1 detangler offers premium conditioning, hair growth, and smooth tangle-free hair. It also works really well on natural hair and curly hair.

Who It’s Not Good For
  • It might not be necessary for those with straight hair.

The Mane Choice has a detangler that’s perfect for nourishing curly and natural hair and reviving it with hydration, vitamins, and various botanical extracts. This 3-in-1 formula allows you to wash, condition, and detangle your hair, all while restoring moisture and helping with hair growth, softness, and shine. It’s also not harsh on hair, so you can safely use this product daily as part of your routine.

Price at time of publish: $12

Size: 8 oz. | Cruelty-free: No | Fragrance: Yes, unlisted scent | Best for: Restoring hair growth, detangling, conditioning, hydrating

Best Detangler for Curly Hair

Aunt Jackie’s Knot on My Watch Instant Detangling Therapy

Aunt Jackie's Curls and Coils Knot On My Watch Instant Hair Detangling Therapy


Who It’s Good For
  • If you have curly hair, this detangler and its “silky slip” technology helps with tangles, hydration, and breakage protection.

Who It’s Not Good For
  • It might not be as effective with UV and heat protection.

Aunt Jackie’s Knot On My Watch detangler targets knots, tangles, and everything in between. Using a generous amount of this formula, you can work it through your hair from the ends to the roots to help smooth out dry hair cuticles, nourish and hydrate, and protect your hair — especially curls. Ingredients like shea butter and soybean oil create a salon-quality shiny finish, and your curls will remain intact and have a stronger hold. As a formula that’s designed for wet or dry hair, you can use this detangler right out of the shower, or apply it on dry hair prior to styling.

Price at time of publish: $8

Size: 12 oz. | Cruelty-free: No | Fragrance: Floral, fruity | Best for: Detangling, protection from breakage, restoring moisture

Best for Color-Treated Hair

Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle

Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle

 Courtesy of Birchbox

Who It’s Good For
  • If you have color-treated hair and suffer from dry ends and heat damage, this detangler can protect and rehydrate your hair.

Who It’s Not Good For
  • It won't be as effective for natural hair.

Beauty Protector aims to protect and detangle your hair, and that’s exactly what it does. If you color your hair regularly, you know it’s a constant struggle to keep those ends hydrated, nourished, and healthy. The ingredients also combine to protect against UV rays, heat from styling tools, and fading color, while also adding a shiny finish to your hair. To apply, spray this solution from roots to ends after towel-drying your hair post-shower.

Price at time of publish: $45

Size: 8 oz. | Cruelty-free: No | Fragrance: Floral | Best for: Detangling, smoothing, sun protection, prevents color fading

Best Leave-in

JVN Complete Conditioning Mist

JVN Complete Conditioning Mist


Who It’s Good For
  • This detangler is a perfect refresh for your hair, providing hydration and smoother hair for people who frequently get tangles and frizz.

Who It’s Not Good For
  • It’s more of a coverall detangler so if you have a specific hair type that needs special care, this might not be as effective.

If you constantly wake up with dryness, breakage, and pesky tangles, this revitalizing mist from the hair guru himself will nourish your hair in seconds. Celebrity hairstylist Jonathan Van Ness’ conditioning hair mist works to smooth and hydrate your hair, leaving it silky, soft, and knot-free. 

“A detangler is a fantastic tool in everyone’s hair styling arsenal,” Jonathan Van Ness writes on their site. “Whether a pro, at home beginner, or advanced, this spray will help to end tangles and give your hair the hydration it needs heading into your day! It's a fabulous day [two] style reviver as well.”

As this is a leave-in conditioner, you can use it in your regular hair routine for consistently glossy locks. It also helps with UV and color protection, and is completely vegan. You can comb it into wet hair or spray onto dry hair before styling.

Price at time of publish: $21

Size: 5 fl oz. | Cruelty-free: Yes | Fragrance: Amber, cashmere musk, lemon, mandarin | Best for: Retains moisture for smoother hair, detangles, refresh strands

Best Primer

Amika The Wizard Detangling Primer

amika Wizard Detangling Primer


Who It’s Good For
  • This detangler is ideal for priming and can help you prep your hair before drying and styling it.

