Known as the Rolex of hair brushes, Mason Pearson hairbrushes have long been revered by the top hairstylists in the world.
But with a hefty price tag that can range from $105 to $230, the iconic hairbrushes can take a major bite out of your bank account.
Thankfully, there are still plenty of affordable dupes on the market that don’t require taking out an extra mortgage on the house.
Of all the knockoffs, the most written and talked about is the Sonia Kashuk Hair Brush ($15.99, Target). Made with a mixture of boar and heat-resistant nylon bristles, the budget-friendly paddle brush (which has appeared on Allure’s annual Best of Beauty list more than once) is touted for eliminating static and leaving hair healthy and shiny when used daily.
At a quick glance, the Sonia Kashuk brush looks almost identical to the Mason Pearson version. From the black handle to the signature red base pad, there is little doubt that the budget brand took heavy inspiration from the luxury version in its design.
The only physical difference I found between the two hairbrushes involved the handles. While the Mason Pearson’s handle is rounded like a traditional hairbrush, Sonia Kashuk’s brush has a handle contoured to fit comfortably in the hand.
Unlike Mason Pearson’s hairbrushes, which break down with excessive heat, the Sonia Kashuk version can be used with a hair dryer for blowouts thanks to its heat-resistant bristles. The hairbrush is also well-suited for dry hair.
Fab or flub?
Flub. In the end, the Sonia Kashuk Hair Brush turned out to be average, leaving me wanting more.
The brush feels sturdy and looks much more expensive than its $16 price tag. However, be aware that you might have to deal with the heavy smell of rubber when you first take the brush out of its packaging. That being said, when compared with other budget-friendly paddle brushes, this is one of the sleeker, more stylish options on the market.
Regarding performance, the brush is similar to other boar-bristle hairbrushes. The bristles are rough, so sensitive scalps can take quite the beating. The hairbrush works well detangling wet hair but made my thick hair more frizzy when I combed it after it had been dried.
Since I started using the brush over the past month, I haven’t noticed much of a difference in the amount of oil that my hair produces. However, it has left my hair shinier.
For those wanting to impress friends, it’s probably the closest thing to a physical dupe for the Mason Pearson. However, it’s just that. All physical.
If you truly want a boar-bristle hairbrush that gives you beautiful hair without sacrificing your scalp, then you might be better off saving your pennies to get the real thing.