12-27-2012, 12:49 AM
#1
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I just got my first boar brush (Semogue OC) for Christmas and shaved with it tonight for the first time. Have previously only used badger.

I soaked it for about 10 min in warm water prior to the shave, but started to have problems after that (using new Acqua di Parma SC).

Problems were related to lathering and heat.

- I had trouble generating lather compared to badger (bowl lathering) and found that face lathering worked better

- The brush got cold following my initial hot water soak and didn't hold much heat or lather ... I think that instead of resting in my scuttle (SRD), I might need to let the brush soak in warm water between passes???

- I realize boar has a break in period.

- I also know I could have started with more sc / more water / spent more time

Realizing this is basic boar 101, but any help would be appreciated.

Thanks!

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 12-27-2012, 01:04 AM
#2
  • Johnny
  • Super Moderator
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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Practice and patience. It takes awhile to break in a Semogue SOC. They work great making lather in a bowl/scuttle with either cream or soap.

A better first boar to start with might have been the 1305. And, if you have not already looked at this, check out this thread. Valuable info.

http://shavenook.com/thread-a-beginner-s...ving-brush

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 12-27-2012, 01:40 AM
#3
  • ben74
  • Administrator
  • Perth, Australia
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Badger/boar mix (such as the TSN or IR LE brushes) is IMO opinion the perfect introduction (for the badger enthusiast)...

With my initial experiences, I found (perhaps as a result of the extended soak times) I had more water the I was ordinarily used to, but some extra "whipping around a scuttle soon remedied the situation and produced a wonderful lather akin to the soft white peaks of the uncooked meringue base of a pavlova (a delicious pudding from Australia served with sharp fruits to counteract the sweetness of the meringue).

   

I am convinced that boar, although often touted as the poorer medium, has qualities that make it an excellent tool for producing lather, particularly in a scuttle, mug or bowl.

I still generally prefer my badger only brushes, but am always surprised by the volume of incredible lather produced by my Semogue TSN LE badger/boar mix. The brush requires an augmented approach for those primarily disposed to the virtues of badger, but I am adamant that it delivers outstanding results.

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 12-27-2012, 09:51 AM
#4
  • Songwind
  • Soap Slinger & Scuttle Pusher
  • Burnsville, MN
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I had the same experiences (other than the face lathering) during the early days with my two boar brushes.

The more the tips split, the more individual little fibers the brush has for stirring up the water/soap mix. That's pretty much simple mechanics and there's no way around it except a bit more elbow grease during the initial break in.

Similarly, boar get cold faster because the bristles aren't just wet, they're soaked. That water transfers heat out more efficiently than the hairs from the badger. I haven't had a problem with them getting cold while in my scuttle, but they definitely cool off faster in open air.

During the early going w/ my boar brush, I found it helpful to soak it for longer than 10 minutes, and in pretty hot water. That gave the bristles more flex, so there was better mechanical action during latering.

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 12-27-2012, 10:50 AM
#5
  • Teiste
  • Moderator Emeritus
  • Salt Lake City,UT
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Yes , you have said so , boar requires a break in (softening) period.This video shows what I do to softening a boar brush.You can use a hand soap , bath geal , a shaving soap you dont use , but its very easy to understand (even , when is in Spanish...I need to make one in English):


Once you have followed this process around 10 times , the brush will be ready , and you will see the difference.

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 12-27-2012, 11:53 AM
#6
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Thanks for all the great advice & links!

I am sure the next go around will be much improved.

I'm waiting on a Il Rasoio Semogue LE (mixed badger / boar) & might find that to be a good bridge to the OC.

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 12-27-2012, 12:44 PM
#7
  • EHV
  • Senior Member
  • Milford,PA
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I certainly agree with all that is mentioned and shown above and will just add that my SOC boar brush took twice as long as any of the other 5 boar brushes that I own to break in!!!

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 12-27-2012, 01:23 PM
#8
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Be patient and it will get better. Good luck.

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 12-27-2012, 01:29 PM
#9
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I'm right there with you Wave. I busted out my SOC for the second time today with DRH. I had a hard time getting the ratio right and found the loading to be hard and the lather generation to be slow.

That said, it generated good lather, just not as fast as I expected. Maybe I'm just used to bigger denser badger brushes.

Stick with it and you'll figure it out.

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 12-27-2012, 01:39 PM
#10
  • freddy
  • Senior Member
  • San Diego, California, U.S.A.
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Once you break in your boar brushes and the tips begin to split you'll be amazed at just how good they are. I bowl lather and, as others have mentioned, get fantastic lather with my boars. After the break in period you will find them at least as soft as some of your badgers, perhaps more so. It will all fall into place. Thumbsup

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 12-27-2012, 07:05 PM
#11
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Patience is the key young Skywalker! Just keep using and soon it will be all good.

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 12-27-2012, 10:19 PM
#12
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I'm not sure if Teiste mentioned this but, it's all about the drying period that splits the tips. Even if you don't plan on using your SOC wet the bristles and let them dry fully. I like to repeat this daily while I'm softening a new boar. Making sure it dries in between. Hope this helps. The SOC is a lather machine when softened!

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 12-27-2012, 10:28 PM
#13
  • Teiste
  • Moderator Emeritus
  • Salt Lake City,UT
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(12-27-2012, 10:19 PM)vitaman Wrote: I'm not sure if Teiste mentioned this but, it's all about the drying period that splits the tips.Even if you don't plan on using your SOC wet the bristles and let them dry fully. I like to repeat this daily while I'm softening a new boar. Making sure it dries in between. Hope this helps. The SOC is a lather machine when softened!

Vitaman , where did you get that info from ? For what I understand , and I know , the tips split when you use the brush : the more you use it , the more it will become softer (until a certain point).

