08-29-2012, 06:31 PM
#1
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Good evening all!

If you'll pardon a bit of redundancy from the Introductions Forum, my name is Paul, I'm from Cincinnati, Ohio and I've just recently stumbled into the world of wet shaving.

Since I'm completely new to all of this, I'm wondering if anyone out there might be able to offer some direction on the subject of brushes?

Here's my predicament:

I had been leaning towards one of a few different Simpson models, but after reading Teiste's "The Best Brush For The Money Is..." thread (That guy puts in some serious work by the way! Thanks, Teiste!), I'm now thinking about the Vulfix 404 Grosvenor. Since I'm not sure if I'm going to prefer creams or soaps, face or bowl lathering, etc., and since it's a bit less expensive than some of its Simpson counterparts, I thought it might make sense to go the more economical route in the beginning.

Is this being short-sighted? Would I be better off spending the money up front? What do the good folks at the 'Nook have to say?

One last thought, and I'm not sure if this factors into the decision or not, but I do tend have fairly sensitive skin.

All the help is GREATLY appreciated! Thanks a million!

- Paul

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 08-29-2012, 06:33 PM
#2
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This might be a good read:
The Difference Between High End and Low Cost Brushes

And, spending the money upfront is a better option than skimping. That said, you're paying way more for the Simpson name than a huge bump in quality vs. other brands.

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 08-29-2012, 07:02 PM
#3
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My first brush that was a good all rounder was the Frank Shaving Finest. For < $30 shipped it was a great deal for me.

However, with this being your first brush I'd recommend a Muhle Black Fibre. Great with both soaps & creams; it can lather anything. It produces a very creamy lather & has a very small learning curve.

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 08-29-2012, 07:21 PM
#4
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My first brush was an inexpensive VDH boar. It was good enough to learn with before spending lots of $ upfront. I was like a sponge on the forums, just soaking up information before deciding what i wanted to spend serious money on.

BTW, even so I wound up spending lots of money to try various brushes, so no matter what you buy, you'll wind up spending more $ anyway.

I find I can use any brush with any product, it's all in knowing how to wield the tool.

I used to have as my signature,"It's not the bow, it's the Indian.". I still believe that.

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 08-29-2012, 07:25 PM
#5
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Hello, Paul. It depends if you are bowl or face-lathering.
If you have sensitive skin, i would highly recommend the Frank Shaving Synthetic brush as it is a very inexpensive an great lather producer. They do make some fine badger brushes also.
Semogue boars are very nice also. Just so many great brushes out there, really, to answer your question. Have fun acquiring them. Hee hee.
One other thing i would highly recommend for your sensitive skin is Organic Unrefined Shea Butter as the final moisturizer. Fantastic stuff. Good luck to you.

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 08-29-2012, 07:33 PM
#6
  • gijames
  • Mile High Soldier
  • TN, USA
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I know that my second brush, Vulfix 660S medium has enough packing of hair that its backbone is not floppy.

It has soft tips, does extremely well with creams, and croaps.

Handles hard soaps well too. It can be used to face lather, but is definitely better in the bowl/mug/scuttle.

Won't break the bank, and quality hair!

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 08-29-2012, 07:43 PM
#7
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Seems like the more I learn, the more I find out I don't know! Blush

Thanks all!

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 08-29-2012, 07:58 PM
#8
  • Teiste
  • Moderator Emeritus
  • Salt Lake City,UT
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To be honest, if you dont know if youe gonna prefer bowl lathering over face lathering ,or soaps over creams , i will recommend you an "all rounder" brush like the Simpson Duke 3 best badger , the Semogue SOC two band or 1305 ,the Wet Shaving Products stubby (less firm backbone) silvertip, or a Muhle 21 mm silvertip fibre brush.
The Vulfix 404 Grosvenor is a very good brush for its price too but I wont consider it an "all rounder" brush like the other,but for sure would do the job.

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 08-29-2012, 08:02 PM
#9
  • Theido
  • Shave Stick Proponent
  • Colorado
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There are a lot of cost effective brushes out there that you can pick up and learn with.

I've coming up with on my 1 year wet shaving anniversary and have yet to own a brush over $30.

Will I eventually get high quality Simpson? Yes, but for now I enjoy the world of Semogues and Omega boars, to be honest my favorite brush is a $9 Omega.

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 08-29-2012, 10:15 PM
#10
  • Johnny
  • Super Moderator
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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I don't normally disagree with my friend Teiste, but on the Vulfix 404 mixed, I do. I think it is an excellent all round brush, good for both bowl or face lathering. It works equally as well with hard soaps or creams.

Vulfix also makes another excellent line of inexpensive boar brushes.

But, if you want a good inexpensive brush that will do it all, get the Semogue 1460. It is a work horse.

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 08-30-2012, 02:14 AM
#11
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Paul, can you give us a idea on how much you are willing to spend? I know you listed Simpson's you are looking at, which models.

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 08-30-2012, 08:20 AM
#12
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(08-30-2012, 02:14 AM)Slim-65 Wrote: Paul, can you give us a idea on how much you are willing to spend? I know you listed Simpson's you are looking at, which models.

