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The "Right" Curly Tools

Updated: Jan 25, 2022

Using the "right tools" for your curly hair is a secret in achieving the best results for styles and having healthy hair!

If you're looking for definition, volume, or a great detanglers, researching and testing out tools for your type of curl and hair density is critical!

For quite some time, as my hair got longer, it's curl pattern stretched and changed to a slightly wavier pattern.

However, I knew there must be something I can do (other than cutting my hair) to create more BOUNCE!

This is what prompted me to look into different types of tools. Of course you can just use your fingers to detangle and product application methods (like praying hands, raking, etc.) to control definition.

However, sometimes tools (brushes, combs, hair ties, etc.) can help your experience and or results that you are looking for!

This blog will focus on:

So, let's review some of my favorite haircare tools and some on my list of tools to try!

Brushes, Brushes, Brushes

Did you know that there are specific brushes for specific hair types, lengths, and densities (to learn more about density, check out my blog post that discusses all the factors that make up one's hair type.)

Definition and Detangling

Dense and Thick Hair Types

For example, my hair is dense and thick. So when I want something to deep detangle tough knots, I need a brush with long (but very sturdy) bristles (like rubber) to get to the root of my hair (at the scalp) while gently detangling my various curl patterns.

This brush I'm describing is the Denman Brush. It helps define hair when it is in thin sections (for me because of my hair's thickness).

So it takes more time for product application and wash and go styles, as I have to thinly section each portion of my hair.

Low Density and Thin Hair Types

If you were to use the same brush, it may work for you, but in a different manner. Perhaps the brush may be too harsh for your hair. You would want to find a brush that is very gentle and, doesn't pull on your hair or doesn't irritate your scalp.

But thankfully, now, it's easier to find tools that work for multiple hair types! Take the Denman Brush, it's one that is sturdy and has long bristles that are gentle on my scalp and hair while being able to get through my medium-high density.

However, it is also a great brush for finer hair, as the bristles are gentle enough to detangle finer curly hair as well.

Due to its structure, it may work easier for finer curls when defining curls, as you wouldn't have to section hair as much, but comb the brush bristles through the hair and that's it!

But despite these factors, note that not all products will work for every curly despite the thickness or construction of a tool!—Find what works for you!!

Product Distribution

When distributing product, it's important to find a tool that evenly distributes product for your hair type as well.

For example, a Denman Brush may be great for type 2 and 3 hair types and not the best for type 4b or 4c hair types (depending on the curlies fineness or coarseness of their texture).

Fingers may end up being a better tool than a brush!

If something is already working for you, there is no need to change what's not broken—ya feel?

Listing ALLLL The Specific Brush Tools

The Behairful Brush (Definer and Detangler)

The Behairful Brush reached out to me around this time I noticed how many curlies had such great results. I was super excited to try and once I did, I decided that this would be my dedicated tool for wash day!

As I've expressed in many posts, this brush honors all my hair types, so each curl is defined in the best way it can be.

While the Behairful Brush is great for adding definition and distributing product by detangling and smoothing out curls, the best tool I use to get out my most stubborn knots is my Denman Brush.

The Denman Brush (Definer and Detangler)

I've used the Denman Brush since the beginning of my journey (around 2017, I went natural 2016). It helped define my hair with my short curls and kept it tangle-free!

It's my go-to brush when I need to remove knots and get to the very root of my hair to detangle. I love using this brush after I condition on wash day.

I love using paddle brushes (or combs) when straightening my hair. I use to use one when I first chopped my relaxed ends, but it ended up pulling my hair out (because of the way it's made).

The bristles are not constructed in the same way of curly-friendly brushes. They usually have more bristles (sometimes with rubber balls at the end), that are very fine, and more spread apart.

They are wider than the usual brush as well. These brushes are often used for fine or straight hair types. They are sometimes even made with materials that prevent static and frizz. Paddle brushes also typically have many more bristles.

However, not all paddle brushes are curly friendly but there are some out there specifically made for thick/curly hair (Denman Paddle Brushes, Wet Brush Shower Flex, Wet Brush Original Detangler, etc.)

I definitely have the Denman Paddle Brush on my list of ones to try! They have some that are recommended for thick, long, and curly hair, so it's something for me to consider *insert HUGE heart eyes*

Bristle brushes are dense and strong and are used to slick back hair, increase shine, and depending on the type of bristle brush, they're used for blow-drying (like 360 or round bristle brushes).

