Image via Buena Vista Pictures.
In fact, I think I’ve had my current one since I was about six years old – it’s bright lime green and has a picture of a whale on it. It’s reliable, it’s durable, it gets rid of knots, doubles as a microphone… and yes, it’s probably time for a new one.
But despite it’s simple and harmless appearance, turns out with improper use the humble hairbrush could actually be doing your hair more harm than good. We found out the five most common mistakes people make when it comes to brushing their hair.
1. Skipping the roots.
“The biggest mistake people make when brushing their hair is that they only pay attention to the mid-lengths and ends, forgetting to brush the scalp,” says internationally celebrated hair stylist Kevin Murphy.
“This is important as you need to stimulate the scalp and create blood flow to keep the scalp healthy and stimulate hair growth.”
2. Trying to get out knots.
When it comes to getting rid of knots, the tendency can be to try and get them all out in one go. According to Aleks Abadia, Salon Director and founder of Esstudio Galleria, it’s the worst thing you can do.
“Most people try to brush the knots out from the roots – you should always start at the end of the hair and work your way up to the roots,” he says. (Post continues after gallery.)
Hair Stylist Anthony Nader agrees.
“If you start with your brush at the root area and scrape all the way down, you’re just pulling down the knots to the end,” he says.
“This is such a ‘no-no’ as you’re only going to create hair breakage and your locks deserve more love.”
3. Brushing too hard.
Think you’re going to get the whole thing over quicker if you go hard and fast? Well, you might – but you’ll leave hair devastation in your wake.
"Rigorous brushing is the biggest hair sin in my opinion," says Barney Martin, Pantene Ambassador & Hair Expert.
"Excessive brushing can cause damage to your hair cuticles, which can also lead to thinning hair. To combat this, I always recommend using a hair treatment like the Pantene Pro-V Minute Miracle ($2.99) once a week to repair and protect hair from damage," he says. (Post continues after video.)
4. Brushing when wet.
Straight after washing your hair might seem like the most logical time to detangle, brushing your hair when wet is not recommended.
"Your hair is in its weakest form when it is wet, so if you are too aggressive or use bad plastic brushes that pull the hair, you can break your hair's elasticity, which can cause breakage and split ends," explains Murphy.
If you are going to brush your hair, try using a comb instead.
"Swapping your brush for a wide tooth comb will get the knots out more easily and also be much more kinder and smoother on your poor hair," says Nader. (Post continues after gallery.)
Alternatively, going for something like The Wet Brush (which you can use on both dry and wet hair) is also a good option. It's specially developed bristles and soft tips eliminate any tugging, pulling or ripping of hair and I find it can even handle my thick and curly hair.
5. Not brushing enough.
That said, brushing your hair properly has some important benefits.
"Brushing your hair is good to stimulate the scalp and also to move the natural oils down from the scalp to the mid lengths and ends to help treat the hair," says Murphy.
As for frequency, Martin recommends brushing every day.
"You should be brushing your hair daily to remove dirt and loose hair," he says.
"Using a large paddle brush instead of a round brush is better as it doesn't stretch the hair follicles and keeps hair smooth."
How often do you brush your hair?