10-29-2019, 06:40 PM
#1
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As someone who is only now starting to get into shaving more seriously I'm curious to read how long have people kept their favorite brushes as well as what were they made of, preferred brands, rough price, etc.

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 10-29-2019, 09:35 PM
#2
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(10-29-2019, 06:40 PM)Rozbickon Wrote: As someone who is only now starting to get into shaving more seriously I'm curious to read how long have people kept their favorite brushes as well as what were they made of, preferred brands, rough price, etc.
Hi,

I have few threads subscribed to that are worth keeping around for reference.  2 of them are below.

Here is a valuable year long thread that does two things.  Specifically nswers each of your questions while showing there is no answer to your question!

What is your favorite brush for facelathering?

While you are studying paradox...  Might as well look at soap too.

What is Your SINGLE Favorite Soap (Read Carefully)

Both are a great read, I think you'll enjoy them.

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 10-30-2019, 01:22 AM
#3
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An interesting question for sure... Though I'm not sure anyone here has a small enough collection to give you a valuable answer, I suspect the average brush on here will last a lifetime considering it will be just one among dozens in a shavers "rotation".

From what I have seen I expect a natural hair brush knot to last 10 years of moderate use (4-6 uses per week) before being past its best. I've bought a few second hand brushes in the 10-15 year age category and they were all still technically usable but ideally needed reknotting. I expect synthetics last much longer provided the glue does not fail.

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 10-30-2019, 02:01 AM
#4
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The oldest brush I have in my current rotation is the Semogue TSN LE from '12, and it's still in great shape Smile

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 10-30-2019, 04:20 AM
#5
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I'll agree that most of us weirdos have enough brushes in rotation that we may never wear one out.  But I live with a dedicated leg shaver that uses just one brush every other day.  She tried several in boar, badger, and synthetic but settled firmly on a Omega Pro boar.  She rinses well and drys it between uses but MAN does she mash that thing flat when she splays it. Total knot abuse in my eyes.  She's been using that brush for over two years now and it shows very limited wear.  I'm guessing it'll go many more years until she would want to replace it.  So just a guess, her boar will roll through 6 to 8 more years pretty easily.

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 10-30-2019, 05:23 AM
#6
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(10-29-2019, 09:35 PM)old school Wrote: Here is a valuable year long thread that does two things.  Specifically nswers each of your questions while showing there is no answer to your question!

What is your favorite brush for facelathering?

While you are studying paradox...  Might as well look at soap too.

What is Your SINGLE Favorite Soap (Read Carefully)

Both are a great read, I think you'll enjoy them.

Haha thank you for the material. Both fun (and useful) reads. I also appreciate the soap one because although I did make this post about brushes I'm probably more interested in experimenting with them than anything else. And yeah people don't really tout how long they've actually had their brushes in that one thread.


(10-30-2019, 01:22 AM)Rohleder Wrote: An interesting question for sure... Though I'm not sure anyone here has a small enough collection to give you a valuable answer, I suspect the average brush on here will last a lifetime considering it will be just one among dozens in a shavers "rotation".

From what I have seen I expect a natural hair brush knot to last 10 years of moderate use (4-6 uses per week) before being past its best. I've bought a few second hand brushes in the 10-15 year age category and they were all still technically usable but ideally needed reknotting. I expect synthetics last much longer provided the glue does not fail.

Yeah, I had a feeling someone might point this out and I actually considered not creating the thread because this had crossed my mind. Still, as I am currently thinking that I personally probably won't be amassing a collection of brushes - instead just stick to one or two that work either well or great - that it's worth asking. I imagine that even if you are an avid collector you'll still have preferences among the one's you've collected and eventually find something that you won't want to just shelf or trade off. Thanks for the general wisdom though and the part about the used brushes gives me some hope but I also wonder just how much had they been actually used during those 10-15 years. (either way in Poland we don't seem to really have a big used brushes market and I'm mostly stuck with buying them brand new)

I'm currently getting a Best Badger 100% from Edwin Jagger because I was able to find it reasonably cheap by the Polish market's standards, from the vendor I was already buying from, and I'm hoping that if I truly get into all of this that I'll be able to get away with upgrading it once / getting one other brush down the line and stop myself from getting carried away after that haha...

(10-30-2019, 02:01 AM)WegianWarrior Wrote: The oldest brush I have in my current rotation is the Semogue TSN LE from '12, and it's still in great shape Smile

Just looked it up. She's a beaut. Smile Not available 'round here but there are some other Semogues. Have you had any experience with the Semogue SOC Boar variant and know how it compares to it? And thank you for your answer!


