Recommend a lightweight non-silicone product for detangling my hair
March 5, 2014 10:13 AM   Subscribe

I am looking for a new hair products that are very lightweight, non-silicone, and detangle. Do they exist?

I have long, blond hair that is more fine than thick, more oily than dry, but basically in the middle. My current regime is to shampoo just the roots, condition sometimes, towel dry, and then rub in a bit of Fekkai glossing cream to detangle my hair while it is damp. Then I finger-comb the major tangles, let it air dry, and give it a quick brush. This is easy and results in nice waves.

However, lately my hair has been feeling "sticky" and tangling really easily, and breaking more. I think maybe the silicones in the Fekkai cream and in my conditioner are weighing it down.

So I'd like recommendations for a) a very lightweight conditioner that detangles without silicone and/or b) a detangling styling product that is, again, lightweight and without silicone, and/or c) your alternative suggestions for why my hair is doing this.

Detangling is my primary need - my hair needs very little in the way of conditioning.
posted by mai to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (17 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
Go to the source, Johnson and Johnson, No More Tangles. Cheap and cheerful at most retail outlets.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 10:15 AM on March 5, 2014 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I used to use No More Tangles as a kid! It does have silicone in it though.
posted by mai at 10:17 AM on March 5, 2014

Best answer: It does? It didn't used to.

Perhaps another kid's product. Here's an article with 25 detangling products. Perhaps one of them would work for you.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 10:22 AM on March 5, 2014

Best answer: Pureology Reviving Red conditioner - ONLY this one, as it looks like all of the other Pureology conditioners contain silicones but this one does not. I have very fine hair with an oily scalp and this conditioner does the job without weighing down my hair. And even though it claims to be for red color-treated hair it is not color depositing so anyone can use it.

Apply it, comb out your hair with a wide toothed comb and let it sit for a minute before rinsing out.
posted by joan_holloway at 10:25 AM on March 5, 2014

I use the detangler from Mane and Tail. I don't know if it has silicone, but it does a great job on my fine hair.
posted by mikurski at 10:27 AM on March 5, 2014

Best answer: I love this stuff. I use a tiny bit of it as styling cream as well. It's made to not weigh down curly hair, so it might work for you.

If your hair is getting tangling and breaking a lot, even though it's oily, I would condition more and shampoo less. I know some people with very fine wavy hair who like Low-Poo. Also try de-tangling your hair in the shower when the conditioner is in your hair instead of after you towel-dry, it might cut down on the breakage.
posted by inertia at 10:30 AM on March 5, 2014 [1 favorite]

I condition every time I shampoo and then detangle before rinsing out the conditioner. The Suave Naturals product line (a) is cheap and (b) shouldn't have any dimethylcones in it and work well to detangle my thick-ish hair. Some people with thick, curly hair report that Suave products aren't strong enough for detangling their hair but they work for me.

Another option would be to look for conditioners with water-soluble silicones.
posted by muddgirl at 10:31 AM on March 5, 2014

Best answer: I got a sample of this No. 4 Prep & Protect in my Birchbox recently and really liked it (I have superfine hair that tangles very easily when it gets past my shoulders, and this worked great for detangling -- I'd just spray a bit on before hitting the hair dryer). Ingredient list here -- I don't see any silicone.

Also, I tried that Fekkai glossing cream on my hair and it was way too heavy. I wonder if that's part of the problem for you?
posted by jabes at 10:34 AM on March 5, 2014 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Kinky-Curly Knot Today Leave-in/Detangler

This stuff is so amazing, it doesn't matter if your hair is straight or curly, very lightweight, silicone free.
posted by nanook at 10:57 AM on March 5, 2014 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I use O'Pro Organic Leave In Conditioner (which I found at TJ Maxx for $7 after my hairdresser recommended using leave-in for my fine hair). I'm not sure if it's sillicon free - I don't see it in the ingredients unless it's under another name. I really like it! And my hair is very fine, straight and on the oily side and this works great for me.
posted by Shadow Boxer at 11:08 AM on March 5, 2014

Best answer: I have a bottle of this John Masters Rosemary and Peppermint Detangler that I usually don't use because I find it too light (my hair feels like of flyaway-y when I use it) and it doesn't seem like it really conditions. It smells GREAT though. I also like TRESemme Naturals Nourishing Moisture Conditioner, which is silicone-free and pretty lightweight. (I have fine-ish wavy hair.)
posted by mskyle at 11:30 AM on March 5, 2014

Best answer: I think we are hair twins. My own fine, wavy, midway down my back hair is maintained by:

1) washing it only once a week, max - if it must be showered another time, just conditioner. I like Unite's Volumizing Shampoo & Conditioner because it doesn't weigh my hair down.
2) Oribe Supershine Leave In Conditioner after washing it and for touch ups/detangling while my hair is dry. Ok, it's a $50 bottle of hair product. Mine has lasted 2 years and is the best. YMMV?
3) Pretty much only finger combing. Boar's bristle brush if I have to. Avoid blowdrying, diffuser if necessary.
4) Unite 7 Seconds Spray Detangler for emergencies. You do have to wait about 30 seconds in my experience.

