09-17-2012, 03:23 AM
#1
User Info
............if this hair was offered as an inferior grade to their 'Best', I'd believe them!

Now, before I get yelled at by the Manchurian fans, let me discuss my rationale here. Smile

To me, badger hair grades (arbitrary as they may be) are based on the fineness of the hair and the tips. Pure has thick tips, because it can be trimmed, and it tends to be scritchy. Best has finer hair, with finer tips. Super has the finest hair, with the finest, and softest tips. That's why a lot of makers will list 2-band as a lower grade than Super (or silvertip): it has thicker hair.

Among the Simpsons grades, I find 2-band Super and Best to suit my tastes the best. Regular Super is too fine and the knots are too dense for my tastes.

When I got my first Manchurian brush, I noticed that the hairs were coarser than 2-band, and (importantly) that the tips were coarser as well. The thick hairs gave the knots some backbone, and they also resulted in a slight drop in density of the knot, making the flow through better than the Super, for example.

So, if you like the thicker, scritchier tips, then the Manchurian brushes are actually going to suit your tastes better than Super.

That being said, the Manchurian hair is coarser than any of the other grades, except Pure. If they had marketed it as a lower grade than Best, I'd have believed them. The genius of their marketing strategy was to market it as a rare, super-premium grade, and to hike the prices to the stratosphere. If someone shells out $300 for a brush, they're not likely to want to think of the hair in it as being inferior..........making their satisfaction guaranteed.

Yes, I've read all the speculation about what makes this hair grade rare, but that means little. I think that Ben alone has bought enough of the Manchurian brushes to exhaust the original lot of hair that Mark said he had, but the brushes keep coming.

So, perhaps the hair is not that rare, after all.

In a similar vein, while several manufacturers were designating 2-band as a lower grade than Silvertip, Simpsons called it 2-band Super and kept the prices at the same level as Super. Again, a stroke of marketing genius. Why designate it as a lower grade when your customers are perfectly happy to believe that it is a higher grade? Of course, you sell it for more too.

I originally thought that my opinion of the Manchurian hair was coloured by the fact that I had one of the Simfix Pearlescent brushes, and I was reluctant to buy a genuine Simpsons Manchurian, because I wasn't enamored with the hair. However, several generous forum members lent me their Simpsons Manchurian brushes, and my opinion didn't change.

Also, I can prettily easily afford to buy a couple of the models I like, so it's not a case of sour grapes.

Anyway, this is a personal choice, and there are certainly a lot of happy Manchurian owners.

For me, Best is best!

37 1,731
Reply
 09-17-2012, 04:19 AM
#2
  • VTMAX
  • Banned
  • Woodstock, Vermont
User Info
Yohann, I tend to agree. I own a couple Manchurians and a few Rooney Finests. Great lather but scritchy and can leave the face a bit raw at times. I prefer the Somerset Simpson two bands and the three band supers Mark produces. One of those ymmv things.

42 1,041
Reply
 09-17-2012, 04:26 AM
#3
User Info
Great post of your thoughts Yohann.

I totally know where your coming from.

For me, it's all about 2 band super then best.

7 1,179
Reply
 09-17-2012, 05:33 AM
#4
User Info
YMMV Cool

Mark

1 630
Reply
 09-17-2012, 06:42 AM
#5
  • Teiste
  • Moderator Emeritus
  • Salt Lake City,UT
User Info
(09-17-2012, 05:33 AM)Simpson1919 Wrote: YMMV Cool

Mark

Mark,how are you? From what badger species does the Manchurian badger comes?.Thanks.

Yohann : thanks a lot for writing your inputs/thoughts about this kind of badger hair.I have a T3 Manchurian coming my way and Ill see how much I like it , but I do value your opinion a lot.

86 7,123
Reply
 09-17-2012, 07:31 AM
#6
  • TexBilly
  • Moderator Emeritus
  • Austin, TX
User Info
Yohann - thanks for your honest appraisal. I don't yet own a Manchurian but your review actually increases my motivation to try one out someday since we all have varying preferences and tastes (although I tend to lean the same way as you). I really appreciate the "balance" you've provided! Cool

35 2,703
Reply
 09-17-2012, 07:46 AM
#7
User Info
Thanks for the frank input, Yohann. i, like, Billy am still interesting in trying one, maybe, someday.

75 20,883
Reply
 09-17-2012, 08:43 AM
#8
User Info
well, I'm one of the happy Manchurian owners... YMMV, after all some people think the Rooney Finest to be God's gift, yet others find them far too scritchy...... can't win 'em all, which is part of the fun, I guess... :-)

0 235
Reply
 09-17-2012, 09:09 AM
#9
  • beartrap
  • Resident Цирюльник
  • Southern California
User Info
Well, I thought this review would discourage me from trying Manchurian, but it turns out that I want to try it even more now Biggrin

88 4,233
Reply
 09-17-2012, 09:14 AM
#10
  • Johnny
  • Super Moderator
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
User Info
To manchurian, or not to manchurian, that is the question:
Whether 'tis Nobler in the mind of shavers
The Slings and Arrows of outrageous Badger,
Or to take Arms against a Sea of brushes,
And by opposing end them:

YMMV

Nice write up Yohann.

