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Brushing your hair used to be a thing of ritual—100 strokes a night for long and luscious princess hair. But not everyone has “princess hair” per se, and everyone still needs to groom their hair one way or another. Rather than rip your hair out (figuratively and literally) over the wrong brush that may not even be detangling and styling your hair the best way it could be, here’s a brief guide to de-bunking which brush could benefit your hair the best.
A boar bristle brush is a great staple for almost any kind of hair. The natural boar bristles are excellent at distributing your scalp’s natural oils down the hair shaft, which may save you a day or two of washing. The bristles are flexible, so it won’t snag and break hair as it pulls through. Sometimes these can be densely packed though, so a thorough brushing takes several passes. These are also great for styling if you’re looking for smooth, frizz-free hair. Some of them have a mix of stiffer nylon bristles within the boar so it’s got a bit more grip for detangling and grooming.
Your basic weapon of choice, the classic hairstyling brush has a rubber base and nylon bristles and can come in several sizes from small, medium, to large. The best thing about this brush is that it tackles detangling, blow-drying, and styling. This is an especially good pick for detangling curly hair since hair can move pretty easily through nylon bristles, and it can shape and smooth at the same time. If you’re after smooth styles, this is a good tool for blow-drying to get volume at your roots, before using round brush if you’re looking to style curled/waved ends.
If you have long and straight hair for the most part, a paddle brush covers a lot of ground for detangling purposes. Straight thick hair will benefit the most from this type of brush, which can come with nylon, boar, or a mixture of both bristles. Sometimes they’re vented for blow-drying purposes. The flat surface makes this a great tool for smoothing, frizz, and static-fighting. Plus, with its wide flat shape, it can fit more bristles on it and detangle your hair quicker and with less passes—so less shedding for you.
The wide-tooth comb is a must for detangling wet hair. Since lots of hair can slip through the teeth, that means less breakage for you. Wide-tooth combs are also one of the best tools for thick curly hair, since it can detangle your curls without messing with their shape, and it’s the best weapon against hair poof-age.
The round boar bristle brush is your go-to for blow-drying. By being able to wrap the hair around the barrel and brush it through and you heat style, you can create smooth curls, waves, and bends. It’s not the easiest tool for detangling, but if you’re trying to maintain a blow-out a couple days afterwards, smoothing and brushing in the direction of your hairstyle with this brush would be best to refresh the shape. Just don’t wrap hair TOO much around this or you may find yourself with a new attachment to your hair. These brushes come in all sizes, and to some degree, size does matter. The bigger the barrel, the straighter your blowout will be. Those are great for high volume styles and for creating a relatively smooth and straight style, with flipped-out or curved-under ends. The smaller barrel, where you can wrap a section of hair around at least twice, is the one to give you waves and curls. Round brushes comes in a variation of nylon, boar, or both bristles, and the inner barrel sometimes can be ceramic or heat-conducting to help speed up your blow-out.