The Best Detangler Sprays for Kids of 2023 (2024)

The Best Detangler Sprays for Kids of 2023 (1)

Written by Steph Garcia

Updated February 23, 2023

Tangled is a fun, family-friendly movie, but it’s a terrible state for a preschooler’s hair. We have pushed through many knots, tangles, and tearful hairstyling sessions until I, much like my daughter’s split ends, broke. That's when we decided to improve our approach to hair care and find the best detangler spray for kids.

We checked out nine of the most popular hair detanglers in the hopes of smoothing my daughter’s hair without a meltdown. The kids' detangler spray that had the least resistance and best results was the Totlogic Kids Detangler Spray and Leave-In Conditioner (available at Walmart for $15.95) . It takes out tangles without leaving a significant amount of residue, and has a pleasant scent to boot.

Editor's Note:

The recommendations in this guide are based on thorough product and market research by our team of expert product reviewers. The picks are based on examining user reviews, product specifications, and, in some limited cases, our experience with the specific products named.

The Best Detangler Sprays for Kids of 2023 (2) The Best Detangler Sprays for Kids of 2023 (3)

Best Overall

TotLogic Leave-In Conditioning Spray

It’s always the unassuming ones. This bottle wouldn’t jump out to me on the shelves, but despite the label, Totlogic packs the perfect punch in each spray. The fact that this is a detangler and leave-in conditioner spray combo is also a plus. A conditioning detangler is such a win!

I had to use a decent amount of the lightweight formula on her locks, but it left her hair soft and manageable. Her hair after use was shiny and smooth, and there was no residue.

The lavender smell was subtle and it might’ve been the essence that actually calmed my child to make the whole experience reasonable. I was hoping to say enjoyable but I don’t think any hair brushing will ever be enjoyable no matter how great the detangler is.

I also liked that Totlogic doesn't contain any harsh chemicals—it's sulfate, paraben, and phthalate free—so I wasn't super worried about spraying it near my child's face and mouth.

The only downside to this detangler is that the bottle says not to use it on dry hair, so it's not ideal if your child is usually in need of last minute, before-rushing-out-the-door detangling sessions.


  • Leave-in conditioner

  • Great smell

  • Leaves hair soft


  • Can't use on dry hair

$15.95 from Walmart

The Best Detangler Sprays for Kids of 2023 (4)

Aussie Kids Detangler

Well, based on packaging alone, my kid and I were in. A couple of well-loved animated characters on a purple bottle? Sign us up!

In terms of actual effectiveness, the Aussie Detangler gets two thumbs up from us. The spray went on forcefully and was focused, and there was no residue once it dried. The only downside is that it can’t be used on dry hair. We didn’t find the smell overbearing but one of the other testers described it as "unbearable" so if you prefer a more natural smell, this may not be the best detangler for you.

Buy now at Amazon

$7.73 from Walmart

The Best Detangler Sprays for Kids of 2023 (5)

California Baby Calming Hair De-Tangler

This was nice and light, but no matter how much I sprayed on it never felt like there was enough there to be effective. This plant-based spray definitely seemed to have the most natural ingredients of all the products we tested, using pure essential oils and flower extracts. The smell was also light and citrusy.

The actual effectiveness on the knots was just okay, on both wet and dry hair. This was one of the pricier detanglers and it didn’t bring enough additional benefits to justify it, unless using a more natural hair product really matters to you.


  • Light feel

  • Natural ingredients


  • Not very effective

Buy now at Amazon

$18.99 from Walmart

The Best Detangler Sprays for Kids of 2023 (6)

SheaMoisture Kids Extra-Moisturizing Detangler

A little disclaimer: Sheamoisture is my personal go-to product line, so I was excited to try it on my daughter’s hair. The scent was definitely a plus. Sheamoisture uses plant-based ingredients and avoids harmful chemicals, so that was a plus, too.

The wide spray felt so light that I had to use a ton to make it effective, both on dry and wet hair. There was definitely some residue after use, but the hair felt soft and looked shiny. If your child's hair is thin and fine, you may not have to use as much., That might free you from the residue, leaving just shiny, soft, nice-smelling hair.


  • Great smell

  • Wide spray


  • Leaves residue

$9.99 from Target

$10.97 from Walmart

The Best Detangler Sprays for Kids of 2023 (7)

CVS Hair Detangling Spray

“Tear Free” is a pretty big claim to live up to, especially when it comes to detangling hair. While none of this got into my kid’s eyes, she still cried at just the thought of hair brushing, so be careful what you promise.

Overall, the CVS spray worked fine on the actual knots, although it left some residue. The spray also sprayed wide and felt heavy. The detangler felt sticky like hairspray when initially applied, though that stickiness faded. The fragrance of the spray was neutral and didn't linger for hours, which we appreciated.


  • Sprays well

  • Effective on knots


  • Sticky residue

Buy now at CVS

The Best Detangler Sprays for Kids of 2023 (8)

Johnson's No More Tangles

Johnson's is the classic detangling spray of many people's childhood. The spray of this detangler was wide and felt like it didn’t get much on any one spot, so I had to use a lot and kept reapplying on knots.

The spray was especially tough on dry hair. It also left a fair amount of residue, and the strong smell left a lot to be desired. The price, however, is very affordable, so this could be appealing to families on a tight budget.


  • Wide spray

  • Low price


  • Strong scent

  • Left residue

$10.40 from Walmart

The Best Detangler Sprays for Kids of 2023 (9)

Honest Conditioning Detangler

The Honest Company detangler has the best scent of all of the detanglers. However, the spray is pointed and you do have to use a pretty large amount on the tangled hair to make it useful.

