This study will provide a solution to the discharge of phenol containing water and wastewater problem. This could be achieved through the development of a treatment process based on the combination of adsorption and membrane filtration processes. In this study, the efficiency of phenol removal from model phenol solution was investigated using Purolite MN 200 and Purolite MN 202 hypercrosslinked macronet polymer adsorbents by using only adsorption and adsorption-ultrafiltration hybrid processes. In order to remove phenol with a percent removal of about 90% from aqueous solution, optimum amount of adsorbent was found to be 0.1 g-adsorbent/50 mL-solution and 0.2 g-adsorbent/50 mL-solution for Purolite MN 200 and Purolite MN 202, respectively. According to the results of kinetic study, phenol removal rate was found to be higher when the particle size of Purolite MN 200 is smaller due to increased surface area. The results of the hybrid system showed that the optimum operating conditions to meet the goal of discharge limit of phenol containing water by Purolite MN 200 were found when the adsorbent concentration is 3 g/L, flow rate of suspensions of saturated and fresh adsorbents 6 mL/min, and flow rate of feed and permeate 3 mL/min. Finally, the performance of Purolite MN 202 adsorbent used in adsorption-ultrafiltration hybrid system showed much promising removal rate than that of Purolite MN 200 polymer adsorbent for phenol removal. (C) 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.