05-14-2012, 11:51 PM
#1
  • ben74
  • Administrator
  • Perth, Australia
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Plisson: Performance, but at a Premium

[attachment=2056]

For me Plisson brushes have an aesthetic as well as functional quality
and for that reason they hold a special place in my collection.
As a collector and a shaving enthusiast
it is extremely important for me that my pieces are
both functional and pleasing to the eye
and Plisson are certainly that.

The shaving brush is said to have it's origins in France
and was regarded as a status symbol.
The price Plisson commands for their work upholds this ideology.
In real terms or discernible difference,
perhaps the price point of Plisson brushes
is less than directly proportional to the difference in performance.
However, every product has it's elite brands
and surely the price commanded by elite brands
is based on elements such as quality, performance and reputation.

In the most simplistic of comparisons,
an inexpensive car such as Hyundai, Kia or Proton
is not going to provide the same "experience"
as a premium vehicle such as offered by BMW, Mercedes or Aston Martin.
Either will get you were you need to go,
but I think life is about the journey and not just the destination!

Bottom line, for me, Plisson brushes are a work of art.
Art can be a very personal experience
and not enjoyed by all people in the same ways.
In fact, many people are unable to see the value in art,
it's most likely the same with shaving brushes.



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 05-15-2012, 04:25 AM
#2
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(05-14-2012, 11:51 PM)ben74 Wrote: ...life is about the journey and not just the destination!

Bottom line, Plisson brushes are a work of art. Art can be a very personal experience and not enjoyed by all people in the same ways. In fact, many people are unable to see the value in art, it's most likely the same with shaving brushes.

Can I get an Amen! Hallelujah

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 05-15-2012, 04:39 AM
#3
  • ben74
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  • Perth, Australia
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Thanks for taking the time to read my thoughts Jon!

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 05-15-2012, 05:19 AM
#4
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Well said, Ben!

As you know, I have two Plisson brushes that I really like. Both from the 80's - one is an HMW 14, which is certainly the best brush I've used, and the other is a small brush of unknown grade (probably 'Pure Badger' equivalent) that I like better than most of my high-end brushes.

I also had a modern EW Plexi #14. I didn't think that was anywhere as good as the others. In fact, it wasn't as good as a Simpsons Colonel X2L, which is much cheaper. So, not all Plissons are great. Still, two out of three ain't bad!

I think Teiste can offer some insights on the EW 14 too.

-----------

To reiterate - the best brush I own is a Plisson! Yes, it's a work of art!

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 05-15-2012, 05:41 AM
#5
  • ben74
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  • Perth, Australia
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Plisson HMW Plexi Size 20
Custom made January 2008
[attachment=2066]
Sorry to hear you didn't enjoy your Plexi, Yohann.
I've never experienced a vintage Plisson, so I don't know what I'm missing...

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 05-15-2012, 06:16 AM
#6
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Well, these are personal items and they need to match personal tastes. The Plexi 14 was lovely, but the performance of the knot didn't match my requirements. It will probably be fine for other people, though.

Yes, I'm very impressed with the two vintage Plisson's I have. They are the only ones I've tried, and they're both pretty much excellent. There's no way to know how other vintage Plisson's will perform. Also, going with the point above - these work for me, but they may not work for anyone else. Wink

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 05-15-2012, 06:22 AM
#7
  • Johnny
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  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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Ben, that was very well thought out and written. My Dad use to always tell me that I had a champagne appetite on a beer budget.

From my smoking pipes, tools, lawn equipment, shoes, cars, shaving equipment, and just about everything else I've ever owned, I have always bought what I thought was the best I could afford. It has always been when I bought more than I could afford that I got in trouble.

I still have that champagne appetite, but I have learned to live with that beer budget. It is sometimes very hard as I do appreciate things of quality and beauty.

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 05-15-2012, 06:28 AM
#8
  • ben74
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  • Perth, Australia
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My father still tells me that very same thing...
[attachment=2070]
Here's to more champagne... in spite of the beer budget!

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 05-17-2012, 04:53 AM
#9
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Stunning pictures, Ben.
A horn-handled Plisson in HMW or EW is perhaps my "Holy Grail" brush. However, that is completely out of my budget...

So, I've taken another way... the Vie-Long way. Smile I recently bought a Vie-Long 16728 that reportedly uses the same type of hair than the EW from Plisson. OK, it may not be a Plisson, but so far, I'm liking it a lot!

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 05-17-2012, 04:58 AM
#10
  • ben74
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  • Perth, Australia
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(05-17-2012, 04:53 AM)oversaturn Wrote: Stunning pictures, Ben.
A horn-handled Plisson in HMW or EW is perhaps my "Holy Grail" brush. However, that is completely out of my budget...

So, I've taken another way... the Vie-Long way. Smile I recently bought a Vie-Long 16728 that reportedly uses the same type of hair than the EW from Plisson. OK, it may not be a Plisson, but so far, I'm liking it a lot!

Congratulations Emmanuel, I am really looking forward to seeing this acquisition!

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 05-17-2012, 06:07 AM
#11
  • Johnny
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  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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Ben, in the top picture, what model Plisson is the brush laying on its side?

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 05-17-2012, 06:15 AM
#12
  • ben74
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  • Perth, Australia
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(05-17-2012, 06:07 AM)Johnny Wrote: Ben, in the top picture, what model Plisson is the brush laying on its side?

Black handle EW size 10
[attachment=2194]

The black handle is from Plisson's acrylic range. Although hand turned, it feels extremely "plastic" and very light weight. When I first acquired the brush I was disappointed with it's lack of weight and almost "cheap" feel. I think it is likely hollow inside given it's light weight. The heaviest part of the brush is the metal gold ring that holds the bristles in place. The octagonal design is comfortable to hold and it's light weight makes it an ideal travel brush.

