Hair brushing: five good reasons - and how to do it right
- Why brushing is just as important as washing.
- Which brush is best for natural hair care?
- How to properly brush your hair.
Greasy hair or dry ends, a scaly or itchy scalp - you might think it's fate. A personality trait. Unlucky in the life lottery? At least that's what advertising sometimes wants to tell you. This is completely wrong: If no illness is the cause of these problems, it is usually due to incorrect or excessive care. The natural state of your scalp is: healthy. The natural state of your hair is: silky and strong. Actually, our body has hair care under control - even without chemical clubs and daily excessive washing. In this article, we look at one of the essential fundamentals of natural hair care: brushing. Because brushing has different functions, which you can learn more about here. We also give you instructions on how brushing actually works. You'll see: your hair and scalp will automatically feel great. Trust in your body! And a good brush...
Why is brushing your hair so important?
Essentially, brushing performs two functions. First, it rids you of things you don't want on your scalp and hair. Second, it distributes the endogenous substances that protect and care for your hair right down to the ends of the hair – in a completely natural way. It is a good idea to pay attention to brushing for these five reasons:
- Cleansing starts with the scalp: your scalp works at night while you sleep - that is when it excretes excess minerals and metabolic products that are deposited on the scalp. So that the pores do not become clogged and the skin's natural pH value is maintained, these excretions must be removed from the scalp. Otherwise, the body reacts to this by increasing sebum production - and this ultimately leads to greasy hair. A good brush will easily get rid of these deposits.
- A good brush will also be able to rid your hair and scalp of styling residue. Many products you may be using dry out the hair and scalp and further clog pores. They may also clog your hair with chemical substances that block access for the natural care substances from your scalp. So the stuff has to be brushed out with as little residue as possible - also no problem for friend brush!
- Mechanical cleaning with a brush works well. In fact, it works so well that it leads straight to the next reason for brushing: if you brush a lot, you need less aggressive cleaning substances. Brushing is therefore a prerequisite for using mild, natural hair care products. Besides, why should you wash your hair every day when brushing it makes it clean and fresh? If you brush your hair regularly, you automatically need fewer hair washes - a real plus for your hair's self-care powers.
- Your scalp is no different from the skin on the rest of your body: in order for it to function optimally, it needs good blood circulation. You'll already think it: stroking with a good brush gently massages your scalp and stimulates blood circulation. Not only does this regulate general skin function; blood circulation is also important to ensure that the hair roots are optimally supplied with nutrients. These nutrients are carried to the roots via the capillaries – i.e. the very fine blood vessels – while pollutants are carried away from there via the blood.
- The natural hair care power of your scalp: Your scalp constantly releases a mixture of sebum and sweat. That doesn't sound appetizing at first, but the mixture is ideal for protecting the hair with a natural protective acid mantle and making it shine when distributed evenly. Because sebum consists of triglycerides, fatty acids, wax esters and proteins that make the hair water-repellent, supple and shiny. With a good brush you distribute the mixture reliably to the ends of the hair.
Wood, plastic, metal: what is the right brush for me?
There are no two opinions among professionals here: A brush made of natural boar bristles is best suited, especially since their structure is very similar to human hair. They are firm enough to penetrate the scalp and soft enough not to injure the scalp or damage the hair. Due to their structure, they clean thoroughly while being able to absorb and distribute sebum and fat well. The hairbrush made of real wild boar bristles also owes these properties to its special structure: in good products, the bristles are arranged on the paddle in graded lengths with different degrees of rigidity. Unlike plastic brushes, natural hair brushes clean the hair without charging it with static electricity; and unlike metal brushes, they damage the hair significantly less (especially in combination with heat from a hair dryer). Of course, high-quality brushes made from wild boar bristles are not cheap, especially since the animals are not specially bred or killed for them. We too have opted for brushes made from wild boar bristles because of their special properties, even though we use vegan alternatives wherever possible. In this case, however, we give priority to the health of the hair, especially since, with full respect for life, we contribute to the full exploitation of the animal. Since a well-crafted brush will also accompany you for many years with good care, we firmly believe in the sustainability of this approach.
A friend for life: How do I care for a boar bristle brush?
To ensure that you can use your brush for a long time, you should clean it carefully after each use. First, you should carefully remove hairs in the brush with your hands or with a wide-toothed comb. There are also special brushes and combs for cleaning such products, but in our opinion they are not really necessary. Then you should tap the brushes lightly with the bristles in a soft cloth to mechanically remove scales and other small particles. If after a while you feel that wet cleaning is necessary, you can simply clean the bristles under lukewarm running water with a little mild shampoo - this will remove excess sebum that can accumulate in the bristles over the course of weeks or months. It is important that you then pat the wood thoroughly dry and lay the brush with the bristles down on a towel to dry. The dried bristles do not need any extra care products afterwards, because the sebum on your scalp will care for the bristles sufficiently after just a few uses.