I don't think these are magical products, though!

When my hair gets gunked up, I put less detangling stuff on it and only brush when it's wet and being conditioned. I've also done Keratase deep conditioning treatments (about $30 at the salon). It really does seem to happen if I'm shampooing too much or subjecting my hair to harsh treatment like blowdrying or brushing it with anything but a boar's bristle brush (I try to avoid anything but finger combing and twirling it back into waves after that)-- my hair almost always goes back to being easy when I avoid both shampooing and brushing/styling tools.
posted by sweltering at 12:30 PM on March 5, 2014

I use Suave Kids Detangling Spray on my own hair . I don't see the word "silicone" in the list of ingredients, but I don't know if there's a scientific name for silicone that it could be listed under.
posted by stampsgal at 12:35 PM on March 5, 2014

My daughter has long, thick, fine hair and it's tangled immediately after she brushes it.

We've had some luck with (a) lots and lots of conditioner (b) adding some argan oil. (I use MoroccanOil stuff on my hair and like it a lot, but I think it's got silicone. I bought her some Organix Argan Oil stuff which is ok, but I think it has silicone too. But I have heard that you can buy Argan Oil without silicone in it.)
posted by leahwrenn at 12:41 PM on March 5, 2014

i don't have a product you rub/spray in to recommend, but you might want to try the tangle teazer. it looks ridiculous but it does detangle hair quite well (i do have to run it down the length of my hair with my free hand pressed gently against the hair so it all goes through, but i have crazy thick hair and lots of it, and it works a treat) without breakage. it's all i use now for that purpose despite having always preferred detangling combs in the past.

if it is silicone buildup, you could try "resetting" your hair using a method favored by the longhaircommunity, where every great once in a while you do a sulfate-containing clarifying shampoo with something that really wipes out all the build up (neutrogena anti-residue works crazy well, but smells terrible) followed immediately by a deep treatment out of the shower applied to damp hair to restore the moisture the shampoo takes out (they like 4 parts silicone-free conditioner, cheap runny V05 is a favorite for this purpose, to 1 part pure aloe vera and 1 part honey, warmed lightly in the microwave before applying and leaving in for hours/overnight in a cap then rinsing, don't shampoo just rinse). if this sounds like a messy pain in the ass to you, doing it once then avoiding 'cones from here on out will mean you don't have to do it much.
posted by ifjuly at 12:47 PM on March 6, 2014 [2 favorites]

oh, i missed before that you're up for cone-free conditioner recommendations too. i don't use sulfate shampoos to wash my hair unless i'm doing the aforementioned once-in-a-blue-moon treatment, so i avoid silicone as much as possible. i also do the conditioner-only hair washing thing which enables me to only use shampoo once a week, so i've tried a bunch of different silicone-free conditioners. my favorites include shea moisture, the l'oreal ever series of conditioners (i'm not positive all of them are silicone free, so you might want to check first), giovanni (again, only some are if i recall), whole foods 365 brand in herbal mint (it doesn't make my hair greasy/weighed down, plus a huge bottle is cheap and easy to get in town, which is why it's a staple for my conditioner-only washing...but it doesn't detangle quite as well as others, heads up), and trader joe's tea tree one (ditto). and v05 even though the smell doesn't really appeal to me. there's also toadstoolsoaps on etsy's conditioners, which are silicone free and get rave reviews for their detangling properties. and aubrey organics conditioners are a crunchy person favorite too, though i've never personally had luck with them (too thick, weigh my hair down too much). and i'm a diehard fan of camellia oil (a couple drops combed through the bottom half of post-shower damp hair) to detangle and protect the ends of my hair without weighing it down or making it dull over time.
posted by ifjuly at 1:10 PM on March 6, 2014

Had to come back and re-comment because a couple weeks ago I found this Sesame Street detangler at Big Lots for $1 a bottle. It is amazeballs.
posted by jabes at 2:56 PM on April 29, 2014

« Older 4 year old, Shared custody, Heartache   |   I need new tires for my Subaru, but am overwhelmed... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.