Many men prefer using a comb to a hairbrush. Slicking your hair back with a comb in front of a mirror can make you feel like Hollywood bad-boy James Dean. Using a brush just doesn’t have the same effect. It almost feels like betrayal to your manhood to use a brush – aren’t brushes for girls?
You’ll be happy to know that brushes aren’t made just for girls – they’re made for hair. Long hair, short hair, thick hair, wavy hair, curly hair, straight hair, thin hair. The only reason to avoid using a brush is if you’re bald.
Table of Contents
- Combs and brushes are both fantastic hair styling tools
- Combs are great for beards, but have a limited use for the hair on your head
- Keep your comb, but get a hairbrush
- Hairbrushes serve different purposes
- Thick or curly haired men – listen up!
- Stop using combs for thick and curly hair
- Watch your hairstylist closely and ask questions
- But wait, there’s more!
- Embrace the brush
Combs and brushes are both fantastic hair styling tools
Combs and brushes were invented to help people clean and style their hair. The comb came first, but both combs and brushes have an interesting history as symbols of wealth in countries like China and Egypt. Today, owning a brush symbolizes an active interest in your personal hygiene.
Combs are great for beards, but have a limited use for the hair on your head
Combs are always great for beards. Nothing feels better than combing your beard or goatee after it’s been washed and freshened up with some woodsy scented beard oil. Unless you’re growing a forest on your face, you don’t need to use a brush for your beard.
Whether you should be using a comb or a brush for the hair on your head boils down to hair length, practicality, and your preferred hairstyle (volume? No volume?). Brushes are better at getting through thick hair, curls, and tangles, but tend to flatten your hair in the process. Combs are easier to use on short hair, and are better for maintaining volume and fluff. Either way, using a brush before any hairstyling routine is essential.
Keep your comb, but get a hairbrush
Learning to maintain the hair on your face was probably a significant grooming challenge. When it comes to the hair on your head, it’s equally tough. Not because grooming is hard, but because you’ve probably been using the wrong tools your whole life. It’s time to start using the right hairstyling tools by adding a hairbrush to your bathroom drawer.
Hairbrushes serve different purposes
Combs come in a variety of colors, lengths, and materials, but overall they’re basically the same. Even wide-tooth combs still work like a comb. Hairbrushes, on the other hand, are about as diverse as the number of emoticons in your Smartphone.
To get a general idea of what type of hairbrush will work best with your hair, Men’s Health describes 6 of the most common brushes made for different hair types. This guide will get you acquainted with brush basics. For example:
- -Round brushes with stiff, thick bristles close together are best for short hair
- -Oval brushes with nylon and boar bristles are best for medium to long hair
- -Paddle brushes are best for wavy hair
- -Round brushes with stiff bristles spaced farther apart are best for thin and straight hair
- -Palm-held “tangle teezers” are best for thick and curly hair
Once you’ve become familiar with the type of hairbrush you should be using, it’s time to test them out. Buy a couple of brushes designed for your hair type and see how well they work for you.
Thick or curly haired men – listen up!
When you’ve got straight hair that isn’t too thick, you can get away with using just about any type of brush or comb. When you’ve got thick or curly hair, using the wrong hairbrush can be a nightmare that ends in frustration and a shaved head.
Stop using combs for thick and curly hair
For guys with thick or curly hair, trying to use a comb quickly becomes a battle between genetics and wishful thinking. In the end, you’re left looking like a poof-ball because you can only comb through the top layers of your hair. If you manage to get the comb all the way through to your scalp, you have to drag the comb so hard you end up with visible dandruff flakes. Wide-toothed combs won’t give you dandruff, but they aren’t thorough. The only way you’re going to untangle those luscious locks is by using a brush.
Give up the comb! A paddle brush will save you from poofy hair, dandruff, and the urge to shave your head. Paddle brushes have a large surface area that makes brushing thick and curly hair less painful. They’re also good for controlling frizz while maintaining your natural waves.
Before you grab the first paddle brush you see at the supermarket, consider that supermarkets sell cheap, low-end brushes because it’s not their area of specialty. The best option is to buy a salon-style wooden paddle brush from an environmentally responsible company like Aveda. Launched in 1978, Aveda is a popular brand among professional salons because their products are eco-friendly and built to last. Other brands are just as good, but Aveda has a top reputation.
Watch your hairstylist closely and ask questions
The first thing a stylist does is get your hair damp and brush it out. Next time you get your hair cut, pay attention to the type of brush they use to brush out your hair. Ask them if that’s the type of brush you should be using on a regular basis. If you ask, they’ll help you find your ideal brush and you can probably buy it right there in the salon.
But wait, there’s more!
For an exceptionally detailed look at combs and brushes, check out Real Men Real Style’s in-depth guide on finding the right hairbrush for your hair type. The guide includes five different graphical charts indicating which type of brush or comb to use for your hair length and type.
This guide will tell you everything you need to know about how to brush your hair. It even provides detailed information about each hair type. For example, if you’ve got straight, thick hair, the guide explains that your hair “contains all 3 hair layers – the cortex, cuticle, & medulla – which means it takes more time to dry up.” Now you can give your roommate a scientific reason for hogging the bathroom to dry your hair.
Embrace the brush
While combs serve a purpose for styling, brushes are a necessary first step in grooming the hair on your head. Embrace the brush that works for your hair type. Brush out your hair before styling it. You’ll be amazed at the difference a brush makes.
And don’t forget to include some of our quality pomade as a supplement to your hairstyling routine!