05-03-2012, 11:29 AM
#1
User Info
Guys

I have been asked by Teiste to put together some information relating to Badger Hair Grades.

Now I know that there are various grades of hair 'sold' these days so I have categorised into the 3 grades that I know and have worked with - Pure, Best & Super. These 3 grades should give you a good idea on the characteristics expected and should give you a good starting point to compare to the more 'exotic' grades available nowadays....

PURE BADGER
Pure badger hair is the commonest grade of hair. Around about 60% of the hair obtainable from a single badger is graded as ‘Pure’.

Location on Badger: Usually from the underbelly area.

Normal Colour Range: Black to a Dark Brown/Tan, Dark Grey.

Characteristics: Thick filament with less lateral flex than higher grade hair and less tapering along the filament.

Face ‘Feel’: Scratchy/Scrubby – normally thought of as the best hair for exfoliating. Normally brushes made from Pure grade have low density knots (less hair per knot) but still have low flexibility due to the stiffness of the filaments.

Soap or Cream?: Usually good for hard soaps due to the coarseness of the filament ends.

Ageing characteristics: Pure hair tends to ‘bleach’ quicker than higher grade hair giving it a look more akin to a Boar after prolonged exposure to sunshine. The filament ends will soften over time but do tend to keep their scratchy feel – more so than Best grade.

BEST BADGER
Best badger hair is a ‘mid-range’ hair grade. Around about 25% of the hair obtainable from a single badger is graded as ‘Best’.

Location on Badger:Usually from the belly area.

Normal Colour Range: Grey to Light Brown/Tan with more significant colour difference between bands.

Characteristics: More tapering filaments than Pure grade with softer tips. Better lateral flex along the filament than Pure due to the tapering nature of the hair.

Face ‘Feel’: Less scratchy than Pure grade but still has a scrubby feel. Mid to high density knots (mid level of hair per knot) with better flexibility than Pure due to the tapering filaments.

Soap or Cream?: Good for both soap and cream. Due to the fact that it holds water better than Pure it is ideal for creams that require more water to create lather.

Ageing characteristics: Tends to hold its colour better than Pure grade but the filament tips can grey more over time creating a look of a ‘two band’ brush.


SUPER BADGER
Super badger hair is a fine grade of badger hair. Around about 10% of the hair obtainable from a single badger is graded as ‘Super’.

Location on Badger: Usually from the neck/mane area.

Normal Colour Range: Dark Grey/Black central band with silver/white filament ends.

Characteristics: Even finer tapered filaments than Best grade. Extremely pliable filaments – more lateral flex than Best grade.

Face ‘Feel’: Soft feel to the face, no scratch, Can feel firmer than Best grade due to the high density knot (high level of hair per knot) that can be made because of the finer filaments. Can be described as a more ‘velvet’ feel than best.

Soap or Cream?: Tends to be better suited to creams due to the lack of scratch on the filament ends, although densely packed knots can work well with soaps.

Ageing Characteristics: Super grade tends to keep its look over Pure and Best. Colours tend not to fade as much as the lower grades. In some cases the tips can curl or ‘hook’ over time. This can be caused by the initial sterilising process that badger hair is put through by hair suppliers.


Gary

0 213
Reply
 05-03-2012, 11:34 AM
#2
  • Songwind
  • Soap Slinger & Scuttle Pusher
  • Burnsville, MN
User Info
Leaving aside exotic West Elbownian Tunnel Badger and what not, "Finest" is a common hair grade as well. Care to take a stab?

10 1,858
Reply
 05-03-2012, 11:38 AM
#3
User Info
(05-03-2012, 11:34 AM)Songwind Wrote: Leaving aside exotic West Elbownian Tunnel Badger and what not, "Finest" is a common hair grade as well. Care to take a stab?

Eric

Against the 3 grades I have described it sits with Super. IMHO

Gary

0 213
Reply
 05-03-2012, 11:38 AM
#4
  • mikeperry
  • Senior Member
  • St Louis via the UK
User Info
(05-03-2012, 11:29 AM)Gary Young Wrote: I have been asked by Teiste to put together some information relating to Badger Hair Grades.

Hi Gary

Good stuff there Thumbup Hat-tip to you Sir! Euro

Take care, Mike

ps Thank you for taking the time away from the snooker to write it up Wink

23 1,872
Reply
 05-03-2012, 11:40 AM
#5
  • Johnny
  • Super Moderator
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
User Info
Gary, excellent post and information.

Thank you

173 23,540
Reply
 05-03-2012, 11:43 AM
#6
User Info
Thanks Gary! This is great information to have.

I may have to get some Pure brushes now. Smile

37 1,731
Reply
 05-03-2012, 11:58 AM
#7
  • Songwind
  • Soap Slinger & Scuttle Pusher
  • Burnsville, MN
User Info
(05-03-2012, 11:38 AM)Gary Young Wrote: Eric

Against the 3 grades I have described it sits with Super. IMHO

Gary

Thanks! It helps not only knowing what to expect but *why*.

