Those of you familiar with my hair growth system know that I am a big opponent of brushing the hair, because for us, it does more harm than good. Due to our naturally coily hair pattern, brushing places too much stress on our hair which increases breakage. This is especially true for chemically processed hair that is already weak and susceptible to damage.
Back in 1989, I stopped brushing my hair after having spent over a year conducting extensive research as to the effect of brushing on my own hair. What I learned was that brushing my hair everyday without care caused it to break in the middle of the hair shaft. I even experienced balding at the top of my head and severe breakage in other spots where I had brushed it the most. By brushing my hair, I was actually ripping it out at the roots!
We have all heard the three primary arguments that favor brushing the hair to help achieve growth. They claim that brushing: (1) helps stimulate scalp circulation, (2) distributes the sebum oils from the scalp to the ends and (3) loosens scalp scales and dirt. First, while it is true that stimulating the scalp is necessary to make the blood circulate, thereby feeding the hair cells to make them grow and get rid of waste, I found that the stimulation the scalp needs for hair growth can be accomplished with a good deep conditioner. Second, the idea of brushing the hair to distribute sebum oils is not sufficient for afro hair. Our hair needs much more moisturizing lubrication than can be provided by merely brushing it. Third, washing your hair with a good shampoo will loosen and remove dirt and scales from the scalp and hair without causing the damage and breakage of brushing.
When my hair stylist dries my hair with a blowdryer and brush, it is only after it has been carefully detangled from roots to ends to prevent the bristles from snagging in my hair. My hair also has products on it that smooth the texture so the brush glides right through. Using a brush along with your hair dryer when drying your hair is an option, but only after preparing your hair to avoid breakage. Too, since afro hair isn't washed on a daily basis, the brushing isn't as frequent as when included as part of a daily hair care maintenance regime.
Of course, whether you choose to brush your hair or not is up to you. There is no special brush that you can buy to prevent your hair from breaking, so don't go on a hunt for the "perfect" brush. There is no such thing. Personally, I can only tell you that since I eliminated brushing from my everyday hair maintenance routine, my hair has never been longer, fuller or healthier. Giving up daily brushing is a necessity in my opinion for growing longer, stronger, beautiful hair.