Used to be a man always carried a hair comb in his pocket. Now, a fella gets looked at sideways when he extracts from his back pocket a comb and runs it through his mane.
But men’s combs are extremely useful. In fact, a good comb helps your hair look fuller and healthier (by spreading the natural oils around your follicles), two things that men of a certain age might appreciate. As not all combs are created equal, we sat down with Martial Vivot, a French-born master barber and owner of Martial Vivot Salon Pour Hommes, to talk about what makes a good one.
“The most important thing,” says Vivot, “is that you want to avoid plastic.” That seems like difficult advice to follow considering the vast majority of high-quality combs are made with cellulose acetate, a type of plastic.
But what Vivot means is that one should avoid the standard petrochemical plastic, the kind that makes up those cheap-o black combs you find at most drugstores. This type of plastic both causes static — “the enemy of hair,” says Vivot — and easily chips, turning the teeth of a comb into scalp-piercing needles. Holding a plastic comb before him and peering at the pointy teeth, Vivot shakes his head in disgust “Look at these,” he exclaims, “they’ll cut your scalp right up!”
In terms of leveling up, many high-quality combs are made of wood. The reason? “It’s keratin combing keratin,” Martial says excitedly, adding that this won’t react poorly with your hair.
And it’s not just the material that determines the quality of the comb; it’s the manufacturing, too: the best men’s combs are saw-cut then hand-finished to refine the polish and smooth the teeth. In terms of manufacturing, the thing to avoid, says Vivot, are injection molded combs which yield extremely sharp teeth.
“A comb should be gentle on your scalp,” he explains.
Who knew there was so much to a comb? Keeping this criteria in mind, here are the best men’s combs at all price levels to seek out.
Best Men’s Combs
Founded in 1777, Kent bills itself as the world's oldest hairbrush maker. The comb division is no slouch either. This comb is made with high-quality Italian acetate with saw-cut hand-polished teeth. Like many of the combs featured here, this comb features two sets of teeth: narrower and thinner on one side and thicker but more widely spaced on the other. This allows for use on both coarse hair and fine hair.
This easy-to-pack comb unfolds with the flick of a wrist, not unlike a switchblade. You can use the comb on your head, your beard, your 'stache. Wherever you need. It's cut from cellulose acetate, so it won't snag or tear your hair our.
Speert is a Swiss company known mostly for eyeglasses. They use those same acetate purveyors to make their range of numbered combs. This handmade comb glides through hair without damaging it, is biodegradable and hypo-allergenic, and affordable.
Mason Pearson is the big dog of high-end combs. Handmade in Switzerland in a comb-only factory, these Italian acetate combs are recognizable for the slight texture in their tortoise shell finish. Each tooth is saw cut individually and then tumbled smooth. As with all true acetate combs, there's no static and the teeth are pleasingly smooth at the tips.
This handcrafted men's comb is made of cellulose acetate, and features smoothly tapered teeth and rounded tips. You can use it to shape and untangle hair on your scalp as well as your face.
- 100 percent HandMade : Wahl’s styling comb is hand cut to gently stimulate natural oils on the head & face for healthy scalp & skin; smooth, rounded tips allow for gentle stimulation of hair follicles & help prevent ingrown hairs while giving you healthier, tangle free hair
- Smooth, Rounded Tapered Teeth – Our cellulose acetate is a plant derived material that goes through an 11 step manufacturing process that results in smoothly tapered teeth & rounded tips; This durable, handcrafted comb provides Maximum grooming comfort for the head, beard, & moustache
- Made for Men – For far too long, men have had to choose their grooming products from brands that specialize in women’s beauty; Our products were formulated exclusively for men to help them look & smell their best with an aromatic scent that doesn’t over power
- Add to Cart Wahl’s new complete line of wet goods will help men maintain a fresh, well managed look. Check out our essential new products, add them to your daily grooming routine and watch the head turning results
- Complete Grooming Line : Wahl now offers a full line of wet goods exclusively designed and formulated for men; From beard care to shaving creams and gels to body wash, lotion, shampoo & conditioners
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