173 23,490
Reply
 09-17-2012, 09:21 AM
#11
User Info
It sounds like a brilliant marketing scheme to me. Nice insights. Best is best to me.

97 615
Reply
 09-17-2012, 09:31 AM
#12
User Info
I've always said that the manchurian hair was a distinct grade from the other Simpsons offerings. So it really is a YMMV thing, as Mark said.

If it works for you, that's all that matters. I actually find it to be okay.

I'll wait to see if the Chinese brush makers start offering it, as I suspect that it's not all that rare.

While I don't blame Simpsons for selling it at the prices they do (they're a business, and I love the knots they tie), I do think it's way overpriced.

37 1,731
Reply
 09-17-2012, 10:22 AM
#13
User Info
Demand & Supply... I cannot stand the scritchy variety so if at all a Simpson brush then a 2 band... At least for me ....

31 1,554
Reply
 09-17-2012, 10:35 AM
#14
  • Teiste
  • Moderator Emeritus
  • Salt Lake City,UT
User Info
(09-17-2012, 09:31 AM)yohannrjm Wrote: I've always said that the manchurian hair was a distinct grade from the other Simpsons offerings. So it really is a YMMV thing, as Mark said.

If it works for you, that's all that matters. I actually find it to be okay.

I'll wait to see if the Chinese brush makers start offering it, as I suspect that it's not all that rare.

While I don't blame Simpsons for selling it at the prices they do (they're a business, and I love the knots they tie), I do think it's way overpriced.


Well,that might happen before you even think...

86 7,123
Reply
 09-17-2012, 10:51 AM
#15
User Info
I cannot find fault in any of the logic or statements of fact in the OP or his subsequent post.

I also cannot dispute Mark's YMMV statement as clearly there are at least a few dozen very vociferous people who tout the virtues of the Manchurian hair.

I've already stated my opinion of the brush that Simpsons sent my way in another thread.

9 2,988
Reply
 09-17-2012, 01:35 PM
#16
User Info
Well, I have no doubt that the principal players in this thread are all sincere and above board.

Obviously, it's definitely a YMMV item.

There are many factors that are involved in the price of a brush, scarcity being first and foremost is my understanding, not neccessarily quality of the hair.

Hey, gotta run. Making pizza tonight and the dough and oven are ready.

32 6,308
Reply
 09-18-2012, 03:32 AM
#17
User Info
i learn manchurian term with simpson company and i have only one pL 10 manchurian badger from genuine orginal manchurian badger brush maker so im very happy with this brush except its price Smile
Before and after this manchurian badger i bought many shaving brushes and manufacturers calling their hair type manchurian as well. im sure that they are all from manchurian zone but totally different types. here im adding all my manchurian badgers for your opinion.
FS manchurian ,Lijun manchurian and last ones from the hebei provence and called their hair type hmw manchurian .. it looks real manchurian isnt it ?
Regards.

Attached Files Image(s)
                       

3 369
Reply
 09-18-2012, 08:35 AM
#18
  • Teiste
  • Moderator Emeritus
  • Salt Lake City,UT
User Info
What I want to know if that Manchurian badger comes from the Meles Meles (less likely) or the Hog Badger (more likely).I know that its a long hair (over 70mm) but from what type of badger?Thats my question...Rolleyes

86 7,123
Reply
 09-18-2012, 09:19 AM
#19
User Info
And here I thought Lijun was at least above the marketing crap....

For the record Frank Shaving the company doesn't call it Manchurian, only that one ebay seller calls it Manchurian. So, while FS may or may not deserve some dirt being thrown at them, I'm afraid I must defend them on this one particular issue.

Now, whether that one seller is a spokesperson for FS, I don't know, but I kind of doubt it.

In fact, I'm fairly certain both Ian Tang and the other guy are both just resellers and the FS factory is probably called something like Hebei Cosmetics and Brush Co. (I made that up, don't google it).

9 2,988
Reply
 09-18-2012, 10:35 AM
#20
  • GreekGuy
  • Not saving money yet....
  • La Jolla, CA
User Info
Yohann,

Thank you for the interesting and well thought out post.

I completely understand your perspective on the matter, but I would like to interject briefly in defense of Simpson's.

What makes the Manchurian different with regards to pricing is the feel of the hair. It is very comparable to the 2-band, but with some added scritch. Now, normally scritch is associated with lower quality hair, but as I'm sure you know, there are many wet shavers who love the feel. In fact, finding brushes with scritch but not scratch is no easy task. The best example of this is the now legendary Rooney Finest. In many ways, I feel the Manchurian is designed to compete with those brushes. I have no idea if there are still Rooney/M&F brushes still being made in Finest, but I know Lee Sabini has stated that the hair used for them is difficult to source and costs 3x's as much as the next grade down. I think this makes sense, but I know some will disagree with the validity so I don't want to belabor this point.

Clearly Simpson's marketing strategy has worked. I think wet shavers sometimes have a negative view of marketing, but the reality is that its an important part of any business, wetshaving ones included. I for one really enjoy the Manchurian hair, and while I wish it were cheaper, I think it does offer a, dare I say better, alternative to the 2-band. I do agree that it is on the flat side of the price/return line, but out of all the simpson brushes I've tried, I personally find it to be the one best suited to my preferences. Whether its "worth" the premium over 2-band, however, is personal discretion.

9 541
Reply
Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)