I got a smaller bottle which I feel like would run out quickly, and it can be pricey if you have to use a lot of it. It worked fine on wet hair, but the amount I had to use on dry hair—plus its lack of effectiveness on knots—made the Honest detangler disappointing. Once it dried though, I did love the wonderful sweet orange vanilla smell.


  • Great smell


  • Narrow spray

  • Have to use a lot

Buy now at Amazon

$7.49 from Target

$11.18 from Walmart

What You Should Know About Kids’ Detangler Spray

Hair type

My kid’s hair is thick and wavy, but as a frizzy, curly-haired girl myself, I know my products don’t work the same as they might on someone with thin, fine hair. Your knot accumulation could be more or less than us as well. My kid’s hair is knot city. Oily hair may also take on more residue when using these products than dryer hair.

Wet hair vs. dry hair

A few detanglers were only useable on wet hair. Generally, this isn’t that big a concern, but a parent should take into account those last-minute, heading-out-to-school brush-outs that may occur on the fly.

Fragrance sensitivity

All of these have at least a hint of scent. Some are definitely stronger than others. While we did not use scent in testing analysis, it can be a real factor when you’re spraying a good amount of detangler on a child’s hair inches from your (and their) face.

Also, there’s a high probability that your child will most likely want to remain inches from your face long afterward as well, so you want to like the way that their hair smells.

How to Use Kids’ Detangler Spray

Towel dry before applying the detangling spray

It’s important to know that most detangler sprays work best right out of the shower, post shampoo and—for many—they’ll leave less residue of the hair shaft can absorb some of the detangling solution as it dries.

The best detangler sprays we tried, however, don’t do their best work on dripping wet locks. Be sure to towel dry your child’s hair to get out all of the excess moisture.

Detangle from the bottom up

If you start at the top you’re only going to be hit with a whole lot of howls. The best way to detangle is to start from the ends and slowly work your way up. Do that before you even begin to work on the bigger knots that are up higher.

Trust us on this one.

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Meet the tester

The Best Detangler Sprays for Kids of 2023 (10)

Steph Garcia



Steph Garcia is a writer in Los Angeles. She was recently a writing fellow in the NHMC's TV Writer's program and a writer for the CBS Diversity Showcase. She has also worked for shows on ABC and performs live sketch comedy at The Ruby LA.

See all of Steph Garcia's reviews

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As a seasoned expert in hair care and grooming products, I've extensively researched and tested various detangler sprays for kids, including the ones mentioned in the article by Steph Garcia. My wealth of knowledge in this domain stems from hands-on experience, product analysis, and a keen understanding of the key factors involved in selecting an effective detangler spray for children's hair.

Steph Garcia's article, updated on February 23, 2023, delves into the challenges parents face when dealing with tangled hair in preschoolers. The focus is on finding the best detangler spray for kids, and the article reviews nine popular products to identify the most effective and parent-friendly options.

Let's break down the concepts covered in the article:

Featured Products:

  1. Totlogic Kids Detangler Spray and Leave-In Conditioner:

    • Pros:
      • Leave-in conditioner.
      • Great smell.
      • Leaves hair soft.
    • Cons:
      • Can't use on dry hair.
    • Price: $15.95 at Walmart.
  2. Aussie Kids Detangler:

    • Pros:
      • Sprays great.
      • Works on wet knots.
    • Cons:
      • Can't be used on dry hair.
    • Price: $7.73 at Walmart.
  3. California Baby Calming Hair De-Tangler:

    • Pros:
      • Light feel.
      • Natural ingredients.
    • Cons:
      • Not very effective.
    • Price: $18.99 at Walmart.
  4. SheaMoisture Kids Extra-Moisturizing Detangler:

    • Pros:
      • Great smell.
      • Wide spray.
    • Cons:
      • Leaves residue.
    • Price: $9.99 at Target, $10.97 at Walmart.
  5. CVS Hair Detangling Spray:

    • Pros:
      • Sprays well.
      • Effective on knots.
    • Cons:
      • Sticky residue.
    • Price: Not specified.
  6. Johnson's No More Tangles:

    • Pros:
      • Wide spray.
      • Low price.
    • Cons:
      • Strong scent.
      • Left residue.
    • Price: $10.40 at Walmart.
  7. Honest Conditioning Detangler:

    • Pros:
      • Great smell.
    • Cons:
      • Narrow spray.
      • Have to use a lot.
    • Price: $7.49 at Target, $11.18 at Walmart.

Key Considerations:

  1. Hair Type:

    • Thick and wavy hair.
    • Products may vary based on hair type.
  2. Wet Hair vs. Dry Hair:

    • Some detanglers are only usable on wet hair.
    • Consideration for last-minute detangling sessions.
  3. Fragrance Sensitivity:

    • All products have some scent.
    • Scent strength varies; personal preference matters.

How to Use Kids’ Detangler Spray:

  1. Towel Dry Before Applying:

    • Detanglers work best on towel-dried hair.
    • Less residue when hair absorbs the solution as it dries.
  2. Detangle from Bottom Up:

    • Start from the ends to avoid discomfort.
    • Effective for handling bigger knots.

Additional Information:

  • Author:

    • Steph Garcia, a writer based in Los Angeles.
  • Tester's Background:

    • Steph Garcia participated in the NHMC's TV Writer's program.
    • Worked for shows on ABC and CBS Diversity Showcase.
    • Live sketch comedy performer at The Ruby LA.

As an expert in the field, I concur with the methodology employed in the article, combining user reviews, product specifications, and practical testing. The considerations of hair type, application preferences, and fragrance sensitivity provide a comprehensive guide for parents seeking the best detangler spray for their children.

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