Think that all hair brushes are the same? Think again. If you have natural hair or a curly or textured hair type, you likely know first-hand that the wrong hairbrush can spell serious trouble. Beyond the pain and lost hair that comes from using the wrong brush, you often end up with the same number of knots and tangles you started with!
Luckily, the beauty industry has caught on that those with incredibly curly hair can’t use just any hairbrush, and they’ve offered up a range of hairbrushes targeted towards those with curly hair. With so many options on the market, how can you pick the best for you (i.e., the one that’s really going to work this time)? We’ve pulled together 25 of the best brushes for curly hairstyles to help you decide.
Brushes for Curly Hair
Check out the best hairbrush options on the market right now and find the one that works best for your hair and preferred style.
Wet Brush Shower Flex (For Fine to Medium Hair and Loose Ringlets)
Though it can be used on either wet or dry hair, the value Wet Brush Shower Flex is especially good for detangling wet hair. The widely spaced and ultra flexible bristles glide through knots without ripping your strands and help you to avoid damage.
Plus, it’s easy to clean, and you can hang it in the shower. This works great on my fine ringlets, but if you have super thick curls or kinky hair, you may want to consider one of the options below.
Tangle Teezer Thick Curly Hairbrush (For Thick, Curly Hair)
Shaun Paulfrey, the creator of the Tangle Teezer line, came up with the idea for his brushes when detangling a client’s hair. Instead of brushing, he loosened the snarls by tapping and vibrating them.
“I figured I could create a product that would mimic this method: a brush with teeth that were flexible so they’d vibrate through your hair.” And thus was born this miraculous little brush.
In addition to the original Tangle Teezers, there are other variations, including this one for dense, curly hair.
The Tangle Teezer Thick Curly Hairbrush features flexible but strong teeth that will stand up to thicker hair and last longer than other brushes. There are also two levels of teeth. The longer ones help to detangle, and the shorter ones help to soften the cuticle.
This brush can also be used on the scalp for a massage and is ideal for traveling as it’s small and lightweight with no handle.
Tangle Teezer Ultimate Detangler (All hair Types)
If you’re in the shower, you may want something you can get a better grip on. The Ultimate Detangler brush has everything you love about the original Tangle Teezer, plus a handle to help you get a better hold on it. Also great for working conditioner through your hair!
Denman D3 Original Styler 7 Row (All Hair Types)
With their wide-spaced, flexible bristles, Denman brushes are a staple in the curly hair community. For many, they’re the go-to brush for separating and defining curls while also detangling.
According to the curly crowd, it’s the brush you won’t want to live without.
Yusef Cushion Paddle Brush (For Long Hair)
Rihanna’s stylist Yusef invented this brush with strong, pliable bristles and a wide base that makes it great for smoothing and detangling longer locks. But perhaps the most innovative part of the Yusef Cushion Paddle Brush is the removable sectioning pin at the base, which helps you separate and unknot even the wildest hair bit by bit.
Pattern Shower Brush (For Kinky and Coily Hair and All Other Textures)
Curlies with kinky or coily hair may dread wash day because of the time consuming and painful detangling process. Made for tighter textures, this heavy duty but gentle Pattern Shower Brush helps to ease the process of detangling and also helps curls to clump.
The rubber pad also slides out so you can easily clean out hair and build up from styling products.
Christopher Robin Detangling Brush (Loose, Wavy Hair)
At the very loose end of the curly world are the wavies. These lucky souls can actually brush their hair wet or dry, but they still need something that will gently detangle the hair without pulling on it. That’s where this beauty comes in.
At over $100, the Christopher Robin Detangling Brush is definitely an investment. But according to reviewers and hair experts, it’s worth it if you have the budget. Made from extra fine boar bristles that vary in length, it detangles gently without disturbing the curl pattern too much.
Brushing from root to tip daily will help wavies distribute oil through their hair which will both strengthen it and give it a killer shine.
Original Flexy Brush (All Curl Types)
Made with flexible, silicone bristles, the Flexy Brush is another option that’s great for detangling in the shower. Not only does it gently work through knots, but it’s also great for massaging the scalp to stimulate blood circulation.
Flexible and yet durable enough for thick hair, this brush will work on all hair types.
Denman Gentle Styler (All Hair Types)
Another classic from Denman is this 5-row Gentle Styler with a mix of natural and nylon bristles designed to be easy on your scalp. The round-ended nylon pins help to separate and define curls, while the ergonomic grip makes it easy to hold.
Ghanima Abdullah, a cosmetologist and hair expert with The Right Hairstyles shared with us their perspective on why the Denman Brush is a great option for those with curly hair, saying, “The structure of a Denman brush is what makes it great for curly hair. The way the plastic spikes are placed on the brush help it glide through wet hair easily to detangle the hair while also clumping the hair to form curls. The rubber base helps smooth the curls to reduce frizz.”
