beard brush or beard comb

When you first get into growing facial hair, the number of available beard products can feel overwhelming.

In a nutshell, a beard brush is usually made from boar’s bristles and is primarily used for taming and styling the beard with an added benefit of some exfoliating properties. Beard combs on the other hand are mostly made from wood and can help you untangle any beard snags.

Today, we are going to tackle this question and find out the proper answers once and for all.

Sure, we have already published detailed reviews about the best beard combs and the best beard brushes, but now, it’s time to put the two head to head and see which one is more useful.

Beard Comb vs. Beard Brush Explained

beard brush beard comb comparison

So what is the difference between a beard brush and a beard comb?

Easy. It’s almost the same as the difference between a hairbrush and a hair comb would be (with a few twists).

Beard brush is either round, oval-shaped, or comes with a handle. It’s typically made from durable wood materials (Pearwood, beechwood, or pinewood) and has multiple tight bundles of natural boar bristles, horse hair, or nylon attached to it.

Its purpose is to help redistribute natural sebum oils and beard oils and exfoliate the skin under the beard.

Beard brush can also be used to help style the facial hair and even stimulate the natural sebum oil production.

Beard comb is a thin and usually lengthy piece of wood materials or cellulose acetate which has either sawcut or stamp-pressed tines in it.

The idea is to run these tines through the facial hair, which untangles and arranges all of the individual beard hairs neatly into place.

Beard combs can also be used to redistribute the oils from roots to tips, but a beard brush is better for this purpose.

At the core, beard comb and beard brush do almost the same thing.

But if you look closer you can see that a brush is much stronger and is more in contact with the skin underneath the beard.

Beard combs, on the other hand, tend to be used only on the facial hair fibers and they rarely get in contact with the skin underneath.

It’s as if the comb was a gentler, more sensitive, and smaller version of the brush.

One big difference is also that you should never use a beard comb on a wet beard (otherwise you’ll risk damaging the facial hair). Beard comb, on the other hand, can be used on a wet beard.

Benefits of Using a Beard Brush

seven potions beard brush

Beard brush in a wooden housing and with 100% pure boar bristles packs a bunch of benefits.

First of them is that when you glide the natural hog-hairs on your own beard, you are redistributing the natural sebum oils as well as the beard oils that you use, perfectly from roots to tips.

Of course, if you have a medium to strong bristle stiffness, your beard brush can also help exfoliate the skin underneath your beard. This helps remove dead skin cells and flakes of beard dandruff.

If you apply beard products like beard oil or beard balm before using the brush, you may find that it’s a great tool in distributing them evenly into the mane and can greatly help in styling and shaping.

(as for the downsides, I do have to mention that cleaning a beard brush is much harder than cleaning a beard comb).

Last but not least, brushing your face with a beard brush can improve the circulation to the facial hair area and stimulate the natural secretion of beard nourishing sebum oils.

List of beard brush benefits:

  • Exfoliates the beard skin.
  • Removes dead skin cells and beardruff.
  • Redistributes natural oils and beard oils.
  • Stimulates circulation and sebum oil production.
  • Can help you style and tame the beard.

Do note that there are many types of beard brushes with different handle materials and bristles. You can often get the best results when you invest in a quality 100% boar bristle beard brush.

Benefits of Using a Beard Comb

beard comb in a pouch

Beard combs come in many different shapes and sizes.

Most commonly they are made from wood materials like sandalwood, wenge wood, Pearwood, or maple, but there are also some hardshell materials like cellulose acetate and even natural ox horn or ivory.

Of course, there are also those ridiculously cheap stamp-pressed plastic combs that cost just a dollar or two and have pretty horrible quality with jagged edges (we don’t recommend those at all).

There are many beard comb benefits to look for, and here are some of the most important ones.

Beard combs help untangle the facial hair, especially long and curly beards, and they do this much better than beard brushes do.

Beard combs can also be used to redistribute the natural and beard oils evenly to your beard hairs from root to tip, but most often beard brushes handle this task better.

You can also use a beard comb to help you trim your beard and mustache with beard trimming scissors.

And lastly, of course, a beard comb is much thinner and easier to carry around. You can even use it on a wet beard if you want, without any risk of causing damage.

List of beard comb benefits:

  • Untangles the facial hair from knots.
  • Can be used as a tool to help trim the beard.
  • Can be used on a wet beard, unlike a brush.
  • Redistributes natural oils and beard oils evenly.
  • Extremely useful (almost mandatory) for long beards.

Keep in mind that you probably don’t need a beard comb at the early stages of facial hair growth. But the longer your wizardly whiskers get, the sooner you should invest into a good beard comb.

Which One Should I Use?

two panel with man using beard brush and another using comb

If you ask any credible beard care expert this question…

“Should I use a beard brush or a beard comb?”

Nine out of ten times the answer would be that beard brushes work better on men with short to medium beards, and beard combs are more important for men with long beards that tend to knot and tangle up in bundles.

Of course, both the brush and the comb have their own unique set of benefits, and if you have the budget for it, we recommend that you get both.

You see, no matter how short or long your beard is, you will inevitably want to exfoliate and clean it; so get a beard brush.

And no matter how long or short your beard is, you may periodically want to untangle it or trim it with scissors; so get a beard comb.

Both of these beard care tools are relatively inexpensive, even if you buy good quality ones.

And the best part is that they last for years when taken care of and used properly. So you’re really not looking at something like beard oil which you have to constantly stock up.

The average lifespan of a high-quality beard brush is 2-5 years, whereas beard combs can last up to 7-10 years!


I hope this comparison between beard brushes and beard combs helped you choose the right tool for you.

Or maybe you’re like me and you now realize that you should probably be using them both, as beard comb and beard brush both have their unique benefits.

So, that’s it, beard comb vs beard brush, the battle of the third and fourth most popular beard care tools, ends up in a… Tie?

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Ali is a published author and a beard grooming expert. To this date, his articles have been read more than 15-million times on various sites, and he has helped thousands of men make their beards look better and grow thicker. His work has been featured and cited in Seeker, Wikihow, GQ, TED, and Buzzfeed.


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