The history of hair brushes do not have a definite inception date. The one thing that is known is that they were all made from natural materials. Handles were formed from wood, bronze or copper and the bristles could be anything stiff. Animal hairs, such as wild boar or horse, were rigid enough for brushing. Porcupine quills were even stiffer. Shards of sea shells, stones and bone could be sized to untangle a snarl or knot. One theory is that the paint brush used for millions of years was slowly transformed into a hair brush. In ancient times, grooming was necessary to reduce the amount of head lice. Brushing hair or producing wigs to look refined was a luxury only afforded by the prominent people of that time.
In 1777, William Kent founded the first hair brush manufacturing company in Great Britian, Kent Brushes. The bristles were hand stitched and it took as many as 12 people to complete one hair brush. They still remain one of the oldest companies in Great Britain.
It’s no wonder that Kent brushes make a frequent appearance in my daily beard routine.