Cats are great self-groomers, but when it comes to keeping coats shiny and unmatted, they can still use a little help, especially long-haired cats. To choose the best brushes for long-haired cats, look for styles with longer bristles that will still be gentle on your cat's very delicate skin so you can get all the way down to the undercoat without applying uncomfortable amounts of pressure.
Especially if your cat is particularly prone to tangles and mats, it's a good idea to
start with a wide-tooth comb instead of a brush when grooming long-haired cats, according to cat behaviorist Pam Johnson-Bennett's best-selling book Think Like A Cat.
And when it comes to the brush itself, while slickers with a flat or mostly flat set of bristles are the most common and work well for short-haired cats, Johnson-Bennett recommends a pin brush for long-haired cats. Pin brushes more gentle for daily use and less likely to cause frizz. However, they're not the best for detangling so it's important to start with combs if that's an issue.
While many short-haired cats are fine with a thorough brushing two to three times a week, it'd smart to
brush long-haired cats daily. If you're brushing daily with the right tools, regular brushing sessions should only take a few minutes for most cats. This ritual is not only a great way to prevent mats, distribute oils through the skin and hair to maintain coat health, and cut down on hairballs, but daily grooming also helps deepen the bond you have with your cat and get your cat used to being handled.
To get your grooming routine started, find the best top-rated brushes for long-haired cats on Amazon below.
1 The Overall Best Brush For Long-Haired Cats
With rounded tips to be gentle on your cat's delicate skin, this
pin brush is a customer favorite with a 4.6-star rating after nearly 200 reviews. This brush helps remove loose hair, prevents tangles, and distributes your cat's natural oils throughout their coat. Made with an anti-slip handle and a cushioned grip, it's also easier on your hands. Fans say: "This brush is perfect for combing my Ragdoll and Birman cats' long hair. It removes the hair and untangles potential knots. The wire bristles are close together and plastic-tipped so that the comb doesn't hurt them. This brush has replaced another wire-tipped brush I had and it's been a much better choice. I highly recommend it." 2 The Best Budget Brush
For about half the price, this
BV pet brush is a great budget-friendly alternative. The handle is not quite as comfortable as the top pick and the bristles are not as dense, but you do get an added bristle brush for shine (though be careful to use it very lightly on a long-haired cat to avoid getting it stuck in the fur, especially at first). Fans say: "We used the brush on our cat, to test the effectiveness & it was able to effectively brush away shedding fur. The double sides give you the best of both worlds without digging deep into the pockets." 3 The Best Wide-Tooth Comb For Cats
If you're dealing with a lot of matting and tangles, it's a smart idea to start with a comb before moving on to a brush. This
set of two pet combs is a great choice for all around your long-haired cat. Use the smaller one around the backside, legs, neck, and other hard to reach areas while the larger comb would do well tackling the body. With two teeth widths on each comb, it's easy to adjust according to your needs. The rounded tips are more gentle on skin but it's important to still work carefully. With a 4.8-star rating, it's a fan favorite. Fans say: "I have 4 cats, 3 of them with long fur.... This new comb has already begun to be MY grooming instrument of choice. I prefer to use the smaller comb because I have small hands & find the smaller one works better for me. Charlie is the one who isn't crazy about being groomed, but even he started purring when I used the new comb. It has a very comfortable grip, works really well at getting at the undercoat & getting at those pesky mat. In addition, it seems to be soothing to my furry friends. I would definitely recommend this product." 4 The Best Deshedding Brush For Cats
Cats shed year-long, but it can be especially intense just before winter and just before summer. When you need to get through the shedding quickly, consider this
Furminator-style deshedding brush with a 4.7 after more than 11,000 reviews. With an easy-to-clean detachable head, shedding season just got a whole lot easier. While this will help with shedding, it's important to comb and brush out tangles and mats before using. Fans say: "I have a long haired cat and this has cut her shedding down by about 70% it really does work that good and she loves it. Easy to clean does not pull the fur, glides nice." 5 The Best Dematting Brush For Cats
If you're facing mats and tangles other brushes and combs haven't been able to handle, consider this
rake-like brush for dematting. With two lightly bladed sides — one for mats and tangles, and the other to help with shedding — it's a versatile tool that's gotten a 4.7-star rating and more than 3,000 reviews. However, if the mats are especially severe, you might need to call in the pet groomer or vet to safely shave your cat. Fans say: "We have a long hair black cat who's hair tangles and knots up. He also has horrible anxiety problems! So taking him to a groomer was out of the question. I was able to comb all through his hair. He purred and rolled over. I think he is incredibly grateful to have the knots gone." 6 Also Great: A Detangling Spray For Cats
Pam Johnson-Bennett says that while a sprinkle of corn starch can help with tangles and mats, a spray is a lot easier. This soap-, detergent-, and alcohol-free
detangling spray for pets won't irritate the skin or coats of most felines while still being effective. Just spray it on and work through the tangles and mats gently with a comb or brush. More than 500 customers have given this a 4.2 rating overall. However, those with mats that are knotted tightly or stuck against the skin will likely still need to see a vet or groomer. Fans say: "I had a cat who developed a ton of mats in her behind. The mats were very stuck together and would not come out for anything. This tangle remover made the mats naturally loosen up which allowed me to gently and gradually comb the mats out." Bustle may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was created independently from Bustle's editorial and sales departments.
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