best detangler shampoo for black hair

4 Best Detangler Shampoo For Black Hair | For Knots In 4C Natural Hair

Want smooth and knot-free natural, 4c hair? Try these top detangler shampoo for black hair that can untangle the most matted hair too!

I love my natural 4c, hair! I’ve stopped straightening or perming it and have decided to embrace my heritage and curls in the past few years.

And I know a lot of black women who are now wearing their natural hair with pride. But let’s face it girlies, the maintenance required for 4c hair is something else!

The biggest issue I faced while transitioning to natural hair is how matted and tangled my curls looked!

Of course, I couldn’t wear a bonnet everywhere and when my curls were out of protective braids, they simply wouldn’t lay flat.

So I have an arsenal of detangling products for natural hair in my bathroom. 

I know a lot of women just think using an oil or leave-in conditioner would be enough to detangle natural hair, but I feel the detangling process should start in the shower with the shampoo.

Wet hair is most prone to knots and tangles. So using the best detangler shampoo for black hair is the first step to getting knot-free 4c curls!

Best Detangler Shampoo For Black HairBest ForTop Ingredients
African Pride Moisture Miracle ShampooOily 4c Natural HairHoney, Coconut Oil
Design Essentials Honey Creme Super Detangling Conditioning Shampoo3b, 3c, 4a, 4b CurlsHoney 
Shea Moisture Red Palm Oil Detangling ShampooDandruff/Build-up Prone ScalpRed Palm Oil, Flaxseed Oil, Tea Tree Oil
Mielle Organics Moisturizing and Detangling Shampoo4c Black Hair/Dry ScalpHoney, Babassu Oil

How I tested the best detangler shampoo for black hair?

After I decided to give you my reviews on the detangling shampoos for black hair, I tested some of the products on my curls. Some shampoos I had used before, others I got for testing out. I also rated them on a scale of 1-5 based on the following factors. 

  • Detangling Properties – Obviously, I first checked how good of a “slip” the shampoo had and to what extent can it detangle your matted curls
  • Moisturizing Properties – Since 4c hair requires more conditioning than other textures, I also checked if the shampoos have moisturizing ingredients like shea butter, coconut oil, castor oil, etc.
  • Gentleness on Hair & Scalp – Sulfates and harsh surfactants are a big no-no! I checked if the shampoos were free of SLES and SLS and other “problematic” ingredients like ethanol or isopropyl alcohol. 

Top Detangler Shampoo For Black Hair 2023

How To Choose The Best Detangler Shampoo For Black Hair

When it comes to maintaining strong, healthy, and beautiful black hair, detangler shampoo is a must-have. But with so many options on the market, choosing the right one for your hair can be overwhelming.

To help you make an informed decision, we’ve outlined some important considerations when selecting the best detangler shampoo for black hair.

Firstly, look for a shampoo that is gentle and non-stripping. Black hair is naturally dry and delicate, and harsh shampoos can strip away its natural oils, leaving it prone to breakage and damage. A detangler shampoo that is formulated with natural ingredients such as coconut oil, jojoba oil, or shea butter can help nourish and strengthen your hair while detangling it.

Secondly, choose a shampoo that is designed specifically for black hair. This means selecting a product that is designed to address the unique needs of your hair type, such as its texture and density. Products that are specifically for black hair contain ingredients that help to smooth and protect the hair, making it easier to detangle without causing damage.

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Thirdly, consider the texture of your hair. If you have coarse, thick hair, you may need a more intensive detangler shampoo to help work through knots and tangles. On the other hand, if you have fine hair, you’ll want a lightweight product that won’t weigh your hair down or leave it feeling greasy.

What is a good homemade detangler for Black hair

If you have Black hair, you know that finding the right detangler shampoo can be a challenge. Luckily, there are some great homemade options that can not only detangle your hair but also provide nourishment and moisture. Here are some of the best homemade detanglers for Black hair:

1. Coconut Oil and Aloe Vera: Mix together equal parts of coconut oil and aloe vera gel and apply it to your hair before washing. Let it sit for at least 15 minutes and then follow up with your regular shampoo and conditioner. This powerful combo not only detangles but also nourishes and strengthens your hair.

2. Apple Cider Vinegar and Water: Combine equal parts of apple cider vinegar and water and use it as a final rinse after shampooing and conditioning. This helps to remove any tangles and buildup while also restoring the pH balance of your scalp.

3. Banana and Almond Oil: Blend one ripe banana with a tablespoon of almond oil and apply it to your hair. Let it sit for 30 minutes and then rinse with warm water. This hair mask not only detangles but also provides deep nourishment and hydration.

