Looking for a beard brush so you can keep your beard looking ruggedly handsome? Here are 8 excellent options to consider.
When you think of essential beard grooming tools, you probably think of a razor and a comb — maybe scissors.
You probably don’t think of a beard brush. However, this underused tool might be exactly what your beard needs.
Beard brushes are often overlooked because not many guys understand their purpose. For a long time, I was just as guilty of this mistake. I assumed that the beard brush was just an alternative to a comb.
The main role of a beard brush is to tidy up the beard. The brush’s firm bristles provide a stronger and more thorough detangling power than a comb, and they also help keep everything in place more effectively.
In addition, beard brushes can aid in hydration and exfoliation. They distribute natural oils throughout the hair for a healthier beard, and they can also help you apply beard oil or beard balm more evenly. Many brushes also offer exfoliating benefits for the skin beneath the beard that often gets ignored.
Although guys with longer beards will see more noticeable results, brushing always helps. Of course, the best way to find out is to grab a brush and see for yourself.
What To Look For in a Beard Brush
There are three important factors to keep in mind when shopping for a beard brush: bristle material, overall size, and overall shape.
Most beard brushes use bristles made from either boar’s hair or synthetic fibers. Some brushes use horsehair, although this is less common.
Boar’s hair is widely recommended for its strength and texture. In particular, it excels at distributing oils throughout the beard.
Synthetics can be just as effective, but it depends more on the exact material. Some synthetics are quite similar to boar’s hair, while others are plasticky and abrasive. Synthetic brushes are usually cheaper.
Overall, unless you’re vegan (or just dislike using animal products), go with a boar’s hair brush.
Next, think about size. Both the bristle length and the head size are important here.
The bristle length should correspond to your beard length, so if you have a short beard, choose a brush with short bristles.
For the size of the brush head itself, the same rule (usually) applies. The longer and thicker your beard, the bigger your brush should be. But depending on your situation, a travel-sized brush may be more useful for you.
Finally, think about the shape and form of the brush. Some brushes feature a handle; others are shaped to fit the palm. These two brushing experiences can be pretty different, so try out both if you can.
Now that you know what to look for in a beard brush, here are our top 8 picks in no specific order.
Here are our top three recommendations from the list:
Seven Potions brush is a top choice if you like palm-shaped brushes. This brush has boar hair bristles and a pearwood body. The wood is oiled and polished to feel soft and smooth in the hand.
Diane Original Military Brush is a rugged brush with boar bristles and a wood handle. This brush is best for guys with regular skin and medium-length beards.
Kent BRD2 is handmade in the UK and features boar bristles. The elongated, curved handle fits nicely in the hand and provides distance between hand and beard for uninterrupted grooming.
Read on for more info and the complete list…
8 Best Beard Brushes
Here they are in no particular order…
Kent BRD2 Beard Brush
Kent Brushes is the world’s oldest hairbrush manufacturer, so it’s no wonder their BRD2 is so widely praised. This exquisite brush is handmade in the UK and features boar bristles that have been cut and shaped specifically for beard brushing.
The elongated, curved handle fits nicely in the hand and provides distance between hand and beard for uninterrupted grooming. It also creates an ideal angle for brushing. Because of the BRD2’s ergonomics, it actually matters which hand you hold it in, and Kent makes both right- and left-handed versions.
The BRD2 is one of the highest-quality beard brushes available, so it makes sense that it’s not cheap.
If you’re not in the UK, expect to pay around $50. Of course, this is an artisanal brush from a heritage brand, so you really are getting what you pay for. Unless you’re really strapped for cash, the BRD2 should be on your radar.
Cremo All Natural Beard Brush
Cremo’s well-reviewed beard brush hits a sweet spot of price and quality. For around ten bucks, you get boar hair bristles and a simple wood handle. While this isn’t specifically a travel brush, it’s compact enough to throw in a Dopp kit or small bag.
The bristles are pretty short, which means this brush will work best with shorter beards (and might struggle with longer ones).
Even though it’s pretty cheap, the quality control is solid, so you don’t need to worry about getting a flimsy product that will fall apart when you touch it. At the price, the Cremo is a great entry point into the world of beard brushes.
ZilberHaar Regular Beard Brush
ZilberHaar’s flagship beard brush is a nice step up from some of the more basic brushes on this list.
Made by a family-run brush manufacturer in Germany’s Black Forest, this ZilberHaar brush features boar bristles and an oiled pearwood handle.
The brush comes in two varieties: soft and stiff. The soft brush is better for shorter beards or guys with sensitive skin, while the stiff brush is better for longer beards and guys with regular skin. The stiff brush seems to be a little more popular, but both brushes have overwhelmingly positive reviews.
