The struggle is real for curly-haired girls. From unintentionally destroying brushes to having random things stuck to our hair, we’ve learned to keep up with the ever-changing moods of our waves and ringlets. If you’ve just had a perm or are a natural kulot who’s stumped on what hair tools to use, don’t give up on your mane just yet. We tested every hair tool in the market and narrowed down the choices to five.
1. Paddle brush
What it is: A wide and flat brush with bristles sitting on a soft cushion, a paddle brush is heavier than most standard brushes. Some handles are made of rubber and/or plastic, but the ones made of wood are sturdier.
Why it’s curl-friendly: It’s the widest brush of them all, so it can handle the thickest, longest, and curliest hair.
How to use: Curly-haired girls who have mastered the art of styling their hair know that there’s no need to brush throughout the day. Just use the paddle brush right before you shower to detangle your mane, get rid of dirt and falling hair, and give your scalp a good massage. For wavy hair that looks flatter than usual, use this brush to lift the roots and volumize your hairstyle. If you’re looking to temporarily blow-dry your curly hair straight (good luck with that!), this is the brush professional salons prefer to the barrel brush.
2. Wide-toothed comb
What it is: A comb with thick teeth spaced wide apart
Why it’s curl-friendly: It can detangle curls when wet or dry.
How to use: If you don’t own a paddle brush, you can use this to detangle before taking a shower, but it won’t be as gentle. It’s better to use the wide-toothed comb in the shower to evenly apply conditioner or treatment on wet hair. You can also use it after you shower while hair is still damp. Detangle and rake in your favorite mousse, hair oil, or cream. As soon as your tendrils are set and dry, there’s no need to comb or brush throughout the day. Just scrunch and go.
What it is: A wide base that you attach to the nozzle of your blow dryer. Some blow dyer sets come with a diffuser, but if yours doesn’t, see if you can find a universal diffuser that you can attach to your regular blow dryer.
Why it’s curl-friendly: Regular blow dryers tend to frizz curly hair, so a diffuser lessens and controls the hot air that comes out of the nozzle.
How to use: After taking a shower and toweling excess water from your hair, apply leave-in hair conditioner. Tilt your head to the side and place sections of your curls inside the diffuser’s bowl. Make sure it’s set to low or medium heat only, because high heat will cause frizz. When the roots to mid-section are dry, just leave the damp ends to dry on their own.
What it is: This bean-shaped brush has light, flexible bristles that gently loosen and detangle hair. It’s one of the more modern brushes invented less than 10 years ago. It’s lightweight, so there’s less fatigue on your hands.
Why it’s curl-friendly: The soft, flexible bristles work with the hair, not against it, so there’s less snagging and hair breakage.
How to use: Like the paddle brush, you can use this to detangle dry hair before taking a shower. You can also use the tangle teaser to apply product to wet hair during or after showering.
5. Small barrel curling iron
What it is: A curling iron that comes in 1/2-inch, 3/8-inch, or 5/8-inch barrels
Why it’s curl-friendly: When your curls are looking a bit lifeless, a curling iron can activate and set your curls a la Taylor Swift.
How to use: Wrap sections of your dry, limp hair around a hot curling iron and watch it spring back to life.