12 March 2009

Previously, I wrote of how a Jack Black® Pure Performance Shave Brush, with synthetic bristles, proved to be far better than the Burma Shave™ boar-bristle brush that I had been using.

I said that I would probably try, for the sake of comparison, an Art of Shaving® badger-bristle brush that I had, and there was some interest in my doing so.

That badger-bristle brush is not of the highest grade. Above it would be the best badger, and better than the best would be the silvertip badger. I'm not going to be trying a best brush or a silvertip brush, because I'm not going to contribute to the the deaths of more badgers. (Again, I got my boar-bristle brush in a state of ignorance, and my badger bristle brush was likewise got by someone who didn't know that badgers were killed for the bristles.) FWIW, I've read that there isn't much difference between an ordinary badger-bristle shave brush and a best badger-bristle shave brush, but that there is a remarkable difference between a silvertip brush and a best badger-bristle shave brush.

In any event, I found the Art of Shaving® badger-bristle brush much better than the Burma Shave™ boar-bristle brush, but the Jack Black® synthetic-bristle brush significantly better than the Art of Shaving® brush.

The Art of Shaving® brush still irritated my skin somewhat. I don't know to what extent that was a result of the overt texture of the bristles and to what extent it was an allergic reäction or something like an allergic reäction. The Black brush has no such effect.

Both the badger brush and the the Black brush have a much greater tendency to hold water than does the boar brush.

I've only tried the badger brush and the Black brush with a hard cake shaving soap. (I once tried the boar brush with a thick shaving cream from Lush, but that the experiment suggested that that stuff shouldn't be applied with a brush at all.) I have other shaving soaps with which I can experiment later, but I don't mean to conductive extensive further comparisons of these brushes.

For those who are interested, here is a list of the synthetic shave brushes of which I am aware:

Many of them have been reviewed at Badger & Blade.

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