How to Properly Clean Hair Brushes & Combs

Combing through hair

Don’t settle for a dirty hair brush or comb.

If your hairbrush is full of hair, dust, and dandruff, it could be wreaking havoc on your scalp. And not to mention curbing your hair from being as shiny and luscious as it could be. 

Luckily, cleaning a hair brush is easier than you may realize. Read on for our favorite tips for cleaning your hair brush with tools and ingredients you likely already have around the house.

 Why Should You Clean your Hair brush?

You may be asking yourself, why should I clean my hair brush? People tend to think that since they usually have clean hair when they use their hair brush, there is no need to clean it. Well, we are here to tell you that is not the case. Depending on how much product you use in your hair daily, you should be cleaning your hair brush anywhere between once a month and once a week.

The thought of adding yet another task to your cleaning routine may sound taxing, but if you are at all concerned about hair health and growth you will want to consider adding this to your list. (after all, this is clean beauty.)

A dirty hair brush can be caused by various factors, one of the most obvious being hair. The average human sheds 50-100 hair strands a day. If you think about it, that is a lot of hair accumulating at the base of your hair brush. Aside from hair, a dirty hair brush can be caused by anything from dust, oils, sweat, dead skin cells, hair product buildup, or bacteria buildup. A brush filled with these impurities cannot do its job.

Not only does all of this buildup cause the hair brush to not be able to do its job, but it can also cause hair loss as well. Leftover product debris is likely to irritate the scalp, but a dirty hair brush can also cause breakage and split ends in addition to scalp irritation and dandruff. This can lead to bald patches if left untreated for too long. 

 What Should You Use to Clean your Hair Tools?       

If you regularly get your hair done in a salon, you have probably wondered about how your hairstylist cleans their hair tools in between clients. The process that hairstylists use is naturally going to be more vigilant than an at-home cleaning since the tools are used by multiple clients a day. Hairstylists not only clean the hair tools to get rid of buildup and impurities, but they sanitize the hair tools as well. This process goes beyond hair brushes and is the same for blow dryers, flat irons, and any styling tools that were used on a client.

 While hairstylists have specific products for cleaning and sanitizing hair brushes and combs, you may find items at home that will do just the trick.

+ Vinegar
+  Warm Water
+ Baking soda
+ A clarifying shampoo
+ Dryer Sheets
+ An old toothbrush

How to Clean Different Types of Hair Brushes

Step 1: Remove Loose Hairs — The first thing you want to do when cleaning your brush is remove any loose hairs from the brush. If you don’t clean your brush often, chances are it has accumulated a large amount of hair. You can do this step by hand. The hairs that you aren’t able to pull out using your hands can be removed with a comb. (the finer the teeth, the better). 

Step 2: Soak — Next, you’ll want to fill a clean sink with warm water and a clarifying shampoo. Clarifying shampoos are designed to remove oils, buildup, and residue from the hair, but if you do not have clarifying shampoo a general shampoo will be fine as well. 

FYI: This soaking technique works best with plastic hair brushes. If you have a wooden paddle brush, use your old toothbrush to put a dollop of the clarifying shampoo on top of the bristles and gently dip the bristles in the warm water as needed. Use a sponge or cloth to clean up the handle and paddle and set aside for rinsing. This method will avoid any damage to the wooden handle.

(Pro tip: If you don’t want your shampoo to go to waste, use dryer sheets instead! Just add two dryer sheets to the sink with clean water and let it soak)

Step 3: Add Baking Soda — After letting your hair brush soak in this soapy water mixture for at least half an hour, you can add a tablespoon of baking soda to amp up the oil cutting.

Step 4: Scrub — To clean your combs or the hard-to-reach areas of your hair brush like in between the bristles, you can use an old toothbrush to scrub the buildup away. Then, just add a dab of the same shampoo you used in Step 2 and scrub away! 

Step 5: Dry — Finally, allow time for the hair brush to dry, and you are good to go!

 How to Keep Your Hair Brushes and Combs Clean?

In the haircare community, the general rule of thumb for how often you should replace your hair brush is about every six months. However, this may differ depending on the type of brush you have and how you care for it. Maintaining a clean hair brush will not only make your hair happy but also increase your brush’s lifespan. 

We often spend so much time perfecting our skincare routine that we end up neglecting our scalp. Just because we typically cannot see our scalp throughout the day doesn’t mean it does not need the same love and attention as your skin. A healthy scalp is a happy scalp and a happy scalp leads to happy, strong, and luscious hair.


Now that you know the importance of cleaning your hair brush for a healthy scalp, you can take other measures to keep your scalp happy, like introducing a scalp serum into your routine to promote hair growth. The Power Fol Advanced Multi-Correctional Scalp & Hair Treatment is what we like to call “where skincare meets scalpcare”. The Power Fol uses the most advanced clean beauty science to help thicken the appearance of your hair. In addition to these proven long-term benefits, the Power Fol works to immediately volumize your hair. Now that you have a clean hair brush, your scalp is the perfect blank canvas for the Power Fol to work its magic. Discover Your New Routine Today.