Do Boar Bristle Brushes Damage Hair?

There are several different types of hair and depending on your hair type you should choose the best brush to avoid split ends that is best for you. A boar brush my not be the best choice depending on your hair and purpose.

Can You Damage Your Hair Using A Bristle Brush?

Boar brushes do not damage your hair. Boar brushes are beneficial in massaging the scalp and increasing blood flow to hair follicles in which supports hair growth. Boar bristle brushes distribute natural oils throughout your hair. Regular brushing once at night and once in the morning your hair will be conditioned naturally. Boar brushes helps promote shiny and healthy hair.

Conditions Hair – as you brush the boar bristles spread your natural oils all along the hair shaft conditioning your hair.Y
Helps Hair Grow – boar bristles gently massage your scalp every time you brush thus increases blood flow to your hair follicles in which can help hair growth.Y
Polishes Hair-shaft – removes dirt and debris from your hair while smoothing the hair cuticles giving you a natural shinny look.Y
Creates a Natural Shine – the natural oils from your scalp called sebum are distributed through your hair. This is what gives you a natural shine.Y
Less Static – due to the grip and tension boar can have on your hair under certain conditions can cause static electricity. Because wood is not a conductor of electricity it’s going to be the best choice to help fight static.Y
Head Massage – a great way to get a good head massage is to use a bamboo brush due to it’s larger bristles it has a calming effect.Y
Styling – boar brushes are great for styling because they can grip the hair for better tension allowing you to style your hair.Y
Animal Friendly – boar bristles can be animal friendly due to boars can be sheared and their bristles harvested without killing the animals. Some manufactures treat the boars like royalty to ensure they get the best bristles. But nylon and bamboo is much better.YY
Sustainable Product – boar bristles can be sustainable if the boar is protected and bristles harvested in a good way, but bamboo are better for sustainability.Y
Good for Blow-Outs – the tension you get when using a boar brush gives you control over your hair while styling.YY
Maximum Penetration – depending on the stiffness of the boar brush it can have great penetration but you must have first cut bristles.Y
Use on Wet Hair – boar brushes should never be used on wet hair. Wet hair is at it’s weakest state and using a boar bristles brush will stretch your hair to the point is will break and then you will have split ends.Y
Detangle Before Use – boar brushes are not to be used to detangle your hair. There are much better options out there to detangle hair.Y
Brush very curly hair gently – due to the tension and grip of boar bristles have on hair you should brush slowly as not to pull on your hair too hard. Pulling too hard can pull out your hair.Y
Brush Nightly Before Bed – it’s best to establish a routine and stick to it to see results from using a boar brush.Y
Brush in the Morning – after sleeping all night to get the blood flowing and to stimulate your hair follicles brushing in the morning is a great idea.Y

Long before conditioners were invented people brushed their hair to promote healthy hair and a get a natural shine. With regular brushing your hair will be conditioned naturally. Your hair will begin to develop a natural shine over time.

Now, that’s not to say you can’t damage your hair using a boar brush. You can easily damage your hair by forcefully taking the brush and ripping through your hair, or brushing when your hair is wet or even trying to detangle your hair with a boar brush. These are instances where you should not be using a boar bush. There are other brushes better suited for the job that is not going to damage your hair.

For example, a boar bush is not a detangling brush and if used as one could possibly damage your hair. It’s not made to be pulled through your hair. Instead a detangling comb would work much better. And for those really stubborn tangles using a small amount of conditioner and a detangling comb will do the trick.

Brushing when you hair is wet is not a good idea either. Because it can cause breakage and does not correctly distribute the natural oils in your hair when wet.

Are Boar Hair Brushes Good?

Boar hairbrushes - R+Co and Mason Pearson
Boar hairbrushes – R+Co and Mason Pearson

Boar hair brushes are good because they add shine to your hair by spreading your scalps natural oils along the hair shaft from root to tip. According to Meesh, Hair Product Analyst, “Boar hair brushes also clean your hair by removing dirt and debris.” We have used boar brushes for hundreds of years as a natural way of cleaning your hair long before they invented shampoo.

Boar brushes are a great way to make hair look healthy. We have used boar brushes for many years. Boar bristle brushes add shine to your hair naturally and are a great way to clean your hair. Plus, they are one hundred percent natural and chemical-free. I love boar brushes because they last a lifetime. Keep reading my recommendations for the best brushes and a list of the advantages and disadvantages of boar hair brushes.

