One of beauty's biggest contradictions is the wash-and-go. You'd think that the hairstyle means literally shampooing, conditioning, and air drying your hair — but anyone with with natural curls knows that this is far from the truth. In fact, any natural hairstyle requires time, effort, and hero products. Tools that work for natural hair, like blowdryers and specialty brushes, also help with achieving the twist-out, braids, or blowout of your dreams. However, the same discernment that you use for hair products should be used on tools... even if you want a sleek blowout or stretched-out curls, you don't want to damage your hair with a dryer that's too hot, the wrong flat iron plates (Yene Dametew, Michelle Obama's hairstylist, told TZR that ceramic is best for textured hair), or a brush that snags and tears.
Celebrity hairstylists and colorists have the benefit of test driving all of the newest and buzziest products that hit the market... and they get to use them on a variety of textures, too. With that in mind, I tapped five stylists who gave me the real scoop on the hot tools, brushes, and combs that are really in their kits: Vernon Scott, Takisha Sturdivant-Drew, Tym Wallace, Nai'vasha Johnson, and Shai Amiel.
Clients include Danai Gurira and Cynthia Erivo.
"I love this because it has great heat control and produces extremely strong blowing power. Also, it has an instant cool button that is clutch."
"This flat iron is light, efficient, and has proper heat control when working with coarse hair."
"These clippers are dependable, cordless, and provides the most accurate height attachments for precision cutting."
Clients include Kerry Washington and Uzo Aduba.
"You can take even the smallest section of the hair to create a curl."
"It adds more texture to the hair in a natural way."
Clients include Taraji P. Henson and Cardi B.
"I call this my hair BFF. It’s pretty light and versatile. I can do endless styling with it — straight styles, curls and waves on all hair types. Also, it seals moisture, eliminates frizz, and produces high shine that's perfect for long-time wear, such as events and photo shoots."
"The old school Afro pick is always in my kit, straight from the beauty supply store. It adds maximum volume from the root to any natural hairstyles, like the pompadour or fro-hawk. It's the best natural tool for any naturalista."
Clients include Yara Shahidi and Logan Browning.
"I love this dryer because it's relatively quiet, yet incredibly powerful due to its Ferrari engine."
"This will forever be my hot iron go-to. It has a state-of-the-art system and is intense enough to use for a keratin treatment. Also, I can get maximum smoothness with one pass."
"I really do love my Mason Pearson brush. It refines all textures."
Clients include Kehlani and Tamera Mowry.
"I’ve been using T3 for over 15 years with no issues. They're a bit more affordable compared to the Dyson."