With so many brushes to choose from it can be hard to figure out what hair brush is best for you. Here's a breakdown of some of the popular brushes and what they are best used for.
Paddle Brush (example: Mason Pearson popular)
What is it used for? - Simply brushing through to get out knots, gathering hair for a ponytail or updo, or making the ends really straight during blowdrying if a round brush is giving you too much bend on the ends. Best brush to use on bangs so they are beveled slightly under, not rounded like you used a soda can to set them).
What to look for- A brush with synthetic and natural bristles of different lengths to grab every hair. Keep in mind that you need to keep a few inches distance from the blowdryer because synthetic bristles will melt.
Wet Brush (i.e. wet brush)
Used for- Detangling wet hair or combing through hair while conditioner is in during the shower).
What to look for- A paddle brush with bristles that bend very easily so they are getting the knots out gently, not ripping hair strands.
Good for everyone. Great to bring on vacation or the beach to comb through leave-in conditioner so hair stays protected and tangle-free.
Good for anyone with over processed hair. Hair is already stretched to maximum capacity when wet. This will allow you to comb through and detangle without putting so much pressure on strands that are already heavy with water so they don’t snap.
Boar Bristle Brush (i.e. spornette italian collection)
Used for- Blow drying hair that tends to be frizzy. Blow drying delicate or fragile hair that you are concerned about putting too much heat on. Setting hair in brush sets.
What to look for - A lightweight natural bristle brush with no metal and dense bristles. Why dense? The more bristles, the better the chance of grabbing all the hair and the tighter you will be able to grip hair to pull it straight.
Benefits- Won’t add extra heat during styling. Cools off quickly when set. Polishes frizzy, wavy or curly hair. Brings out hairs natural shine as it helps seal cuticle.
Metal Brush (i.e. bio ionic silver classic)
Used for - Blow drying thick, heavy hair. blowdrying straight hair so it has a bend or wave.
What to look for - A lightweight brush with vents to minimize blow-dry time.
Benefits- This brush emits negative ions into the hair which help undo damage. Extremely lightweight. Gets hot like a curling iron so if you are looking to bend the hair, this skips the step of a curling iron when used with some finesse.
Tip- This is the brush you need to use any day when you need to spruce up already dry hair. Have a ponytail dent? … Metal brush. Hair got a little flat by the end of the day and you’re going out?… Pump it up again with your metal brush.
Vent Brush (i.e t3 free flow vent brush).
Used for- Getting water out of the hair quickly before pulling tighter with a different brush or blow drying very straight or flat hair without pulling on it too much so you get the most natural body out of it.
Look for - Bristles that are pretty far apart with a nice amount of open space behind them so the air from the blowdryer can pass easily through.
Benefits - This particular brush also emits negative ions to counteract heat damage.
Things to keep in mind-
- Never set the hair in metal brushes. Why? Because they stay hot. This will either burn your scalp or burn the already dry hair you have wrapped around it which will then cause static.
- The larger the brush the straighter the outcome (more surface area to be stretched across). The smaller the brush the more bend it will have (think about a small perm rod).
- Brushes need to be cleaned regularly, simply wash with shampoo, rinse and let air dry. (Product builds up on them).
- Use a hard rubber comb to get the hair out of your hairbrush and make it like new.
- Biggest mistake people make - Not keeping a few inches distance between the nozzle and the brush. This not only melts and mangles the bristles of your brush, shortening its lifespan, but it damages your hair. Back up a little.
- The right brush should make your job easier and help your hair hold its style better and longer.
- Balls on the end of bristles (wet brush) usually tear hair the more dry it becomes. That is why we don’t use them to blowdry, only to comb wet hair, certain haircuts may require more than one brush to style. (Think a-line bob. smaller brush in back and larger brush in front).