Benefits Of Using Boar Hair Brushes

Benefits Of Using Boar Bristle Hair Brushes - HairBrushy

1. Cleans Your Hair With Every Brush Stroke

I recommend getting into a regular schedule, once in the morning and once at night.

2. Gives Your Hair A Natural Shine

Your scalps natural oils are distributed all along the hair shaft making your hair look shiny.

3. Makes Hair Feel Softer

Natural oils also conditions without the use of conditioner.

4. Gives Hair A Natural Healthy Look

With regular brushing you may not need as much hair product such as conditioners.

5. All-natural

With boar you are brushing you hair with all natural boar hair.

6. Last A Lifetime

With proper care and cleaning high quality boar brushes last a lifetime. I recommend a light cleaning at least once a week depending on use. According to Jon Alan Salon, “The right tools are KEY to recreating that salon blowout look.

Are Boar Bristle Brushes Bad For You Hair?

According to Meesh, Hair Product Analyst, “As you rightly know, with everything, there are disadvantages, right? And, yes, you are right if that was what you were thinking. One of the biggest disadvantages of a boar bristle brush is you can’t use it on wet hair.” If you use a boar bristle brush on wet hair, you will either pull your hair out or stretch it till it snaps, giving you a head full of split ends. The reason this happens is your hair is weakest when it is wet. Combine the wet weak hair with the grippy characteristics of the boar brush, and you end up pulling your hair out with every brush stroke. So the advantage of the boar bristles becomes it’s the biggest disadvantage when your hair is wet. So my advice is never, ever brush wet hair with a boar bristle brush. To read more about boar bristles and hair damage, read my article called, do boar bristles damage hair. 

According to O2 Salon, “Natural bristle brushes work best for evenly distributing oil from your scalp through the rest of your hair, resulting in softer, shinier looking hair. The soft bristles will not cause breakage and are great for fine hair. You can find board bristle brushes with either plastic or wood handles and in various sizes.

Oh, but wait, there is another big disadvantage to boar brushes. And just like the disadvantage above, no one really talks about this one either. Boar brushes are great at causing static electricity. So if you have dry hair, with little to no natural oil in your hair, and a dry brush, in an environment that is also parched, then you have the perfect set of circumstances for static electricity. When you get done brushing your hair, you will look like a Lion. Your hair will stand straight on its ends. There are several things you can do to combat this problem. I have written several articles that will go into detail on what you can do. You can start with this article, How to tame frizzy hair, and you also use this product, Redken Frizz Dismiss Instant Deflate Oil-In-Serum For Frizzy Hair. There are many other products, but this one seems to work very well. These conditions are prevalent during the winter months when you are indoors mostly, and it subjects your hair to dry heat. The reason this happens is just the nature of rubbing two things together in a dry environment that causes static electricity. And remember, the boar bristles with the shingle-like structure are very grippy, so it’s going to cause even more friction than a nylon brush.

Another big disadvantage you should know about is you should not use a boar bristle brush to detangle your hair. And yes, you have guessed it by now, it’s because of the grip of the boar bristles. Again, it will pull out your hair. There are much better options that will not pull out your hair and get the job done faster.

Boar Hair Brush Advantages

According to Stacey, Hair Research Analyst, “Did you know boar bristles contain the same ingredients as our hair? Hair is made up of a protein called keratin.” Both human hair and boar bristles contain keratin. By using a boar brush, you are using an all-natural styling tool to brush your hair. Hey, it’s me Ed at HairBrushy, “Be sure to read my article called choosing a boar brush to find out more about “first cut” bristles and see my article of the top 15 best of the best boar bristle brushes.” Boar bristles are not smooth like nylon bristles.

In the photo at the top of this article are two of my favorite boar brushes. The Mason Pearson oval brush and the R+Co. Both brushes are very high quality and will last a lifetime if taken care of. 

The bristles have tiny overlapping edges all along the bristle. If you look at human hair which is similar to boar bristles, up close under a microscope, you can see the tiny shingle-like structures. It’s the tiny overlapping structures that give boar bristles the ability to grab and spread your natural oils throughout your hair. Boar bristles do a much better job of spreading your natural oils than nylon bristles. Many people think boar bristles absorb oil from your scalp, and that is why it is so good at spreading your natural scalp oil. But that is undoubtedly not the case. It so good because of these tiny shingle-like structures and can grab and capture the oil. Oil from your hair will ultimately build up on the brush, and a good cleaning is needed.

