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Plisson HMW Size 16 in Genuine Horn Handle

Item Description

I've got to admit, I'm a huge fan of these brushes. Having always been an admirer of the horn, but skeptical of the value, I always considered it a bit silly that guys would spend this kind of money on a brush. However, after this thread started, I had to decide for myself if they are all that they are cracked up to be.

Before I get into the actual review of the product, I will tell you that I've acquired 3 of these brushes since that aforementioned thread was started (all by way of trade or selling off gear to purchase): a size 12 3 band HMW in horn and 2 size 16 2 band HMW in horn. For reference, I'm very stingy with my numbers in ratings feeling that 10s are reserved for the top 1% of products and 5s are for middle of the road products. I've given products that I really like a 78%, which I consider to be a nice score. I try to avoid hyperbole, but I know I'm not perfect in that regard either. With that frame of reference, let's begin :001_smile

I'll start by showing a couple of pictures of the packaging.

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Price: This size 16 HMW 2 band brush is quite expensive at $450 from Vintage Blades, LLC. However, for that price, you get a genuine horn handle, top quality hair, beautiful style, and a first rate performer. Because of these factors, I give it a 6 for price. This isn't a "value" brush, but it's high quality in every aspect. Considering that, I think the price is pretty much right where is should be. The price you pay is for the brush, not packaging for sure. It doesn't have a fancy tube or anything that makes you feel like Plisson was trying to justify their price. They let these beautiful babies stand on their own!

Quality: Quality is where these brushes stand out from the crowd, in my opinion. Of my 3 Plissons, I've only lost a total of 4 hairs (all from the size 12 3 band brush). The knot's dense with tremendous backbone for the size of the loft, and the tips are really quite soft. These features combined with the flawless fit and finish of all the components make it worthy of a 10 for overall quality.

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Density:
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One of the most interesting things about this brush is that even though it has a really big loft, it's not floppy at all; yet, it's really soft. I'm not sure if you guys are familiar with the sponges used by tile mechanics, but this is the sensation that I'm reminded of when using this brush. Here's a pic for reference:
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The bristles almost feel like they meld together when lathered up on my face. It's weird. Face lathering is no problem at all, and, in fact, it's a luxurious experience. I'm giving it a 8 for density.

Stiffness of Hair: This goes along with the density topic, in my opinion. What it boils down to is that this brush has a great amount of backbone. In fact, I'd put it slightly behind the B&B LE '08. This is quite impressive though considering the tremendous difference in lofts.

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~In this picture is a B&B LE '08, a different 16 Plisson HMW, a 12 Plisson HMW, and the B&B Essential brush for reference in lofts~

The backbone being so nice relative to the size of the loft deserves a 9, in my opinion.

Softness of Tips The Plisson HMW hair is really soft, but it's not the softest that I've felt. It's on par with the B&B Essential in softness, but not as soft as the '08 LE. However, I enjoy a little bit of a scritchy brush and this feels nice and luxurious by all accounts. I'll give it a 8 for softness

Ergonomics: I really like the ergonomics of this brush. It's quite nice and accommodates almost all grips that you might want to use. The only grip that I didn't particularly feel comfortable with is the pencil grip. Pics below:

Pencil Grip:
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Loose Pencil Grip:
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Frisbee Grip:
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Microphone Grip:
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and my favorite,
The Boss:
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This is the most comfortable brush in my rotation from an ergonomics perspective. Therefore, I give it a 9

Latherability: This is where the rubber meets the road with a shaving brush to be sure. It also happens to be one of the strong suits of this Plisson HMW brush

Instead of describing it, I'll use pictures to tell the story!

DR Harris Soap:

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After 3 generous passes :w00t:
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Second attempt at squeezing the lather out.

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Cream:

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After 3 generous passes
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I've never experienced a brush that lathered as well as this one, or held the lather so well. This deserves a 10:thumbup:

Final Thoughts

For both creams and soaps, this brush is a top performer and will look great in anyone's shave den. I understand the "it's not worth it" sentiment on a strictly utilitarian level. However, I love the feeling of shaving with custom razors for exactly the same reason that I love these Plisson brushes. They work really well, and they are works of art. To me, the "is it worth it" question is a definitive, "Yes" :thumbup:

Please discuss this review in this thread

Latest reviews

Excellent review and beautiful pictures. I think I must start saving, after reading your review I think I must have one of these in the future.
I've got to admit, I'm a huge fan of these brushes. Having always been an admirer of the horn, but skeptical of the value, I always considered it a bit silly that guys would spend this kind of money on a brush. However, after this thread started, I had to decide for myself if they are all that they are cracked up to be.

