The hair brush is a universal tool in the beauty universe. Whether you’re male or female with a mermaid mane or cropped bob, there’s a good chance you have at least one of these lying around.
What’s less popular, though, is owning multiple hair brushes at the same time. Some seem to think that a brush is like a monkey wrench—you don't pull it out of the cobwebby closet often enough to really invest. Friends, that’s a mistake. Owning just a single paddle brush and using it for everything would be like signing even your most important legal documents with a pencil because you don’t think you need to own a pen.
We’re always in conversation with professional hair stylists about the tools they're using to create runway-ready hairstyles. Ready to get your own bathroom cabinet in check and start styling with a variety of tools? Add these brushes to your shopping list.
Often dismissed as a relic of your middle school hair fantasies, the paddle brush is the workhorse of the bunch. You can identify it by its rectangular shape, plastic bristles, and (usually) a squishy handle.
Hair professionals recommend never attempting to heat style hair that’s soaking wet from the shower, which is where this little beauty comes in. The paddle brush is an excellent choice for rough-drying hair, taking over the task you’ve previously accomplished by raking your fingers through your strands.
The round brush is the perfect tool to create volume, curl, and bounce, which is why you’ll primarily it sitting right next to the blow dryer at your stylist’s station in the salon. While admittedly a bit more intimidating than its flat fellows, the round brush is available in a range of materials and sizes to suit every kind of hair.
It may seem counterintuitive, but the largest sizes of round brush barrels will actually make your hair less curly—no matter how frantically you turn your wrist. If you’re looking for that blowout bar movement, start with a medium round brush that conducts heat.
Boar Bristle Brush
The boar bristle brush has the ultimate comeback story. While professionals have never abandoned the use of the age-old tool, it fell out of popularity for many years. When women decided to shampoo their hair less frequently, however, they found themselves in need of a brush that was capable of distributing the extra oil from the scalp along the hair shaft. If you’re the kind of hair owner who gets upset about shampooing more than twice a week, we’d recommend purchasing a boar bristle brush immediately.
Detangling Wet Brush
There are two distinct camps when it comes to snaggle-prone hair: the people who insist it should be done in the shower, and everyone else. Whatever your preference, we always recommend keeping a gentle detangling brush somewhere in your bathroom in case of emergency.
To make sure you’re purchasing the right variety, look for brushes that specifically recommend use on wet hair.