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Homemade Hair Detangler Spray (Only 2 Ingredients)

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More Health and Fitness

DIY hair detangler

If you experience tears and battles when brushing/combing your kiddo’s hair, try this easy (and super cheap!) DIY hair detangler spray that uses items you probably already have at home!

DIY Hair Detangler Spray

  • 1 part conditioner
  • 2 parts hot water


  1. In a small water bottle/spray bottle.
  2. Mix one part conditioner and two parts hot water (not boiling water).

For example, I mixed about 4 oz. conditioner and 8 oz. hot water in the 12 oz. spray bottle pictured in this post.

How to make detangler Hip2Save
My daughter has long hair and a sensitive head (not the easiest combination! 😉 ), so we have to use detangler spray to avoid tears. I love that I can make my own detangler and customize it with a conditioner that I prefer- and, it really does work!

 Lina ( loves cooking new recipes, thrift store shopping, and DIY home decor projects. 
Join The Discussion

Comments 107

  1. Heather

    I do this for my Daughters hair. Shes mixed and has very kinky curly thick hair and this works perfect, however, I do not use as much conditioner. I squirt about the amount of conditioner I would use when washing my hair into a bottle and then fill it the rest of the way up with warm water and shake. I just reuse an old detangler bottle.

    • dustbusterhip

      Do you rinse it out or leave it on the hair?

      • Lina (Hip's Modern Martha)

        I leave it in and only use a few sprays!

      • Heather

        I almost completely wet her hair and leave it in

    • Lina (Hip's Modern Martha)

      Good idea!

    • Crystal

      How does it feel after its dry? I find a lot of detangler I buy leave her hair sticky to the touch. We use a moisturizer too.
      How bad is the build up on the hair with this method?

  2. Liz

    Love all ur posts Lina…u always have the best photographs too..!!

    • Lina (Hip's Modern Martha)

      Thanks that’s sweet Liz!

  3. Jen

    I make this for my 2 year old weekly, but add 1T of Argon/Moroccan oil too. Here’s the recipe:
    3 parts warm water
    1 part conditioner of your choice
    1T Argon/Moroccan oil (I buy it at either Sally’s Beauty Supply or Target)

    Place in a squirt bottle, shake to combine and spray on each morning. Wait about 5 min. and then comb through hair. It’s a Godsend and leaves it moisturized and healthy!!! Try it you’ll love it!

    • Lina (Hip's Modern Martha)

      I will! I love the shampoo and conditioner with this oil but never thought of this! Thanks!

    • Natasha C

      I have done this and added tea tree oil.

  4. Blyane

    I love your post too Lina! I say this as I’m making the 5 freezer meals from an earlier post, I’m excited to try them and this conditioner spray too!

    • Lina (Hip's Modern Martha)

      Aw thanks! And hooray for freezer meals!

      • Mary

        Hi Lina—I missed the freezer meals! Do you have a link? Thanks!

  5. Mel

    BLESS YOU LINA!!! I dread having to do my daughter’s hair between the tangles n tears. I’m going to try this. Thank you, thank you!!!

  6. Em

    2 of my girls have dreads- it’s great. No brushing evvvvvver, just maintenance of the dreads. Then for my other girls- 1 has twists, 1 has braids. The oldest though has really fine hair that won’t do any of those…so she gets the daily brushing, we condition the heck out of it and only brush at night when it’s wet. In the morning I just grab it up in a pony tail. It looks fine and she doesn’t have to have her hair pulled. Win/win.

    • Em

      I highly suggest dreads if your girls have anything besides super fine hair. They look nice and are very low mantinence!

      • Eww

        Ewwwwwww dirty!

        • Sarah D

          Not cool. Dreads can be maintained quite nicely, your judgement seems unnecessary and out of character considering all the other positive moms here.

          • KKStanley

            I agree with you….the majority of people on this post are kind, positive and offer lots of great ideas! Don’t let it bother you.

        • KKStanley

          That wasn’t very nice!

  7. Wendy

    Does it matter what conditioner you use? Any specific kind recommended? Also, after making the spray, can we just leave it and use it the next day? (Meaning, does this only work when it’s with hot/warm water?)

