How to Brush Curly Hair: 3 Things to Know

Masthead Image
Author Name: Mia Barnes
Date: Monday January 1, 2024

Body + Mind is reader-supported. We may earn an affiliate commission when you buy through some of the links on our site. 

Do you have curly hair? Maybe you’ve gotten into a new relationship where your partner was blessed with curls. Maybe you tried the curly girl method and recently discovered that your hair was supposed to be curly all along. Whatever the case is, you should know how to brush curly hair, as it might be something you need to know for the future. It isn’t like straight hair — and it has a care method all its own.

Properties of Curly Hair

Curly hair requires much more maintenance than straight hair, but it has the volume and beauty to compensate for the extra time spent taking care of your locks from beginning to end. Since curly hair is so dry by default, you must ensure it retains moisture by adding additional products to your routine. Keeping your scalp and hair moisturized is the best way to ensure that your curly hair stays healthy.

Since curly hair is so dry, you should know a few things about your individual strands while learning how to brush curly hair. You should brush or comb your hair infrequently — a good rule of thumb is to only brush your curls as often as you wash your hair, and only when wet. That way, you promote the strength of your curls while ensuring they are brushed thoroughly once in a while. However, your specific hair type might require more frequent brushing.

How to Brush Curly Hair in 3 Steps

Go into your hair brushing knowing that it might be a difficult task when you do it correctly the first couple of times. Knowing how to brush curly hair will make your hair care routine that much simpler. If you’ve worked with curly hair for a while, you know that you must follow a whole process after a shower to promote healthy, beautiful curls. Follow these steps and tailor them to your specific hair type.

1. Don’t Brush It Dry

You should never brush your curls when they’re dry. Ensure you’re only brushing curly hair when it’s wet or damp. Brushing your curls when they’re dry can actually cause more harm than good and promote breakage. Plus, it might cause tangles, and you want your curls to look soft and bouncy.

Brushing your hair while dry can also cause frizz, which can make your curls lose shape over time. Messing with your hair while it’s dry, even without tools and just your fingers, can also make your curls permanently fall out, though you may have tried hard to define them. 

If you need to brush your curls out when they’re dry, add a product first. A leave-in conditioner could be an excellent option to keep your curls moisturized enough to comb through them. Find the right product for your specific hair type. That way, you can be sure that your hair remains lightweight and moisturized.

2. Work With Your Hair

You should know how to work with your hair, not against it. Detangling and combing through your curls shouldn’t cause pain. Take it slow and understand how your hair moves, and you shouldn’t have any issues combing through your moist curls.

Knowing how to brush curly hair effectively means learning how to brush from the bottom up. Start by detangling the ends and work your way up. This technique works well for any hair type. If your hair is particularly thick, try sectioning it out. You can use moisturizer or water as you work through each section of hair.

3. Choose the Right Brush

The hair brush you use can affect several factors in your hair’s growth and appearance. You want a brush that you can hold effectively, so you don’t lose grip on it. It should twist with the curls rather than tug at them. You should also stay away from the hair brushes that have scalp-massaging balls at the ends of the bristles. These balls can just tangle your hair more, which is something you don’t need when trying to manage your curls.

If you can afford it, opt for a natural hair brush. These bristles are made of boar hair and work together to distribute the oil evenly throughout your hair and leave it looking shiny and beautiful. Though all-natural hair brushes can be pricey, they’re worth it for the integrity of your curls.

Learning How to Brush Curly Hair Is Easy

Once you realize that your hair operates by its own rules, knowing how to brush curly hair becomes easier. Above all, ensure that your hair stays moisturized. Moisture will protect your hair from breakage, and it’ll also help your curls keep their shape for a long time to come. Make sure to study your specific hair type and learn the products that work best for you. It may take some time, but you’ll find something that keeps your curls healthy.

Previous Article4 Ways To Get Rid of Frizzy Hair Next ArticleWhat Is a Plant-Based Diet and How To Get Started With It
Subscribe CTA Image

Subscribers get even more tailored tips & deets delivered directly to their inboxes!