Is There a Correct Way to Brush Hair?

(c) 2016
(c) 2016

When I was younger, I used whatever brush was available and I would just run it through my hair, not caring about my hair falling out or ripping. You may think brushing hair is simple – you just use a brush or comb and run it through your hair. However, there are a couple of tricks that you must try to get a step closer to healthy hair.

Dianna Mazzone from InStyle, spoke with senior stylist of New York City’s Cutler Salon, Kelsey Osterman, about brushing hair properly:


The 1st Step: Choose the correct brush.

There are so many different types of brushes because there are multiple hair types. If your hair tangles very easily, consider using a brush or comb that are not too dense on the bristles as it can rip your hair. Osterman notes that a paddle brush is recommended for almost all hair types. She adds that a paddle brush “’detangles but is still gentle because the teeth of the brush are further apart and not too dense.’” Use a brush that will not be too harsh on your hair.


The 2nd Step: Do not brush/comb wet hair.

Hair becomes more vulnerable and fragile when wet because the water molecules break down the natural structure of hair. If wet hair must be styled or brushed, use a wide-toothed comb as Osterman notes that “the thick plastic prongs are less likely to damage wet hair.”


The 3rd Step: Start from the ends.

Brush your hair from the ends first and then gradually move upward. This method will reduce the risk of hair ripping and hair fallout because if you start from the roots first, it will be more difficult to detangle as you brush down and you will tend to force the bristles into the tangles. Forcing a brush into tangled hair can cause the hair to fall out of the follicles and/or cause ripping of the hair strands.


The 4th Step: Finish by brushing from the roots.

After detangling hair, run the brush down from the roots. We all have natural oils that secrete from our scalps and those oils should be distributed down the hair to give it more shine. Some people may think that the appearances of their natural hair oils are unattractive but spreading those oils down the hair will benefit the health of hair. Osterman points out that the natural oils sitting on top of your head are healthy and that it “’actually strengthen[s] your hair, not weigh it down.’” The oils that wrap around the hair strands will prevent easy damage as it protects the layers of the hair.