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What's the Deal About Boar Bristle Hairbrushes?

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Mason Pearson Brush
John Piekos/Flickr
Question: What's the Deal About Boar Bristle Hairbrushes?
I got this letter from Laura in Brooklyn: "I keep reading about boar bristle hairbrushes in magazines. Is there really a difference?"
Answer: I know, I know. Every magazine, it seems, is on a Mason Pearson hairbrush kick. They make you feel as if your beauty cabinet just isn't complete if you don't have a boar's bristle hairbrush. So is it all hype or is there a real benefit to natural bristle hairbrushes?

Yes, there is. Boar bristles are easier on hair than cheapie plastic brushes and they redistribute oils throughout hair, boosting shine. There are many natural bristle brushes on the market, Mason Pearson is just the Cadillac of hairbrushes at $85 on up. Cheap, plastic hairbrushes aren't necessarily bad for hair (except for the ones with the double bristle, one long, one short -- these can tear at hair), they just don't benefit hair as much as natural bristles.

When looking for a good brush, consider if you need a round brush (great for blowouts)or a paddle brush (best for detangling). Also consider a brush with a mix of nylon and natural bristles if you have normal to thick hair. Natural bristles alone can be too weak for tangles and are best for fine to normal hair, according to the Mason Pearson Website. If you have coarse, thick hair, consider an all-nylon hairbrush, which tends to be stronger.

Check out our list of Best Hairbrushes on the Market.

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