Let me ask somebody regarding this , and I will let you know.

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 12-28-2012, 10:12 AM
#14
  • blzrfn
  • Butterscotch Bandit
  • Vancouver USA
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I think split ends on the hair is actually due to structural damage causing the outer layer or follicle to fail allowing the inner layers to separate. The faster you damage the follicle the faster the hairs will split. If we look at what causes split ends in humans we can probably accelerate the process in our brushes. Processes that are known to cause split ends in humans are using shampoos designed to strip oils, physical agitation (lathering and drying brush on towel would be a good application), blow drying, and dyeing (not recommended on your brush, but may explain why certain shavers have noticed their dyed boar brushes having softer tips).

Allowing the brush to fully dry in between lathers may aid in the splitting of the hair ends naturally, but my guess would be that frequent agitation would be a faster way to cause the ends to split, perhaps using a shampoo or soap known for stripping oils would accelerate this further.

I recently ordered several Omega brushes and even though they are all different knots it may be worth doing a little experiment to see if I can get the hairs to split faster using different break-in methods.

PS- yes I did actually do a little google-ing to research this post and am not a hair expert

http://www.hairscientists.org/trichoptilosis.htm

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 12-28-2012, 10:14 AM
#15
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All I can do is agree with the others here. Boars can take a significant break in period, but they're well worth it when you finally get to that moment where the brush performs so beautifully you have to check to make sure you grabbed the right one.

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 12-28-2012, 10:17 AM
#16
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(12-27-2012, 10:28 PM)Teiste Wrote:
(12-27-2012, 10:19 PM)vitaman Wrote: I'm not sure if Teiste mentioned this but, it's all about the drying period that splits the tips.Even if you don't plan on using your SOC wet the bristles and let them dry fully. I like to repeat this daily while I'm softening a new boar. Making sure it dries in between. Hope this helps. The SOC is a lather machine when softened!

Vitaman , where did you get that info from ? For what I understand , and I know , the tips split when you use the brush : the more you use it , the more it will become softer (until a certain point).

Let me ask somebody regarding this , and I will let you know.

I learned of this years ago (don't remember source) and it has worked for my boar brushes. I will not always use them during the break in period(because i am using another brush)but, I will get them wet(and wipe tips off on a dry towel) and go through a dozen or so drying cycles and the tips split and the bristles become softer. I also miss quoted a statement....it's not ALL about the drying period. It's a combination of drying and agitation.

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 12-28-2012, 11:53 AM
#17
  • Attila
  • The Hungarian Blade
  • Vancouver, Canada
User Info
I have found that wiping them to dry as possible (after rinsing thoroughly of course) on a towel vigorously after use and moving to dry sections of a towel a couple of times really helped in the break in process for my boars.

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 12-28-2012, 12:57 PM
#18
  • Teiste
  • Moderator Emeritus
  • Salt Lake City,UT
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(12-28-2012, 10:17 AM)vitaman Wrote:
(12-27-2012, 10:28 PM)Teiste Wrote:
(12-27-2012, 10:19 PM)vitaman Wrote: I'm not sure if Teiste mentioned this but, it's all about the drying period that splits the tips.Even if you don't plan on using your SOC wet the bristles and let them dry fully. I like to repeat this daily while I'm softening a new boar. Making sure it dries in between. Hope this helps. The SOC is a lather machine when softened!

Vitaman , where did you get that info from ? For what I understand , and I know , the tips split when you use the brush : the more you use it , the more it will become softer (until a certain point).

Let me ask somebody regarding this , and I will let you know.

I learned of this years ago (don't remember source) and it has worked for my boar brushes. I will not always use them during the break in period(because i am using another brush)but, I will get them wet(and wipe tips off on a dry towel) and go through a dozen or so drying cycles and the tips split and the bristles become softer. I also miss quoted a statement....it's not ALL about the drying period. It's a combination of drying and agitation.

Interesting.I always understood that the more you use it , the faster the tips will split and became softer.Never thought about the drying time.

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 12-28-2012, 01:13 PM
#19
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(12-28-2012, 10:12 AM)blzrfn Wrote: I think split ends on the hair is actually due to structural damage causing the outer layer or follicle to fail allowing the inner layers to separate. The faster you damage the follicle the faster the hairs will split. If we look at what causes split ends in humans we can probably accelerate the process in our brushes. Processes that are known to cause split ends in humans are using shampoos designed to strip oils, physical agitation (lathering and drying brush on towel would be a good application), blow drying, and dyeing (not recommended on your brush, but may explain why certain shavers have noticed their dyed boar brushes having softer tips).

Allowing the brush to fully dry in between lathers may aid in the splitting of the hair ends naturally, but my guess would be that frequent agitation would be a faster way to cause the ends to split, perhaps using a shampoo or soap known for stripping oils would accelerate this further.

I recently ordered several Omega brushes and even though they are all different knots it may be worth doing a little experiment to see if I can get the hairs to split faster using different break-in methods.

PS- yes I did actually do a little google-ing to research this post and am not a hair expert

http://www.hairscientists.org/trichoptilosis.htm

Yes, and bleach causes damage too. Split tips and curling.

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 12-28-2012, 01:31 PM
#20
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I agree with what's been written so far. Boars are definitely not for folks requiring instant gratification.

A gent on the forum has found a way to break a boar in at an accelerated rate while watching TV. But I'll let Brothers fill you in on his technique.

I'll use a boar from day one, but in between, especially in the winter when our indoor air is bone dry, I'll lather the brush throughout the day. As previously written, allowing it to dry between lathers. I can easily do this 4 x per day. I've broken a boar in in under a week before. One day it seems it's a boar needing breaking in, the next day, the transformation is amazing. Or so it seems to me.

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