While technically it’s not a curly styling tool, the Denman brush is better at whipping wet hair into ringlets than anything else. Yes, you might have seen failed trials resulting in spaghetti strands or detangling traumas on YouTube, but chalk those up to the learning curve that we all go through. The Denman brush is your friend, and with a few variations of technique, you can get the best curls of your life. This is because it allows you to evenly coat each strand of hair with moisture which in turn helps your curls clump better.

Although Denman offers a variety of brushes and combs, for the purposes of this article, I am referring to the Denman D3 Classic. It’s a medium-sized brush that has seven rows of pins imbedded in a rubber pad. You can remove rows if you have thicker hair. Here is a video demonstrating how to do this:

Embedded content: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AmZhJLm5DM0

Before you get started using your brush in its original or modified form, here are some tips:

  • Do not use the brush on dry hair.
  • Do not use the brush to detangle. Instead, detangle first with your fingers, and a wide-toothed comb for stubborn knots.
  • Do not brush through wet hair that does not have product on it.

How to Use:

  1. On fully saturated and detangled hair which you have applied a leave-in conditioner, moisturizing foam or cream styler, carefully brush through your hair in a downward motion.
  2. Flip your head over and brush through your hair again. This will allow you to reach the layers in the back of your head.
  3. Flip your head back over, and let your hair fall into place. Part your hair as you normally would.
  4. Now, this is where you can use different techniques to achieve different results.

Check out the video below to see how Jannelle O’Shaughnessy shows how she uses a denman brush on her 2c/3a curly hair.

Embedded content: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gFLcF5n8BP8

  • If you want large clumps, brush downwards and flip out the ends. This technique is good for wavies and looser curlies.
  • If you want tiny separated, defined curls, brush hair up and away from your head. This technique is good for tighter curls.
  • If you want medium clumps, curl sections of your hair under.
  • After you have brushed through your hair using your desired technique, check your head to ensure that there are no strands of hair that are not clumped, or curls that are smaller than you would like them to be. If there are, shingle them with another curl clump.
  • Lastly, there are variations in scrunching technique you can use to produce different results.
    • If you want a lot of small, springy curls all over your head, start scrunching everywhere. Flip your head over, and scrunch the layers in the back of your head. You can then further scrunch with a microfiber towel to remove excess water.
    • If you want smooth, defined curls that curl evenly from root to tip, cup a few curls at a time in a microfiber towel, and scrunch them up to the root, squeezing out excess water as you go.
    • If you want to elongate your curls and avoid too much shrinkage, use microfiber gloves to squeeze out excess water from the mid-shafts to the ends of your curls. Remove the gloves, and then scrunch your roots. Do not scrunch upwards.
    • If you have tighter curls, check out the video below to see how
      JeanetteJBeauty shows how she uses a denman brush on her 3c hair to get the most out of her wash n go routine.

      Embedded content: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CVYESul7UBg

      How do you like to use your Denman brush? Let us know in the comments. For more about the Denman brush, click here.

      Stacey Biro

      Stacey Biro is a food and lifestyle blogger living in Southern California with her husband, Alex, and cat and dog. She loves sharing her favorite healthy plant-based recipes and tips on her blog, and encouraging all her curly-haired friends to embrace their beautiful natural textures.

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