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Are natural hair brushes days NUMBERED?

My very first brush was badger hair, then I had 2 boar brushes and my last purchase was synthetic. All do the job with the synthetic being more robust , more pleasant on the skin and dries quicker. That being said, I am currently considering abandoning brushes altogether.
According to sales numbers of a famous German brush manufacturer, synthetics are rapidly displacing natural hair brushes, but there is a minority loyal to natural hair brushes. It would be interesting if others can pitch in with numbers from other vendors.
 
Synthetics keep getting better and in some situations their usefulness may even surpass shaving brushes with natural fibres, like when travelling and when there is not enough time to thoroughly dry a natural fibre brush.
I also admit that when the Mühle Silvertip Fibre® synthetics first arrived I used these brushes for a while almost exclusively, but then I moved on and my herd of badgers started growing again.

But for me synthetics are hardly replacing natural fibre brushes and my badger and boar brushes see clearly more use than the synthetics, because I just like them better and get superior results from them.


B
 
Naturals will still be produced because people will still buy them regardless of the superiority of synthetic performance of for no other reason to be old school...or just familiar. I enjoy my badgers but none of them can go toe to toe with a modern synthetic's efficiency. Faster and better lather using less soap. They're softer, they're way, way tougher, they dry faster and are inexpensive to produce, never stink, don't have to be soaked, break in very quickly, are cruelty free and have even catching up with water retention albeit a different mechanism

The only card naturals have to play is heat retention.
 
Synthetics might well displace natural at the low end since a predictable performance and very low price are attractive. Collectors will always want good 2 and selected 3 band IMO. They’ll be willing to pay for it so someone will be willing to sell it. My understanding is that badgers are raised for meat in China and the hair is a high value by product rather than the only reason. In that sense it’s very different from the mink coat industry. More like leather. Vinyl works but a lot of people prefer leather and will pay a premium to get it.
 
No, badgers always in my den.....I have a couple synthetics, and they get used maybe once a year, except my Muehle travel brush - but it has not been used since last years March when I stopped traveling. Synthetics are in my book not even close to natural badger hair. They always feel springy and splay not well.
 
Synthetics might well displace natural at the low end since a predictable performance and very low price are attractive. Collectors will always want good 2 and selected 3 band IMO. They’ll be willing to pay for it so someone will be willing to sell it. My understanding is that badgers are raised for meat in China and the hair is a high value by product rather than the only reason. In that sense it’s very different from the mink coat industry. More like leather. Vinyl works but a lot of people prefer leather and will pay a premium to get it.

Until non renewable resources are depleted and rationed…maybe, but I doubt it. Rudy Vey made a group buy brush last year and I bought a Shavemac D01 knot with it. It’s amazing, short and stiff like a boar, soft and comfy like a badger should be, and moisture is easily controlled. I rarely use another brush.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
Naturals will still be produced because people will still buy them regardless of the superiority of synthetic performance of for no other reason to be old school...or just familiar. I enjoy my badgers but none of them can go toe to toe with a modern synthetic's efficiency. Faster and better lather using less soap. They're softer, they're way, way tougher, they dry faster and are inexpensive to produce, never stink, don't have to be soaked, break in very quickly, are cruelty free and have even catching up with water retention albeit a different mechanism

Well said. I agree 100%
 
There will always be badger people and there will always be synthetic people. There will never be a reconciliation, although B&B members tend to be an older crowd. When we die out and the younger generation discovers wet shaving, I can see synthetics being their choice of brushes. That just seems to be the new thinking.
 

Owen Bawn

"Ask me about a fluffernutter"
No doubt synthetics have come a long way since the days when they were made of what felt like nylon fishing filament designed to take giant tarpon or sharks. I own a bunch of synths, including some pricey Simpsons, and I really like them, as part of a rotation.

But in May/June as I awaited the arrival of my Beagle brushes from Germany I started the 'Synthetic Summer' thread where I invited members to join me in using synths exclusively until the Beagles arrived. From that experience I learned that while incorporating synthetics into a rotation of brushes can be enjoyable, using nothing but synths for a month or more makes me want to grow a beard. I didn't enjoy it.

On another note, a few years ago Joe from Italian Barber ('Razorock') told me that inexpensive synthetic brushes have all but destroyed the market for boar brushes. I forget the exact figure, but I seem to recall that he said his boar sales were down over 70%. That was in 2017 or 2018. Probably even worse today.
 
@thp001 Has Kent discontinued badgers? They still have them on their site. My buddy just bought one at a local shop as well.
I have a Simpson T2 and don’t care for it. The fibres are fine but the knot is so small and set so low it’s difficult to splay.

I was on the Kent website yesterday, all that is available in the shaving brush range are synthetic or what they call "bristle" which is most likely boar hair. Anything in stores which is badger is likely old stock.

 
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My bad, Kent of Inglewood still has badger. I thought they were the same company.

I was on the Kent website yesterday, all that is available in the shaving brush range are synthetic or what they call "bristle" which is most likely boar hair. Anything in stores which is badger is likely old stock.

 
The industry will get to "all synth" eventually, but I don't think that it is something I will have to worry about in my lifetime. I have 3 synths right now and 4 badger/boar/horse and my synth Yaqi and Chubby are great (but VERY different from each other), while my Asylum Cheswick is way too stiff.
 
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