02-23-2017, 04:21 PM
#1
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Hello,
       I'm considering purchasing my first shaving brush. I've pretty much narrowed it down to a horse hair brush. However, I'm not certain what kind of horse hair shaving brush I should try first. Any suggestions or pointers on picking out a good quality one would be appreciated.
Thanks

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 02-23-2017, 04:27 PM
#2
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Have you checked out the stuff from vie long? Very reasonably priced, several varieties of horse hair.

Edit: I agree, horse hair wouldn't be my first choice either. I'd go synthetic first.

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 02-23-2017, 04:28 PM
#3
  • Barrylu
  • Senior Member
  • Portland OR
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(02-23-2017, 04:21 PM)punchy Wrote: Hello,
       I'm considering purchasing my first shaving brush. I've pretty much narrowed it down to a horse hair brush. However, I'm not certain what kind of horse hair shaving brush I should try first. Any suggestions or pointers on picking out a good quality one would be appreciated.
Thanks

Horse hair would not be my first preference. However, if you are sure you want a horse hair Vie Long brushes are the some of the best horse hair brushes around.

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 02-23-2017, 04:37 PM
#4
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I'm agreeing with the guys above, my buddy has a brown hair epsilon horse hair from vie long in the 50mm loft and its a great brush. Has nice media density and its one of the softest tipped brushes I've used.

But in all honesty as a first brush I'm not sure I'd recommend horse hair, I'd consider synthetic or a stirling finest 2 band. I'm a big 2 band guy so Id personally be going with stirling 2 band finest, the knots are a complete steal at the price of $40 and under

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 02-23-2017, 04:45 PM
#5
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(02-23-2017, 04:27 PM)NickMach007 Wrote: Have you checked out the stuff from vie long? Very reasonably priced, several varieties of horse hair.

Edit: I agree, horse hair wouldn't be my first choice either. I'd go synthetic first.

I was thinking of trying a synthetic brush for my first one. But I'm trying to get away from buying unnatural products as I have allergies I have to deal with and keep in mind.

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 02-23-2017, 04:50 PM
#6
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(02-23-2017, 04:37 PM)Safelysimpson Wrote: I'm agreeing with the guys above, my buddy has a brown hair epsilon horse hair from vie long in the 50mm loft and its a great brush. Has nice media density and its one of the softest tipped brushes I've used.

But in all honesty as a first brush I'm not sure I'd recommend horse hair, I'd consider synthetic or a stirling finest 2 band. I'm a big 2 band guy so Id personally be going with stirling 2 band finest, the knots are a complete steal at the price of $40 and under

What's the difference between a synthetic and a "2 band" brush?

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 02-23-2017, 04:50 PM
#7
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I would go with a synthetic. You can get a RazoRock or an Omega at very good prices. I think there would be less chance of it affecting your allergies based on what they are made from.

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 02-23-2017, 04:51 PM
#8
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(02-23-2017, 04:50 PM)punchy Wrote:
(02-23-2017, 04:37 PM)Safelysimpson Wrote: I'm agreeing with the guys above, my buddy has a brown hair epsilon horse hair from vie long in the 50mm loft and its a great brush. Has nice media density and its one of the softest tipped brushes I've used.

But in all honesty as a first brush I'm not sure I'd recommend horse hair, I'd consider synthetic or a stirling finest 2 band. I'm a big 2 band guy so Id personally be going with stirling 2 band finest, the knots are a complete steal at the price of $40 and under

What's the difference between a synthetic and a "2 band" brush?

2 band is a badger brush.

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 02-23-2017, 05:07 PM
#9
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Yeah, honestly you are not going to have allergies from a synth brush. It is inert material. I'd recommend a black wolf knot, or the RazoRock Silvertip Plissoft.

Sent from my SM-N920P using Tapatalk

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 02-23-2017, 05:19 PM
#10
  • grantmm
  • Friend of the Badgers
  • Draper, Utah
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With badger brushes you will find that people usually refer to the style of badger by how many visible color lines there are.  For example, this would be considered a 3 band due to a top (light), middle (dark) and bottom (light) section:

[Image: 8297c571ba149dce6d3ec4281c93c199.jpg]
(found via google images)

This would be considered a 2-band due to the top (light) and bottom (dark) coloration:

[Image: MF-2-band-02.jpg]
(also found via google images)

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 02-23-2017, 05:33 PM
#11
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Okay, thanks for the tips. It sounds like I would be better off starting out with a synthetic brush instead of a horse hair brush because of my allergies. So I'll go in that direction. 

   Are there any 'hypoallergenic' synthetic brush's available by chance?

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 02-23-2017, 05:37 PM
#12
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(02-23-2017, 04:50 PM)punchy Wrote:
(02-23-2017, 04:37 PM)Safelysimpson Wrote: I'm agreeing with the guys above, my buddy has a brown hair epsilon horse hair from vie long in the 50mm loft and its a great brush. Has nice media density and its one of the softest tipped brushes I've used.

But in all honesty as a first brush I'm not sure I'd recommend horse hair, I'd consider synthetic or a stirling finest 2 band. I'm a big 2 band guy so Id personally be going with stirling 2 band finest, the knots are a complete steal at the price of $40 and under

What's the difference between a synthetic and a "2 band" brush?

2 band is a form of badger hair. They tend to have resiliency and aren't quite as 'mushy' or 'floppy' as a silvertip brush but when done properly can still have  just as soft tips. If your not allergic to badger hair I would highly recommend the stirling finest fan brush. I purchased one for my father for Christmas, after test lathering it I would have been satisfying paying a heck of a lot more than $40. Soft tips, nice backbone and a quality handle. I've read good things about the other stirling finest brushes but have no first hand experience with those.

