Is It Better To Brush Or Comb Curly Hair?


In this article, you will learn about the best way to take care of your curly hair by understanding whether it is better to brush or comb it. We will discuss the differences between brushing and combing, as well as the benefits and drawbacks of each method.

When it comes to curly hair, it is generally recommended to use a wide-toothed comb instead of a brush. Curly hair tends to be more prone to tangling and breakage, and using a brush can cause more damage by pulling on the curls and creating frizz. A wide-toothed comb, on the other hand, can gently detangle the curls without disrupting their natural pattern. It allows for more control and reduces the risk of causing unnecessary damage to your hair. So, if you want to keep your curly hair healthy and minimize frizz, opt for a wide-toothed comb instead of a brush. Curly hair can be both a blessing and a challenge. Its unique texture is beautiful and adds a stylish flair to anyone’s appearance. However, curly hair also tends to be prone to tangles, frizz, and breakage. With so many potential issues to contend with, it’s important to determine the best way to care for your curly locks.

Benefits of Brushing Curly Hair

One of the main benefits of brushing curly hair is that it helps detangle knots and reduce frizz. Curly hair tends to naturally form knots and tangles, making it difficult to manage and style. Brushing your curls gently can help loosen these tangles and create a smoother, more manageable hairstyle.

Brushing is also an effective way to distribute your hair’s natural oils, which can add shine and moisture to your locks. Generally, straight hair easily distributes these oils from the scalp throughout the entire length of the hair shaft. However, due to the curl pattern, natural oils have a harder time traveling down curly hair strands. By using a brush, you can distribute these oils more evenly, resulting in healthier-looking and shinier curls.

Furthermore, brushing curly hair can create volume and enhance the natural curl pattern. By gently brushing your curls from the roots to the ends, you can encourage the curls to take shape and create a fuller appearance. This technique can be particularly useful for individuals with looser curls or those seeking to boost their hair’s volume.

Drawbacks of Brushing Curly Hair

Despite the benefits, brushing curly hair does come with some drawbacks. One major concern is the possibility of breaking or damaging fragile curls. Curly hair tends to be more delicate and prone to breakage due to its unique structure. When brushing, there is a higher risk of causing breakage, resulting in shorter and uneven strands.

Another potential drawback of brushing curly hair is excessive hair shedding. While some hair shedding is normal, using a brush on curly hair can sometimes exacerbate this issue. The brushes’ bristles can untangle the knots but also catch hair, causing it to become loose and fall out more easily.

Lastly, brushing curly hair can lead to a flattened or poofy appearance. The brushing motion can disrupt the natural curl pattern and result in hair that appears less defined and more frizzy. This can be especially problematic for individuals with tighter curls or those who prefer a more controlled and polished look.

Is It Better To Brush Or Comb Curly Hair?

Importance of Proper Hair Brush

Choosing the right brush for your curly hair is crucial to minimize damage and achieve desirable results. It is recommended to use a wide-toothed comb or a brush with boar bristles. These types of brushes are designed to work well with curly hair and are specifically designed to detangle and style curls without causing excessive breakage..

Avoid using brushes with sharp or pointy bristles as they can easily get caught in the curls and cause damage. Instead, opt for brushes with smoother bristles that glide through the hair more easily. These brushes are less likely to cause breakage, leading to overall healthier and stronger curls.

Furthermore, investing in brushes specifically made for curly hair can make a significant difference. These brushes are specifically designed to accommodate the unique needs of curly hair, such as detangling, reducing frizz, and promoting curl definition. Using the right tools can make the brushing process more effective and prevent unnecessary damage.

Benefits of Combing Curly Hair

Combing curly hair has its own set of advantages. One key benefit is that combing is generally gentler on fragile curls compared to brushing. Combs with wide teeth or specialized curly hair combs allow for a more delicate approach when detangling and styling curly hair. This reduces the risk of causing breakage and damage to the curls.

In addition, combing can minimize hair breakage and shedding. The wider spacing between the teeth of a comb allows for easier detangling, preventing hair from getting caught and pulled out during the process. This can be particularly beneficial for individuals with thick or tightly coiled curls that are more prone to tangling and breakage.