    • Heather

      You can use any conditioner or leave in cream. The water does not have to be warm, that just helps for the initial mixing. I make a bottle and it last about a week and a half.

    • shopper

      Conditioner doesn’t matter, along as it works for your hair. I keep mine in the spray bottle (travel section of Target) for whenever needed. I start with room temperature water and eyeball it in the bottle and just shake to mix.

    • Lina (Hip's Modern Martha)

      Oh no just warm or hot water initially so it mixes. Use whatever conditioner you like 🙂 yes leave it in the bottle and continue to use.

    • Wendy

      Thank you!! 🙂

    • couponingmama22

      I would use leave in conditioner if you can. Regular conditioner is not made to be left in the hair for an extended amount of time and can cause major build up.

    • Renee

      My stylist told me to always use a leave-in conditioner when making a detangler. Any other conditioner must be rinsed out of the hair even if it’s been diluted.

    • emily

      I’ve done this with expensive, organic conditioner and with cheap conditioner (depends on budget). They’ve been regular conditioner and never have had a problem.

  8. shopper

    For my self, I mix water and leave in dresser’s idea..since those premade reactivating style sprays are the same. If you have dry hair this will also help hydrate.

  9. Melissa

    You can use the same ingredients to make DYI wrinkle release for your clothes. Just add more water.

  10. Potato

    Cut to the chase – just bring a brush into the shower and brush out knots when conditioner is in the hair. I do this every day, and I have 39 inch long naturally curly red hair. Works like a charm and is parsimonious.

    • Em

      You’re like my favorite commenter, always very funny! Question- are you from New Hampshire? You don’t see parsimonious used very often- I know several people from there and they’re actually the only folks I know who use it.

      • Potato

        How was that comment funny? I was actually totally serious. My hair really is that long, and that is how I manage to efficiently take care of it.

        And parsimony is a concept applied when constructing a cladogram hypothesizing the evolutionary relationships of a group of taxa. It is certainly not a New Hampshire thing.

        • Potato

          In other words, parsimony means they path taking the fewest steps, as in the case of evolution, when creating a cladogram using parsimony, one selects the resulting tree that presents the fewest evolutionary steps (as typically many trees are produced from a single dataset).

          • Kennedy

            I think she meant funny by your username 😋Have a great day

            PS I am only 11🙂

          • Marin

            Way to get all pedantic towards someone that was paying you a compliment.

    • Melissa

      I had to look that one up: par·si·mo·ni·ous
      unwilling to spend money or use resources; stingy or frugal.
      “parsimonious New Hampshire voters, who have a phobia about taxes”
      synonyms: cheap, miserly, mean, niggardly, close-fisted, close, penny-pinching, ungenerous, Scroogelike; informaltightfisted, cheeseparing, tight, stingy, mingy; formalpenurious
      “Lou’s parsimonious mother was horrified by his lavish spending”

    • Lina (Hip's Modern Martha)

      I should have clarified. We use this in the morning when we have dry tangled bed head. The kids shower at night. Thanks!

    • Nicola

      I do this with my own hair. 🙂 I have wide tooth comb that hangs in the shower, and when I condition it, I comb it through and let it sit for a couple of minutes before rinsing it out.

  11. Kate

    I have extremely long hair (actually want to cut it off cause I’m sick of sitting on it whenever I have it dwn & my 1yr old loves to pull it & make mama scream…. Kinda like the red bearded guy in Polar Express minus the reindeer lol) & I do the reg conditioner, oil & 1tsp olive oil for shine. I LOVE IT!!!

    • Maggie

      Donate it! I cut 17 inches off last June and sent it to Locks of Love…they make wigs for kids going through treatment. Just a suggestion, leave it long enough to still put up, the only thing I missed was my weekend ponytail 🙂

      • J

        I agree on donating but not to Locks for Love. They lie & say they donate to people but they actually charge. There was a post on here about it last year sometime. Honestly my favorite from that post was a group called Wigs for Kids. They’ll even take a shorter minimum of hair, I think 10″ & they donate all of their wigs to kids in need. It’s a fabulous program! I believe that they will also take color treated hair unlike Locks for Live, though I may have them mixed up with a different group.

        • A

          J is right. I used to donate to Locks but found Wigs for kids and now donate to them.

