Photo: Mark Mainz/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Wearing a classic style like finger waves can make you feel like a starlet fresh from the silver screen, but throw-back styles can be tricky to create because you don't start out with a blow dryer and end with styling paste. It's all setting lotion and wet setting where these styles are concerned. Once you get your hair set and dry, you have to brush out the curls to remove style lines, and the type of brush you use does matter.
While you can feasibly use a round brush to brush out pin curls, a round brush isn't your best option. The bristles don't give when you brush the hair since they are rigidly held in place by wood or plastic; this places a lot of tension on the newly formed curls. A round brush also only brushes a small portion of hair at a time unless you twist the brush while you are brushing, and twisting the brush will affect the look of your pin curls -- not in a good way.
Vent brushes -- those wacky looking things with big spaces between the plastic bristles -- are made for drying hair with a blow dryer since the spaces allow air to flow freely. Again, anything will do in a pinch but vent brushes do not perform well when combing out wet sets. First, the bristles are few and far between, and they don't separate the hair or remove the style lines -- the crimps and lines that get set into your hair when you wet set it. Second, the bristles are set in hard plastic, placing too much tension on the hair.
Natural-bristled brushes work a little too well. Use one of these suckers and you may find that you have frizz and no curl because you brushed it all out. Use these brushes at the end of the day to remove your style before going to bed. Do not use them at any time during the styling process.
The paddle/cushion brush is your best bet for brushing out your pin curls. The base is wide and square -- it looks like a paddle -- so you brush and separate more hair with each swipe. The bristles are set in a cushion, which allows the bristles to move when they encounter resistance. This means less tension on your hair and more curls remaining after you finish brushing.