Bee brushes should be used as little as possible because bees don't like them much. Still, when you need one you need one, so every beekeeper should keep one in his or her toolbox. The trick is to "flick" small numbers of bees with short, fast strokes. Brushing lots of bees with a slow, even motion will surely evoke a hostile response.
This brush is durable, and also washable for when it gets sticky with honey or propolis.