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Hair Combs

Hair combs have for so long been a part of our culture. Since ancient time, hair combs have been priced pieces of possession and have even been considered as jewelry for the hair. Hair combs are also universal pieces of culture for every race of humanity in the world.

Understandably, the first combs were made of materials which were readily available to prehistoric societies, wood, bone and ivory. After a time, hair combs were soon made from silver, tin and brass. Tortoise shell and horn soon became fashionable as materials for combs. These materials had the distinct advantage of being moldable. When heated, tortoise shell and horn can be formed into different shapes and they will retain this shape once they are heated.

During the year 1869, Isaiah and John Hyatt started an experiment for a material to replace ivory. They soon discovered a material which became known as celluloid. This was the first plastic product developed. The development of celluloid soon revolutionized comb making.

Soon, ivory and tortoise shell combs were replaced with celluloid combs. Ivory and tortoise shells were beginning to become rare and expensive. These materials came from endangered animals and were legally protected by law from poaching.

As a tool for grooming, combs are indispensable. In fact, there are specialized combs made specifically for removing parasites in the hair which, during the early centuries, helped spread dangerous and often fatal diseases such as the Black Plague which killed about a third of all the people in Europe during the 14th century.

To this end, it is important to refrain from sharing combs. Hair combs should be considered as personal property which should not be shared. Sharing of combs can often result in transmission of parasitic infections as combs can contain a variety of parasite eggs or the parasites themselves. It is possible to get hair lice, fleas, mites, crabs and fungi when combs are borrowed or lent.

In general practice, wooden combs and tortoise shell combs have been found to be more preferable for use. This is because they do not have static and sharp seams which can cause hair tangles and hair breakages. Many hair care professionals recommend the use of these types of hair combs over metal, plastic and rubber hair combs for maintaining healthy hair. Of the many materials used for hair combs, rubber hair combs are the most damaging to hair.


 
   
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