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How Do I Choose the Best Curling Iron Brush?

J. Beam
J. Beam

Given all the different brands and retail sources available, finding the right styling tools for your type of hair and current hairstyle can sometimes be overwhelming. If you prefer a curling iron brush or are looking for one to try, there are a few things to keep in mind that will help you select the right one. A curling iron brush is an ideal styling tool for many different types of hair and hairstyles, but does not provide as tight a curl as a curling iron without bristles. A good product will help smooth the hair shaft, providing waves and body while eliminating frizz.

The first factor to consider is the size of the barrel. Sizes range from ¼ inch (.6 cm) to 2 inches (5.1 cm) or more in diameter. The smaller the diameter of the barrel, the tighter the curl will be. Larger barreled curling iron brushes are ideal for creating smooth, wavy styles or sleek styles with upturned or underturned ends. The size of the barrel is also relevant to hair length and a larger barrel is not the best choice for short hair. The hair must wrap around the barrel at least once in order for the tool to be effective.

Man with hands on his hips
Man with hands on his hips

Another factor to consider is temperature. Thinner, finer hair will react to lower heat settings, but thicker, more resistant hair will require a higher heat setting to achieve results. The best models have adjustable heat settings identifiable by a number range such as 1-30, rather than just three heat settings of low, medium and high. Tourmaline and ceramic irons with adjustable heat settings are a good choice for any hair type.

Other considerations that might influence your choice in curling iron brush include weight and ergonomics. The basic style of this type of tool is quite similar regardless of brand, but weight can vary. If you are older or suffer from any condition that makes holding your arm above your head difficult, a lightweight model is best. You may also want to consider whether you want a model that combines air drying with the styling ability of a curling iron brush to save time and effort. Fortunately, curling iron brushes are slightly easier to handle than curling irons and are a better tool for the clumsy or physically awkward individual.

To help narrow down your selection, ask professionals in the hairstyling field. Your hair stylist may have recommendations or you can consult a sales associate at a beauty supply retailer. The price margin on styling tools, including curling iron brushes, is not always indicative of quality, but the cheapest models may not have the best features. Read reviews from other consumers or check with an unbiased consumer product review site like Consumer Reports before you buy an expensive model. Lastly, make sure all electric styling tools you use at home carry the UL seal before use. In most cases, you will be able to find an effective curling iron brush in the right size and style for your hair type in a very moderate price range.

Discussion Comments


@heavanet- Not only do ceramic curling iron brushes have perfect heat control, but they are also great for curling long hair. I have found that hair slides effortlessly off this type of curling iron brush. The reason for this is probably because of the smooth finish of the ceramic part of the iron.


@heavanet- The fact that the curling iron brush that you are using has short bristles is probably the problem. Longer bristles are less likely to get tangled in long hair. Also, soft bristles work better than short, hard plastic ones, in my opinion.

Another tip to follow when using any type of curling iron brush to style long hair is to avoid wrapping your hair too tightly around the barrel. This will allow it to slide off of the curling iron easily once the curl is set.


I have long hair, and like to use a curling iron brush because of the soft curls it creates. However, I have found that the brush sometimes gets tangled in my hair. This is concerning because it is hard to remove it when it's hot. Are there certain types of curling iron brushes that are less likely to cause tangles? The one that I am currently using has short, plastic bristles.

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