11-17-2013, 05:15 PM
#1
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I am still trying to decide if I want to get a badger shaving brush. While the price is the main consideration here, not being the cause of an animals suffering is the other. So, questions are:
1. Are there synthetic brushes feel and quality on par or better than badger brushes? If there are which one?

2. Does animals really have to die to produce a brush?

Btw boar brushes are out for me for personal reasons.

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 11-17-2013, 05:18 PM
#2
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(11-17-2013, 05:15 PM)lowks Wrote: I am still trying to decide if I want to get a badger shaving brush. While the price is the main consideration here, not being the cause of an animals suffering is the other. So, questions are:
1. Are there synthetic brushes feel and quality on par or better than badger brushes? If there are which one?

2. Does animals really have to die to produce a brush?

Btw boar brushes are out for me for personal reasons.

Synthetics do not feel exactly like badger. I think maybe it would help for you to read the thread below where the strengths and weaknesses of synthetics versus naturals are discussed. In addition, synthetics cover a variety of different fiber classes so this article can help you in that discussion as well.

http://shavenook.com/thread-synthetic-br...ns-updated

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 11-17-2013, 06:23 PM
#3
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As Gary has mentioned, synthetic brushes do not have the same qualities as a good badger brush. You don't NEED a badger brush as the synthetics produce lather as good if not better with less product, as far as I am concerned, but if you want a very luxurious brush, then it is very difficult to supplant a good badger brush.
With regards to your ethical dilemma, you could always use a horse hair brush as the animals are not harmed in any way. Also, you could always just get a good used badger brush as you aren't directly making the original purchase and it has already been manufactured. Good luck with your decision.

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 11-17-2013, 08:23 PM
#4
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How does horse hair feel compared to badger?

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 11-17-2013, 08:53 PM
#5
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To me and some folks, it has too much 'scritch' compared to a good badger brush. Great backbone, but nowhere as soft as good badger hair. You should try one to see if you can tolerate the hair as they are very nice brushes. Vie-Long makes the best ones, in my opinion. You should be able to get a good one for under $25 delivered if you live in the US. Phil has some good ones on his site. Good luck. Smile

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 11-17-2013, 08:55 PM
#6
  • ben74
  • Administrator
  • Perth, Australia
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Is vanilla better than chocolate? Nope it's all ice-cream to me, but I do have my favourite...

Synth vs badger is more a case of taste rather than one being better than the other.

I personally prefer badger, but I don't believe my preferences means I'll produce better lather.

In the past Synth may not have been as comparable, but the healthy following they now have, would suggest they are as good as any natural fibre in terms of producing lather...

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 11-17-2013, 09:09 PM
#7
  • beartrap
  • Resident Цирюльник
  • Southern California
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1. No
2. Yes

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 11-18-2013, 12:08 AM
#8
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Good advice and comments.

Yup, even the "softer" horse brushes have some scritch. Horses aren't killed in the making of the brush. It's part of the grooming process. A horsehair brush DOES NOT feel anything like a good synthetic.

If all I had were todays synthetic brushes I wouldn't feel a bit deprived. They are really good. Not the same as badger, but very good. Notice that I'm not saying one is better than another; they're different.

With your concerns, and as good as todays synthetics are, I wouldn't even consider a natural fiber brush. I wouldn't have written that a few years ago. I thought synthetics were things to be shunned, and they were. Not today however.

I have no idea what you have for synthetics, but there is variation in the various fibers. You might explore some of them rather than exploring badgers. TGN has synth' knots and Franks Shaving has somewhat similar brushes. TGN will assemble a brush for a small fee ($10?), but it isn't difficult to glue a knot into a handle which they also sell.

Please let us know how you make out.

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 11-18-2013, 12:27 AM
#9
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This recent talk about synthetics is very interesting. When I introduce friends to wet shaving I always give a synthetic brush. Why? Hygiene. Most people would be put off by badger and associated funkiness.

I prefer synthetics over badger lower than silvertip grade.

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 11-18-2013, 06:09 AM
#10
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Synthetics don't need to trade backbone for tip softness. The hairs can be manufactured with firm shafts and yet unbelievably tapered soft tips. With the addition of spirals/curling in the shafts the brush experience is so real it's surreal.

They dry faster, make lather more easily, feel outstanding on the face and vary less brush to brush.

Badgers and boars have each reached their respective performance pinnacles. But synthetics as good as they are now are still being perfected. No wetshaver should be without at least one of each.

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 11-18-2013, 07:11 AM
#11
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(11-18-2013, 12:27 AM)mixershave Wrote: This recent talk about synthetics is very interesting. When I introduce friends to wet shaving I always give a synthetic brush. Why? Hygiene. Most people would be put off by badger and associated funkiness.