How to use detangler on natural hair

Detangling natural hair is a crucial step in any natural hair care routine. It’s important to use a detangler that provides sufficient slip to avoid breakage and damage to the hair. Here are some tips on how to use detangler on natural hair:

1. Start with detangling on dry hair. Before jumping in the shower, section your hair into four or six parts, and detangle each section with a wide-toothed comb or a paddle brush.

2. Apply the detangler. Once in the shower, wet your hair and apply a generous amount of detangler to your hair. Make sure to apply it evenly throughout your hair, from the roots to the ends.

3. Use a wide-toothed comb. Using a wide-toothed comb, start detangling from the ends of your hair and work your way up towards the roots. Detangle each section thoroughly before moving on to the next one.

4. Rinse your hair. Once you’ve detangled all sections thoroughly, rinse your hair with warm water. Make sure to rinse out all of the detangler to avoid buildup.

5. Style as usual. After you’ve rinsed out all of the detangler, style your hair as usual. Avoid using heat styling tools, if possible, to ensure that your hair does not become damaged.

African Pride Moisture Miracle Shampoo

best detangler shampoo for black hair

One thing I’ve noticed with a lot of detangling shampoos for natural hair is that they tend to be very “heavy”. In other words, they contain ingredients like butter and cream that weigh curls down.

So I was happy to find this African Pride shampoo that has honey and coconut oil as its chief components. 

I was happy with the results after using it on my hair as it did its bit for detangling my knotted mess of a head.

A lot of users said it could do better in the detangling department but let me tell you a secret. You have to leave it on for 10-15 mins after combing your curls in the shower. That’s when the shampoo works to its full potential.

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It’s not got any sulfates but there is a milder version of surfactants like Sodium Alpha Olefin Sulfonate and Cocamidopropyl Betaine which are safe on color-treated hair. So that’s was one more thing I liked. 

Did the shampoo have it’s drawbacks? Yes. It’s full of added colorants and perfume. And while the fragrance is very pleasant, I don’t think it’ll suit sensitive or inflamed scalps. 


  • Contains coconut oil and honey that moisturizes hair without weighing it down


  • Contains added perfume and colorants that can be harsh on sensitive scalp

My Ratings:

  • Detangling Properties – 4/5
  • Moisturizing Properties – 4/5
  • Gentleness on Scalp & Hair – 3.5/5

Who It’s For – Limp curls, Smelly scalp

Design Essentials Honey Creme Super Detangling Conditioning Shampoo

best detangler for matted african american hair

Ever heard of the phrase “jack of all trades, master of none”? This shampoo is it. 

At first,  I was intrigued that the shampoo claimed to cater to all hair textures from 3a to 4c curls. But that’s what causes its downfall in my opinion. 

It was good enough to detangle my 4c curls but not nourishing enough for them. I wish the formula (that has honey as a chief ingredient) also contained ingredients like coconut oil or shea butter.

But no. It actually uses Polyquaternium-7 to condition your hair. And while this ingredient is technically “safe” for hair, it causes product build-up. Like, a lot of it.

I actually saw Elmer glue-like chunks of it on my scalp right after showering. So this shampoo is so not worth it.

best detangling shampoo for 4c natural hair

If you have “looser” curl patterns or need a detangler shampoo that adds volume this might be a good choice.

But for dry, 4c hair, I’d suggest sticking to SheaMoisture shampoos.


  • Good for all natural hair types (from 3a to 4c curls)
  • Lightweight formula won’t weigh down curls
  • Doesn’t use mineral oil to give it slip
  • It’s sulfate-free so can be used on color-treated hair


  • Can leave certain hair textures dry as it’s not very nourishing 
  • Leaves sticky residue behind on hair

My Ratings:

  • Detangling Properties – 4/5
  • Moisturizing Properties – 3.5/5
  • Gentleness on Scalp & Hair – 4/5 

Who It’s For – Type 3-4 hair

Related: Best Shampoos For Black Hair Growth

Related: Best Leave-In Conditioner For 4C Hair

Shea Moisture Red Palm Oil Detangling Shampoo

best detangler for matted african american hair

Okay, so this is a very lesser-known SheaMoisture product. I am a loyal user of the SheaMoisture Jamaican Castor Oil shampoo for years now. And so when I saw that they sell a “detangling shampoo”, I just had to try it. 

My experience with this product was very mixed. On one hand, it does a high slip as promised thanks to the red palm oil and cocoa butter formula. On the other hand, it left my hair feeling wavy and dry after use.

It’s supposed to be good for removing product build-up as well as it contains tea tree oil but I felt it made my curls very wiry. 

