The 4 Best Hair Brushes For Toddlers

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by Ileana Morales Valentine

Getting your toddler ready to head out the door in the morning definitely takes some time, and brushing their hair is one of those daily tasks they may try to wriggle their way out from. The best hair brushes for toddlers use flexible bristles — whether they’re natural or synthetic — to gently work through hair without pulling. The right hair brush really makes the process much smoother for you and your toddler.

The best hair brushes for toddlers gently detangle strands without snagging, and one of the key things to look for is bristles that flex as you move through hair. Brush bristles generally fall into two categories: natural or synthetic. Hair brushes with natural bristles, sometimes made from boar or goat hair, are super gentle on sensitive scalps, distribute and disperse the scalp’s natural oils for conditioning, and smooth strands for shinier hair on straight to wavy locks. Natural bristles may minimize frizz for curly or thick hair but you may find these to be too gentle to brush through thicker hair types. Synthetic brush bristles, usually made from plastic, excel at detangling and are sturdy enough for brushing thick or coarse hair — even when wet — but they can result in the breakage of fine hair strands. Synthetic bristles are more affordable, but natural bristles tend to last longer.

Though there is some overlap between hair brushes that would work for your little one’s head as well as yours, the best hair brushes for toddlers tend to be smaller so little hands can comfortably hold them. Now, keep reading to find hair brushes that won't cause an all-out toddler tantrum — who knows, your little one might just start to enjoy this daily ritual.

1. This Cult-Favorite Detangling Brush For All Hair Types

If you're constantly fighting knots in your toddler's hair, you need this kid's detangling brush. It's a highly rated brush with over 27,000 reviews, and the soft plastic bristles flex to massage the scalp and glide through nearly any hair type, including wavy, textured, curly, thick, coily, or straight.

The unique curved shape of the brush is ergonomically designed for ease and comfort in small kid hands. Plus, this brush works equally well on wet or dry hair to separate knots without pulling or breaking strands.

A helpful review: “My toddler has a mean case of the tangles every morning. [...] It was like torture every morning to brush her baby fine (but dense) hair. I felt horrible. I tried everything and every kind of brush, to no avail. Finally, I found this one. I use a detangling spray and this brush and she now actually enjoys getting her hair brushed! Her little ringlets are restored and her hair looks beautiful every day with minimal effort. I would buy this brush 10x over, just to not make her cry from the tangled mess. Highly recommend! (and always start detangling from the bottom up, that's a big help!)”

2. A Soft Natural Hair Brush For Fine Hair

The best brush for fine toddler hair uses super soft goat hair bristles affixed to a natural beechwood handle. My son was born with a full head of fine hair, and we've used this gentle hair brush since he was a baby and continue to reach for it daily now that he's a toddler. I love the brush's minimalist design and flexible bristles. The handle is comfortable for either my increasingly independent son or me to hold.

With a 4.7-star rating and over 2,000 reviews, several shoppers noted the high quality and soft bristles of this hair brush stand out.

A helpful review: “So unbelievably soft! My daughter has fine straight hair and this is great to smooth out any fuzzy tangled patches when she wakes up with crazy bedhead. She also enjoys brushing her own hair with it whenever she can.”

3. A Budget-Friendly Detangler In Cute Prints

This affordable detangling brush is more budget-conscious than the first two picks on this list and comes in the cutest prints that will delight your toddler. This highly rated pick is designed for use on wet or dry hair and has spaced-out synthetic bristles that flex and bend through the hair to painlessly undo knots, making it work particularly well for toddlers with textured, wavy, or even thick straight hair.

The pretty aqua color and ice cream theme may appeal to your toddler, but it's also available in six other patterns, including polka dot and chevron. The brush's handle is sized to be comfortable and ergonomic for children, but you might also like a slightly larger version in your kid's favorite Disney Princess design.

A helpful review: “My daughter loves swimming lessons. She also loves her curly 3a hair. But she hate hate hates having to brush those lovely curls. We only brush while wet, so our tools need to be appropriate for her hair type. We used a wide tooth water comb, but she was not a fan. I grabbed a Wet Brush on the recommendation of a friend for home [and it] was like night and day. This is our 'Swimming Only' brush. My daughter doesn't hate brushing anymore!”

4. A 2-in-1 Brush & Comb For Cradle Cap

This cradle cap brush and comb has densely packed rubber bristles that gently help treat this condition by loosening flakes with the brush and removing them with the comb. This small brush with over 8,000 reviews has a notably utilitarian design with a short handle on the back that is best suited to an adult's hand.

A helpful review: “My son has had cradle cap on and off for his 3.5 years, and recently I noticed that it had spread from one side of his scalp to the other. [...] So I bought this brush/comb combo, along with Mustela shampoo, and used them together tonight. I made a gentle lather on the top of his head only, used the soft brush to gently massage his scalp, and then used the comb on the spots with cradle cap, and it was painless. His long hair took a bit of brushing to get through, but when I rinsed that comb... WOW, all of the flakes washed right off. I am a very happy customer.”

Also Nice: A Detangling Spray

Use this highly rated detangling spray for kids and prepare to spend a lot less time fighting your toddler when it comes time to brush. The formula is enriched with keratin and vitamin B to detangle and smooth any hair type while also making it softer and less frizzy. The gentle spray also adds shine and elasticity to hair with ingredients like aloe vera, jojoba oil, and vitamin E.

A helpful review: "Nothing else we have tried has worked to tame the tangled curly mass of hair my toddler has. Not only did it work like a charm to detangle painlessly on both dry and then again on wet freshly washed hair, but once dried her hair looks soft, managed and shiny. No other product has achieved this!"