10 1,858
Reply
 05-03-2012, 12:06 PM
#8
  • njpaddy
  • Member
  • Central New Jersey
User Info
Thanks Gary. It's nice to have all this information in one place to refer back to.

0 204
Reply
 05-03-2012, 12:30 PM
#9
User Info
(05-03-2012, 12:06 PM)njpaddy Wrote: Thanks Gary. It's nice to have all this information in one place to refer back to.

You really need to thank Teiste because this was his brain child!

Gary

0 213
Reply
 05-03-2012, 12:44 PM
#10
User Info
Organised, concise, and accurate. What more could I ask for?

0 221
Reply
 05-03-2012, 12:48 PM
#11
User Info
This is precious information, Gary!
Thank you for sharing this with us!

2 5,532
Reply
 05-03-2012, 01:15 PM
#12
  • Brent
  • Active Member
  • Columbus, OH
User Info
Excellent information. I notice that hair is used from the belly and neck area - I thought pure came from the back so this helps out my knowledge.

I assume that the hair on the back is unsuitable for brushes - is it used for any other purposes (ie maybe paintbrushes)?

0 353
Reply
 05-03-2012, 01:19 PM
#13
  • Teiste
  • Moderator Emeritus
  • Salt Lake City,UT
User Info
Excellent,simply EXCELLENT!
Thanks a lot,Gary,I knew you were the man to ask for this tutorial.
I have a question,my friend : in the past,Simpson sold some best badger brushes with two band looking hair.Now,Simpson called Super Badger Two Band this kind of hair.What are their characteristics?I mean,are they regular two band badger hair,is there any differences between then (super badger two band,best badger two band).
Ill me moving this thread to traditional wet shaving101 since this is really informative.

86 7,123
Reply
 05-03-2012, 01:20 PM
#14
User Info
(05-03-2012, 01:15 PM)Brent Wrote: Excellent information. I notice that hair is used from the belly and neck area - I thought pure came from the back so this helps out my knowledge.

I assume that the hair on the back is unsuitable for brushes - is it used for any other purposes (ie maybe paintbrushes)?

Hair from the back does get mixed in with some grades but in the past it always tended to be a bit too 'wispy' to make a decent knot.

Gary

0 213
Reply
 05-03-2012, 01:23 PM
#15
  • bullgoose
  • The Enabler
  • Redondo Beach, California, U.S.A
User Info
Great post Gary! Thank you for sharing.

45 16,347
Reply
 05-03-2012, 01:30 PM
#16
User Info
(05-03-2012, 01:19 PM)Teiste Wrote: Excellent,simply EXCELLENT!
Thanks a lot,Gary,I knew you were the man to ask for this tutorial.
I have a question,my friend : in the past,Simpson sold some best badger brushes with two band looking hair.Now,Simpson called Super Badger Two Band this kind of hair.What are their characteristics?I mean,are they regular two band badger hair,is there any differences between then (super badger two band,best badger two band).
Ill me moving this thread to traditional wet shaving101 since this is really informative.

I can't comment on any 'newer' 2 band style Best knots but in our days we used to use a method called 'collaring' to create the 2 band look.

It is a bit difficult to describe this method of knot making without showing you but I will give it a go!

We would form a Best knot using our standard method. We would then take a small piece of paper and fold it lengthways to create a neat edge. A small quantity of darker badger hair would be picked and laid onto the paper. Using the back of a comb we would even out the hair across the paper to create a single layer of dark hair. The paper would then be folded back in half and the hair tapped down so the base of the hair was all even. We would wrap this section of paper around the base of the standard Best knot, grasp the tips of the hair in the paper and then pull the paper away. An extra bind of twine would be tied around this 'collar'. Then using finger tips and thumb we would work the knot around on its base until the applied collar blended in with the shape of the standard knot. This would create the look of a two banded head.

Hope this makes sense! It is easier to show rather than explain in writing.

Gary

0 213
Reply
 05-03-2012, 01:33 PM
#17
  • Johnny
  • Super Moderator
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
User Info
Very interesting information Gary.

173 23,540
Reply
 05-03-2012, 01:34 PM
#18
  • freddy
  • Senior Member
  • San Diego, California, U.S.A.
User Info
This is superb non-jargon information. Thanks Gary, it helps a lot.

Teiste, this is another of your great ideas. Smile

2 11,211
Reply
 05-03-2012, 01:36 PM
#19
User Info
(05-03-2012, 01:33 PM)Johnny Wrote: Very interesting information Gary.

I think I will try my hand at video making and put something together showing how this type of collar was made. I have just read my description back and it confused me and I wrote it!

Gary

0 213
Reply
 05-03-2012, 01:39 PM
#20
User Info
Thank you Gary for an informative and authoritative post, especially valuable since it was authored by the world's expert in this subject area.

We are all indeed very fortunate to have you as an active participant on this wonderful forum.

0 3,341
Reply
Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)