Another advantage of combing curly hair is that it helps define and separate the curls, resulting in a more polished and put-together appearance. Combs allow for precise styling, allowing you to shape your curls and create a more uniform and controlled look.

Is It Better To Brush Or Comb Curly Hair?

Drawbacks of Combing Curly Hair

Despite the benefits, it’s important to be aware of the potential drawbacks of combing curly hair. One possible disadvantage is that combing can cause frizz if not done properly. Vigorous or rough combing can disrupt the curl pattern, leading to more frizz and less defined curls. To minimize frizz, it is advisable to comb gently and use a leave-in conditioner or detangler to facilitate the process.

Another concern is that combing can flatten or stretch out natural curls. Curly hair tends to have more volume and bounce, but over-combing can result in a flatter appearance. This can be particularly relevant for individuals with fine or low-density curly hair who strive to maintain as much volume as possible.

It is also worth noting that combing curly hair often requires more time and effort for detangling compared to brushing. The narrower spaces between the comb’s teeth mean that it may take longer to loosen knots and remove tangles. This can be a consideration if you have a busy lifestyle or prefer a quick and convenient hairstyling routine.

Proper Technique for Combing Curly Hair

If you decide to comb your curly hair, it is essential to follow the proper technique to minimize damage and achieve the desired results. Start by applying a conditioner or detangler to damp hair. This helps to add moisture to your curls and make them more manageable.

Next, select a wide-toothed comb or a specialized curly hair comb. These combs have wider spaced teeth that allow for easier detangling without causing excessive breakage.

Divide your hair into sections and start combing from the ends, working your way up to the roots. This technique reduces pulling and tugging on the curls, minimizing the risk of breakage. Taking your time and being gentle is key when combing curly hair to maintain the integrity of the curls and keep them looking their best.

Considerations for Brushing or Combing Curly Hair

When deciding between brushing or combing curly hair, several factors should be taken into account:

  1. Hair type and curl pattern: Different hair types and curl patterns respond differently to brushing and combing. Individual experimentation is necessary to determine which method works best for your specific hair type.

  2. Current condition of hair: The health and condition of your hair should also be considered when choosing between brushing and combing. If your hair is dry, damaged, or prone to breakage, you may want to opt for combing to minimize further damage.

  3. Desired hairstyle or look: Your hairstyle preferences and desired outcome should also be taken into consideration. If you prefer more volume and less defined curls, brushing may be more suitable. Alternatively, if you strive for defined and polished curls, combing may be the better option.

Finding the Right Hair Routine for Curly Hair

Each person’s hair is unique, so it’s important to find the hair care routine that works best for you. Experimenting with both brushing and combing can help you determine how your curly hair reacts to each method.

Observe how your hair responds to brushing or combing and adjust your routine accordingly. Pay attention to factors such as frizz, curl definition, volume, and overall hair health. This trial and error approach can help you fine-tune your hair care routine to achieve the results you desire.

Seeking Professional Advice for Curly Hair Care

If you’re unsure about how to care for your curly hair or need personalized recommendations, it can be beneficial to consult with a hairstylist who specializes in curly hair. These professionals have the knowledge and expertise to assess your hair’s specific needs and provide tailored advice.

A hairstylist specializing in curly hair can recommend suitable products and techniques for your unique hair type and curl pattern. They can also guide you in choosing the right brush or comb for your specific needs.


In the ongoing debate of whether it’s better to brush or comb curly hair, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. The best approach depends on individual preferences, hair type, and desired outcome. It is essential to experiment, take proper care, and seek professional advice when needed to maintain healthy and beautiful curly hair.

Whether you choose to brush or comb, the key is to be gentle and find a routine that works for you. Ultimately, the goal is to achieve healthy, well-maintained curls that make you feel confident and beautiful. By understanding the benefits and drawbacks of each method, considering your unique hair characteristics, and seeking professional advice, you can achieve the best results for your curly hair.

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