Who It's Not Good For
  • It’s intended for wet hair, so you shouldn’t use it on dry hair.

Before you get ready for your next night out, begin prepping with this lightweight priming detangler. Amika Wizard Detangling Primer works quickly to smooth out and detangle your hair, so you can blow-dry and style it, yielding a shiny finish. Simply mist this detangler throughout your hair while damp, and run your fingers or a comb through the ends. It also hydrates your hair and helps prime it for hot tools by providing heat protection up to 450°F.

Price at time of publish: $25

Size: 4 fl oz. | Cruelty-free: Yes | Fragrance: Yes, scent unlisted | Best for: Detangles and hydrates hair, provides heat protection up to 450°F, reduces blow-dry time, increases shine

Best for Intense Tangles

SheaMoisture Raw Shea Butter Moisturizing Detangler

SheaMoisture Raw Shea Butter Deep Moisturizing Detangler


Who It’s Good For
  • Since mattes usually form when hair is dry and brittle, this rich and creamy formula instantly helps mattes by drenching the hair with hydration and natural botanicals to soften it.

Who It’s Not Good For
  • Because it’s so hydrating with ingredients like argan oil, unless you have mattes, this may not be ideal for those with naturally oily hair.

We’re all just one neck scarf or hair scrunchie away from a bad matte, so having the proper tools on hand can save you time and frustration. This shea moisture detangler saturates your hair with moisture to loosen strands, making it easier to comb through (from ends to root!). If your hair is dry and damaged from color, heat, etc., this detangler can help restore some nourishment and create a softer, shinier finish.

Price at time of publish: $14

Size: 8 oz. | Cruelty-free: Yes | Fragrance: Unscented | Best for: Strengthens, conditions, smooths, detangles hair

Best for Dry Hair

Drunk Elephant Wild Marula Tangle Spray

Drunk Elephant Wild Marula Tangle Spray


Who It’s Good For
  • Suited for all hair types, this tangle spray works especially well for those with dry hair.

Who It’s Not Good For
  • Due to the high moisture content, it might be too hydrating for naturally oily hair.

Drunk Elephant is known for many of its beauty products, and this detangler lives up to the name. With amino acids and marula oil, this detangler softens and hydrates dry hair, and protects the hair against heat from styling tools, making it a great choice for use prior to blow-drying and styling. The amino acid complex specifically helps restore hair health, creating a shiny healthy finish. The formula is also designed to help your skin, so it won’t irritate your scalp. Overall, this is a high quality detangler that will make your hair look and feel amazing.

Price at time of publish: $25

Size: 4 fl oz. | Cruelty-free: Yes | Fragrance: Unscented | Best for: Dryness, heat protection, straightening, smoothing

Best for Kids

SoCozy Detangler & Leave-In Conditioner Spray for Kids

SoCozy Detangler & Leave-In Conditioner Spray for Kids


Who It’s Good For
  • This detangler is specially formulated for kids without any harmful chemicals like parabens, sulfates, synthetic colors or dies, and gluten, wheat, and nuts.

Who It’s Not Good For
  • If you're an adult wanting to borrow your child's/relative's detangler, you might enjoy the detangling prowess of a formula that's a bit stronger.

If you have little ones in your household, you’ve probably experienced a tangled-hair meltdown or two. Save the tears and your time, and utilize this specially-formulated detangler designed for kids. So Cozy works with three primary ingredients — keratin, soy protein, and kiwi extract — to strengthen, smooth, and protect hair while you tackle each tangle. Simply divide your child’s hair into sections, and spray each one from root to end, working with a comb from the bottom up. This mist also helps with frizz and shine.

Price at time of publish: $13

Size: 8 fl oz. | Cruelty-free: No | Fragrance: Fruity | Best for: Strengthens and softens hair to loosen tangles

Best Versatile

Cowboy Magic Detangler & Shine

Cowboy Magic Detangler, best detanglers


Who It’s Good For
  • Technically, it’s good for pets because that’s who it was designed for, but it’s safe for human hair, and according to reviews, it works well on both.