I prefer synthetics over badger lower than silvertip grade.
At some point in the future I can for see synthetic brushes surpassing the performance of both boar and badger. I look forward to the upcoming simpson synthetics, and further upgrades on the already excellent muhle v2.

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 11-18-2013, 07:36 AM
#12
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A few years back on a shaving brush forum I read the big rage/thing was boar brushes. I was using badger brushes at the time but I got the bug and bought and sold quite a few boars, but came to the conclusion I still liked the badgers better, so I sold all the boars and kept using my badgers. Now I have been bitten by the synthetic bug, and I don't think it is the same passing fancy. The boars were more maintenance, soak the brush, etc. than the badgers. The synthetics are the opposite, less maintenance than the badgers and so far I believe they out perform the badgers. So for now I am a synthetic brush fan and haven't used the badgers in quite awhile.

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 11-18-2013, 02:15 PM
#13
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(11-18-2013, 06:09 AM)Aimsport Wrote: Synthetics don't need to trade backbone for tip softness. The hairs can be manufactured with firm shafts and yet unbelievably tapered soft tips. With the addition of spirals/curling in the shafts the brush experience is so real it's surreal.

They dry faster, make lather more easily, feel outstanding on the face and vary less brush to brush.

Badgers and boars have each reached their respective performance pinnacles. But synthetics as good as they are now are still being perfected. No wetshaver should be without at least one of each.

I actually agree with all of this. If I could only choose one type of brush it would be a Muhle synthetic. Luckily, I don't have to choose!

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 11-18-2013, 02:35 PM
#14
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(11-18-2013, 02:15 PM)Ronnie Aloha Wrote: I actually agree with all of this. If I could only choose one type of brush it would be a Muhle synthetic. Luckily, I don't have to choose!

* Aren't we very fortunate for this! Biggrin

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 11-18-2013, 02:42 PM
#15
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Synthetics are super-soft and give excellent performance for less money than badgers. I however, love the feel of a badger brush on my face and don't see myself ever switching.

Boar brush can be great too (and inexpensive), I love my Semogue 610, alot of brush for very little money.

Edit: Sorry, missed that boar brushes are out for you.

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 11-18-2013, 02:46 PM
#16
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(11-18-2013, 02:35 PM)celestino Wrote:
(11-18-2013, 02:15 PM)Ronnie Aloha Wrote: I actually agree with all of this. If I could only choose one type of brush it would be a Muhle synthetic. Luckily, I don't have to choose!

* Aren't we very fortunate for this! Biggrin

Sometimes the very fact that humans value a product from an animal leads to care of the population.

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 11-19-2013, 03:35 PM
#17
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In my opinion I think synthetics are better than badgers and cheaper. A hard combination not to like.

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 11-29-2013, 07:05 PM
#18
  • Sanch
  • Active Member
  • Tennessee
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I don't know. I don't have a badger yet and don't know if I will spend the money on one, why? well I have been using a boar, and a mighty midget boar/badger mix. I just received my Synth from WD before using it I washed it in the same manner as I washed my other two (they stank) the synth did not, the other two shed the synth did not, not even one hair! guess I'm sold cause I love the spine of the boar and would love the softness that I'm sure the badger has now I have IMO both but hard to say as the only comparison I have is a mixed brush. my only gripe is I would like to see WD offer different style handles other than the ceramics (very negligible complaint IMHO) Love my WD Synth

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 11-29-2013, 11:03 PM
#19
  • LORDBISHOP
  • Lover of the Wet Shaving way of Life
  • Westchester, NY
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I am very close to purchasing my first synthetic brush simply due to their unique qualities, rave reviews and many noted differences when comparing to badger...After inspecting a Muhle V2 recently, seeing and feeling the brush almost had me straight sold.Also hearing the awesome news that Simpson will be releasing their own synth brush to market, has me excited to add another worthy option to my collection...which one will just depend on timing with Simpson's release, and when I can check one out in person. As to the consistant question of animal suffering and badger humanity, I truly believe a case can be made that synthetics are made from petro chems, which have caused much pollution and wars in human history...synth hairs aren't natural so they will never biodegrade and from what I've read about badgers destroying rural Chinese crops and causing havoc on their farms, I don't feel as much for them as I do my fellow responsible man...Finally I can't say this for sure, but additionally I bet the badgers are used for their meat, pelts and ability to bring some wealth to areas of extreme poverty...just some info to add to the conversation...nothing in this world is perfectHuh Angel

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 11-30-2013, 10:24 AM
#20
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The Kent Infinity is a synth with very soft tips and backbone to spare. It's my favorite brush, more like a very good boar than a badger.


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