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Cleaning Vintage Brushes

Chan Eil Whiskers

Fumbling about.
I agree, @Chan Eil Whiskers. I've heard many warnings against Barbicide for sterilizing Badger brushes, but supposedly MarvyCide is O.K.

I'm still with those who believe that a good mild dish detergent is the best way to clean a brush.
Yes, there seems to be a strong opinion that one is okay for brushes, but not the other.

Me, I don't know, but I want to do some good by my brushes and my safety.

Happy shaves,

Jim
 

Chan Eil Whiskers

Fumbling about.
Barbicide:
ACTIVE INGREDIENT: Alkyl (50% C14, 40% C12, 10% C16) dimethyl benzyl ammonium chloride . . . . . . . 5.12% INERT INGREDIENTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 94.88% TOTAL: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100.00%


Mar-V-Cide:
Isopropyl alcohol
Quaternary ammonium compounds, benzyl-C12- 16-alkyldimethyl, chlorides

Dimethyl benzyl ammonium chloride, anyone? It's been a while since chemistry was a big thing in my professional life, but it looks to me like the active ingredients are the same with these products. A better chemist should correct me if I'm wrong, please.

The inactive ingredients could be an issue perhaps, but why would one be safe for brushes and the other not?
 
Barbicide:
ACTIVE INGREDIENT: Alkyl (50% C14, 40% C12, 10% C16) dimethyl benzyl ammonium chloride . . . . . . . 5.12% INERT INGREDIENTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 94.88% TOTAL: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100.00%


Mar-V-Cide:
Isopropyl alcohol
Quaternary ammonium compounds, benzyl-C12- 16-alkyldimethyl, chlorides

Dimethyl benzyl ammonium chloride, anyone? It's been a while since chemistry was a big thing in my professional life, but it looks to me like the active ingredients are the same with these products. A better chemist should correct me if I'm wrong, please.

The inactive ingredients could be an issue perhaps, but why would one be safe for brushes and the other not?
Those look the same to me. It's been six or seven years since I did chemistry so I might be mistaken.
 
I use Dial Anti-Bacterial handsoap followed by Zartgefühl Brush-Cleansing Soap from TSS. I have no science to back up my methods but it gives me enough comfort.
 

Chan Eil Whiskers

Fumbling about.
I have spent the better part of two hours now investigating what I could find on disinfecting brushes. Short version: quite difficult to sterilize the way we do razors. Chemical treatment seems less advised than the easily available hot water and soap. Link to a WHO report on water temperature and its ability to kill various bacteria for various periods of time. All enteric pathogens unfortunately. Still difficult to find the truly best method. Give me another day as I think I'm close to finding the guidelines regarding temperature to inactivate certain viruses.
Anything?
 
Anything?
Sorry, Jim, been looking at housing options and haven’t gotten any further information. Best info I could find was that 11 deg C isopropyl alcohol for 2 minutes would kill Hep B. Percent I can’t remember right now, I think it was 80 or 81%. Anything else would be killed with water above 60 C, 70-80 C seemed good for most microorganisms. Soak for 10 minutes. I think a good way of doing it would be dish soap and water at 70 C for 10 minutes, agitating the brush every couple minutes. After that, rinse under warm water for a few minutes. Could do borax here as I think it wouldn’t hurt and might help. No research on it that I could find, just anecdotal. If you think it necessary, could do a final two minute soak in isopropyl alcohol. That should take care of everything I would normally worry about. Fungi I’m not certain about. Reading the posts about barbicide gives me more confidence that it would be ok on brushes and it would reliably kill everything possible. Five minute soak with the dilution suggested in that thread by the med student seems best. Ten minutes is what is recommended as contact time on the bottle. So taking it out after five, letting it sit for five, then rinsing would give 10 minutes contact time. That thread said to let it dry which Im not crazy about.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Chan Eil Whiskers

Fumbling about.
Here's the link to the medical student's thread on disinfection of brushes.

Sorry, Jim, been looking at housing options and haven’t gotten any further information.
Man, I'm sorry to have bothered you. I thought you'd just forgotten; it's hard to keep up with everything.

Hope you're finding a good place to live!

Best info I could find was that 11 deg C isopropyl alcohol for 2 minutes would kill Hep B. Percent I can’t remember right now, I think it was 80 or 81%. Anything else would be killed with water above 60 C, 70-80 C seemed good for most microorganisms. Soak for 10 minutes.
That might work.

I think a good way of doing it would be dish soap and water at 70 C for 10 minutes, agitating the brush every couple minutes. After that, rinse under warm water for a few minutes.
More likely to work, I agree.

Could do borax here as I think it wouldn’t hurt and might help. No research on it that I could find, just anecdotal. If you think it necessary, could do a final two minute soak in isopropyl alcohol. That should take care of everything I would normally worry about. Fungi I’m not certain about.
Yeah.

Reading the posts about barbicide gives me more confidence that it would be ok on brushes and it would reliably kill everything possible.
Seems likely to be okay.

