12-26-2014, 05:31 PM
#1
  • cmh8890
  • Senior Member
  • Atlanta, GA
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I've been trying to decide whether to add a Kent BLK8 (or BK8) to my stable of silvertips. Could any of you Kent aficionados, who also have/had silvertip Thaters, and/or Savile Rows, and/or Shavemacs, and/or Simpson Best (all of which I have experience with) give your opinions/comparisons/comments? I'm not so much interested in backbone, just tip softness ("face feel" softness, if you will). Just for added info, out of the mentioned brand names, I'd say that my Thater 3-band is about as soft tipped as I've used.

Thanks.

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 12-26-2014, 06:04 PM
#2
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It has been awhile since I tried a Kent 12, but they should be just as soft as your Thater, but with a much larger face-feel....much larger! Biggrin
Personally, I think Thater's 2-Band brushes are some of the softest.
Good luck.

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 12-26-2014, 06:07 PM
#3
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I have a Kent BLK8, and I have experience with just about all that you have listed, except for Thater 3-band. I'll do my best to give my impressions, some of which are based on brushes I no longer have.

I find that the Kent brush I have is comparable to other brushes that are silvertip and associated with being soft. The density of the knot and the shape of the knot are what I associate the most giving this a unique brand of softness that I didn't get with others.

I find often that while many brushes have a good softness to them the density and the shape of the knot affects its perceived softness. I have had brushes with absolutely soft lovely hair, but for myself it's a fine balance of dialing in the right shape to the knot, the correct amount of hair to the brush to promote good flowthrough, but at the same time not being floppy as many others complain about, and how soft the material is itself. I've noticed I've shifted to what others would call floppy, so less dense is a bit of a preference I have. The loss of flowthrough is a negative for me.

I have found for me that you can get hair that is far too soft. Sometimes it's the hair, sometimes some other variable. For me, I can't think of any other brush that works absolutely great when I want a soft luxurious shave. The hair is soft without being too soft, just the right amount of denseness, a handle I can hold onto comfortably, and a very pleasing knot shape while in use. It's still with me after all these years, and the fact that I got it on BST somewhere I view it as one of my top purchases for myself. I don't know if it will be for you.

The only other brush that I can say that is softer and still strikes my balance zone for me was an original loft 3824. Absolutely phenomenal brush! I still miss it at times, but I could never come to terms with the handle. Looked great yes, but just didn't suit me when being used. Another brand with exceptionally soft hair was Shavemac silvertip. But the Kent and the Savile Row mentioned had one other quality that I liked a bit better which is what I would call airiness. It's close to the flowthrough, and it didn't suffer in that regard, but I've heard people speak of saying it's like a soft cloud upon your face. If the knot shape was closer to the Kent brush I believe it would have that airiness to me, but when I think of a soft cloud upon your face, the Savile Row and Kent brushes come to mind for sure. There are others too. A Beaufort 6 I had had this trait as well. So much to love about brushes!

Hopefully what I said helped and let me know if I can answer any questions. I'm a bit under the weather which doesn't help me to think clearly. Smile

(12-26-2014, 06:04 PM)celestino Wrote: It has been awhile since I tried a Kent 12, but they should be just as soft as your Thater, but with a much larger face-feel....much larger! Biggrin
Personally, I think Thater's 2-Band brushes are some of the softest.
Good luck.

Just a reply to this as it sparked my memory. I had a Kent BLK12 too, and oh my... That was absolutely beyond insane pillow soft but too big for me. I get goosebumps still thinking about that brush!

Thater 2-band for me was too soft with the gel tips, which I wasn't a fan of. For me soft is good, but you need just a bit of a tickle left in the tips to let you know something is there as you are using the brush.

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 12-26-2014, 06:34 PM
#4
  • cmh8890
  • Senior Member
  • Atlanta, GA
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Thanks for the quick replies. I've been swayed to pull the trigger on one now.

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 12-28-2014, 05:53 PM
#5
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My preference in silvertip badger was usually for a Shavemac/SR bulb for years, but I have really enjoyed a BLK8 for its well-formed knot, very soft tips (curly and stiff when dry) and great flow and release. Somehow, despite being a 100% facelatherer who enjoys medium to strong backbone (not a "stick" of a brush), I greatly enjoy the performance of the Kent. How the knots are constructed and the relatively higher loft of the Kent lends to a big, luxurious "pillow" face feel, and the BL(K)8 and 12 are certainly large brushes with big bloom and "faceprint" in use.

I, like the poster above, consider flow through and release important attributes and Kent does not disappoint. I consider them to have mild but sufficient backbone; the problem I think many have is that they mash soft-tipped brushes into their faces because they are used to a certain level of feedback from their other brushes. These types should be lathered to and fro with care to utilize the tips (not necessarily painting, which I don't like at all).

All in all, a truly unique and classic brush that has special performance characteristics while remaining very "usable" and gives a most luxurious lathering experience.

EDIT: I neglected to mention that I prefer the face feel of the tips of the Shavemac/SR and Kent over Thater 3 band; the latter was too soft for me. "Anesthetic" was the word that came to mind. Definitely the softest natural fiber I've experienced.

