Having thick hair is a wonderful thing. Styles hold better — and longer — and even on your third day of not washing, you’ve still got volume. But it also means hair is more prone to knots and tangles, and it can take hours to dry. The best brushes for thick hair, however, can seriously help in these departments. The ideal brush will easily detangle, minimize static and flyaways, and speed up the drying process.
You probably don’t even think the type of brush you use matters — but, it really does. Brushes made for thick hair typically have nylon bristles, as they glide through coarse locks easier than boar (though, a combination of both works well for blow drying). You’ll also want the teeth to be widely-spaced, as they penetrate dense strands better without disrupting the hair’s natural shape. If you have waves or curls, you might want a brush for wet hair so you can safely detangle in the shower. And, if your hair takes forever to dry, a vented brush will help move things along faster.
Below, you’ll find six of the best hair brushes on the market. Each one caters to a specific need, including a heavy-duty paddle brush, a travel-sized detangler, and an ionic model with round barrels that’ll give you old Hollywood-style curls.
1. The Best Everyday Brush For Wet Hair
If you’re looking for a basic brush to suit your everyday needs, this Wet Brush for thick hair is your best choice. It’s not too big, not too small, and works on both wet and dry hair (pro tip: brush in the shower while your conditioner’s absorbing, so your natural texture will retain its shape while it air dries). The brand’s signature bristles prevent tugging, glide through tangles easily, and stimulate the scalp. One thing to note is that this brush should not be used with a blow dryer, as it may damage the teeth.
2. The Best Brush For Travel
The Tangle Teezer is a modern cult-classic, and this one is specifically made for thick and curly hair. It features a patented, two-tier teeth design, comprising extra-long, firm but flexible bristles, so it detangles and combs through even the coarsest of hair with ease. The ergonomic design fits comfortably in the palm of your hand and, since it offers more control, you’ll wind up pulling and tugging less — therefore reducing damage. Its small size and lack of handle make it perfect for travel and stowing in your purse.
3. The Best Brush For Straight Blow Dries
For women who typically blow dry their hair straight, a curved brush like this will make it even easier by matching the natural contour of your head. Nylon bristles reduce frizz and static, and the heat-resistant, no-slip grip makes for a quick and seamless blow-drying experience. “I’m really pleased with the way it holds my hair in place while drying, and pulls through smoothly,” said one reviewer. Another great feature of this brush is the vented design, which speeds up the drying process. The ball-tipped pins also offer a gentle massaging effect, which feels great on sensitive scalps, and another reviewer with self-described long, thick, kinky curls said that, unlike other brushes that pulled and broke her hair, this one went through it easily.
4. The Best Brush For Detangling
Women with extra-thick or coarse hair that tangles easily will love this heavy-duty paddle brush — the nylon bristles reduce flyaways and static, while their sparse placement helps curly and wavy textures retain its shape. It’s perfect for extra-long locks, as the handle makes it easy to detangle hard-to-reach hairs, and it comes in four cute colors. As its name indicates, it’s made for painlessly brushing through wet or damp hair. One knot-prone reviewer raved, “[It] went through my hair like a hot knife through butter!”
5. The Best Brush For Styled Blow Dries
If you’re capable of giving yourself a salon-level blow out — or want to learn how — this is a tool worth investing in. The largest round brush from the series, it’s especially good for women with long hair who want volume. The sturdy barrel makes it easy to straighten the curliest of curls, and the boar and nylon bristles will make hair look smooth and shiny. You can also create flips, polish bangs, and shape bobs. Overall, this is a fantastic brush for creating all different types of styles.
6. The Best Brush For Voluminous Curls
For naturally thick hair, an ionic brush like this one is recommended, as the ceramic vented barrel heats up and creates air flow to speed up the drying process (the ions also produce less static and reduce frizz). This 2-inch round brush creates both loose and defined curls and combines anti-bacterial nylon and boar bristles that prevent static, add shine, and glide through thick manes easily. The rubber handle is heat-resistant and provides a secure anti-slip grip, and it works equally as well on all lengths of hair.
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