Slim-65 -

I was originally looking at either the Special, the Colonel or the Commodore (X2 or X3). They seem to range between $45 and $90, give or take, but I was really looking to stay in the $40 to $60 range if at all possible. (Again, I don't want to be "penny wise and pound foolish" here either.)

Thanks for all the help!

- Paul

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 08-30-2012, 10:00 AM
#13
  • mikeperry
  • Senior Member
  • St Louis via the UK
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(08-30-2012, 08:20 AM)Boti2634 Wrote: I was originally looking at either the Special, the Colonel or the Commodore (X2 or X3). They seem to range between $45 and $90, give or take, but I was really looking to stay in the $40 to $60 range if at all possible. (Again, I don't want to be "penny wise and pound foolish" here either.)

Hi Paul

While I don't own a New Forest brush at this time, I can (highly) recommend you take a look at them... Personally I am planning to treat myself to 1 out of the following 3 brushes: If you decide to go with a Simpsons (I'd be surprised if you ended up disappointed with whatever one you choose) may I suggest you at least take a look at the Berkeley 46 Best Badger...

Good luck and fingers-crossed you enjoy whatever shaving brush you end up with Smile

Take care, Mike

Edit: "choose" not "chose".

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 08-30-2012, 10:01 AM
#14
  • xraygun
  • Active Member
  • Bainbridge Island
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A Simpsons Berkeley 46 in Best is a great starting point.

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 08-30-2012, 10:42 AM
#15
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Simpsons best gets a lot of love. Personally haven't tried it yet as super silvertip is my cup of tea.

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 08-30-2012, 11:58 AM
#16
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I agree with Tieste, that if you don't know whether you prefer face or bowl lathering you can't really decide what you want at this point. Decide that and we can help you more.

The Simpsons mentioned are all good brushes, but IMO the smaller brushes are better for face lathering. If I was going to bowl lather (not on a bet! BTDT) I'd want a larger handle and knot to keep me out of the bowl and to better facilitate lathering.

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 08-30-2012, 12:33 PM
#17
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(08-30-2012, 11:58 AM)ShadowsDad Wrote: I agree with Tieste, that if you don't know whether you prefer face or bowl lathering you can't really decide what you want at this point. Decide that and we can help you more.

The Simpsons mentioned are all good brushes, but IMO the smaller brushes are better for face lathering. If I was going to bowl lather (not on a bet! BTDT) I'd want a larger handle and knot to keep me out of the bowl and to better facilitate lathering.

Good point, ShadowsDad.

I think I've decided to start out with bowl lathering instead of face lathering and using creams vs. soaps. (No particular reason why really, I just figure at some point I've gotta' jump in with both feet so it might as well be there!)

All that being said, and keeping in mind that I do tend to have sensitive skin, any additional thoughts on a decent brush that lends itself well to bowl lathering with creams?

Thanks again to everyone, and by the way, this place is awesome!!

- Paul

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 08-30-2012, 12:47 PM
#18
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Paul,
For 40 to 60 dollars you can get a fantastic brush. Many guys used 10 dollar tweezermans for years (and still do). I have a friend who's fond of saying that you can get a good lather on soaps and creams with a hairbrush if you know what you're doing.

Boars, badgers and horse all make excellent brushes, but were I you, I would get a badger first. My limited experience with boars was unpleasant since I don't like scritch. Others here will tell you, probably correctly, that their broken-in boars are as soft as silvertip badgers and that may be true. All I would say is that my worst badger was softer than my best boar (hmmm, one exception to that). Also, we're seeing a fair number of restores come up on the BST with TGN knots which probably represent the best value in the market for Badger and seldom cost more than 30 or 40 bucks for a very good brush.

I won't recommend horse though I love my BGS Horsies. People seem split on them. Same with Boar. Everyone loves badger though many give up badger later because they believe they get better value elsewhere. I've yet to hear anyone say that Badger hair itself was no good, just that it was not a good value.

just my .02cents. Do what feels good and we'll help you along.
oake

(08-30-2012, 12:33 PM)Boti2634 Wrote:
(08-30-2012, 11:58 AM)ShadowsDad Wrote: I agree with Tieste, that if you don't know whether you prefer face or bowl lathering you can't really decide what you want at this point. Decide that and we can help you more.

The Simpsons mentioned are all good brushes, but IMO the smaller brushes are better for face lathering. If I was going to bowl lather (not on a bet! BTDT) I'd want a larger handle and knot to keep me out of the bowl and to better facilitate lathering.

Good point, ShadowsDad.

I think I've decided to start out with bowl lathering instead of face lathering and using creams vs. soaps. (No particular reason why really, I just figure at some point I've gotta' jump in with both feet so it might as well be there!)

All that being said, and keeping in mind that I do tend to have sensitive skin, any additional thoughts on a decent brush that lends itself well to bowl lathering with creams?

Thanks again to everyone, and by the way, this place is awesome!!

- Paul

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 08-30-2012, 12:56 PM
#19
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Bowl lathering with cream is so easy. Any brush will work.

Just my opinion.

That said, longer lofted brushes can really whip up that cream into a huge frothy bowl o' cream. Long loft + high density = fun with cream in a bowl.

A little hard to face lather with if the density isn't enough to give the brush more backbone though. Not impossible though.

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