The brush can usually be found for about $18, which is a great deal. It’s a solid choice if you want a handled beard brush that’s a step above some of the entry-level brushes.
ZilberHaar Vegan Regular Beard Brush
In addition to making boar brushes, ZilberHaar also makes a vegan brush that stands out from many of the other synthetic brushes on the market.
Amazingly, this vegan brush is completely plastic-free. Instead, ZilberHaar uses an agave fiber called “Tampico” to make naturally stiff bristles that are surprisingly similar to boar hair.
These bristles also distribute oils and exfoliate much more effectively than plastic fibers. However, they’re on the stiffer side, so they may not work for you if you have sensitive skin.
The only other major difference is that the handle is made from walnut instead of pearwood. In terms of material quality and craftsmanship, it’s similar to ZilberHaar’s other brushes, so you can rest assured you’re getting a well-made brush (and for the same price, no less).
Zeus Boar Bristle Brush
Zeus’s boar brush is another worthy contender to consider if you’re looking at the $15-$20 price range.
In many ways, it’s suspiciously similar to the ZilberHaar. It’s made in Germany from boar hair and pearwood, and you have the option of soft or firm bristles. However, there are a few small yet important differences.
The handle on the Zeus is gently tapered instead of scalloped, so it will probably fit some hands better than others. Zeus also specifies that the bristles have rounded tips and a medium-stiff backbone for a less abrasive experience.
Beardbrand Beard Brush
Grooming giant Beardbrand offers something a little different in the way of beard brushes. Their options include large, round, and travel brushes, and each one has a distinct purpose.
The Large Brush is an all-purpose brush that works with most beard shapes and sizes.
If you’re buying a beard brush mainly for styling purposes, take a look at their Round Brush, which offers 360 degrees of bristles for numerous styling possibilities.
Finally, their Travel Brush is essentially the same as the Large Brush but in a smaller form factor.
All three brushes feature stiff, medium-length boar bristles. Guys with longer, thicker beards will get the most out of these brushes, though the Travel Brush is a good choice for smaller beards.
Seven Potions Beard Brush
If you prefer beard brushes that don’t have handles, check out this midrange option from Seven Potions. As you might expect, the brush has boar hair bristles and a pearwood body.
The bristles have medium stiffness and backbone, so they’ll work fine for most beards. The wood is oiled and polished to feel soft and smooth in the hand for a splinter-free experience.
This brush is a step up from something like the Cremo, though it is almost double the price. It really comes down to which form factor you prefer. This Seven Potions brush is a top choice if you like palm-shaped brushes.
Diane Original Military Brush
If you want the cheapest brush available, go for Diane’s Original Military Brush. This spartan tool is decidedly more rugged than the other options on this list, but that might be exactly what you’re looking for.
You’re getting the bare necessities here: boar bristles and a wood handle. That’s it. There’s nothing special about the materials, but they get the job done, and that’s the whole point of this brush.
This brush is best for guys with regular skin and medium-length beards. Diane specifies that the brush is designed for medium to coarse hair, so you might want to look elsewhere if you have soft or fine beard hair.
Cheap vs Expensive Beard Brushes
While researching beard brushes, we saw massive price differences between them. It made us wonder if it was really worth it to spend 10 times more on a brush.
One of our team members was using a $4 beard brush that had bristles on both sides.
One side was soft, the other was more abrasive. He then tried this $40 brush to see if it was a noticeable upgrade.
Compared to the inexpensive brush, the more expensive one looks nicer, is a higher-quality wood and has more weight.
As far as the actual function of the brushes, there really isn’t a noticeable difference, and the $4 brush actually has an edge because it has a soft option and an abrasive option.
If money isn’t a concern to you, you may as well buy a higher-quality brush, but if you can only afford a cheap beard brush, don’t fret! The performance probably won’t be much different.
Beard Brush FAQs
Here are the answers to some common questions about beard brushes.
Are Beard Brushes Worth It?
Yes! You probably need a beard brush if you’re rocking anything more than stubble.
What Are the Benefits of a Beard Brush?
They detangle the hair, exfoliate the skin and follicles, and distribute natural oils.
Should You Comb Your Beard Wet or Dry?
Always brush your beard dry. Wet hair is more prone to stretching and breaking, which means you could unnecessarily lose hair.
How Do You Use a Beard Brush With Beard Oil?
Apply your preferred amount of beard oil to the beard with your hands, then use the brush to distribute it evenly throughout the hair.
Which Beard Brush Is Right for You?
Now you know what to look for in a beard brush, and you’ve seen some of the best options out there. All that’s left is to choose the one that’s right for you.
Even if you already have an established grooming routine, a beard brush can make a huge difference.
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