When it comes to styling your hair, a comb is one of the most trustworthy weapons in a man’s grooming kit. Not only will it ensure a neat and tidy barnet when you're fresh out of the shower, but you can easily whip one out for a touch-up if you're travelling too - so you'll always look like a cool cat!
However, it can be tricky to determine which type of comb is best for your hair type. Should you go for fine or wide teeth, and is plastic better than wood? You might even want a set with a few different-sized combs or a product that folds up so you can pop it into your pocket. We’ve compiled all the info you need to know into a handy little buying guide, plus we've got a list of barbershop-worthy recommendations from Amazon, eBay and Argos.
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Table of Contents
There aren’t a lot of factors that separate combs - the main ones being the spacing of the teeth, the material, and whether the comb has a handle. In this section, we’ll delve into the distinctions and identify what you should look for, depending on your hair type.
The spacing of the teeth on a comb can generally be split into three categories: fine, medium, and wide. Some are better suited to a specific type of hair - we'll explain more below!
If you have thin or relatively straight hair, then we would recommend picking a comb with fine teeth. The narrow spacing allows the comb to capture smaller hair strands and pull them into place. This style is also more adept at providing greater precision and detail when it comes to styling.
Those with thick or curly hair should steer clear of narrow spacing though, as these hair types can easily snag on the fine teeth and become tangled - or, in the worst case scenario, snap off while you're trying to run a comb through your barnet!
A comb with medium spacing is the most common type found on the market. It's pretty versatile and can be used on many different types of hair with varying thicknesses.
Featuring teeth halfway in size between fine and wide, this type of comb is useful for untangling and styling your hair. It's often the preferred choice of barbers due to its ability to work with almost anyone's hairstyle - think of it as a kind of Jack of all trades!
This type of comb generally has fewer teeth, and each individual tooth is much thicker. The size of the teeth means they make light work of untangling and tidying up hair that's thick, coarse, or curly - without pulling or damaging it.
You might also want to use this style of comb to detangle wet hair immediately after getting out of the shower, as it won't break strands like a brush can. However, we wouldn’t recommend it for use on fine hair, as the teeth are too big to be able to separate each strand.
Next, you’ll want to consider the material that your new comb is made from. This will affect the cost of your purchase and its durability, as well as the general comfort and efficiency.
Plastic is the most common material used for making combs. Products made from this type of material come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, and they’re generally the cheapest option.
The downside is that they can be quite flimsy - teeth can easily bend or break off if you're not careful! Choose a sturdier plastic such as acetate to avoid this issue and save yourself the effort of having to buy a replacement.
Metal combs, as you’d expect, are incredibly durable and much less likely to break than those made from other materials. This kind of comb is perfect for the gentleman who likes the feel of a heavy-duty brush, as well as those with thick, long, or curly hair.
However, some are shabbily made - if the teeth haven’t been filed down carefully, they can trap hairs when you’re combing. Also, some men may find the heaviniess of a metal comb a little cumbersome, especially when travelling.
Durable and firm, carbon combs are ideal for those who don’t like the flimsiness of plastic but find metal a little too heavy.
This material is fairly versatile and tends to have a stylish, sophisticated black finish. While it's generally more expensive than plastic, it's still affordable and is excellent value for money due to its sturdiness.
Wooden combs will not only detangle your tresses, but also massage the scalp. This helps to release the natural oils in your hair and spread them evenly across your head. Plus, wooden teeth are strong and don't suffer from static build-up, so they're a good choice if you have naturally frizzy hair.
While this type of comb isn't as common as those made from plastic or metal, making it harder to find online, it's worth investing in if you want something that's made from a natural material.
If you'll be travelling with a comb, we'd suggest opting for one with either no handle or one that folds down, for your convenience. That way, it won't take up much room in your bag but it's accessible whenever you need a quick touch-up.
You might also have noticed that some combs have pointed handles. These are typically used by hairstylists to divide hair into segments, so you might want to buy one if you like precision styling. As you can imagine though, they're not very practical if you want to use your comb on the move.
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Baxter of California
A Flexible Product Crafted From High-Quality Materials
Afro Combs｜3 Pack
Versatile and Durable, With a Powerful Political Message
An Anti-Static Comb That Helps to Massage Your Scalp
Folding Beard and Hair Comb
Perfectly Balances Both Charm and Functionality
Professional Styling Comb Set
A Lightweight Set That Covers All Hair Types
Men's Barbers Comb
The Sophisticated Way to Style Your Hair
Handmade Folding Hair Comb｜20 T
Made for the Man on the Move
A Cheap Option for Coarse Hair
Medium Rake Comb
Smooth and Comfortable to Hold
Jack Dean Pompadour Streaker Comb
Ideal for Creating a Tousled Look
Each comb from this West Coast-based company goes through a rigorous 12-step production process. Surprisingly though, this is all done by real people and not machines, ensuring that every single comb is made to the highest standard, every time!
