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Flat Vs. Round Hair Brush: What You Need to Know

Out of all the hairstyling tools in your bathroom cabinet, a hair brush is perhaps the most basic. It combs your hair free of tangles and helps you get those perfect center and side parts, right? You probably think that’s all you need to know but you would be doing yourself a disservice if you didn’t know the difference between a flat and a round hair brush. Two brushes with a lot in common, but with very different purposes.


The Flat Brush

flat hair brush

Often known in the styling world as a paddle brush, this one looks exactly how you’d picture it: a flat or wide base with plastic spines on an air-filled cushion for combing, and a simple easy-to-grip handle. A good flat brush’s bristles flexible move along your scalp to leave no hair uncombed.

Typically, women and mothers with little girls use the flat brush to rid the hair of tangles. There are some flat brushes strictly for dry hair, some best for wet hair, and there are ones that combine for an all-in-one: the wet/dry hairbrush. Flat brushes are used after showers or right in the morning to assist you in styling that cute ponytail or simply help neaten up straight hair.

The flat brush is a must-have for any woman’s styling bag; hair type and length doesn’t even factor in. Even for women with black natural hair, a flat brush is a good hair tool to have on hand. Just look for one with smooth bristles not made of nylon or plastic, if possible.


The Round Brush

round hair brush

Many women use a round brush the same way they’d use a flat brush, but round brushes – because they are a round shape – were actually designed to add volume, height, body, and wave to hair. You use them with a blow dryer by combing and “winding up” the hair, then holding a blow dryer to the comb for a few seconds, before unwinding it.

Of course, a smaller round brush will result in smaller, tighter curls or waves, while the bigger the brush, the bigger the wave or curl. It’s worth it to note that boar bristles create a tighter curl and are also gentle on all hair types. In general, a boar bristle round brush is a good hair tool to have if it’s only for the fact that they are optimal for dispersing any oils in the hair from scalp to tips. A mixed bristle brush can also do this.

Expect to spend as little as $5 or as much as $20 for a round brush. Brushes with a larger “barrel” or that come with little extras tend to be the spendier ones. Finally, women with frizzy hair will love how a round brush nixes that hair problem. Use the round brush for all hairstyles, from a down do with beach waves to an updo with volume.


The nice thing about hair brushes, round or flat, is they are very easy on the wallet. Order one, or both, online or visit your local beauty supply store. Then have fun experimenting at home with all the hairstyles you can create!


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