      • Aleshia

        Locks of Love is a scam. They may give some hair to those in need, but they also sell it to wig makers and profit off of it. Here are some facts: Locks of Love receives more hair that they actually use to make wigs for cancer patients.
        Locks of Love SELLS the suplus hair for CASH! How much are they selling the hair for? In 2005, they sold $352,401 of hair!
        Most of the hair donated does not end up on a child’s head. It ends up being sold to commercial wig makers.
        In 2005, they received $552,554 in contributions. They also do not give out every wig for free, they charge juvenile cancer patients according to their parent’s income level. So they take people’s hair and they take money from dying kid
        Recently 6.6 million dollars worth of hair at Locks of Love are unaccounted for. You did an awesome thing by helping people in need out, but there are other great places to donate your hair at that is completely non profit!

      • Denise Humphreys

        From my understanding you have to make sure that the hair you donate is actually going to someone that actually uses it for someone who needs it. I have heard that 90% of donated hair does not get used and is sent to other countries where it sits in a bag ( if not discarded) where it is rarely used.

    • Potato

      If you are considering keeping your hair but just want to more easily manage it, I suggest wearing it up as a Figure 8 Bun during the day. Essentially create a low ponytail, then put that ponytail into a bee bun. Flip the outermost ring of the bun up, and affix hair in place with a claw clip on either side. It is a stable, sturdy style that holds hair in place and keeps knots from developing over the course of the day. Plus, it distributes the weight of the hair more even so you avoid neck pain. It is also ideal for working out, even in things like turbokick and other vigorous workouts. Better for swimming too.

  12. Tilly

    Yeah I dont get it. 🙁
    If you’re having to buy (or get a deal for) conditioner… why not just buy (or get a deal for) bottled detangler? I’m not tying to be mean, I just really dont see what the difference is or what the savings is.

    • Lina (Hip's Modern Martha)

      This is also an idea for those small samples or travel size freebies just so you don’t have to buy an additional product.

      • Julie

        Exactly! I never buy conditioner, I just use samples and make this. I also add some olive oil.

    • Carmen

      Detangler products do not work for my daughter. I’ve always used a mixture of water and Cantu leave-in conditioning cream in a spray bottle to brush my daughter’s hair in the morning. She bathes at night since she’s only four. She has super curly hair too. It works a thousand times better than any detangler product I’ve ever tried.

    • Heather

      Because one bottle of conditioner can make probably 30 bottles of detangler if you use a small amount like I do.

  13. Harlow

    How in the world do you think of this stuff?? LOL .. this is a real money saver for me my hair is about 20 inches long from my neck so I always need cond. THANKS:) <3

    • Harlow

      I prefer sprays over regular because I like to save money in the shower by not using the water as long and to cond. my hair it takes a long time in there to lather it up, then rinse.

    • Erin

      All this stuff is one Pinterest!

      • Katie

        I may be the odd one out but I don’t Pinterest at all … just haven’t gotten the hang of it. So I love the ideas that are posted here!

        • Lina (Hip's Modern Martha)

          Thanks Katie!

        • Mel

          Same here Katie!

  14. Nicola

    Thanks you for this! My 3 year old son has long, curly hair (despite being 50% Asian, go figure!) that I struggle to know what to do with. I had started putting some of my own hair products through it to help tame it, but I much prefer this idea because I can use a natural conditioner to make it rather than my own chemical laden hair products. Saving money is an added bonus! Does anyone know if I can use Extra Virgin Olive Oil for the oil, or even Tea Tree Oil? I have both on hand, but don’t have the Arogan/Morrocan Oil. Thanks!

    • J

      I use tea tree oil hair products and they work wonders in my hair. I was thinking of using some tea tree oil in this conditioner.

      • Nicola

        Thanks! I think I’ll try it too, I have a bottle on hand because I use it as a deodorizer in my cloth diaper pail. I used use Body Shop Tea Tree Oil face wash when I was a teen, and that worked awesome for preventing break outs! Tons of uses for it. 🙂

  15. Jennifer

    Tough crowd in here sometimes, lol. I love this because it is dirt cheap, I don’t have to buy anything I don’t already have, and I can create it with a product I already love. My kids and I have fine hair with causes a lot of static so I thinking this may help that too. I’m gonna mix me up some right now, thanks Lina!

