Anyone with curly hair knows it can be a blessing and a curse. It looks gorgeous on the good days but needs some extra love now and then to tame the beast – especially when it’s humid. Yup, there’s no denying curls require more maintenance than straight hair. And if you’re a ringlet-mopped babe, your locks will also have different needs based on your season of life.
Just like two people can have different curls and therefore need different tools, the same person’s curls can also evolve after going through a period of stress, pregnancy, or run-of-the-mill ageing.
Which means? It can seem like a mighty task to find the right brush for curly hair. A great brush is your secret weapon and can work wonders for your curls, from helping to detangle to preventing frizz. However, it’s super-important to find the right one for your type. Do you have soft, loose waves? Tight coils? Are your curls a ball of frizz from damage? Whatever your curls are going through, there’s a brush for you – and we’ve got the details! Read on to discover what brush is best for curly hair based on your unique curl needs.
What to Look for in a Brush for Curly Hair
Before we explore our top 6 picks, let’s look at some general tips when picking a brush for curly hair. Here’s what you should consider before handing over your hard-earned dough.
- Brush size: Find a brush that feels comfortable in your hand. Being able to easily grip and control the brush will help you better achieve the style you’re going for.
- Bristle density: Look for bristles that are spread apart. This will help the brush glide through your hair without snagging or messing with your natural texture or pattern.
- Purpose: What do you want your brush to help you with? Detangling? Blow-drying? Styling? Straightening? There are different brushes designed for different purposes, and you may need a particular one for each use. Knowing what brush to use for curly hair in each of these situations can be a gamechanger.
Now we’ve got that off our chest, let’s get into what different types of brushes have to offer you and your luscious locks.
The Best Brush for Curly Hair, Based on Your Needs
Whatever your curls need, we’ve got a red-hot recommendation. See our top pick for each style situation and say goodbye to breakage, frizz and unruly strands.
Detangling: The Coco & Eve Leaf Detangler
The Coco & Eve Leaf Detangler is a gentle and super-effective detangling brush for curly hair and straight strands alike. With soft and plentiful bristles, it painlessly removes knots and gnarly clumps from all hair types, whether you have wavy, curly, or seriously kinky hair.
With vents for airflow and heat-resistant bristles, it allows heat to reach your hair from all angles to cut back on blow-dry time and leave you with smooth curls. While also reducing heat damage.
The bristles on this brush are made to bend and be flexible, so it’s able to work through even the toughest tangles without pulling, which means less breakage or damage. It’s even a great wet brush for curly hair – keep it in the shower for applying hair masques. With a textured grip, our Detangler won’t slip out of your hands when you’re in the shower, either. Plus it has a super-cute leaf shape to bring those tropical vibes to your bathroom.
Learn more about detangling matted hair.
Smoothing: The Denman D3 Original Styler 7 Row
You may have seen this one on TikTok. It’s basically famous. The Denman D3 Original Styler Row 7 was specifically designed in the 1930s for naturally curly hair. The iconic brush is pretty multi-functional – it can be used on both dry or wet hair and for just about any usage, from detangling to blow-drying to styling.
A great overall pick, this brush has smooth, rounded pins that allow it to move through your curls without catching or dragging, so you won’t lose any definition or volume. The handle is designed for maximum comfort so you can easily control the brush as you work, and the grip is made of rubber to lessen static. It’s easy to see why it’s a fan favourite.
Separating: The Curly Hair Solutions Flexy Brush
If you have tighter curls, you know how difficult it can be to keep your locks separated. Even looser curls can often wrap around one another, forming one big, not cute curl. The Curly Hair Solutions Flexy Brush is great for preventing said curl clumping.
You can use it on wet or dry hair to separate curls and give each section of your hair definition, so your strands don’t blend together. It also has an open-cushion design to prevent product build-up so your hair doesn’t get overloaded with the ghosts of products past every time you brush. Clever, huh?
Blow-Drying: The Denman D4 Original Styler 9 Row
Not to be confused with its sister brush above, the Denman D4 Original Styler 9 Row is another tool in the Denman series that’s often voted as the best brush for curly hair. Blow-drying your curls can take some serious perseverance, but the tear-drop handle on this brush makes it easy to hold and manoeuvre, plus it’s lightweight, so you won’t have to worry about arm fatigue setting in.
The design of the pins keeps it from catching or dragging under the dryer, and the staggered pin pattern gives you the ideal amount of grip and tension to achieve the perfect blowout!
Volumising: The Pattern Wide-Tooth Comb
This is a standout from Tracee Ellis Ross’s line. Her Pattern Wide-Tooth Comb was created for use on delicate curls and it’s the perfect option when you need a light touch. This comb has a gentle glide and encourages separation while fluffing up dry hair, giving you glamorous volume for a night out or big event. You’ll love it – and so will your locks.
Styling: The Quidad Vented Brush
We can’t make a list of the best brushes for curly hair without mentioning the Quidad Vented Brush. It’s a classic. The design gives you infinite styling options, it’s easy to clean, and it won’t cause damage to your precious curls.
What’s more, it’s built to last with extra-durable rubber tines. You can use this brush over and over on even the most stubborn of curls and they won’t break or split. It’s also super affordable! Win-win.
Honourable Mention: We have to mention the Ibiza Round Brush here, too. Many say it’s the best brush for curly hair when it comes to styling your curls into a different shape or a non-curly style. Definitely another one for your curly-haired kit.
Additional Tips for Managing Curly Hair
If you tend to see your curls as a pain, it’s time to ditch the curly hair blues and embrace your locks! With proper care, your curls can be a gorgeous and unique part of you. And the envy of straight-haired babes.
Having said that, it CAN take a little extra effort to keep curls looking their best. Here’s what we suggest:
@coco_and_eve How to care for natural hair💚 ft. Silky Hair Set #cocoandeve #curlyhair #naturalhair #haircare #hair #hairtok #hairmask #hairoil #hairserumviral #foryou ♬ original sound - Ian Asher
- Cut down on the heat. Heat can lead to damage and dryness, and both of those lead to frizz and fried, unhappy curls. Air dry as much as you can.
- Use the right products. Don’t just use any shampoo, conditioner, mask, etc. Go with products that are specifically designed for your hair type.
- Don’t overdo it on the washing. Curls need moisture to live their best life. Overwashing can eliminate the necessary oils to keep curls’ shape and shine. Consider yourself warned.
- Protect them while you sleep. Unless you want to wake up to an out-of-control mane, secure your curls in a low, loose bun or cover them with a wrap at night time. It’s also a good idea to use a silk pillowcase to prevent snags.
See our full guide on how to care for curly hair.
Who runs the world? Curls! As long as you take care of them. Remember, the right tools make all the difference in how well your curls hold their shape, maintain a workable texture, and stay healthy and free from frizz.
Whatever your curl type may be, there’s a brush on this list for you – we made sure of it! The best brush for curly hair, though, is the one that meets your curls’ unique needs, so you may want to experiment a bit with different brushes until you find the one that takes your curls from frumpy to fierce. It will be well worth the effort 😊.
Want more hair-care tips and recommendations from Coco & Eve? Check out the Hair section on our blog!
Edited By: Pip Jarvis & Iris