Straightening brushes make hair styling easy and fast, particularly if you are after a straight but natural finish (glass hair will still need a flat-iron, I’m afraid). However, like with straightening irons choosing the best hair straightening brush for your hair type can be difficult. So many options in the market, some will fry your hair and some will become your favourite tool. So do your research before purchasing one, and don’t let price be your only criteria or your hair health will suffer.
Types of Hairbrush Straighteners
There are different types of straightening brushes in the market which can be used to create different styles from straight to blow-dry like volume. But all of the work similarly to detangle and style your hair (and sometimes dry it) in a fraction of the time a blow-dry would take.
Paddle or Flat Hair Straightening Brush
Most hairbrush straighteners look like a paddle brush, with a ceramic plate that has hard, rounded bristles that comb the hair and straighten at the same time. As the device warms the heat is evenly distributed to the bristles. The quality of the materials is what differentiates the best hair straightening brush from the rest: if the heat is not distributed evenly your hair will be damaged in places and unstyled in others.
Some modern hairbrush straighteners work similar to a hairdryer, blowing a jet of hot hair through the wristles. Those allow for styling from wet or at least towel dried hair for even quicker results.
Round Hairbrush Straighteners
Round brushes are the best hair straightening brush style if you want a natural finish and extra volume, but don’t like blowdrying your hair. Perfect for volumising and detangling fast, this type of hairbrush straighteners look like a barrel or round brush. Some of them are just a ceramic core that heats up the bristles, and those are to be used on dry hair. But others actually push hair out of tiny holes located in the brush, and they can be used to straighten hair from wet instead of having to rough dry first.
Best Hair Straightening Brush For Thick Hair
If you have thick hair that takes hours to straighten or style, the InStyler STRAIGHT UP Ceramic Hair Straightening Brush is most definitely worth a try. It heats up very quickly, but most importantly it keeps the heat as you detangle and straighten your hair. It allows you to brush a large section of hair on every pass, reducing the time it takes to straighten thick hair, gliding easily through the hair. At the same time the Cool Tip Ionic Bristles means you won’t accidentally burn your scalp (or your fingers) while straightening your hair. It also reduces frizz on naturally wavy or curly hair for a professional blow-dry finish.
The temperature goes up to 450F but there is usually no need to go as high when straightening your hair unless you have very curly, thick hair that refuses to hold a style. Usually a lower temperature setting, such as 330F is enough for a natural finish. If you want to achieve glass hair, you can always use a straightening iron afterwards just for finish.
It only works on dry or almost dry hair, do not use on wet hair because then it won’t really straighten. I have found the best way to use it is to let hair air dry (or rough dry, if you are in a hurry) and detangle it, and then apply a heat protectant and use the hair straightening brush in sections. This achieves the best results with minimal damage to the hair and in the shortest time.
Only negative to keep in mind is that it’s pretty heavy, so if you have very long hair or find it difficult to use heavy tools this one may be too heavy for you. If you are looking for a straightener for thick hair that leaves a pin straight finish a flat iron may still be needed.
Best Straightening Hairbrush For Curly And Coiled Hair
Drybar’s new hair straightening brush is probably the best for curly and coiled hair, as it delivers the heat from a flat-iron but in a paddle brush. It’s a professional grade tool with all the features you’d expect, including automatic safety shutoff after 60 minutes and digital temperature control to fine-tune the styling to your hair type.
It is an investment, but it will leave you with the smooth, straight hair of your dreams which usually would require a blow-dry and iron. Stick straight hair, here I come.
A more affordable version is the MiroPure 2-in-1 straigtening brush. It also includes a travel bag and protective gloves and does a wonderful job of straightening natural hair without burning it to a crisp. It only works on dry hair and can be a bit heavy but works great for most people.
Best Hair Straightening Brush For Heat Damaged Hair
If your hair is damaged from frequent styling, this hot air powered Lescolton One Step Hot Air Paddle Brush is the answer. Instead of a hot ceramic plate it uses hot air, that is blown through the paddle brush giving you a mix of a blow-dry and a straightening iron with minimal heat damage.
It works best on thick and long hair, as it’s quite large so you’d have issues styling smaller areas like a short fringe. And it works on towel dryed hair, which means cutting down your styling time in half. It generates ions to reduce frizz, and works great on curly hair as well as wavy hair as you can adjust the temperature.
I personally don’t think it works to create curls, but you can use it to create open waves by twisting the strands as you go. But if you have damaged hair or are trying to cut down on heat styling this is the best hair straightening brush you can buy.
Best Straightening Hairbrush For Volume
If you are after volume and shine the Revlon One-Step Hair Dryer & Volumizer is the best hair straightening brush for you. It has round edges to create volume and Nylon bristles for detangling as you go. It generates a negative ion saturated air flow, which helps with faster drying and reduces frizz. You can use it on wet, towel dried hair for the quickest results.
It is quite a large brush, so while you can get pretty close to the scalp it won’t really style very short hair comfortably. You’d better off finding a smaller brush or using a regular bristle brush for the shorter hairs. The shape is also designed for volume, so if you want pin straight hair this won’t work. But if you are after the results from a traditional blow-dry this is a much quicker and easier to use alternative to a blow-dryer.
Best Hair Straightening Brush For Oily Hair
If you use a lot of product when styling your hair or suffer from naturally oily hair you may find that your straightening hairbrush becomes dirty quickly. And that results in diminishing results and hair that feels dirtier after use, which defeats the purpose of styling it! The Braun Satin Hair 7 Brush - BR 710 has a removable cushion that makes for easy cleaning.
It’s perfect for medium to thick hair, as the seamless bristles glide smoothly and don’t snag or pull (though I would still advice combing hair beforehand to detangle with a detangling brush). It’s also one of the few models that are battery operated, so perfect for travel as well.
Getting The Best Results From Your Hair Straightening Brush
I have found you get better results if you detangle the hair first, as that will allow you to focus on styling rather than detangling your hair and reduce the amount of passes needed to straighten your hair. For this, I think a wet detangling brush is a must have. Particularly if you have very curly or thick hair.
Even the best hair straightening brush will rely on heat to style your hair, so you should always use a suitable heat protector product beforehand. Products that help blow dry your hair faster also work great with this kind of hairbrush straighteners as they help hair glide more smoothly.