Pick Your Poison: Denman Brush, Finger Detangle or Wide Toothcomb?

how to detangle natural hair without breakage

Detangling has to be the most annoying part of a natural or transitioner’s routine. Probably because it’s time consuming and painful or maybe it’s because the hair is all over the place and you’re left wondering if you’ll even have any left when you’re done. So, to make the whole process easier, I’m going to give you three options for how to detangle natural hair without breakage, plus a quick overview of how each one works and the results I received.


The denman brush was one of the very first tools I saw many naturals swear by when I first went natural. A lot of vloggers used it in their videos and said that it made their curls clump. I knew that I had to try it. I went to Wal-Mart and bought a purple Denman brush with plastic bristles, I did like the vloggers advised and removed every other row vertically across the denman, as this would help prevent snags.

At first I loved it, my curls did clump together nicely but only while wet. I noticed that as my hair dried, it was very frizzy unlike how it looked when it was wet. It did detangle my hair very nicely though and it works just as well when you are trying to detangle on dry hair. I just think that the brush sucks product from your hair causing it to dry only if you are rocking a wash n go.


The wide toothcomb was another popular tool I saw amongst naturals. The teeth are spaced far enough apart so that you are not snagging and pulling your curls excessively. Instead, the comb glides down your hair catching the major knots. The trick to successfully using a wide toothcomb is to start at the ends and work your way up.

I find that it’s easier to use the comb when your hair is wet. On dry hair? Pfft! Forget it! You will have a hard time getting it through for sure. Out of all three methods, the wide tooth has to be my least favorite and least effective on detangling hair. I feel as though it covers too much space in the hair and doesn’t grip where it needs too.


Last but certainly not least, is finger detangling. Finger detangling consists of exactly what it sounds like, using your fingers to detangle your hair. You shape four of your fingers like a comb and run through your hair. Overall, I have found this method to be the most efficient in getting the job done. Here’s why: You can guide your hands and personally feel the knots and places in your hair that need a bit of extra love.

You can control how hard or how soft you pull your hair and you’ll know just how much hair you’re losing because you will see and feel it. The best way to do it is to detangle on wet hair with a generous amount of conditioner. I start at the top and work down in vertical pulls in sections. I feel as though this method gives me better defined Wash n go’s versus the other two methods, and my frizz level is significantly reduced this way as well. I think it has to do with the product being distributed more evenly than it would be if you were using a comb or brush.


Curls Understood recommends Mielle Organics’ conditioners when detangling. They’re all natural and work with all hair types. Best part is they work for the whole family so if you have kids you can make detangling day a breeze for them too.

Co-WashDeep ConditionerLeave In

It’s best to try all three methods of detangling and figure out what works best for you. Each hair type is different and depending upon the style and volume you want, the way you detangle will be a deciding factor on your outcome. It’s best to experiment and go with what makes you happy!

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