Crafted from high-quality acetate, this comb is flexible but long-lasting. Plus, it combines fine and medium teeth, for maximum versatility. Gentle enough to be used on your beard as well as your hair, we reckon you'll want to take this comb everywhere!
Need to tame thick, curly hair? This multipack of metal combs from Anself will do the trick! The teeth on each comb are slightly different in terms of spacing, but they're wide enough to sort out all kinds of tangles.
These combs have garnered extremely positive reviews on Amazon, with a very respectable 4.7 out of 5. Not only are they great quality, but we also love the Black Power fist design, which allows you to showcase a strong political message while you're styling your tresses.
Made from 100% sandalwood, this comb is anti-static and will smooth your locks with ease. As we mentioned earlier, this kind of material excels at helping your hair to release natural oils, as well as promoting blood circulation in the scalp.
While you might think wood is susceptible to corrosion, particularly if used on wet hair, there's no need to worry about this product - it's been specially treated so you can even use it in the shower if you want!
The Percy Nobleman ethos is all about bettering oneself - the brand's name was even inspired by the famous Hemingway quote "...true nobility is being superior to your former self". This comb will certainly make you look better than you did before!
This neat, foldable comb can be popped into your pocket when you're on the go, and we love that it's designed with both your hair and your beard in mind. It's a brilliant all-in-one product that perfectly balances charm and functionality.
If you find yourself constantly changing the length of your hair, or helping your friends and family to style their barnets, then you might require more than one comb. We present this professional set from Xnicx! It comes with three combs, some clips, and a nifty case to keep everything safe.
Each comb is suitable for a different hair type and one even has a pointed handle for sectioning while you style. Plus, they're all made from lightweight yet sturdy carbon, so they'll last you for years to come!
How about this for a stylish bit of kit? This barber's comb from Ted Baker is inspired by those used in traditional Turkish barbershops. The brushed metal, combined with the fine teeth, creates a cooling sensation on your scalp which is believed to promote root growth.
Another factor we like about this product is the chic faux leather case that it's presented in. Sure, it's expensive, but we'd say it's worth spending a bit more on if you like your designer brands!
Designed for travellers, this compact comb from Kent comes in at just over three inches when folded. It's a well-made product, with saw-cut teeth that have been hand-polished and buffed to create a smooth finish.
However, some reviewers have found that the folding mechanism can be a little tricky and becomes stiff over time. Also, the small size means it's no good for longer hair!
Made with afro hair in mind, this robust black plastic comb from Kobe features 12 long teeth, all with rounded edges. It has a small handle which gives you a good grip but doesn't add too much length to the whole comb, so it's still pretty portable.
Furthermore, this is a super cheap product - it's ideal if you don't have a huge budget when it comes to grooming. Some folk have found that the product is a little small for their liking though, so we suggest checking the dimensions to see if it'll be right for you.
Kent combs are known for their brilliant quality, as their products are handmade from large sheets of durable acetate. This comb has rounded teeth that ensures smooth styling, as well as a large handle that will give you a decent amount of control over your mane.
This tortoiseshell comb can be trusted to glide through most people's hair effortlessly, without damaging or pulling. However, the gold logo is known to disintegrate rather quickly which can leave the comb looking a bit cheap and tacky!
First up is this incredibly cheap, wide-toothed comb from Denman. Affectionately named the pompadour comb, it's best used for detangling thick and coarse hair. Made from plastic, it comes with rounded teeth and a classy logo printed on the front.
Unfortunately, some reviewers have found that the comb is a little too thick for their afro hair. Also, the "finish" it gives you is more of a tousled look than a carefully styled do!
Need more grooming supplies to keep your hair in tip-top condition? Click the links below to see our recommendations, from cordless clippers for trimming your barnet to styling products that'll keep your tresses looking fresh and clean!
A trusty hair comb is an essential styling purchase - once you've picked one up, you'll wonder how you ever managed without it! We hope this article has given you some handy tips on how to find the perfect product for you and your hair.
Author: Lewis Clark
No. 1: Baxter of California｜Large Comb
No. 2: Anself｜Afro Combs｜3 Pack
No. 3: Anself｜Wooden Comb
No. 4: Percy Nobleman｜Folding Beard and Hair Comb
No. 5: Xnicx｜Professional Styling Comb Set
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