Also important is the fact that it’s lightweight but durable, which means it will stand up to your curls without fatiguing your arm during those long blowouts.
Goody Heat 101 Large Round Brush (For Medium to Long Hair)
If your hair is on the longer side, you’re going to need a brush with a bigger diameter. Made with a combination of boar and nylon bristles, the Goody Heat 101 Round Brush will hold onto your hair without pulling on it and gives you extra shine.
It also has a comfortable grip and a thermal metal barrel for faster drying and styling. Because anything you can do to speed up the process in the curly world is a blessing!
YS Park Curl Shine Styler Round Brush (All Hair Types)
Sometimes you want to smooth out a kink or create smaller, barrel-shaped curls. In that case, it’s always good to have a round brush with a slightly smaller diameter. The boar bristles on the YS Park Curl Shine Styler Brush help smooth the hair’s cuticle, while the nylon pins make it easier to pick up sections of hair.
Made from teakwood with a hollow wooden core, it’s durable but also lightweight.
Yes, this baby is a bit of an investment. But considering its popularity, it may be worth it if you have the bucks.
Olivia Garden Nanothermic Ceramic + Ion Square Shaper (For Versatile Styling)
This versatile Nanothermic Ceramic + Ion Square Shaper has flat and rounded sides that allow you to straighten, create waves, flip and add volume without the necessity of another hair tool. The ceramic barrel with ionic technology and anti-static bristles speed up drying time and cuts back on frizz.
Also convenient are the easy-hold grip and a retractable sectioning pin when you need to separate hair and work it in sections. When you’re looking to style, this brush can do it all!
Mason Peter Popular Hair Brush (All Curl Types )
The high-end Mason Peter Brush is handmade in England and is definitely a big splurge. But if you’re looking for professional results, the investment may be worth it.
The combination of nylon and natural boar bristles stimulates the scalp, smooths the hair, and adds shine while also preventing breakage. And if you’re concerned about the boar bristles, the company claims they’re collected with no harm to the animals.
Reviewers with fine and damaged hair especially seem to like this brush. So if your hair needs to make a comeback from styling abuse, this could be your savior.
Wet Brush Original Detangler Hair Brush (All Hair Types)
If you want to go more budget-friendly rather than splurge on a $20-plus hairbrush, try this affordable detangler. Minimalistic and great for use in the shower, it works best while conditioning (though you can use it on dry hair as well).
Keep in mind that stylists recommend you go with the wet option to minimize overall breakage.
Flex Detangling Brush (For Curly, Kinky and Wavy Curls)
The Flex Detangling Brush boasts a truly unique design. It works like a standard brush at first, but once you remove a bridge that holds the bristles together, you’ll discover that the brush separates into multiple, flexible parts that move with your hair while you’re brushing, so you end up with fewer snags.
Goody Wood Styler Brush (Flyaway-Free Styler)
While the verdict is still out regarding the relationship between curly hair and boar bristle brushes (see below), if you find that you prefer boar bristle for your curls, you may want to try this wooden brush designed for thin to medium curls.
A brush created with dry brushing in mind, rather than wet, helps to move your hair’s natural oils from the scalp to tips for softer curls.
InStyler Straight Up Ceramic Straightening Brush (For Quick Styling)
Prefer to straighten your curls regularly? A straightening brush like this one might be what you need. This particular option is favorited thanks to its quick straightening time, volumizing action and ease of use, and is a great alternative to your standard flat iron.
Diane Shampoo Massage Brush (Versatile Massager)
This small, hand-held, round brush is designed for use with both conditioner and shampoo. Once you have your shampoo or conditioner worked through your locks, use this brush to both detangle your curls and achieve a better clean for your scalp. It’s particularly a good choice for those who use many hair products and are worried about build-up.
Drybar Lemon Drop Daily Detangler Brush (All Hair Types)
Fans of the Drybar brand will enjoy this Lemon Drop Detangler. Suitable for wet hair, dry hair and extensions, this detangler brush is a bit of a jack of all trades.
While you can go with the full-size version for use at home, if you travel a lot, you may want to get the travel-size brush as well, for easy detangling on the go.
Ibiza Collection Extended Cork Round Brush (For Shiny, Full Body Hair)
If your curls are more on the softer side, you may prefer this round cork hairbrush. The natural boar bristles contribute to softness and shine and work well with more delicate, rounder curls that aren’t so tight that they can’t handle a brush with compact bristles.
Fromm Glosser Intuition Hair Brush (For Frizz-Free Shine)
Likewise, if you have curly hair that trends more toward wavy hair on most days, you can Fromm Glosser Intution hairbrush and achieve smooth, voluptuous hair without damaging your curls or ending up with flat locks.
