04-16-2012, 05:34 PM
#1
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When I try out a product, no matter what the product is, I want to enjoy it. I preset my mind to enjoy the experience. So when I come across a product that really does not meet simple standards, it has to overcome my will to like the product. The Parker Synthetic Brush is a product that just does not make the grade. Before I discuss my testing, lets discuss the product visually and provide specifications. This brush can come in Faux Ivory Resin or a Blue Tone Resin. The one I tested is Faux Ivory. The handle looks nice and the brush fibers look nice when they are dry.

[Image: 7085855195_784b94a9e6_b.jpg]

I tried face lathering using Palmolive stick and it would not provide enough fiber action to generate a good lather. I moistened my face, applied the stick in a quantity that would provide sufficient lather and dunked the brush in water and gave it a single shake. The Parker it simply clumped to itself on the sides and provided no coverage in the middle. The density of this brush seemed to be insufficient. I began to swirl and spent an inordinate amount of time stirring the brush against my face with very little lather being generated. I applied a little more water to my face and I was able to generate barely enough lather for two face passes with a very thin layer of lather.

In comparison the Frank Shaving and H.I.S. brushes were able to provide ample lather for three face passes on the soap applied one time to the face alone. The H.I.S. brush was able to go further and lather my head completely without having to add any soap to the head. The same amount of soap and water was available for all three brushes. The same technique was used for lathering. The Frank Shaving and H.I.S. brushes made easier and better work with the amount of available soap and water than the Parker.

I then decided to try the Parker brush with mug lathering. I tried with both Fitness soap and with C.O. Bigelow which for me are both easy to work with in terms of generating lather. For the Fitness soap I dunked the Parker brush in water, gave it one light shake, and swirled the brush in the tub of soap and proceeded to lather in the mug. Again, there was very little lather being generated for the amount of soap lifted. A small amount of water allowed for a sufficient, but thin, lather capable of providing two face passes but no more. With the C.O. Bigelow it was even harder. I had to use two nickel sized drops to generate a sufficient lather. I dunked the Parker brush in water, gave it one light shake and started the lathering process with the first drop of C.O. Bigelow, but it was dry, so I added some more water and it thinned out, but with a large amount of whisking, I could not generate a thick enough lather. A second drop of C.O. Bigelow was added and finally there was sufficient soap and water to generate a thin lather capable of providing two face passes but no more.

So here are the results of the testing:

Water retention: Does it hold water sufficiently enough? Barely. Closer to no than yes.

Loading: Does it pick up soaps and creams easily? Yes.

Lather: Does it built and apply lather well? No:

Application: Does it allow for a soft/smooth/effective application of lather to the skin?
Somewhat with what amount of fibers are available.

Quality feel: Does the synthetic brush have the “quality” feel against the skin? Would it pass a blindfold test against naturals?
It would not pass a blindfold test and there is not enough fibers to have a quality feel when wet. The Parker is soft when dry, but it becomes too thin and floppy when wet. It does not hold form well and so it has some issues with lather buildup and retention. Lacks backbone.

Appearance: Is the look of the brush attractive? Yes.

The Franks Shaving Brush which is $8 less expensive out performed the Parker brush in every facet. The H.I.S. Brush which is $10 more expensive really out performed Parker brush. This brush would be vastly improved if it had 30% more fibers to provide a denser effect. Sadly it does not. So I will call it a day on the Parker Brush even though it does have a decent handle. Would I recommend this brush? NO I WOULD NOT!

Now what to do with this brush? Decent handle … reknot? Maybe someday I would give that a try.

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 04-16-2012, 05:44 PM
#2
  • Teiste
  • Moderator Emeritus
  • Salt Lake City,UT
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Gary,once again,excellent review of the brush.
Man,those fibers looks terrible when wet....The Taylor Synthetic is less dense,but at least works with facelathering and pick up soaps really good.
This one seems like a joke,to be honest,and the handle would be perfect for a badger hair knot,or if you can make it wider,for the 23 TGN synthetic one.
Im sorry about the experience,but yes,the Frank Shaving seems to be a really nice brush to beat for its price.

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 04-16-2012, 05:46 PM
#3
  • Dave
  • Moderator Emeritus
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That's the way my Body Shop Brush looks when its wet. It's hard to beat that FS Brush.

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 04-16-2012, 05:49 PM
#4
  • bullgoose
  • The Enabler
  • Redondo Beach, California, U.S.A
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Thank you for the review Gary. Your review very thorough and objective. Great job!

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 04-16-2012, 05:51 PM
#5
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(04-16-2012, 05:46 PM)Dave Wrote: That's the way my Body Shop Brush looks when its wet. It's hard to beat that FS Brush.

True on the FS brush. It under promises and over delivers big time! I think that Parker knot may be the same as the Body Shop brush, so the Body Shop is another one I will skip.

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 04-16-2012, 08:27 PM
#6
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Great review! Looks like this is one I will totally pass on...

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 04-16-2012, 09:44 PM
#7
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Great information to know. Thank you, sir! Good luck with the re-knotting.

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 04-17-2012, 04:35 AM
#8
  • Howler
  • A calamophile and vintage razor lover
  • Fort Smith AR
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Thanks for a great review.

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 04-17-2012, 04:42 AM
#9
  • EHV
  • Senior Member
  • Milford,PA
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Thanks for this review! Much appreciated.

I'll pass on this one too. Deleted from my Amazon wish list. My synthetic brush kick goes on but thankfully saving some $$$ without this one.

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 06-05-2012, 02:19 PM
#10
  • Codfish
  • Product Tester
  • Connecticut Shoreline
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Thanks for the review, Gary. Excellent, fair and informative as usual.

Frankly, I've given up on acquiring anything Parker. I find too many manufacturing shortcuts and too little quality control in their products.

I like good tools and always look for quality in them, even if I have to spend a few dollars more. Quality, in the end, leads to years of good use in the end, IMO. Parker products, in my experience are cheap because they're cheaply and shoddily made..

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 06-05-2012, 02:30 PM
#11
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(06-05-2012, 02:19 PM)Codfish Wrote: Thanks for the review, Gary. Excellent, fair and informative as usual.

Frankly, I've given up on acquiring anything Parker. I find too many manufacturing shortcuts and too little quality control in their products.

I like good tools and always look for quality in them, even if I have to spend a few dollars more. Quality, in the end, leads to years of good use in the end, IMO. Parker products, in my experience are cheap because they're cheaply and shoddily made..

I have had that same experience with multiple Parker products, so I have passed on the Parker brand after this experience.

Here is the continuation of the brush restoration.

http://shavenook.com/thread-win-some-and...tion-story

http://shavenook.com/thread-let-s-go-wit...-continued

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 03-24-2013, 02:01 PM
#12
  • freddy
  • Senior Member
  • San Diego, California, U.S.A.
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Thanks, Gary. Wow, I asked Jim about doughnut holes and the ones I think I get in my FS look nothing like that and I still get superb lather and shaves from it.

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 03-24-2013, 03:55 PM
#13
  • oscar11
  • Senior Member
  • North Dakota
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That brush has a lot of loft. Good review Gary.

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 03-25-2013, 08:15 PM
#14
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Good review, but I am sorry it was such a negative experience for you ... You can't win them all I suppose.

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 03-26-2013, 05:53 AM
#15
  • ben74
  • Administrator
  • Perth, Australia
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Thanks for the review, definitely a brush to pass on...

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