How do I use a hair care brush correctly?
In addition to regular washing, daily brushing is the most important prerequisite for a healthy scalp and shiny, strong hair. You've probably heard it before: 100 brush strokes a day is said to be the secret to beautiful hair. But is that even true? Such tight guidelines are always a thing, especially since everyone is different and hair care requirements differ from person to person. But the 100 brush strokes are a good starting point, because what the professionals usually want to tell you with that is: It's very likely that you don't brush your hair enough. So: We agree with the statement! Start with said 100 brush stitches and then experiment a little - you know best what is good for you.
Brush your hair after getting up
Since the production of sebum by the scalp is particularly high at night, you can distribute it particularly well to the ends of your hair in the morning. The best way to do this is to bend forward and brush from the back of your neck over your forehead to the ends of your hair. It is important that you do not neglect any part of the scalp, but consider all areas from ear to ear. Then you straighten up and brush your hair back. On days when you don't wash your hair, this will be quite enough to clean your hair, keep it smooth and add shine. If you're just starting out with natural hair care, be patient: it can take a few weeks for your scalp and hair to get used to it and for sebum production to level off.
Brushing the hair on a wash day: Before shampooing
What many people don't know is that you shouldn't just brush your hair after you've washed your hair, you should also brush it beforehand - especially if you use styling products. As already described above, the wild boar bristles are ideal for gently removing gel, hair wax or varnish from the hair. By brushing out before washing your hair, the shampoo then has to be less aggressive to clean your hair well. You'll also find that freshly brushed hair spreads the shampoo even more easily from the scalp to the ends of the hair. At least a short brushing before washing your hair is mandatory.
Immediately after washing: preparation for brushing
Unless you wash your hair with natural shampoo , you should not attempt to brush wet hair. Both the hair and the scalp are sensitive to mechanical stress after washing. The only reason this works after washing your hair with conventional shampoo is that it prepares your hair with chemical straighteners - but we're not into that at all. So: Your hair should be well dried before you approach it with the brush. The best way to achieve this condition is to first gently pat the hair dry with a soft towel. Be careful not to apply too much pressure; You should also avoid circular movements.
Detangle first, then brush
If you have longer hair, you should start with the brush to detangle the hair ends. Depending on how stubborn it is, more or less large strands of hair are divided off to make brushing easier and not to strain the hair too much. This can be a bit thorny, especially after you switch from conventional hair care to natural hair care - because your hair will need a few weeks until the chemical ingredients that made your hair combable have been replaced by the natural, nourishing sebum of the glands in your scalp. Now work the brush further and further towards the scalp until you reach the hairline. Once you've tamed your hair this way, brush the hair down its length with gentle pressure for about five minutes. It is important that you really put the brush on the scalp with each stroke and then slowly move it along the entire hair. This is the only way to distribute the sebum from the hairline to the tips. Again, if you're just starting out in natural hair care, please give your body some time. It is quite possible that your hair will feel drier or greasy in the first few days or weeks than with conventional hair care - but this usually goes away on its own after a while. Trust your body's ability to take care of itself - there's nothing better for your hair.
With curls, the hair does not stay dry
Even the curly-haired among us can give your scalp and hair care with a brush. However, if you have ever worked on curls with a brush, you will know: With the brush you pull out the curls, and the hair stands out from your head in a wispy cloud. Or, as one of our hairdressing experts once said: a sheep after being electrocuted. Of course, this is not the state you want to reach. You can remedy this by brushing your hair while it is still slightly damp. As with other hair types, you should always style from the tips, i.e. first carefully untangle the tips so that you do not pull your hair unnecessarily and thus weaken or even break it. It can help to also use a comb for curls, i.e. a wide-toothed wooden or horn comb. Both variants are antistatic, so your hair is less charged. To get to the scalp on thick curls, you'll need to part your hair once you get to the top, working on a single strand at a time. None of this will prevent your curls from losing their texture from brushing. Our pro tip: Wet your hands after brushing and gently knead your hair - this usually allows you to "knead" defined curls back into your hair. Of course, the chances of success of this procedure always depend somewhat on your individual hair structure, and the result is not always as convincing as you are used to from the "chemical club". So what do you do if you don't want to brush your hair that often and can't transport the sebum well into the lengths? In this case, supplying the hair with a hair oil that takes over the function of the body's own sebum is particularly important. Curly heads can therefore use the oil a little more liberally without overgreasing the hair. The application requires some practice, but you should still be able to achieve very good results for some time. As you can see: the maintenance of curls is a bit more complex - but you are sure to get one or two envious looks from us "smooth heads".