05-03-2018, 04:27 PM
#1
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Nearly a year ago I got a Frank silvertip which I really like. It's a great brush for face lathering. But lately it has started to lose several hairs per shave. Is that normal?

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 05-03-2018, 04:52 PM
#2
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No.

I think a year is not acceptable. There's lots of questions and answers and at the end of the day it's been a year. Was it used roughly for example. Did you let it dry out? Is it your fault basically or the manufacturer's? No one can say one way or the other.

Frank Shaving isn't exactly the tip top of the brush brand heap. 

Where'd you buy it from?

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 05-04-2018, 09:28 AM
#3
  • SCOV
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  • Minnesota
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My first brush purchase was a $12 NOS badger (made by very well known company) and I picked up a tube of Proraso cream.  The tube of cream outlasted the brush.  I assumed if hot water was good, really scalding hot was better.  I am also guessing the quality and care of the brush before my purchase was not "the best."




I am not sure why brushes shed as they age. I would also not expect a "Franks Badger" useful life to be as long as a higher end brush.  Use the brush until lathering becomes a problem - then Bullgoose or B/S/T.  I vaguely recall Father's Day sales and discounts.

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 05-04-2018, 11:13 AM
#4
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But you know, I've had high end brushes(a shavemac) that has shed and low end(Stirling--2 of them) that shed one hair on the first shave between them and then no more shedding for the past year and a half

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 05-04-2018, 11:23 AM
#5
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(05-04-2018, 11:13 AM)bkatbamna Wrote: But you know, I've had high end brushes(a shavemac) that has shed and low end(Stirling--2 of them) that shed one hair on the first shave between them and then no more shedding for the past year and a half

Me too. My Shavemac has shed like a Sled dog on a Miami beach. From the first shave 2 years ago and continues today.
My least shedding has been my Vie-Long silvertip. But HOT water is Bad for a Badger brush.... Nono

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 05-04-2018, 12:00 PM
#6
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I've also had shedding WSP brushes and a Geo F. Trumper brush(their most expensive and biggest one).  None of the Paladin or Declaration have.  Neither has the M&F brush.

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 05-05-2018, 12:47 PM
#7
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(05-03-2018, 04:27 PM)Ilnones Wrote: Nearly a year ago I got a Frank silvertip which I really like. It's a great brush for face lathering. But lately it has started to lose several hairs per shave. Is that normal?

A brush losing a few hairs after a period of time can be the result of soap buildup on the hair.  The thing is:  soap has a high ph which can attack the fibers causing them to break.  An easy test is to run your fingers through the dry knot.  If a cloud of dust appears, that's probably the problem.  My preferred solution is to shampoo your brush a couple times in warm water with a good quality hair shampoo with conditioner.  Then rinse the brush very thoroughly until the water runs clear.  Allow the brush to dry for a few days in a relatively dry environment.  Then lightly comb it out.  That process should remove most of the "dead"/broken hairs.  You may still get some hair loss for a shave or two; but this process will generally solve the problem.

If that doesn't solve the problem, I would just pitch the brush.  If this process didn't correct the problem on a more expensive brush, I would contact the maker; but FS is a relatively inexpensive brush so you shouldn't be out a lot of money.

For the record, I like to shampoo my brushes periodically as a maintenance effort.  (I know some folks like to rinse their brushes in vinegar.  I'm just not crazy about putting acid on a brush for fear of damaging the knot.  But that's another conversation.)

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 05-05-2018, 01:01 PM
#8
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(05-05-2018, 12:47 PM)BSWoodturning Wrote:
(05-03-2018, 04:27 PM)Ilnones Wrote: Nearly a year ago I got a Frank silvertip which I really like. It's a great brush for face lathering. But lately it has started to lose several hairs per shave. Is that normal?

A brush losing a few hairs after a period of time can be the result of soap buildup on the hair.  The thing is:  soap has a high ph which can attack the fibers causing them to break.  An easy test is to run your fingers through the dry knot.  If a cloud of dust appears, that's probably the problem.  My preferred solution is to shampoo your brush a couple times in warm water with a good quality hair shampoo with conditioner.  Then rinse the brush very thoroughly until the water runs clear.  Allow the brush to dry for a few days in a relatively dry environment.  Then lightly comb it out.  That process should remove most of the "dead"/broken hairs.  You may still get some hair loss for a shave or two; but this process will generally solve the problem.

If that doesn't solve the problem, I would just pitch the brush.  If this process didn't correct the problem on a more expensive brush, I would contact the maker; but FS is a relatively inexpensive brush so you shouldn't be out a lot of money.

