How to Clean Hairbrushes and Combs

Two Methods:Brush Meets Comb MethodOther Methods

Ever grab your brush and suddenly think, "Are birds trying to nest in my hairbrush?" Of course, your next thought is a panicked "Oh no, did all that hair come from my head?" Time to clean the hairbrush!

Clean brushes and combs not only keep your hair styled and snarl-free but also keep your hair cleaner, longer. It also ensures that brushing and combing isn't adding lint or fluff to your hair. It's quick and easy to always have a clean brush or comb, and we'll show you how.

Method 1
Brush Meets Comb Method

  1. 1
    Get the dirty brush. The first thing you want to do is clear out massive tangles of old hair and anything else that's collected in that nest of fallen fur. While you're at it, grab a comb.
    • Pick all the hair out of the brush. You can do this with your fingers or a toothpick, but you want to get as much out as you can before you continue
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    • Wet the brush and comb under warm running water. This will help soften that what's left of the leftover locks.
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    • Apply a small amount of shampoo to the bristles of one of the brushes. It'll help break up any hair grease, and also clean your hair care tools.
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    • Gently scrub the brush's bristles with the comb. For best results, scrub in one direction only, dragging the hair from between the bristles with every stroke.
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    • Continue gently scrubbing as you hold the items under the warm running water until all the suds—and all the hair—are gone. If you run out of suds before you run out of spare hair, repeat the process. Don't be too rough with the brush's bristles or they might fall out, like your hair.
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    Dry the brush(es) or comb on a towel.

Method 2
Other Methods

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    Try soaking your brush. You can also clean a brush or comb by soaking it in a mugful of warm water and a bit of shampoo. Or, you can try a mugful of white vinegar, which will remove oily deposits left by your hair. Rinse and dry.
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    Another alternative way: Use your old used toothbrush to clean the brushes of the comb after applying a mild soap or shampoo to it. This is an easy and a perfect way to clean the comb, but we recommend you have a new toothbrush at the ready. Mark the one you used so you know which one not to use in your mouth!


  • Throw away pieces of hair stuck in your brush because that could build up oil in your scalp.
  • Remove hair from your brush or comb after each brushing. Less dirt will remain in the bristles/comb that way.
  • You wouldn't want to put hair oils and dirt back on your hair right after washing it, so cleaning your brush/comb before you shampoo gives you a clean brush/comb to use when your hair is at its cleanest.
  • Be careful if you are getting certain kinds of combs or brushes wet, so that moisture doesn't get stuck inside of the parts and grows mold.
  • If cleaning your styling tools with vinegar, be sure to add a drop or two of your favorite essential oil to reduce the acidic smell of the vinegar.
  • Wetting the hair in the brush will make it a lot easier to pick out.
  • A tapered "interdental" brush is great for cleaning the base of a brush, between bristles, and a comb. These special brushes are in the dental section of a pharmacy.
  • Simply put the brush in hot water and add a little bit of shampoo.
  • Wet your brush and add small amount of shampoo, then brush it with old toothbrush.


  • Always clean your brush/comb gently so bristles/tines don't break off. Never use your fingers to scrub a bristle brush; it's painful to get poked in the finger by a bristle/tine or worse—under the fingernail.

Article Info

Categories: Basic Hair Hygiene