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The 11 Best Detanglers For Smoothing Out Knots

No tugging, no pulling, and no damage in sight.

Product, Plastic bottle, Beauty, Skin care, Spray, Bottle, Material property, Liquid, Hand, Hair care,
Jewelyn Butron

If you struggle with extra tangled hair, you might want to just give up on brushing all together. The key is preventing knots from happening in the first place before you even get in the shower. "Your hair is most fragile when it's wet, so brush out any tangles before it ever touches the water to help make the brushing easier afterwards," explains Siobhan Quinlan, hairstylist and creative director at Art + Autonomy Salon in NYC. If you want to double up on the preventative measures, you can also use a wide tooth comb to brush through your strands while you have conditioner in. Dry, damaged hair is more prone to knots, so never skip conditioner (and if you have fine strands, just avoid your roots).

When you get out of the shower, squeeze or pat your hair with your towel to ring out excess water—rubbing it will cause tangles. Then, spritz in a detangling spray and brush out your strands working your way up from the bottom up. Make sure to hold the section of hair with your free hand so you're not pulling hair from the scalp. Quinlan also recommends choosing a brush made specifically for tangles like the Wet Brush or the Tangle Teezer.

While you can be predisposed to tangles depending on your hair type—fine hair and textured hair tend to struggle the most—tangles could also mean it's time for a trim. "As the ends of your hair split, all of those little pieces intertwine with each other and can cause tangles," explains Quinlan. "A quick inch or so off of the bottom creates a clean finish that's less likely to get mangled."

Yet, even with all of these tips, one of the easiest and most tried and true ways to nix tangles fast and without damaging your hair is with a detangler. Not only will they help knots slip right out, but they also boost shine, condition, and nix frizz. Here are the best ones for keeping strands smooth and knot-free.

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1
Best Organic Formula
Innersense
Sweet Spirit Leave In Conditioner
2
Best for Healthier Hair
Drunk Elephant
Wild Marula™ Tangle Spray
3
Best Multitasker
Drybar
Prep Rally Prime & Prep Detangler
4
Best For Unruly Hair
Briogeo
Farewell Frizz Rosarco Milk Leave-In Conditioning Spray
5
Best Tried And True
It's A 10
Silk Express Miracle Silk Leave-In
6
Best For Fine Hair
R+Co
Pinstripe Intense Detangling Spray
amazon.com
7
Best For Damaged Hair
Not Your Mother's
Knotty To Nice Conditioning Detangler
amazon.com
8
Best For Natural Hair
Pantene
Gold Series Leave-On Detangling Milk
amazon.com
9
Best Protector
Leonor Greyl Paris
Lait Luminiscence Bi-Phase
amazon.com
10
Best Post-Swim
Sun Bum
3 in 1 Leave-In
amazon.com
11
Best For Frizz
John Frieda
Frizz Ease Daily Nourishment Leave-in Conditioner
amazon.com
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