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 12-28-2014, 06:00 PM
#6
  • Johnny
  • MODERATOR EMERITUS
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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Koosh and Tom have pretty much described this brush to a T.

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 12-28-2014, 06:26 PM
#7
  • German
  • Simpson 2 Band Aficionado
  • USA
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The only Kent I ever enjoyed was the B&B 2008 LE. Anything else is way too floppy to use - YMMV.
[Image: LbO3ub7.jpg]

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 12-29-2014, 08:53 PM
#8
  • cmh8890
  • Senior Member
  • Atlanta, GA
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Just the kind of feedback I was hoping for - many thanks!!

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 12-29-2014, 11:06 PM
#9
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Good luck with your decision and show us some pics when it arrives.....if you decide to get it, of course! Biggrin

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 12-30-2014, 02:55 AM
#10
  • Rufus
  • Senior Member
  • Greater Toronto Area
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(12-28-2014, 06:26 PM)German Wrote: The only Kent I ever enjoyed was the B&B 2008 LE. Anything else is way too floppy to use - YMMV.
[Image: LbO3ub7.jpg]

+1; it's a lovely brush.

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 12-30-2014, 03:09 AM
#11
  • ben74
  • Senior Member
  • Perth, Australia
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I've owned the luxuriously soft BK 4, 8 and 12...

[Image: M6ixGTc.png]

But released them, in preference of the denser LE's from 2008 and 2009...

[Image: mquRWRz.png]

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 12-30-2014, 05:17 AM
#12
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I've owned the BK8, twice, and sold it twice.

It's pillow soft YES!
It's a great bowl lather brush YES!
Not so great for face lathering, if you want a massage and exfoliation during the face lathering......

Some people actually do think it's great for face lathering, so if you like the not so dense, not so thick soft brushes with a bit too high loft for my taste, you will probably enjoy the Kent Smile

Honestly, it's no a bad brush per se, it's just fine, in fact it's pretty decent - just not near my personal Top 50 of best brushes I have owned, so I had to let them go both........

But the coffin it comes in is GREAT looking and solid quality !!

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 12-30-2014, 07:07 AM
#13
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I really don't face lather much, but for some reason count me in as one of those crazy people who thinks the BK/BLK8 works great for face lathering. I found for me when I tried with mine I quite liked it. I guess I just have different expectations in mind when face lathering?

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 12-30-2014, 08:20 AM
#14
  • kav
  • Banned
  • east of the sun,west of the moon
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When I began wet shaving Kents and Plisson were mentioned on the forums in reverential tones used for Rolls Royce, Baccarat Chrystal and Swiss Chocolate- with commensurate price tags.
There was one American KENT distributor with prices so high it was almost CHEAPER to buy direct from the UK. Needless to say, with my finances other options found favour.
Now the fervor has dimmed somewhat as many excellent products
do.
This may be straying, but other high end and high price products should heed this caution.

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 12-30-2014, 08:53 AM
#15
  • Rufus
  • Senior Member
  • Greater Toronto Area
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KAV, the same situation exists here in Canada regarding price. Fortunately my family lives in England so I was able to order my BK4 from the Shaving Shack in Plymouth, Devon and have it delivered to my UK address and to pick it up on my next visit. Even with the 20%VAT and postage included, the price was materially lower than in Canada, about 40% less all-in. I found the same pricing issue with Kent hairbrushes and combs.

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 12-30-2014, 12:22 PM
#16
  • kiruiz
  • Boellis Man
  • San Juan PR
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Gents:

I don't know but I was looking t get one Kent since long time now. But every person that I speak about it told me without exception that they are floopy. If that's the case forget it. No way on my end for a Kent. The reason is that I like brushes with good to strong backbone. Main reason for that its because I use more soaps than creams.
Thanks
Ken

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 12-30-2014, 12:50 PM
#17
  • Rufus
  • Senior Member
  • Greater Toronto Area
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(12-30-2014, 12:22 PM)kiruiz Wrote: Gents:

I don't know but I was looking t get one Kent since long time now. But every person that I speak about it told me without exception that they are floopy. If that's the case forget it. No way on my end for a Kent. The reason is that I like brushes with good to strong backbone. Main reason for that its because I use more soaps than creams.
Thanks
Ken

Ken, in that case a Kent is definitely not for you.

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 12-30-2014, 04:48 PM
#18
  • cmh8890
  • Senior Member
  • Atlanta, GA
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(12-29-2014, 11:06 PM)celestino Wrote: Good luck with your decision and show us some pics when it arrives.....if you decide to get it, of course! Biggrin

I will post pictures when I get it. I just ordered the BK8 and eagerly await its arrival.

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 12-30-2014, 06:35 PM
#19
  • Andrew
  • Senior Member
  • Austin, TX
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Here's a brush (BK8) I haven't tried, and I have no idea why.

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 12-30-2014, 09:21 PM
#20
  • grantmm
  • Friend of the Badgers
  • Draper, Utah
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It isn't just floppy. It is a mop on your face. A thick and fluffy mop.

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