05-24-2014, 01:37 PM
#1
  • Giorgio
  • Senior Member
  • Pennsylvania, US
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Greetings gentlemen...

I have been meaning share my thoughts on the Lord Randal Silvertip brush for some time now, but between a FT job, grad program, and a 1.5 yr old little man, trying to find the time to sit down and collect my thoughts on virtual paper is a challenge to say the least Blush...

However, my delay also brought about an advantage where I was able to put it down and come back and revisit the brush after a few weeks. I believe this gave me a better and more realistic perspective on where it stands in my collection. While I also have the LR in natural white horse hair, I'll stay focused on the silvertip since I haven't seen too much discussion on it. Let me also state that I'm not a pro photographer like some of our other fine members, so my apologies in advance for the "basic" photos Tongue

Speaking of photos, here it is in full bloom on the right next to the natural horse hair:

[Image: I2pePZS.png]

I'll start with the "break-in"/de-funk: The Lord Randal is my first Vie-Long badger experience. The force (i.e. funk) was strong with this one...Star-wars-smiley-023...took me over a week of daily lathering until my sensitive nose could no longer pick up on any unpleasantries. And it wasn't so much badger as it was a "chemical" smell. Also to my touch the bristles initially felt like they were coated with something. This is all compared to what I've seen in other new brushes I purchase. For me, it was a non-issue, but it did delay actual face time...so if I absolutely HAD to fault it for anything, this would be it. I know many don't believe in "break-in" of a badger brush, but I will say that this brush certainly did change its feel and behavior after a few weeks of use...mainly I find it much softer, and I'm pretty confident that this isn't a case where my face just grew accustomed to it.

On to the good stuff...

The shape of the handle is one of my favorites, and as I mentioned in another thread, it is very familiar and seems to have been inspired by a classic. When Phil put up the thread for members to vote on handle color, I'll admit I did not vote for this...but it is a great example of how a poll like that worked out so well, as the color turned out beautifully and it definitely stands out in my den (in a good way Wink).

The primary reason I purchased this brush was to see what Vie-Long silvertip was all about. The hair is certainly different than any other brushes I have. While I have never experienced a Plisson badger (rumored to be the same source), if I had to liken it to anything else I've tried, for me it has a similar but softer face feel to D01 3 band, which is one of my favorite knots. While it is extremely soft, my Thaters, Rooney, and Shavemac regular silvertip are all softer on the face. The first few weeks of use, it had ever so slight scritch, which faded away into what I experience now as a mild scrub. I'm very sensitive to scritch, which comes in a few different forms, but this knot works out well. Not only do I not have issues with it, it is a pure pleasure to use even on a "sensitive" day. When dry, the brush remains extremely soft, and doesn't become "crunchy" like most of my others. The only other brush in my den that does that is a M&F Finest. Another unique attribute that I found was the color of the bristles: I noticed that the normal black band that I'm used to in my other 3 bands, here, is a little lighter and has some brown in it...something none of my other brushes exhibit. I tried to take a picture of this:

[Image: lIOJDRR.png]

This tips are very thin and always soft. I highly doubt they will ever develop the "hooked tips" or exhibit those velvety gel-tip characteristics that many seem to pursue, but this isn't a bad thing:

[Image: hB0m8QV.png]

While shaving, I have found this brush to be so perfectly balanced. Its soft, but not floppy; dense, but not overly so and has excellent flow; not too big and not too small (juuuust right....Tongue). In all seriousness though, that's really the best way for me to describe it. Everything about it is just right. It is very clear that the details and specifications of this brush were very well thought through.

Here it is after whipping up some QCS Rose Otto:

[Image: N6mrHu3.png]

I am very excited to have this brush in my den. It is different from what has become the norm for my tastes, and is a pleasant change. The fact that it excels at everything makes it so easy to reach for. The handle, knot diameter, loft, hair quality...all just work incredibly well together making this brush, as a package, deliver and perform beautifully. While there are many ways I evaluate a brush, I find for me it usually comes down to 3 questions: Is it worth it? If I didn't purchase it, would I be missing anything? And, will I get rid of it? For me, its a Yes, Yes, No. For the price, I find the value to be the cherry on top. I have plenty of other brushes around this price range that I will easily pass as I keep reaching for this. In my book, it is the do-anything brush, and I can't think of a more perfect daily driver Biggrin.

Its been said before, and I'll say it again...Well done for all those involved in its development, and a huge thank you to Phil for bringing it to market and making such an outstanding brush available at such a good price Smile

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 05-24-2014, 01:43 PM
#2
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Thanks for the review. You really don't hear much about the Vie-Long silvertips.