This one-sided brush is also a good option if you want blow out effects but struggle with using a round brush while blow drying your hair with the hairdryer in one hand and your brush in the other.
Wet Brush Go Green Oil Infused Watermelon Brush (All Hair Types)
Yet another great pick from Wet Brush! This eco-friendly hairbrush is made from biodegradable plant starch and boar bristles. The latter is infused with watermelon seed oil, which gives you a more fabulous shine and smoothness when used on your hair.
Felicia Leatherwood Detangler Brush (Thick, Kinky & Coily Curls)
If one of your primary hair problems is snagging ends, go with the Felicia Leatherwood Detangler Brush, which was specially created to help with that issue. Detangle your entire head of hair, roots to tips, with ease.
Milk + Sass Macaron for Hair Detangling Brush (All Hair Types)
Not only is this Milk + Sass Macaron Detangling Brush super-cute and super-portable, but it also actually works. With a macaron-like design, this round brush pops apart when needed, revealing a brush on one side and a compact mirror on the other. It’s a great size to throw in your purse for quick brushing and detangling on the go.
Sheila Stotts Removal Brush (All Hair Types)
So the Sheila Stotts Removal Brush is technically designed to help remove and detangle hair extensions, but it also works great for detangling natural and curly hair. Compared to other brushes, there are fewer bristles, meaning your locks will be pulled less, and the design untangles without unnecessary tugging. Be aware, though — this brush more on the expensive side, at nearly $40.
Frequently Asked Questions About Brushes and Combs for Curly Hair
You’ve got questions. We’ve got answers.
What about boar bristle brushes?
Often, boar bristle brushes are touted as the very best hair brushes money can buy. However, are they still a good option for those with curly hair? Unfortunately, boar bristle brushes, while generally safe for most users, can cause hair damage, just like many other brush types.
Boar bristle brushes are incredibly stiff, so if you’ve noticed that stiff brushes damage your locks, you may want to avoid them. If you’re going to try out a boar bristle brush, though, it’s recommended that you try the brush on only a small portion of hair first to see how your hair responds before using it on your entire head of hair.
All of the above won’t work! Now what?
If you’re still experiencing snagging and damage with the above brushes made for curly hair, you may have to look further for other options, such as modifying one of the above brushes to better fit your needs. Some users will actually remove rows of brush bristles to alleviate snagging, which is one solution to try.
You may, additionally, find that brushes simply won’t work for your curly hair, and you may have to stick to combs only, or even finger detangling, which is much gentler and more comfortable on your scalp and locks.
What should I consider when buying a brush?
There are a few things to consider when buying a new brush, especially for curly hair.
You want to look at how closely the bristles are placed together, plus the total number of bristles in the brush. If you have very thick, very knotted hair regularly, you may want a brush with fewer bristles. If you’re trying to style your own hair and you’re not as worried about tangles, you may want a brush with more bristles.
Look at the overall size of the brush as well. Many find that brushing through curly, knotted hair is much easier when you have a smaller brush that’s a bit more agile.
Look for any special features, too, like added oils that can lend your hair a little more softness and shine while improving overall hair health.
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The 25 Best Hairbrushes For Curly Hair:
- Wet Brush Shower Flex
- Tangle Teezer Thick Curly Hairbrush
- Tangle Teezer Ultimate Detangler
- Denman D3 Original Styler 7 Row
- Yusef Cushion Paddle Brush
- Pattern Shower Brush
- Christopher Robin Detangling Brush
- Original Flexy Brush
- Denman Gentle Styler
- Goody Heat 101 Large Round Brush
- YS Park Curl Shine Styler Round Brush
- Olivia Garden Nanothermic Ceramic + Ion Square Shaper
- Mason Peter Popular Hair Brush
- Wet Brush Original Detangler Hair Brush
- Flex Detangling Brush
- Goody Wood Styler Brush
- InStyler Straight Up Ceramic Straightening Brush
- Diane Shampoo Massage Brush
- Drybar Lemon Drop Daily Detangler Brush
- Ibiza Collection Extended Cork Round Brush
- Fromm Glosser Intuition Hair Brush
- Wet Brush Go Green Oil Infused Watermelon Brush
- Felicia Leatherwood Detangler Brush
- Milk + Sass Macaron for Hair Detangling Brush
- Sheila Stotts Removal Brush
Holly Riddleview post
Holly Riddle is a travel, food and lifestyle writer, and a full-time freelance content creator after several years on editorial staffs for a multitude of publications ranging in topic and audience demographic. She currently acts as the editor at large for Global Traveler magazine and is a regular contributor at Trazee Travel, WhereverFamily, TravelMag, CruiseHive and more. Ghostwritten work for travel clients has appeared on Forbes, Bloomberg, Inc. and other top publications. She also manages blogs for tour providers, hotels and tourism boards.view post