Comparison Review: Mane and Tail Leave-In Detangler

Battling the stubborn knots in our horses’ manes and tails can be one of the more frustrating parts of the grooming routine. So we took a look at some common detanglers to determine which is the most effective.

One of the most frequently used items in my horse grooming toolkit is mane and tail detanger. Over the years, I’ve gone through a variety of brands based on what was on sale, what others recommended and what was available. Finally, I decided that, in the name of helping horse owners everywhere, it was time to put some commonly used brands to the test.

Horse Nation tested a number of popular brands that can be found easily at local tack stores or Tractor Supply Company. We approached these products in the same way that we use them on a daily basis — as casual groomers. We weren’t preparing to show or braid our horse’s manes and tails. We were simply grooming our horses as we would as part of our regular horse care.

Our testing panel was comprised of four different horses, two with slightly thinner manes and tails and two with thick locks. None of the horse’s manes have been pulled. We put each product on a different section of the horses’ hair to determine its effectiveness. Our pick is Eqyss Survivor Equine Detangler.

Eqyss Survivor Equine Detangler needs to be applied to the horse’s mane and tail manually, so if you’re the type of person who doesn’t like your horse’s grooming products on your skin, you’ll want to use gloves. As a silicon-based product, a little goes a long way, so one 8 oz bottle should last. Once the gel is applied and worked through the horse’s mane or tail, it loosens knots and softens the hair. Getting a brush or comb through the horse’s mane is remarkably easier once this is applied. The tail, of course, always requires a bit more elbow grease, but the Eqyss Survivor Equine Detangler made working through knots much more manageable. Once the mane and tail were brushed, the sections with the Survivor were noticeably softer than those with other products. Also, it smells great (or so we think).

Application: Liquid — a quarter-sized dollop into your hand and then work into the horse’s mane and tail.
Ingredients: Cyclomethicone, Dimethiconol, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Fragrance
Price per 8 oz bottle (at time of publication): $19.99

Another product we were pleased with was Cowboy Magic Detangler & Shine. Like Survivor, Cowboy Magic Detangler & Shine is a thicker, silicon-based liquid that comes in a squeeze bottle and is applied manually. It also has a pleasant scent and requires a small amount to get the job done. It makes working out knots much easier than detangler sprays and leaves the horse’s mane and tail soft and easy to manage. This does come in at a lower price point than Eqyss, so it’s a valid alternative.

Application: Liquid — a quarter-sized dollop into your hand and then work into the horse’s mane and tail.
Ingredients: Cyclomethicone, Dimethiconol, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Fragrance
Price per 16 oz bottle (at time of publication): $25.95

If you’re looking for a spray-on product or are more budget conscious, we recommend DuMor Mane and Coat Detangler. Although not as effective as the silicon-based products, it was more so than it’s spray-on competitors. It also comes in at a much lower price point, so it’s easy on the pocketbook. This does not lend as much of a shine to the mane and tail as the silicon-based products, but it will help work out the knots.

Application: Liquid — spray directly onto the horse’s mane and tail.
Ingredients: Water, Coco-glucoside, Glyceryl Loeate, Dicoocoylethyl, Hyrdorxyethylmonium, Methosulfate, Propylene Glycol, DMDM Hydantoin
Price per 1 qt bottle (at time of publication): $9.99


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