Synthetics to me are a bit awkward, they've either been too floppy or too much backbone and a bit awkward to face lather, which is my preference. A lot of members really enjoy them though and you can get one at a very reasonable price , however no product is worth using if it causes an allergic reaction

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 02-23-2017, 05:41 PM
#13
  • MaxP
  • Senior Member
  • Madison, WI
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I quite enjoy threads like this. It's great to see so many really helpful recommendations.

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 02-23-2017, 06:20 PM
#14
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Dear Punchy;

I went from a $18 pure badger, to a $70 silvertip, to a $160 two band! If i were you, i would save the $88 and go straight for the best stuff.

I am not saying that a synthetic or a horse brush does not work. What i am saying is that the deeper you go into wet shaving, the more you will enjoy it. Therefore, in the future, you will see the prices from a different perspective. I commend you for having the wisdom to post the question. Now, if you post a question like: what is the price of your favorite brush?, or; if you could only have one, what brush would you own? I bet the average price will be north of $200. So, i suggest to go for it, instead of spending a lot in your way there.

Of course, anyone can object: how will he know the difference if he does not try the other stuff? Well, that is true. I just wanted to tell you that the essence of this hobbie is the journey...

Best regards,

Pepe Peña


P. D. How will you know if you are allergic to badger if you dont try it. In that regard, horse is no different. And, if you ever display an allergy to something, 99% of the time it will be the soap, not the brush.




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 02-23-2017, 07:03 PM
#15
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Maggard's and Stirling have a great selection that won't break the bank for your first brush. For under $20 at Maggard's and they're great to work with.  Cool

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 02-23-2017, 07:14 PM
#16
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I'm still voting for a synth. I now own a wolfman razor, several custom brushes, at least one unobtanium soap and I still prefer synths over badgers. My point being not everyone progresses to badgers. So, ultimately you will just need to try things out and see what you like. That's why I say start with an affordable (synth) brush.

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 02-23-2017, 07:46 PM
#17
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(02-23-2017, 04:28 PM)Barrylu Wrote:
(02-23-2017, 04:21 PM)punchy Wrote: Hello,
       I'm considering purchasing my first shaving brush. I've pretty much narrowed it down to a horse hair brush. However, I'm not certain what kind of horse hair shaving brush I should try first. Any suggestions or pointers on picking out a good quality one would be appreciated.
Thanks

Horse hair would not be my first preference. However, if you are sure you want a horse hair Vie Long brushes are the some of the best horse hair brushes around.

What would be your preference then for a first "beginners" brush?

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 02-23-2017, 07:59 PM
#18
  • EricM
  • Senior Member
  • Encinitas, CA
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A Simpson Commodore x3 is a great brush for $80.  You'll get a lot of mileage out of it.  I'd take it over a horse hair or synthetic brush any day of the week.

Eric

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 02-23-2017, 08:08 PM
#19
  • Barrylu
  • Senior Member
  • Portland OR
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(02-23-2017, 07:46 PM)punchy Wrote:
(02-23-2017, 04:28 PM)Barrylu Wrote:
(02-23-2017, 04:21 PM)punchy Wrote: Hello,
       I'm considering purchasing my first shaving brush. I've pretty much narrowed it down to a horse hair brush. However, I'm not certain what kind of horse hair shaving brush I should try first. Any suggestions or pointers on picking out a good quality one would be appreciated.
Thanks

Horse hair would not be my first preference. However, if you are sure you want a horse hair Vie Long brushes are the some of the best horse hair brushes around.

What would be your preference then for a first "beginners" brush?
This might be a bit long winded but worth it. I started as most people did in this shaving endeavor. I bought inexpensive items which had no re-sale value. As I got more and more involved I kept buying more and more expensive equipment. Some of it was not re-sellable some of the better stuff I could get some of my money back on re-sale. The bottom line became that the more expensive stuff yielded better more enjoyable shaves at a lower price point than the cheap stuff. Eventually I found my favorites and for the most part they are of the more expensive items.
Now to the long winded part. This is a story my father told me (he could be a bit long winded). The tale helps prove my point.
Every night a man heard his neighbor's dog whine and cry in pain. Finally, he could not stand hearing the dogs cry's as he was obviously being tortured by his neighbor. He banged on the offending neighbors door and threatened to call the police if he continued to torture his dog. The neighbor responded Oh you do not understand. I love my dog very much and do not want to hurt him in the worse way. However, he needs his tail docked and I can't hurt him. So as to avoid hurting him too much every night I cut a small piece of his tail off.
My point save money and grief . Get the most out of your new hobby and get the best you can afford from the beginning.

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 02-23-2017, 08:44 PM
#20
  • DJL813
  • Senior Member
  • Darien, CT
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I agree with what many have said...I can also tell you that I own too many brushes including Wiborg, Paladin, Rooney, Simpson and Shavemac....in addition I own several Wolf Whiskers brushes with synthetic knots and personally, I prefer my WW Synthetic over any of the other brushes in the stable as a daily driver....it's hard to get your hands on a Wolf Whiskers but Nathan at Envy Shaves has a real nice selection of brushes with a Black Wolf or Ubersoft II Synthetic knot....his brushes are reasonably priced and these knots are wonderful for both face and bowl lathering and will last provided you use proper care....before, during and after each use.....just my 2 cents.

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