04-19-2016, 11:50 AM
#1
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I wonder if anyone could help me understand what is going on with my brush and whether there is something I should be doing to maintain my brush that I am not doing.

I have an M&F Finest brush that is about 3 years old.  I've probably used it half that time, or 1.5 years worth of use.  Excellent brush.  2 band.  26mmx53.  Bulb.

What I am seeing is the hair dividing into small clumps, for lack of a better word.  Probably no clumping for the first year, and progressively more since then.  Maybe each clump is 1/4 inch diameter.  I see this most pronounced when pulling my brush out of a cup of hot distilled water right before applying cream.  If I look down into the bristles, it is like looking into a honeycomb that is divided  by the point tips of each clump.  I have not changed my routine the entire time I have used it.

The brush still works  fine.  The biggest problem created by this clumping is picking up cream out of the dish.  When the hairs were all evenly spread, it was easy to pick up a nice even smear of cream.  Now I am putting a bunch of separated clump points into the cream and wind up with either a lot or a little.  Much less control over cream amount picked up.

So what might be going on?  I clean the brush in borax every week or two.  I hang it upside down to dry after use.

Do I need to brush it out somehow to separate hairs?
Is this clumping just a normal aging process?

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 04-19-2016, 11:59 AM
#2
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The tips have micro hooks causing this clumping. Highly sought after by many. If you want a brush that won't do this, I recommend the Nathan Clark envy white.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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 04-19-2016, 12:40 PM
#3
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Yes, hooked or curled tips are the cause. I swirl my brush on the cream rather than dip, so I haven't noticed this same issue. Another option would be to scoop out the cream amount you want and apply that to brush. It sounds more cumbersome than it actually is.

-ntr(nwu)

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 04-19-2016, 01:27 PM
#4
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The hooking thing makes sense.  The brush in question has some hooking but not a lot.  Enough to cause clumping I guess. The good news I suppose is that there is nothing I can do. 

Thanks fellas.

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 04-19-2016, 07:31 PM
#5
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I highly doubt you have anything to worry about with this issue. It is a common occurrence with certain types of knot hair(s).
Unless it is really perturbing you, just use the brush and enjoy. Shy

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 04-21-2016, 02:47 AM
#6
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Bayside, NY
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Same thing happens in reverse with the Shavemac knot in my Duke 3.1. It seemed odd initially, however it only occurs when the knot is dry (i.e., clumps appear after hanging to dry). A simple swipe or two against my palm and it's good to go. When wet, the knot is soft and luxurious. Cloud-like, I'd say.

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 04-21-2016, 04:56 AM
#7
  • Journeyman
  • Active Member
  • The Present (when I'm lucky)
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(04-21-2016, 02:47 AM)chazt Wrote: Same thing happens in reverse with the Shavemac knot in my Duke 3.1. It seemed odd initially, however it only occurs when the knot is dry (i.e., clumps appear after hanging to dry). A simple swipe or two against my palm and it's good to go. When wet, the knot is soft and luxurious. Cloud-like, I'd say.

I have four Shavemac 2 band silvertip knots, and I have one that's been very interesting in this manner. Initially it clumped when wet to the point of being mushy versus the soft but more individual hair feel of my other three Shavemacs of this hair type. Now when this brush is wet the hairs still feel slightly this way but much more like my other three Shavemacs. However, now it has this odd way of drying where it looks like for the first couple days the brush has developed a hole in the middle but by the time the brush completely dries it goes away, so I've been thinking this behavior is indicative of the hairs clumping until they completely dry out. Performance remains excellent throughout owning the brush.

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 04-21-2016, 05:19 AM
#8
  • Mouser
  • Senior Member
  • Forest City, Florida U.S.A.
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I had the same concern when I got my M&F finest. The whole brush would be clumpy at the ends. I thought it was defective at first and was going to contact Lee about it but, first of all, I loved the feel and performance of the brush and secondly, a little research revealed that it was part of the natural behavior of this type of hair. I'm glad I kept it, it's my favorite brush now.

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 04-23-2016, 12:07 PM
#9
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(04-19-2016, 11:50 AM)Smoothie Wrote: I wonder if anyone could help me understand what is going on with my brush and whether there is something I should be doing to maintain my brush that I am not doing.

I have an M&F Finest brush that is about 3 years old.  I've probably used it half that time, or 1.5 years worth of use.  Excellent brush.  2 band.  26mmx53.  Bulb.

What I am seeing is the hair dividing into small clumps, for lack of a better word.  Probably no clumping for the first year, and progressively more since then.  Maybe each clump is 1/4 inch diameter.  I see this most pronounced when pulling my brush out of a cup of hot distilled water right before applying cream.  If I look down into the bristles, it is like looking into a honeycomb that is divided  by the point tips of each clump.  I have not changed my routine the entire time I have used it.

The brush still works  fine.  The biggest problem created by this clumping is picking up cream out of the dish.  When the hairs were all evenly spread, it was easy to pick up a nice even smear of cream.  Now I am putting a bunch of separated clump points into the cream and wind up with either a lot or a little.  Much less control over cream amount picked up.

So what might be going on?  I clean the brush in borax every week or two.  I hang it upside down to dry after use.

Do I need to brush it out somehow to separate hairs?
Is this clumping just a normal aging process?

The only red flag I saw is in bold above. I recommend that you Do not use hot water as it can damage the brush. I would consider using warm water instead. My Basic rule of thumb: if the water is too hot to comfortably wash your hands in, you should not soak a brush in it. 

Clumping tips is fairly normal otherwise, and as long as the brush is working properly and not shedding, you are good.

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 04-23-2016, 12:35 PM
#10
  • Mr_Smartepants
  • Senior Member
  • Cambridgeshire, UK (CONUS post address)
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(04-19-2016, 11:50 AM)Smoothie Wrote:  I clean the brush in borax every week or two.  

Borax every week?  That's FAR too often.  I do the borax treatment maybe once every 6 months IF I see some limescale buildup.

Clumping/hooked tips sounds great.  I'll take it off your hands if it really bothers you. Wink

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