The consistency of the shampoo was also very watery. So it’s a product you can easily overuse. 

This shampoo has no sulfates so it won’t lather up. But it will still cleanse your hair and scalp, so whatever you do, please don’t use a lot of it to get that lathery, soapy texture. 

Using a large amount of product will dry your curls! So be careful. 

best detangler for natural hair

Coming to the good stuff. I liked that the shampoo doesn’t rely on ingredients like mineral oil to give it that extra slip. So it’s good for your scalp health.

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As it’s a good clarifying shampoo, it makes a good match for oily or dandruff-prone scalps.

Overall I’d suggest using this shampoo for black people wit 3c or 4a curls. You’d be better off with African Pride or Mielle for your 4c curls.


  • Sulfate-free formula is safe for colour-treated hair
  • It doesn’t use mineral oil to give it slip
  • Tea tree oil formula clarifies scalp


  • The clarifying formula dries out your scalp
  • It’s sulfate-free so it won’t lather well

My Ratings:

  • Detangling Properties – 4/4
  • Moisturizing Properties – 3.5/5
  • Gentleness on Scalp & Hair – 4/5

Who It’s For – 3c/4a Curls, Dandruff-Prone Scalps

Mielle Organics Pomegranate & Honey Moisturizing and Detangling Shampoo

best detangling shampoo and conditioner for black hair

I don’t really Mielle products on a day-to-day basis as they’re on the expensive side. But holy cow was this shampoo worth it!

The chief ingredients here are honey and babassu oil and while you may be sceptical at the lack of heavy nourishing butters, this shampoo makes it work.

I liked how it detangled my hair and added definition to my curls at the same time. 

best detangling shampoo and conditioner for black hair

A lot of detangler shampoos do not do much for adding volume and bounce to curls so I was really happy with this result. 

I really wish the shampoo didn’t have added fragrance though. I liked the scent, but as usual, the addition of perfumes makes it a questionable choice for certain scalp types. 

There is also Polyquarterium-7 here, which is probably why it’s so good at making hair look voluminous. But you’ll need to be careful as this particular ingredient can cause build-up on scalp in the long run. 


  • Oil-based formula is very nourishing and has lots of slip
  • Easily detangles hair on first wash itself 
  • Nourishing ingredients suit even 4c hair
  • Hydrolyzed keratin adds definition to limp curls 


  • Expensive compared to stuff from SheaMoisture
  • Oil-based formula not for looser curls or low-porosity hair

My Ratings:

  • Detangling Properties – 4.5/5
  • Moisturizing Properties – 5/5
  • Gentleness on Scalp & Hair – 4/5

Who It’s For – Very dry scalps, Dehydrated 4c Curls, High Porosity Hair

Here is a quick comparison of the different detangling shampoos for natural hair:

Detangler Shampoos for Black HairAfrican Pride Moisture Miracle Shampoo
Design Essentials Honey Creme Super Detangling ShampooShea Moisture Red Palm Oil Detangling ShampooMielle Organics Moisturizing and Detangling Shampoo
Detangling Properties4.5/54/55/54/5
Gentle On Scalp4/53.5/54/54.5/5

Natural hair is not a monolith. Depending on the condition of your scalp and the health of your strands, you might have to mix and match your detangling products.

But using a detangler shampoo for black hair is always the right place to start.

After shampooing, I highly recommend using a super-nourishing conditioner with lots of slip to keep your curls smooth.

Detangling sprays and serums might be enough for certain hair types but others (high-porosity hair, especially) would require more cream or butter-based products to remain smooth and untangled.  

Why You Should Trust Haireveryday?

The author of this article, Leah Marie Priest has a degree in Cosmetology with years of experience in dealing with hair care, scalp care, and hairstyling. As someone who extensively deals with all kinds of hair textures, products, styling methods and more, hair Leah Marie knows what kind of products and procedures suit each hair type and person. We have also tested these hair products and processes ourselves to provide you an unbiased review about every product. Each of our articles are also reviewed by a team of medical professionals so that you get the most accurate and expert-reviewed information.

Also Read:

Best Styling Gel for Black Women’s Hair

Best Shampoo For Tangled Hair

How To Detangle Matted Hair

Best Hair Growth Products For African Americans

Design Essentials Super Detangling Conditioning Shampoo

Using the best detangler shampoo for black hair helps remove knots and unravel matted hair. The Design Essentials Super Detangling Conditioning Shampoo is best for natural 4c hair.

Product SKU: DSNT24882Y7GS

Product Brand: Design Essentials

Product Currency: USD

Product Price: $21.43

Price Valid Until: 2022-10-09

Product In-Stock: InStock

Editor's Rating:
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