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 05-24-2014, 01:45 PM
#3
  • Giorgio
  • Senior Member
  • Pennsylvania, US
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(05-24-2014, 01:43 PM)branford Wrote: Thanks for the review. You really don't hear much about the Vie-Long silvertips.

Thank you...that's exactly why I wanted to post this thread Biggrin

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 05-24-2014, 04:14 PM
#4
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Thanks for the good review. From everything I read this brush is an outstanding value.

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 05-24-2014, 06:38 PM
#5
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Great to hear you are enjoying the brush, Giorgio!
Thanks for the review! Biggrin

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 05-24-2014, 08:21 PM
#6
  • Attila
  • The Hungarian Blade
  • Vancouver, Canada
User Info
Thank you for the well done review. Enjoy!

I have to admit this brush piqued my curiosity as well, but I recently purchased a Shavemac Silvertip 437 and to say I am loving it is an understatement. So I will have to wait a while, but I may end up buying one also eventually.

The only thing that puts me off from the Vie Long Silvertip is the scritch. If it didn't disappear entirely I would end up selling the brush. I have come to dislike any kind of scritch in my brushes.

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 05-25-2014, 07:47 PM
#7
  • Giorgio
  • Senior Member
  • Pennsylvania, US
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(05-24-2014, 08:21 PM)Attila Wrote: Thank you for the well done review. Enjoy!

I have to admit this brush piqued my curiosity as well, but I recently purchased a Shavemac Silvertip 437 and to say I am loving it is an understatement. So I will have to wait a while, but I may end up buying one also eventually.

The only thing that puts me off from the Vie Long Silvertip is the scritch. If it didn't disappear entirely I would end up selling the brush. I have come to dislike any kind of scritch in my brushes.

That's a gorgeous Shavemac Biggrin ! And I love the regular silvertip knot, as I have a 167 handle with that hair. This is a hair that really came into its own after a few weeks of using it.

I used the LR silvertip brush again today, paying particular attention to any potential scritch. As I mentioned, I consider myself to also be sensitive to scritch, but of course that area is such YMMV territory. At this time, I would struggle to classify any sensation I felt today as scritch. For me, it was more along the lines of scrub...I can feel the individual bristles, but it was a pleasant sensation and not uncomfortable. The only minor discomfort I experienced was when I had some pressure on it and right at the point where I changed direction in my brushing stroke, and only if I was being a little aggressive with it. But I experience the same feeling with any brush in my den including my ultra soft ones, so this should in no way reflect poorly on the LR Wink.

I have a few brushes in my den that are due to either be reknotted or go up for sale because I was too sensitive to them...some of which are quite popular models. And I can say that this LR in silvertip will neither be reknotted, nor going up for sale. The uniqueness of this hair is what makes it a keeper. The first few days with it were nothing special, and it was the constant latherings to get the funk out that starting showing its potential. And I feel like even now, it continues to improve with each use. So if you do ending up picking up this brush, I suggest really giving it a fair run before calling it.

Good luck and enjoy your lovely Shavemac!

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 05-25-2014, 09:27 PM
#8
  • Attila
  • The Hungarian Blade
  • Vancouver, Canada
User Info
Giorgio, thank you so much. This shavemac is getting better and better the more I use it also so I know what you mean. That LR may indeed be in my future based on your experiences. For that is one of the joys in life. New experiences! Why shouldn't that apply to brushes as well?

Thanks again for your time and the details you shared. If anything changes significantly, please do let us know! Enjoy your wonderful brush sir.

Sent from my phone using Tapatalk.

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 06-25-2014, 08:39 PM
#9
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Great review. I just got this brush a couple of weeks ago and I am very impressed. It is a great brush indeed.


Paul

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 07-01-2014, 01:07 PM
#10
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I love those Malachite Green handles.

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 12-05-2014, 07:39 AM
#11
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great review, i think i am gonna try it in horse hair!

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 12-06-2014, 03:42 PM
#12
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Just got mine. Boy, you were right about the chemical funk. Stronger than any of my soaps

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 12-06-2014, 06:00 PM
#13
  • Giorgio
  • Senior Member
  • Pennsylvania, US
User Info
(12-06-2014, 03:42 PM)Stridercombs Wrote: Just got mine. Boy, you were right about the chemical funk. Stronger than any of my soaps

Oh yes...it also took slightly longer than the typical de-funk process, but a small price to pay for what is, IMO, a fantastic brush Biggrin

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