My hair: As a teen & in my early twenties, hip length, (it would grow past my knees if I let it) natural blonde, v fine, ultra soft, v shiny & lots of it, a spectacular mane, I was so proud, loved it.
Thirties onwards: hair dull, thinner, won't grow as long, dry ends, I try every product they bring out to reclaim my Godiva like hair. It had become dark blonde, blah & wouldn't grow like it had, even the shine had gone, sigh.
Light bulb: Mason Pearson brushes. The only styling or product (beyond hot oil treatments - V05) my hair knew in it's glory days was brushing with these brushes - I'd stopped long since thinking brushing was bad for it - the irony. In it's beautiful days, hairdressers used to ask when I went for a trim how I achieved it, I had no idea, it just grew that way, I thought. I do remember I used to bend my head upside down frequently through the day to brush it, wherever I was and then throw it back which made it fluff into ultra voluptuous mane territory. It looked like I had extensions it was so lovely dammit. Males stopped me in the street to stroke it & check if it was real - i could cry.
I've read the reviews and remembered, thanks everyone, am off to get a Mason Pearson asap, and drop all so called enhancing shine etc products, useless muck that clog scalps and ruin hair. Mason Pearson I remember give shine, condition, stimulate growth & help dry ends.
A day after writing this have bought my Mason Pearson pure bristle brush in the Handy size. Anyone who wants beautiful hair should own one & if cost is a problem, buy a smaller size.
An investment but for how long?
With the care reccomended by Mason Pearson, one can expect the brush to last about thirty years. This is born out by reviews of purchasers I've found on Amazon UK who were replacing after thirty years. The brushes are almost completely hand made just as they were during the Victorian era, to ensure the finest quality.
Do shop around, one can pay double the price in some places, whilst being wary of fakes.
Which size & bristles should one choose?
I rang M.P. for advice about which brush to choose and gleaned the following:
The bristle and nylon is probably best for a medium to thick hair amount of hair.
The pure bristle for medium to thinner fullness of hair.
The sensitive pure bristle for thin or thinning hair & sensitive scalps. The bristles of this brush are finer than the others & so on thicker hair may not reach the scalp.
The nylon bristle for very thick hair.
M.P. have advice in their site about bristle and which brush to choose.
The size of the brush won't make any difference to the positive effects, it will just take longer to brush through with a smaller brush. Also M.P. reccomend the size of the brush should be chosen according to hand size so one can wield it more comfortably & with more control, small hands, small brush etc. Have had a pocket size and large & medium size, all the same, equally good, I've small hands.
For those with hair loss:
Have read of a woman who found daily ten to fifteen minutes of brushing morning and night with a Mason Pearson slowed down hair loss due to medication (Prednisone) and for one man, this same morning & night regime helped (along with diet, DHT blocking nutritional supplements, getting more sleep and circulatory boosting exercise) stimulate ninety percent new growth after severe loss, due to hereditary pattern thinning.
A Hairdresser's advice:
Read a review on Amazon for this pure bristle brush by a hairdresser who said she was trained to use Mason Pearson and for anyone with thin hair, stop combing and use one of their pure bristle, it will strengthen roots, stimulate growth and condition hair by drawing sebum through it.
People new to brushing:
Dear hearts, do be consciously gentle at first, your scalp isn't used to brushing. My scalp tingled at first on going back to brushing, like it had had a work out, circulation no doubt. Bristles can feel odd against one's scalp in the beginning. And it can be alarming to see loose hairs coiled around the bristles after it's first session, this is normal for a first time. When my hair was beautiful & extremely voluminous, my brush was usually clogged full of hair but regrowth matched it and I had far more hair than I had once I stopped brushing.
Why was I daft enough to stop brushing for years on end?
The prevailing advice from trichologists and beauty articles at the time was 'brushing is bad, it will tear out your hair and split it, use combs instead, they're gentler.' I did, woe is me, fool I was and my hair, looks & vanity paid the price. I hope others may gain more beautiful hair from my mistake
India knight also has a very interesting & helpful article in The Sunday Times called 'a brush with greatness' about how a Mason Pearson transformed her problem hair.
Happy, beautiful hair to everyone.