Human hair under a microscope, you can see the tiny shingle-like structures
Human hair under a microscope, you can see the tiny shingle-like structures

How compare the image above with a close up of a Nylon fiber below. As you will note the Nylon fiber is much smoother and does not have the tiny shingle-like structures.

Close up of a Nylon fiber
Close up of a Nylon fiber

Using a boar bristle brush to style your hair is wonderful and here is why. And you really can’t beat it. That is why you see so many professional stylists using round boar bristles brushes. The same tiny shingle-like structure is also good at grabbing and holding your hair. When styling your hair using a boar bristle brush, you can feel you have more holding power and tension. The tension allows you to pull and hold the hair in place while the heat from your hairdryer sets the hair molecules in place. This action is how you create those nice waves and bouncy curls. The same action also allows you to straighten your hair with ease. 

According to Ash Salon, “Benefits of hair brushing:

  1.  Brushing distributes natural oils to lubricate your scalp and hair, resulting in healthy, shiny hair.
  2.  Removes loose hair
  3.  Brushing stimulates the capillaries, increasing circulation.
  4.  Daily brushing revs up hormone and oil producing glands, which keep the pores of your scalp (and hair) open, allowing them to breathe and retain their natural oils.

Questions And Answers To Damaging Hair And Boar Brushes

1. Do Boar Bristle Brushes Help Hair Grow? 

Boar bristle brush helps hair grow by gently massages the scalp, and thus increasing blood flow to the hair follicles. Without blood flow, your hair can’t grow. This can be one of many reasons for the cause of hair loss and or very slow hair growth.

2. Is Brushing Good For Thinning Hair?

According to Stacey, Hair Research Analyst, “Brushing is good for thinning hair but don’t over-brush.” Make sure to get the right brush for your hair type. Also, avoid vigorous brushing as it can remove the protective layers of your hair’s outer cuticle. Always use gentle strokes to help prevent hair breakage and scalp irritation.

3. Are Boar Bristle Brushes Good For Thick Hair?

According to Meesh, Hair Product Analyst, “Boar bristles are good for thick hair but I recommend a mix of boar and nylon bristles or a boar brush specifically made for thick hair.” When selecting a brush, you should take into account some factors such as hair texture, density and elasticity. Different hair types therefore require different hair care routines. A pure boar bristle brush is designed for thin, fine hair. It can easily go through delicate hair gently.

A boar bristle hair brush with plastic pins and boar bristles is for normal and thick hair. This type of brush easily penetrates through the hair and offers the benefits of boar bristles.

4. What Is The Morrocco Method Of Hair Brushing?  

Brushing and massaging is two of the key elements for hair maintenance and rejuvenation. Daily hair and scalp brushing can be cleaner than using synthetic shampoo. Brushing removes waste, such as uric acid deposits, catarrh and other acidic debris, which can be encrusted into the scalp. Brushing is a form of shampooing. It’s like shampooing your hair when it’s dry.

The stimulation from the bristles distributes sebum throughout hair and scalp, making both stronger and more resilient. It’s also an excellent natural conditioner because coating hair with sebum (natural oil) as you brush restores moisture, giving hair added sheen, smoothed texture and greater manageability.

5. When To brush? 

For best performance brush your hair two to three times a day: In the morning, a second time in the late afternoon and finally before bedtime. If you have curly hair, you can reduce hair brushing to once a week or so.

6. What Brush To Use?  

It’s recommend to use a boar brush since they are the preferred material and they are almost identical to human hair in texture. This allows the sebum to be collected and redistributed easily all along the hair shaft. A pure boar bristle brush is soft and ideal for thin, weak or fragile hair.

7. What Is The Best Boar Bristle Brushes And Hair Type?

Generally speaking, if you have thick, dense hair, you want a brush that can penetrate deeper. These types of brushes have less bristles, or either the bristle density is much less. In addition to boar’s bristles, these brushes have nylon bristles. The nylon bristles are usually longer and penetrate to the scalp. The shorter boar bristles then distribute the natural oils thought of your hair. This generally works best for people with thick hair.

For people with thinner hair, a regular boar bush seems to work best. The bristles can penetrate the scalp and distribute oils along the shaft with each brush stroke. These brushes will do better to distribute oils than the nylon mix brushes. The biggest drawback is that it can produce more static and frizzy. Most people who use a pure boar brush use a little oil to tame any fizz.