(10-30-2019, 04:20 AM)Lipripper60 Wrote: I'll agree that most of us weirdos have enough brushes in rotation that we may never wear one out.  But I live with a dedicated leg shaver that uses just one brush every other day.  She tried several in boar, badger, and synthetic but settled firmly on a Omega Pro boar.  She rinses well and drys it between uses but MAN does she mash that thing flat when she splays it. Total knot abuse in my eyes.  She's been using that brush for over two years now and it shows very limited wear.  I'm guessing it'll go many more years until she would want to replace it.  So just a guess, her boar will roll through 6 to 8 more years pretty easily

Hah! Even if you see it as knot abuse I see it as a pretty good indicator. Thanks for answering.

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 10-30-2019, 08:33 AM
#7
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(10-30-2019, 05:23 AM)Rozbickon Wrote:
(10-30-2019, 02:01 AM)WegianWarrior Wrote: The oldest brush I have in my current rotation is the Semogue TSN LE from '12, and it's still in great shape Smile

Just looked it up. She's a beaut. Smile Not available 'round here but there are some other Semogues. Have you had any experience with the Semogue SOC Boar variant and know how it compares to it? And thank you for your answer!

The TSN LE is the only Semogue I own, sorry. Some old timers here on the 'nook might be willing to sell theirs, but in my case cold dead hands would be involved Tongue

Overall Semogue brushes have a good reputation, I know that much. If you're looking to expand your rotation, a Semogue should be a safe choice - but I would also recommend looking at Vie Long horse hair brushes... horse hair shaving brushes don't get enough love in the community in my opinion Wink

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 10-30-2019, 09:11 AM
#8
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(10-30-2019, 08:33 AM)WegianWarrior Wrote: Overall Semogue brushes have a good reputation, I know that much. If you're looking to expand your rotation, a Semogue should be a safe choice - but I would also recommend looking at Vie Long horse hair brushes... horse hair shaving brushes don't get enough love in the community in my opinion Wink

You know it's funny you should mention it because when looking earlier through my options (Polish stores) I was only able to find a single horse hair brush model - specifically the "Lea Classic" by Vie-Long - and there were only three of them left. I considered getting it but ultimately ordered a badger one instead. If I decide to get another brush it would probably be by getting a different type of animal hair though so I'll definitely give horse hair some more consideration now.

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 10-30-2019, 03:00 PM
#9
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I haven't used mine very hard, but partially due to a large number to rotate through, and only having decent quality ones, I haven't worn through one yet. I also attribute that to never submerging the epoxy in hot water, though that could just be superstition on my part.   Smile

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 10-30-2019, 08:43 PM
#10
  • SCOV
  • Senior Member
  • Minnesota
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My Edwin Jagger Best Badger lasted 3-4 years (> 1000 shaves) of daily abuse before starting to shed some hairs.  As a novice, I assumed my scalding hot bathroom water was good for a brush.  I probably assumed high pressure was fine also.

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 10-31-2019, 10:29 AM
#11
  • BSWoodturning
  • Co-Owner, Brad Sears ShaveWorks
  • Maryland Eastern Shore
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(10-30-2019, 01:22 AM)Rohleder Wrote: An interesting question for sure... Though I'm not sure anyone here has a small enough collection to give you a valuable answer, I suspect the average brush on here will last a lifetime considering it will be just one among dozens in a shavers "rotation".

From what I have seen I expect a natural hair brush knot to last 10 years of moderate use (4-6 uses per week) before being past its best. I've bought a few second hand brushes in the 10-15 year age category and they were all still technically usable but ideally needed reknotting. I expect synthetics last much longer provided the glue does not fail.

Agreed.  There are many variables that contribute to brush life--many of which are technical in nature and won't add value to this conversation; so I won't go down that rabbit hole.

That being said:  the primary factor affecting brush life--regardless of price or knot material--is proper care.  I've seen brushes 10--15 years old that are in beautiful condition (witness some of the old Rooney's that regularly appear in SOTD posts.)  Conversely, I've also seen a number of brushes barely a year old that look like they've been through World War III.  The difference is proper care, which we describe in detail on this page of our website.  There are different lathering techniques--mashing a brush down to the ferrule, lathering in circular motions (vs. "paintbrush" strokes), etc. that do affect brush life.  Still, proper brush care is the most significant factor in keeping your brush happy and healthy.

