"Ow you're hurting my hair!" is an oft-heard exclamation in our house. My 3 year-old has a head of very fine, very curly hair and tangles are inevitable, so taking a brush to it is a task not to be approached lightly. Which is why I came to own not one, but two detangling hairbrushes.
Denman's Tangle Tamer (€8.99) was my first purchase and I was very happy with it, but still curious enough to try out the famous Tangle Teezer when I spotted it for the much more reasonable than usual price of €10.99 in a local chemist (they're priced at €15.99 in Boots). And here's how the two compare.
ALTERNATING BRISTLE LENGTHS
Both brushes are based around a similar principle - alternating rows of longer and shorter bristles are designed to glide through the hair, removing tangles withouT pulling the hair or catching in knots. In reality, neither is quite as miraculous as that makes it sound, though they do both work better at untangling hair than a normal hairbrush. It takes a few goes and I need to use restraint when I feel the brush approaching a tangle, but both brushes do a good job and particularly on wet hair after washing.
So how do they differ? Well, the obvious difference at first glance is the shape - the Denman Tangle Tamer is a traditional hairbrush shape with a handle, while the Tangle Tamer needs to be gripped in the hand and makes me feel slightly like I'm grooming a pony.
Here the Denman brush has the edge for me - I much prefer using the traditional handle and it definitely makes it easier to use when brushing the hair into a ponytail. I'm a bit of a butterfingers anyway, but I often find the Tangle Teezer feels just a bit too big in my smallish hands and I often find it slipping out of my hand when I use it.
NYLON VS PLASTIC
The next difference is in the bristles and the way they are set into the brush. The plastic bristles on the Tangle Teezer are shorter overall and are set directly into the same hard plastic base of the brush. On the Denman Tangle Tamer, the nylon bristles are longer and are set into a flexible, air-cushioned base. This provides the brush with a lot more give when in use and seems to make it a slightly softer proposition than the Tangle Teezer.
It also gives the Denman brush more longevity - the bristles still look as good as new after a lot of use, where some of the outer bristles on the Tangle Teezer are bent to the side already due to the lack of flexibility.
On the purely superficial front, you'll notice we have the hot pink option for both brushes. I love the colour on the Denman brush as well as the nice retro font where the name is printed on the back of the brush. The Tangle Teezer pink is a slightly more neon shade, but if pink isn't your thing, it's also available in various other patterns and colours.
I did ask my test subject for her opinion on the matter and she claimed that both were "nice", so ultimately I think either makes a good detangling option. From a user point of view, my preference is for the Denman - I just find it a lot easier to use and it functions well as a styling brush in addition to detangling. The price is also better and in general I'm a fan of the Denman brand and find their brushes are very well made. Ultimately, whatever makes hair washing an easier event is a winner in this house!