    • Lina (Hip's Modern Martha)

      Ha, you’re welcome 🙂

  16. Jennifer

    I bet olive oil would work too. I sometimes put a tiny drop of that on my hand and rub through my hair.

  17. robin p.

    My daughters and I all have long hair. I have found not rinsing all the conditioner out in the bath works great.

    • Katie

      I do this with my daughter who has waist long hair. And when the hair is wet in the evening, I french braid her hair and by morning, it’s super soft, no static and the waves are so pretty.

      • Lina (Hip's Modern Martha)

        Hey good idea! I need to up my braiding skills 🙂

  18. Shannon

    Just thinks from a science perspective, this can be a recipe for bacterial growth. You would want to use filtered deionzed water to help keep bacteria from growing which most of us don’t have. I have a science background and also read an article about how watering down conditioner leads to a great iplace for nacteia to grow. Just a heads up

    • Erin

      I tried this for a clothes detangler using filtered water from my refrigerator and after sitting a few weeks it definitely smells BAD.

  19. M Lee

    I cant wait to try this for myself because i have tight curls that are really thick and i have thrown away so much money looking for the right products since my hair grew back after my chemo.

  20. Nicola

    Just wanted to come back and say that I made the detangler this afternoon and when my son woke up from his nap, and I tried it out and it worked extremely well at taming his wild locks and make his curls look beautiful. Thank you is much for sharing!

    • Nicola

      I butchered that sentence – hopefully you can make sense of it! It’s late. 🙂

  21. Kate

    My hair is a tangled mess after I get out of the shower! The last time I had my hair cut my hair dresser used what is called a Wet Brush on me. IT WAS INCREDIBLE! Glides right through tangled hair. I immediately left the hair place and went to Sally’s to pick one up. Totally worth the $8 and it was great on both of my little girls hair which also gets very tangled up!

    • heather

      I tried that brush on my daughters thick, kinky curls. It did not work. The bristles are too weak to get through her hair. My cheap $3 brush from walmart has worked best on her hair

    • tammie261

      I was introduced to the wet brush last year for my daughters crazy curls, that along with the homemade detangler have been a lifesaver. I am definitely going to take the tip of adding the argan oil to see if it helps with some of the frizz

  22. Bernetta

    Thanks Lina!! Made some last night!! No screams after the girls had their shower!! Lol!! Love all your guest posts!!

    • Lina (Hip's Modern Martha)


  23. HitonH

    I have very thick/heavy hair and it is a nightmare to work with when wet. I use Shielo’s Leave In Protectant which is the best detangler and leave in conditioner I have ever used. It makes it easy to comb through my hair when wet and leaves my hair silky after drying. Other leave in conditioners I have used have required a generous amount to work and then leave my hair flaky. The Shielo Leave In is light, so it doesn’t weigh down your hair and you don’t have to worry about having to use so much that it dries on your hair and flakes off. It is also a great heat protectant to use before straightening your hair.

  24. Wendy Swartz

    I think making your own detangler is brilliant. for small children brushing their hair after washing usually ends up in tears unless we buy the detanglers for babies hair which is expensive. If we make our own we can be sure it win’t burn their eyes and it will save us money and save our children tears.

  25. kaitlin

    I have really bad knots I haven’t brushed my hair in a few days do to being very sick. Like its horrible knots I literally have little bit of hair that is not knoted to put up please help it hurts so bad just to brush threw it after a shower!

  26. Karen

    Do you have to reheat it to use every time? Or does the heated water just help it mix initially?

    • Lina (Hip's Modern Martha)

      Correct. No reheating involved. Thanks

  27. Kim

    Months after this initial post and it helped me get names of products to try for my six year old’s tangly hair. She chopped it off four times before age five so it’s just now growing long and it’s a first for us dealing with this tangling problem. So thanks to the author and the commenters for such great ideas. I am not a diy product person tho and have spent hours googling products finding good ones by Shea Moisture that helps. And this post has led me to discover this blog which has been so fun so thank u again for keeping up such a helpful site and being a lovely interactive blogger! On a side note reading thru the comments I did notice one from someone that was quite vulgar in its meaning sadly understanding what is said about “man ju***” I can’t even stand to write it – I’m not a prode by any means but we are talking about Children and the comment goes beyond inappropriate veering to frightening I don’t know if you have power to delete but I would certainly think you could. And you are welcome to delete mine too just to have no mention of the previous comment. I feel that strongly it is inappropriate and this is such a lovely helpful blog. Happy New Year and looking foreword to past posts as I catch up! Best regards!