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out.

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 10-31-2019, 01:47 PM
#12
  • Mel S Meles
  • On the edge, ouch
  • 44.4899° south of the North Pole
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(10-29-2019, 06:40 PM)Rozbickon Wrote: As someone who is only now starting to get into shaving more seriously I'm curious to read how long have people kept their favorite brushes as well as what were they made of, preferred brands, rough price, etc.

I have a Vulfix 2234S "Super Badger" here that I used daily, and I mean daily, seven days a week, from 1989 or 1990, when I bought it, until 2014.  In all that time, if it shed even a single hair, I think I would have noticed it (white porcelain sink, filled before lathering, and habitually I watch the water go down the drain after I have shaved).  I never saw a bristle go down the drain.  It never has been "replaced," but in 2014 I decided I wanted a brush with a bit more backbone, and supplemented, rather than replaced, it in 2014.  It rarely gets used now, because it would take face time away from the Semogue SOC badger that is my daily driver these days.

For what its worth, in the days I was using the Vulfix, I mostly used Col. Conk Amber shaving soap (basically just glycerine and avocado oil, saponified), which is probably very brush-friendly; and I always rinsed the brush after every use, and stored it hanging bristles down between shaves.

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 11-01-2019, 10:06 AM
#13
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(10-31-2019, 01:47 PM)Mel S Meles Wrote: I have a Vulfix 2234S "Super Badger" here that I used daily, and I mean daily, seven days a week, from 1989 or 1990, when I bought it, until 2014.  In all that time, if it shed even a single hair, I think I would have noticed it (white porcelain sink, filled before lathering, and habitually I watch the water go down the drain after I have shaved).  I never saw a bristle go down the drain.  It never has been "replaced," but in 2014 I decided I wanted a brush with a bit more backbone, and supplemented, rather than replaced, it in 2014.  It rarely gets used now, because it would take face time away from the Semogue SOC badger that is my daily driver these days.

For what its worth, in the days I was using the Vulfix, I mostly used Col. Conk Amber shaving soap (basically just glycerine and avocado oil, saponified), which is probably very brush-friendly; and I always rinsed the brush after every use, and stored it hanging bristles down between shaves.

Thank you that's very encouraging! I would also like to thank you for sharing what soap you used because when looking it up I ended up finding a store with shaving supplies in my country which had previously escaped my attention.

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 11-03-2019, 07:05 AM
#14
  • Nero
  • Senior Member
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(10-31-2019, 01:47 PM)Mel S Meles Wrote: I have a Vulfix 2234S "Super Badger" here that I used daily, and I mean daily, seven days a week, from 1989 or 1990, when I bought it, until 2014.  In all that time, if it shed even a single hair, I think I would have noticed it (white porcelain sink, filled before lathering, and habitually I watch the water go down the drain after I have shaved).  I never saw a bristle go down the drain.  It never has been "replaced," but in 2014 I decided I wanted a brush with a bit more backbone, and supplemented, rather than replaced, it in 2014.  It rarely gets used now, because it would take face time away from the Semogue SOC badger that is my daily driver these days.

For what its worth, in the days I was using the Vulfix, I mostly used Col. Conk Amber shaving soap (basically just glycerine and avocado oil, saponified), which is probably very brush-friendly; and I always rinsed the brush after every use, and stored it hanging bristles down between shaves.
I think this is your shortest and most straightforward post. Are you feeling okay Smile

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 11-03-2019, 11:53 PM
#15
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I have always shot for the nice I could afford, experimenting with what I like. I tend to like bulb shapes better...a tad easier for me to get the lather where I want it, but I enjoy having a couple of flatter ones as well. My face has aways required ones on the softer side, so I was drawn to Saville Row and Shavemac right away. Eventually I got interested in ones that were both soft and had some good scrub to them, silver tip two band, to make lathering hard soaps a bit easier . When it comes down to it even my fluffiest can still do the job on harder soaps, they just aren't as efficient. I've hung on to too many because I'm so drawn in by the aesthetics of them from handle shapes to brush shapes. Also by the variety of sizes and purposes from travel to luxury. I did eventually let one of my favorite handles go with the Duke 3 as my face is just too easily irritated. When I was getting started Saville Row was a great price for a very nice soft silver tip, but that seemed to be changing as of a year or so ago.

Best wishes on finding ones you enjoy. Enjoy all the experimenting along the way.

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