The negative void pattern on the surface of the hairbrush allows users to bend and create gaps to easily remove trapped hair



The Need

Hairbrushes have been used for decades to smooth, style, and de-tangle hair. These hairbrushes are available in many different shapes, sizes, materials, and designs. Flat hairbrushes are normally used for de-tangling hair, while cylindrical hairbrushes are used for styling and curling hair. A major problem with these products is the accumulation of hair and dandruff in between the bristles of the hairbrush. This problem is especially prevalent with long hair and the build-up of the products, hair, and dead cells can result in dull hair as the oil just gets rubbed back into the scalp and hair. Because of these problems, users are often forced to dispose of the hairbrush and purchase a new one. This is typically long before the hairbrush's useful life has been exhausted and there is little or no physical wear on the brush. Therefore, this practice of disposing of hairbrushes due to build-up is wasteful and quite expensive for users.

In addition to hairbrushes used by humans, they are also special brushed used for animal care. There are mainly three different types of brushes available for pets in the current markets: bristle brushes, wire-pin brushes, and slicker brushes. Again, these brushes can get easily clogged up with products and dead cells, which can lead to early disposal. In both cases, a hairbrush that would be easy to clean and would prevent build-up would be an ideal product for consumers.

The Technology

The Ohio State University researchers, led by Dr. Scott Shim, developed a novel hair brush that has a negative void pattern on the surface of the hairbrush that allows users to bend and create gaps to easily remove collected hair from the bristles. The features of this innovation include:

  • Pulling forward the outermost frame, the gradual elevation of the frames loosen the trapped hair for hassle-free removal
  • Pushing back the outermost frame, the frames flare out in multiple layers to produce accessible gaps to the collected hair
  • Requires no assembly by the users. It is readily manufacture-able using injection molding.

Commercial Applications

  • Hair products
  • Pet care products

Benefits/Advantages

  • Easy access to and removal of trapped hair
  • Can be used on humans or pets
  • Does not contain mechanical systems, thus reducing the failure rate



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