All brushes are not created equal. At first look they all may appear to the the same but there are differences depending on your hair type and purpose.

My Top Boar Bristle Brushes Recommendations For Healthy Hair

1. My #1 Choice For A Round Boar Bristle Hairbrush

Why? Excellent ceramic and ion thermal brush. Comes in different sizes to create any style you want. I love the seamless body design for no snags. No snags equals no pulling equals less breakage and split ends. The large vent holes provided maximum air flow to help reduce hot spots while styling.

  • Features a vented ceramic barrel for faster and more consistent styling. Includes ion-charged material design. Helps smooth and shiny hair. Thermal’s heat up fast so you got to watch your heat setting closely.

Olivia Garden Ceramic Ion Thermal Round Hair Brush

AdvantagesOlivia Garden Ceramic Ion Thermal Round Hair Brush
Great for all hair typesYes
The perfect sizeYes
Rubber safety cushionNo
100% boar bristlesNo
Once-piece wooden handleNo
Travel FriendlyAverage
Good for Blow-OutsYes
Maximum PenetrationYes
Advanced technologyYes

2. Spornette DeVille Oval Boar Brush #342

AdvantagesSpornette DeVille Oval Boar Brush #342
Great for all hair typesYes
The perfect sizeYes
Rubber safety cushionYes
100% boar bristlesYes
Once-piece wooden handleYes
Travel FriendlyAverage
Good for Blow-OutsAverage
Maximum PenetrationYes
Advanced technologyNo

3. Beauty by Earth Boar Bristle Brush

AdvantagesBeauty by Earth Boar Bristle Brush
Great for all hair typesYes
The perfect sizeYes
Rubber safety cushionYes
100% boar bristlesYes with Nylon
Once-piece wooden handleYes
Travel FriendlyAverage
Good for Blow-OutsAverage
Maximum PenetrationYes
Advanced technologyNo

Boar brushes, what is a boar bristle brush used for? Are boar bristle brushes good for fine hair? Do boar bristle brushes help hair grow? What kind of brush is best for your hair and more:

  1. Are boar bristle brushes vegan?
  2. Do boar bristle brushes damage hair?
  3. Are boar bristle brushes made from boars?
  4. Are boar bristle brushes good?
  5. Are boar bristle brushes cruelty free?

Are Boar Brushes Bad Summary

To sum things up, boar bristles have many advantages, but they also have some grave disadvantages. However, now you know what the disadvantages are, you can now stay clear by not engaging in the critical problem causing actions. Boar bristles brush are the go-to brush for most professional stylist when creating waves, curls, or adding volume. And the reason is that of the superior tension they provide. Boar brushes are a great tool to have in anyone’s drawer, and with practice, you can get the style you are looking for. By keeping your brush clean and well maintained, it can last a lifetime. So for that reason, I do not mind spending a little more on a high-quality boar bristle brush. Please comment below. I would love to hear what your brand you are using and why. 

According to, Mechanical properties and structure of alpha-keratin fibreswool, human hair and related fibers “Being of biological origin, keratin fibres, unlike synthetic polymer fibers used in textile manufacture, are not a continuous material along their length. They consist rather of a compact grouping of cells which originate at the bottom of the fibre follicle. At the bottom of the follicle, the fiber—which is bulbous (see Figure 1.1)—contains the germinal matrix in which cell division occurs. Three distinct varieties of cells are produced in the follicle base, which eventually form the three basic components of any wool or hair fiber: the external cuticle, the cortex and the medulla. In the mature wool fiber the cuticle consists of a layer of flat scales about 1 micrometer (pm) thick just overlapping each other, providing a covering for the fiber of one scale in thickness. For human hair, however, the scales of the cuticle are about 0.5 pm thick and overlap each other considerably, resulting in a covering of 6-10 scales in thickness. The scales form a ratchet-like structure resulting in a directional friction effect, with the fibers being smoother in the direction of growth. This ratchet-like structure of the scales during the growth of the fiber interlocks with the structure of the inner root sheath of the follicle (see Figure 1.1). This inner root sheath structure moves forward with the fiber as it grows outwards and supplies the mechanism by which the keratin fiber is anchored on the sheep’s back or on the human scalp. Pulling out a hair ‘by its roots’ actually results in tearing away at the inner root sheath in the follicle.”

And lastly, consider using a high quality ceramic hair dryer. They are much better on your hair than conventional dryers.