Who It’s Not Good For
  • If the animal factor weirds you out, then one of the other 12 detanglers on this list might be a better fit.

They say dogs look like their owners, and if you use the same detangler, that may start to come true (we're kidding of course). Cowboy Magic Detangler was in fact designed for horses (yes, you read that right — horses), and is one of the most popular pet detanglers on the market, but according to pet parents all over the country, this detangler works on human hair too (really well, in fact!).  

Bear with us here. This is a highly nourishing formula that’s allergy-tested and dermatologist-reviewed, and because it’s made for more sensitive skin, there’s no water or alcohol in this product. We’re not going to recommend it as an everyday detangler, but for especially pesky knots and mattes, this is going to blow your mind and leave you with a coat as shiny as a stallion's.

Price at time of publish: $15

Size: 4 oz. | Cruelty-free: No| Fragrance: Yes, scent unlisted | Best for: Mattes, knots, tangles

How to Pick the Right Detangler 


When you’re looking at different detanglers, the ingredients can inform how well the product will work for your needs. For instance, amino acids help boost keratin production and strengthen the hair, whereas pantheol (or vitamin B5) is better for hydration and softening hair. Squalane controls oil and soothes skin, biotin increases hair growth, and shea butter sends a surge of moisture into even the toughest of tangles. All of these ingredients (among others!) work on the texture, moisture level, and condition of hair to help loosen strands and fight knots.

“When looking for a detangler, I typically gravitate towards products that have moisturizing ingredients like castor oil that’ll help the brush move sleekly through the hair without tugging on the strands,” says Fitzsimons. He notes that beyond conditioning and nourishing, other protecting factors will serve you well. “I also love multipurpose detanglers that can be used for preparing the hair before styling and include heat protecting properties.” 

Hair Type

Your hair type plays a large role in which detangler you should buy. “In any case, detanglers work best on all hair types, just be sure you’re buying a detangler that caters to your hair’s needs,” says Fitzsimons. For example, those with color-treated hair are more prone to dryness and can benefit from detanglers that protect against damage and restore hydration. “Drier hair types, and usually curlier or coarse hair, will need more moisturizing ingredients while fine or straight hair types will need a light detangler that won’t weigh the hair down,” he adds.


If you’re just looking for a general tangle remedy, that’s one thing, but sometimes you’re dealing with larger issues — like mattes. The consistency and level of knottiness will determine what kind of detangler you need. For everyday tangles, you’ll want a leave-in conditioner that you can apply after the shower or spray on before you style it. If you use hot tools frequently, you might want something that accounts for heat protection. Or for those who have intense mattes or thick knots, a stronger detangler with lots of moisture to break up those clumps will be the most effective.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • How do detanglers work?

    Essentially, detanglers work to smooth the surface of each strand by coating it with a conditioning agent to reduce friction and help separate tangles. With leave-in conditioning detanglers, you can spray them on the surface of your hair and then comb through, whereas creamy in-shower detanglers must be rinsed out.

  • Can you only use detanglers on wet hair?

    You can use different detanglers on both wet and dry hair, but Fitzsimons says the best way to use it is on just-washed hair. “The wetter the hair is, the better the products in your hair absorb quickly into the hair shaft, which then makes it easier to slip your brush through any knots. If you have curly or coarse hair, I recommend detangling in the shower.”

  • What are the most common causes for tangles?

    Tangles can happen for a number of reasons — friction with clothing like collared shirts and neck scarves, long hair prone to knots, color-treatment, dryness, heat-damage, and more. Keeping your hair up when you wear clothing around your neck can reduce knots, as well as deep-conditioning your hair on a regular basis with hair masks to replenish moisture.

Take Our Word For It

Madison Yauger is a seasoned writer who’s tested hundreds of lifestyle products across all categories. With a background in news and lifestyle journalism, she has a wide network of expert sources. She’s previously covered many different beauty topics, including the hair space. For this story, she spoke to a celebrity hairstylist, as well as heavily researching the market of detanglers to determine the best picks for different needs.

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