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 05-17-2012, 08:26 AM
#13
  • Brent
  • Active Member
  • Columbus, OH
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(05-17-2012, 04:53 AM)oversaturn Wrote: Stunning pictures, Ben.
A horn-handled Plisson in HMW or EW is perhaps my "Holy Grail" brush. However, that is completely out of my budget...

So, I've taken another way... the Vie-Long way. Smile I recently bought a Vie-Long 16728 that reportedly uses the same type of hair than the EW from Plisson. OK, it may not be a Plisson, but so far, I'm liking it a lot!

Have you tried the Kim Son Vu brushes with the natural horn handles? I think the handle design is inspired by the Plisson and the knot is very, very nice. Probably the softest brush I own but also has the density and backbone that I like. Absolutely no shedding and quality seems to be pretty good. It's not the HMW branded hair of course but the hair quality really blew me away for the price.

You may want to give them a try, I think of it as kind of a "generic" plisson and they're very affordable. I think you can get them well less than $100 from their website though I've heard that shipping can take forever. I picked up the QED Select brush from Charles at QEDusa and the theory is they're rebranded Kim Sons. Stunning brushes, he just got in some natural black horn that looks great. It's a bit over the $100 mark but he is waiting on the shipping time, not me. Wink

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 05-17-2012, 08:32 AM
#14
  • ben74
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  • Perth, Australia
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Another pic...

[attachment=2193]

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 05-17-2012, 09:20 AM
#15
  • Teiste
  • Moderator Emeritus
  • Salt Lake City,UT
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(05-15-2012, 05:19 AM)yohannrjm Wrote: Well said, Ben!

As you know, I have two Plisson brushes that I really like. Both from the 80's - one is an HMW 14, which is certainly the best brush I've used, and the other is a small brush of unknown grade (probably 'Pure Badger' equivalent) that I like better than most of my high-end brushes.

I also had a modern EW Plexi #14. I didn't think that was anywhere as good as the others. In fact, it wasn't as good as a Simpsons Colonel X2L, which is much cheaper. So, not all Plissons are great. Still, two out of three ain't bad!

I think Teiste can offer some insights on the EW 14 too.

-----------

To reiterate - the best brush I own is a Plisson! Yes, it's a work of art!

Thanks Ben for another SUPERB thread about shaving brushes.

Thanks to Yohann I had the chance to try out his EW 14 Plexi Handle brush, and also a HMW 14 horn handle brush ,that you can read about it here.

Well,I need to try more,since I wasnt impressed with any of those two,but I must admit that I do dislike brushes with high lofts,even when both of these brushes had an excellent,super firm backbone,specially for having almost 60 mm of loft each.

Maybe when I try a 10 or a 12 in EW or HWM (or even in grey european badger) I would be able to give a better opinion.

Until then,I would say,that for the money,Simpson,shavemac,Rooney,Morris and Forndran would give you a better brush.

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 05-17-2012, 09:28 AM
#16
  • ben74
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  • Perth, Australia
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There is definitely better value for money to be had, but they are without doubt pleasing on the eye...

[attachment=2198]

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 05-17-2012, 09:30 AM
#17
  • Teiste
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  • Salt Lake City,UT
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(05-17-2012, 09:28 AM)ben74 Wrote:
There is definitely better value for money to be had, but they are without doubt pleasing on the eye...


Oh boy,Im in love with the white handle one on the middle.Is it a EW one? BabeandoBabeandoBabeandoBabeando

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 05-17-2012, 09:50 AM
#18
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My two Size 10 HMWs. They are nice lookers and very well made, but in terms of performance, they are no better than many other brushes I have that sell for a fraction of the price. I bought used at a steep discount. I would not be willing to foot the buy-in for a new one. . .

       

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 05-17-2012, 09:53 AM
#19
  • ben74
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  • Perth, Australia
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(05-17-2012, 09:30 AM)Teiste Wrote:
(05-17-2012, 09:28 AM)ben74 Wrote:
There is definitely better value for money to be had, but they are without doubt pleasing on the eye...


Oh boy,Im in love with the white handle one on the middle.Is it a EW one? BabeandoBabeandoBabeandoBabeando

EW 2 band Genuine Ivory Handle

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 05-17-2012, 10:11 AM
#20
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(05-17-2012, 08:26 AM)Brent Wrote:
(05-17-2012, 04:53 AM)oversaturn Wrote: Stunning pictures, Ben.
A horn-handled Plisson in HMW or EW is perhaps my "Holy Grail" brush. However, that is completely out of my budget...

So, I've taken another way... the Vie-Long way. Smile I recently bought a Vie-Long 16728 that reportedly uses the same type of hair than the EW from Plisson. OK, it may not be a Plisson, but so far, I'm liking it a lot!

Have you tried the Kim Son Vu brushes with the natural horn handles?
I think the handle design is inspired by the Plisson and the knot is very, very nice. Probably the softest brush I own but also has the density and backbone that I like. Absolutely no shedding and quality seems to be pretty good. It's not the HMW branded hair of course but the hair quality really blew me away for the price.

You may want to give them a try, I think of it as kind of a "generic" plisson and they're very affordable. I think you can get them well less than $100 from their website though I've heard that shipping can take forever. I picked up the QED Select brush from Charles at QEDusa and the theory is they're rebranded Kim Sons. Stunning brushes, he just got in some natural black horn that looks great. It's a bit over the $100 mark but he is waiting on the shipping time, not me. Wink

Yep. I have two of those! Biggrin
Those knots are entirely different beasts: dense, soft and luxurious (as every silvertip should beSmile) They are extraordinary brushes indeed.

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