They come in different strengths, some have soft bristles (usually men's beard brushes for example) while others have tougher bristles to help really smooth out hair.

I use a rather strong boar bristle brush for slicking back my hair and adding "a smoothness" to styles, and a bamboo bristle toothbrush for my baby hairs.

Combs, Combs, Combs

Depending on the comb, they're great for after you straighten your hair, or add curls (with rollers, twist-outs, braid-outs, etc.,) and need to add volume.

Investing in a quality wide-tooth comb can help get out some knots that a brush cannot get with the type of bristles it has. They're great for distributing oil throughout the hair, cleaning up product buildup, or simply getting stubborn knots out.

Rat-Tailed Combs

Rat-tailed combs serve many purposes. They're amazing for getting out single strand knots, parting hair, and creating sleek looks when needing to section off portions of curls.

I find myself using this tool the most! They're especially great for thick hair types, when you get the right type of rat-tailed comb, as some have finer tails than others.

Hair Picks

I use a regular wide-tooth comb to pick my hair and add volume. But what's even better than that, is using hair picks! They're uniquely made for us curly queens, to add extensive volume and fluff!

Hair ties, Scrunchies, Rubber Bands

Using the right ties for your hair is important! It may seem like common sense, but if you're using a hair tie that damages your hair then this can lead to breakage, and poor length retention.

Investing in hair ties, scrunchies, and using rubber bands properly can save your ends and edges!

Hair Ties

Dense and Thick Hair Types

Hair ties come in various sizes and materials for different hair types and densities. My preference is using Goody Ouchless® Thick Hair Elastics that are super large hair ties for thick hair.

I also like using their SlideProof hair ties, because they have rubber grips that keep them from breaking as often as normal hair ties.

These hair ties are easy for me to remove from my hair and tightly pull back my hair, but not too tight where my edges can potentially become damaged.

Low Density and Thin Hair Types


A trend for ages, now offered in silk materials, specifically to assist those with curly hair—scrunchies are lightweight, tend to come in packs, and are gentle on the hair!

Investing in silk scrunchies is probably your best bet when wanting to put your curls up, because the silk protects the hair and also serves as a cute style accessory.

While they may not be the best for a slick, tighter style, they're perfect for throwing your hair up for a loose fluffy puff or pony.

Rubber Bands

Using rubber bands can be tricky for curly hair and is always recommended that when taking them out, you cut them (if you can—however, I find this a bit wasteful) or what I like to do, is use an oil to slide them off your ends (without damaging your curls).

Rubber bands also come in various sizes. Using smaller rubber bands for finer hair types and larger ones for thicker hair types is suggested by many when tying off braids or twists.

Bonnets, Head Scarves, Head Wraps

As we know bonnets, headscarves or wraps are great ways to protect your curls at night! And, they're also amazing for protecting straight hair or a blow-out. But there are various kinds of bonnets and scarves.

Silk and Lightweight Hair Protection

Some are just silk, some are insulated with fluffy fabrics, while others have two or more layers of silk, while some are just wraps that you tie.

What's the difference? Well, it depends on what you are looking for! I use silk and lightweight materials for my hair, because I get hot at night.

It's important for my oily hair and skin to breathe at night so I don't produce more oils. Silks and lightweight materials help me balance my natural oil production and protect my hair.

However, the only downside to silks is that they can stain when reacting with sweat. I haven't tried this myself but Google suggests using a water-vinegar rinse with a clean cloth to remove the stain.

Cotton and Multi-Layered Protection

Some head wraps have silk lining (I have a Woven Royal bonnet like this that I've been using for years, especially in the winter).

These are especially great for keeping moisture in at night.

If you have dry hair doing an overnight oil treatment with an insulated bonnet (preferably not silk, as it can stain) can lock moisture in while absorbing excess oils.

Depending on the fabric it can assist in moisture-retention or help dry wet hair, overnight (if it's more of a cotton towel material).

Final Thoughts

Finding the right curly tools takes time. From reading my blogs, you must have found out that going on your natural hair journey means going on a journey of self-love and figuring out what suits you and gives your hair the best results.

—Until next time!

The. Curlfriend



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