For the record, I like to shampoo my brushes periodically as a maintenance effort.  (I know some folks like to rinse their brushes in vinegar.  I'm just not crazy about putting acid on a brush for fear of damaging the knot.  But that's another conversation.)

That is interesting Brad.  Soaking in a water and vinegar solution is a commonly suggested method for cleaning brushes.  Now you have me thinking about that.

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 05-06-2018, 11:52 AM
#9
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(05-05-2018, 01:01 PM)TheLegalRazor Wrote:
(05-05-2018, 12:47 PM)BSWoodturning Wrote:
(05-03-2018, 04:27 PM)Ilnones Wrote: Nearly a year ago I got a Frank silvertip which I really like. It's a great brush for face lathering. But lately it has started to lose several hairs per shave. Is that normal?

A brush losing a few hairs after a period of time can be the result of soap buildup on the hair.  The thing is:  soap has a high ph which can attack the fibers causing them to break.  An easy test is to run your fingers through the dry knot.  If a cloud of dust appears, that's probably the problem.  My preferred solution is to shampoo your brush a couple times in warm water with a good quality hair shampoo with conditioner.  Then rinse the brush very thoroughly until the water runs clear.  Allow the brush to dry for a few days in a relatively dry environment.  Then lightly comb it out.  That process should remove most of the "dead"/broken hairs.  You may still get some hair loss for a shave or two; but this process will generally solve the problem.

If that doesn't solve the problem, I would just pitch the brush.  If this process didn't correct the problem on a more expensive brush, I would contact the maker; but FS is a relatively inexpensive brush so you shouldn't be out a lot of money.

For the record, I like to shampoo my brushes periodically as a maintenance effort.  (I know some folks like to rinse their brushes in vinegar.  I'm just not crazy about putting acid on a brush for fear of damaging the knot.  But that's another conversation.)

That is interesting Brad.  Soaking in a water and vinegar solution is a commonly suggested method for cleaning brushes.  Now you have me thinking about that.


First of all, I know many folks are invested in the vinegar cleaning process; so I am not trying to start an argument.  That said:  I thought long and hard before adding my last comment because I'm sure soaking in vinegar and water can offset the effects of the alkalies in soap; otherwise, it wouldn't be such a widespread brush cleaning method.  The question, at least for me, is where to draw the line.  Said differently:  at what point does the cure kill the patient?

My thinking is that animal hair is, after all, hair.  Given that simple fact, it begs the question:  would I wash my hair in vinegar?  

On the flip side, women's hair product commercials going back as far as I can remember have always emphasized conditioning in order to minimize brittleness resulting from dried-out hair.  I'm not a scientist and not qualified to speak to the minutia of what happens when I wash my hair, but to me it only makes sense to take the very best care I can of my brushes.  So if shampoo with conditioner works on women's hair, why not on brushes?  To that end, I've always used the shampoo process on all of my brushes and have yet to experience the problem that started this conversation.  At the same time, I've suggested this approach to several fellows who were experiencing delayed shedding problems, and it has worked every time.  

Reality check.  Is shampooing a brush a cure-all?  Probably not.  Defective knots can crop up in even the best brushes; so each case should be treated on its merits.  Certainly, if someone wrote me about a problem with one of our knots that suddenly cropped up after a year or more, I would start with the shampoo recommendation.  If that didn't work, I would want to physically examine the brush and either fix the problem myself or, if the problem persisted, replace the knot. 

Hope that adds some clarity.

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 05-06-2018, 02:06 PM
#10
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In regards to the vinegar discussion, I don't think I have ever read comments suggesting soaking a brush in vinegar but using it when it is diluted with water.

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 05-06-2018, 02:17 PM
#11
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(05-06-2018, 02:06 PM)zaclikestoshave Wrote: In regards to the vinegar discussion, I don't think I have ever read comments suggesting soaking a brush in vinegar but using it when it is diluted with water.

+1. And I recall the objective is more to remove mineral deposits from hard water than scum. But I'm not sure about that. When I started buying expensive brushes, I tried to do a short, 1:5 soak every six months or so but didn't keep that up for very long. None of my brushes gets used much anymore. I'm usually testing knots. I do find that brushes I haven't used for a long time tend to shed one to a few hairs, usually when I palm-brush them before wetting the tips. I suspect that's a result of getting very, very dry, which might result in some breakage; however, I think it also allows loose hairs simply to work free.

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