Before I get into the actual review of the product, I will tell you that I've acquired 3 of these brushes since that aforementioned thread was started (all by way of trade or selling off gear to purchase): a size 12 3 band HMW in horn and 2 size 16 2 band HMW in horn. For reference, I'm very stingy with my numbers in ratings feeling that 10s are reserved for the top 1% of products and 5s are for middle of the road products. I've given products that I really like a 78%, which I consider to be a nice score. I try to avoid hyperbole, but I know I'm not perfect in that regard either. With that frame of reference, let's begin :001_smile

I'll start by showing a couple of pictures of the packaging.

proxy.php


proxy.php


proxy.php



Price: This size 16 HMW 2 band brush is quite expensive at $450 from Vintage Blades, LLC. However, for that price, you get a genuine horn handle, top quality hair, beautiful style, and a first rate performer. Because of these factors, I give it a 6 for price. This isn't a "value" brush, but it's high quality in every aspect. Considering that, I think the price is pretty much right where is should be. The price you pay is for the brush, not packaging for sure. It doesn't have a fancy tube or anything that makes you feel like Plisson was trying to justify their price. They let these beautiful babies stand on their own!

Quality: Quality is where these brushes stand out from the crowd, in my opinion. Of my 3 Plissons, I've only lost a total of 4 hairs (all from the size 12 3 band brush). The knot's dense with tremendous backbone for the size of the loft, and the tips are really quite soft. These features combined with the flawless fit and finish of all the components make it worthy of a 10 for overall quality.

proxy.php


proxy.php


proxy.php


proxy.php


proxy.php


Density:
proxy.php


One of the most interesting things about this brush is that even though it has a really big loft, it's not floppy at all; yet, it's really soft. I'm not sure if you guys are familiar with the sponges used by tile mechanics, but this is the sensation that I'm reminded of when using this brush. Here's a pic for reference:
proxy.php

The bristles almost feel like they meld together when lathered up on my face. It's weird. Face lathering is no problem at all, and, in fact, it's a luxurious experience. I'm giving it a 8 for density.

Stiffness of Hair: This goes along with the density topic, in my opinion. What it boils down to is that this brush has a great amount of backbone. In fact, I'd put it slightly behind the B&B LE '08. This is quite impressive though considering the tremendous difference in lofts.

proxy.php

~In this picture is a B&B LE '08, a different 16 Plisson HMW, a 12 Plisson HMW, and the B&B Essential brush for reference in lofts~

The backbone being so nice relative to the size of the loft deserves a 9, in my opinion.

Softness of Tips The Plisson HMW hair is really soft, but it's not the softest that I've felt. It's on par with the B&B Essential in softness, but not as soft as the '08 LE. However, I enjoy a little bit of a scritchy brush and this feels nice and luxurious by all accounts. I'll give it a 8 for softness

Ergonomics: I really like the ergonomics of this brush. It's quite nice and accommodates almost all grips that you might want to use. The only grip that I didn't particularly feel comfortable with is the pencil grip. Pics below:

Pencil Grip:
proxy.php


Loose Pencil Grip:
proxy.php


Frisbee Grip:
proxy.php


Microphone Grip:
proxy.php


and my favorite,
The Boss:
proxy.php


This is the most comfortable brush in my rotation from an ergonomics perspective. Therefore, I give it a 9

Latherability: This is where the rubber meets the road with a shaving brush to be sure. It also happens to be one of the strong suits of this Plisson HMW brush

Instead of describing it, I'll use pictures to tell the story!

DR Harris Soap:

proxy.php

proxy.php

proxy.php

After 3 generous passes :w00t:
proxy.php

proxy.php


Second attempt at squeezing the lather out.

proxy.php


Cream:

proxy.php


proxy.php


After 3 generous passes
proxy.php


proxy.php


I've never experienced a brush that lathered as well as this one, or held the lather so well. This deserves a 10:thumbup:

Final Thoughts

For both creams and soaps, this brush is a top performer and will look great in anyone's shave den. I understand the "it's not worth it" sentiment on a strictly utilitarian level. However, I love the feeling of shaving with custom razors for exactly the same reason that I love these Plisson brushes. They work really well, and they are works of art. To me, the "is it worth it" question is a definitive, "Yes" :thumbup:

Please discuss this review in this thread
Price
3.00 star(s)
Density
4.00 star(s)
Quality
5.00 star(s)
Ergonomic
4.00 star(s)
Latherability
5.00 star(s)
Softness of Tips
4.00 star(s)
Stiffness of Tips
4.00 star(s)

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