    • nicolegammeter

      The comment was deleted. Thanks much for reaching out! 🙂

  28. Carlene Wright

    THis has saved my life. I was wondering what to use. Money is tight right now but I’m thankful for researching this. I will tell you how it works in a day or so. Thanks again for the post.

  29. rosa

    😓😓this does not work as good as Thot

  30. Mandy

    I’ve been doing this for my little girl for a few years. It’s so cost effective. I add a few drops of tea tree oil, peppermint oil, and lavender oil. Smells amazing and keeps the itchy scalp and LICE away!

  31. Jazcat103

    When I made this I had the consistency of goop. Is it supposed to be like goo, or is it supposed to be like a water mix?

  32. latest online deals and offers in india

    Thanks for finally talking about >Homemade Hair Detangler
    Spray (Only 2 Ingredients) – Hip2Save <Liked it!

  33. Chloe

    I hope this works! It was really helpful just reading it so I can personalize it with my own ingredients!

  34. Autumn

    will this work for horses? I have a paint horse with a VERY brittle tail and mane and I was wondering if this would work. I’m still going to try it and see the results

  35. JOY

    can you use Suave professionals split end rescue conditioner

  36. Meisha

    Be careful ladies! When you mix water with most anything and let it sit around, you are introducing an open opportunity for bacteria to grow. A lot of these DIY projects don’t ever mention that because perhaps they don’t realize this. That’s why a lot of cosmetics are made with preservatives. And those that are free of preservatives use only small amounts of water and include natural preservatives in their formulations! Just something to be aware of 🙂

  37. Kathy James

    I usually buy a detangler from the dollar store that works fairly well on my granddaughters frizzy blonde hair. YIKES! We ran out. This worked like a gem! No tears! Thank you thank you thank you!

    • Lina (Hip's Modern Martha)

      Great – thanks for the feedback!!😀

  38. Rachel Lynn Pelky

    Thank You so much so easy and quick to use/make itn saved my morning with my 4 yr.old daughte. heck i even used it on my own 2 after i did hers and im 34 lol…

  39. mariette

    Fast hair grow tips please?

  40. Bloom

    I hate it when I have to untangle my daughters hair, she has thick hair, and a sensitive scalp so I will try this.

  41. Janane

    Will this detangler help me get rid of frizzy hair??….I’m totally depressed with my frizzy and curly hair….please do reply and help me

  42. Anne K.

    I am an adult that has very thin and fine hair. Normally I use store bought detangler and I ran out before I paid to buy some more but I have conditioner always on hand. I used a V05 conditioner that had the smell of kiwi lime. It works great. You can use any conditioner that you have on hand.

  43. Nichole

    What Kind of conditioner? Or does it matter?

    • Lina D

      Leave in conditioner is best, but any will technically work. Hope that helps.

  44. Heidi England

    I just made some for my granddaughter and it was great. I showed her what to do when she is at home and it was not to heavy when her hair dried. It actually made it look healthier. I am g ou ing to try mixing some argon oil in for her next time. Thanks for the recipe. I’m even going to use it.

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Nice! Thanks for sharing Heidi!

  45. Debby

    My problem is after I apply conditioner in the shower, combing it thru is a nightmare. So should I try the DIY detangling spray in the shower after shampooing, and comb it thru, or just shampoo and use the spray when I get out and comb thru?

  46. Maricela Ramirez

    I’ve been using conditioner to untangle my hair for several yrs. And it works pretty good. Unfortunately I can’t used anything else on my head, because I have a surgery and I have try different things and nothing else helped me like the conditioner. I also use it instead of (hairspray, gel, etc) it works pretty good on me.

  47. Cadence

    Can you add anything to make it smell good

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