The Independent’s journalism is supported by our readers. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn commission.

9 best kid’s hair brushes: Happy detangling for every hair type

Even the knottiest of knots don’t stand a chance

Martha Alexander
Friday 12 March 2021 18:30
<p>Before buying, think about the sensitivity of an infant or child’s scalp and the size of their hands </p>

Before buying, think about the sensitivity of an infant or child’s scalp and the size of their hands

Children’s hair brushes are not simply small versions of regular brushes, though in some cases this is true. The best children’s hair brushes will take into consideration the sensitivity of an infant or child’s scalp, the size of their hands and how to ensure that little one’s will be tempted to regularly tackle any knots.

Our round up includes brushes for all ages – including new born babies. Why, you might ask, do new-borns need a hairbrush? Well firstly, a light brush of the hair and scalp helps sooth babies before bedtime, which can be part of their night time routine.

Gaining a sense of regularity with brushing also means they are used to it and less likely to resist hair brushing when hair becomes longer, stronger and more prone to knotting and matting.

We looked at the different bristle material – natural or synthetic, and how well the brushes suited a spectrum of hair types, including superfine and afro. Were the bristles scratchy? Densely packed or sparsely sprinkled? And how did this affect brushing?

Given most children’s propensity for being little magpies – who value how something looks above all else – we also considered the aesthetic of the brushes as well as how appealing they were for our little testers.

You can trust our independent reviews. We may earn commission from some of the retailers, but we never allow this to influence selections, which are formed from real-world testing and expert advice. This revenue helps us to fund journalism across The Independent.

Tangle Teezer the original mini

The Tangle Teezer has become something of a cult product for adults, so it stands to reason that the children’s offerings are just as good. This is a mini version of the adult original, an ergonomic handle-free brush that fits snugly into the palm of the user’s hand with a pastel-toned unicorn themed design to boot.

The bristles are two tiered teeth that glide through even the knottiest of hair and, as the name promises, banishes tangles. This is suitable for very curly hair, and we were thrilled that it could be used on wet hair too, and happily doing so while being completely submerged in bathwater. It made light work of our four-year-old tester’s fine, knotted locks – and we have to admit being partial to borrowing it during our own hair washing.

Rock & Ruddle wild brush

The first thing we noticed about this brush was the rather fabulous illustrations of birds and beasts across the back. But if you aren’t into creatures and critters, there is a wealth of other designs to choose from including fairies and geometric patterns. There are two sizes – the children’s size is of course the smaller,  although older children with thicker hair might try the large.

And there’s as much substance as there is style: the bristles are natural which will suit sensitive scalps or thinner hair, but they do offer a brush with a natural and nylon mix which might suit children with thicker or afro hair better.

The natural bristles help to keep hair and follicles moisturised and healthy. With that said, the company has created a vegan brush with a 100 per cent synthetic bristle – which won’t have the same moisturising qualities as the natural versions – but we salute the option. Our five-year-old tester who has moderately thick, very long straight hair found this brush a dream to use, as it glided through with minimal pulling or pain.

What we really liked was how the brush can be taken apart, allowing you to clean it thoroughly (with cold water – we used a little bit of mild baby soap), which is not something we see regularly with hairbrushes. We worried that we’d never be able to put it back together again, but the whole process was quicker and easier than we could have believed possible.

Jojo Maman Bebe baby’s first hairbrush

The bristles on this little wooden brush are soft nylon which is gentle enough for newborn hair. Given that this brush can be personalised, and comes with a sweet elephant motif, it’s a cute addition to any nursery and a brilliant present for a new baby as it arrives in a gift box. This was so soft – more like feathers than bristles – and our six-month-old tester was calm and relaxed during his pre bed brush.

To All My Black Girls detangler brush

We loved this brush – our two-year-old tester has thick locks that are wavy rather than coily – but very prone to knotting. The brush head itself is bendy rather than rigid, and is divided into sections of “arms” that are connected but that each move independently. This promises to make brushing through three times quicker than with other brushes, and a much less painful experience for little ones and adults alike – and we completely agree. It did seem to do the trick with less effort and pain.

TAMBG’s give instructions on how best to use the brush – essentially, when detangling you position the brush vertically, and when smoothing, you pull the brush out of the hair horizontally, which you might think is surplus to requirements but we found a revelation. The handle is very slim and reasonably comfortable to hold, while the brush can be used on wet or dry hair.

Tiffy & Tallulah detangling hairbrush

We love the colour of this brush, and how sweet the gold-embossed presentation box is: and we have to admit to having a preconception that this hairbrush was going to be a style over substance situation. But we were completely wrong.

We found the two-tiered bristles – that have little caps on the end to ensure no scratching – stood up well to even the most aggressive bed hair. Our four-year-old tester had what could only be described as a nest of knots one morning, and this little brush made light work of them. This can be used in the bath or shower on wet hair, which we think is always a bonus. We love that this is available for mother and child – there’s nothing like matching accessories to make your little one feel grown up and connected to you!

Denman tangle tamer

This comes in a choice of colours, all neon bright and juicy, which we find to be a mood enhancer – and will make this easy to find in messy bedrooms! The bristles are synthetic and come in two lengths, and the longer lengths are topped with tiny balls to prevent scratching on sensitive scalps, as does the cushioned pad.

This has been carefully designed to cater for soft, fine hair, so children with thicker or coiled locks might find this a little lightweight for their needs. That said, we found it to work beautifully to detangle stubborn matting in our little tester’s bed hair.

Kent Brushes kids arthedz

These are the perfect size for children aged around four – our tester loved the pretty design and how perfectly the handle fit into her palm. The bristles are individual quills that have ball tips to promote a “no scratch” situation. However, each bristle is far apart from the next, meaning this brush has a sparser bristle density than others in this round up, and had to work quite hard when it came to stubborn matted clumps.

We found this to be a good brush – perfect for school bags, trips away and popping in the pushchair – and were pleased with the sub £6 price point.

The Verdict: Kid’s hairbrushes

There’s a reason the Tangle Teezer is so popular – it’s just brilliant for all hair types, including afro, and can be used in wet or dry conditions while managing to remain affordable and fun. We love it, so it gets our vote. We also thought Rock & Ruddle was a good shout for anyone who absolutely wanted natural bristles, and the vast array of design choices are a joy to browse.

For a an even smoother bedtime routine, try our 9 best night lights for babies and kids that help them fall asleep

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in