One point again. I've use Barbicide to soak a couple of brushes, both badger. Silvertip. Five minutes of soaking. Loads of immediate rinsing. No damage to or new problems with the brushes.

Five minute soak with the dilution suggested in that thread by the med student seems best. Ten minutes is what is recommended as contact time on the bottle. So taking it out after five, letting it sit for five, then rinsing would give 10 minutes contact time. That thread said to let it dry which Im not crazy about.
From what I've read Ship-Shape is great for washing brushes. It's very inexpensive. Got mine at Sally's.

[I like the beauty...] Oops. Wrong thread.

The brushes will be washed according to directions with Ship-Shape, rinsed, and Barbicided.

I agree on all counts. The idea of a five minute soak and five minutes sitting around without a towel sounds excellent. Probably a lot of rinsing after that plus another round of fresh Ship-Shape.

Sorry to interrupt the housing hunt.

Location. Location. Location.

Happy shaves,

Jim
 
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Here's the link to the medical student's thread on disinfection of brushes.



Man, I'm sorry to have bothered you. I thought you'd just forgotten; it's hard to keep up with everything.

Hope you're finding a good place to live!



That might work.



More likely to work, I agree.



Yeah.



Seems likely to be okay.

One point again. I've use Barbicide to soak a couple of brushes, both badger. Silvertip. Five minutes of soaking. Loads of immediate rinsing. No damage to or new problems with the brushes.



From what I've read Ship-Shape is great for washing brushes. It's very inexpensive. Got mine at Sally's.

[I like the beauty...] Oops. Wrong thread.

The brushes will be washed according to directions with Ship-Shape, rinsed, and Barbicided.

I agree on all counts. The idea of a five minute soak and five minutes sitting around without a towel sounds excellent. Probably a lot of rinsing after that plus another round of fresh Ship-Shape.

Sorry to interrupt the housing hunt.

Location. Location. Location.

Happy shaves,

Jim
Do not worry at all, my friend. I am prone to forgetfulness and a reminder is always a good idea when dealing with me. The part that I forgot was to update you on those circumstances, and the delay they were causing. The house hunt is only happening during the evenings (when I normally do more on B&B), so my continued research was hampered.

I agree with your method, and think it is likely the best to disinfect any brush from the microbes that are most worrisome. The fact that you’ve used barbicide on badgers is proof enough for me that it is likely fine for most badgers, which I’ve seen mentioned as the brushes to avoid barbicide on.

You aren’t kidding about location.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
I have done this with a brand new boar brush that had that funk smell and I was determined to kill it off and might have mentioned it to you in a previous thread. You might have a chuckle, but I was new to DE shaving and so I soaked that brush in regular shaving soap and let it sit for a day and it still had the funk smell and then I used mouth wash 3 or 4 times in a small glass. That smell was still there so I took out Mr Clean with lime and rinsed it a few times and still not satisfied and was going to toss that sucker so last resort mr clean in a small glass cup and micro-waved that sucker 3 times with a 25 second bursts, it was amazing that nature can retain that funk smell.:yikes: I noticed the handle got real warm and it was wood but the compound holding the knot together what was heating up is my best guess. Any ways nothing can survive the micro-wave bombardment is my best guess. That brush held together and I still use the brush once in a while and it seems all right.(I did not pay very much for the brush but it was a boar brush.(I don't think you would do this to a very expensive high end brush.):a22:
 

Chan Eil Whiskers

Fumbling about.
The three brushes are cleaned, sanitized, and disinfected. Two boars. One badger.
upload_2018-3-9_15-41-27.png

They were first cleaned and sanitized with Ship-Shape as directed on the box. Then they were disinfected using Barbicide.

Here's now I did the Barbicide procedure. Some of the timing here was suggested by Joel @Johnnynroy who is far more up on this sort of science than me.
  1. The brushes were soaked - handle, knot, bristles, hairs - for 5 minutes in Barbicide mixed according the the bottle's directions.
  2. After 5 minutes, the brushes were removed from the Barbicide jar, but they were not rinsed.
  3. Before any rinsing, the brushes were placed handle down on the counter.
  4. After 5 minutes on the counter, the brushes were rinsed very well in running tap water.
Thus the brushes were in contact with Barbicide for 10 minutes.
upload_2018-3-9_15-42-54.png
They soaked only 5 minutes.

The next step was another long bath in Ship-Shape. I made up a new gallon of Ship-Shape mixture. After this bath, each brush received another very good rinsing, before being assigned a spot for drying.

I will wash and dry (using shampoo or hand soap or Dawn or shaving soap) these brushes a few more times before I use them. The ongoing Fixed Four makes that easy.

I appreciate everybody's help with this. I will not use these brushes until at least early April.

Happy shaves,

Jim
 
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Chan Eil Whiskers

Fumbling about.
I have done this with a brand new boar brush that had that funk smell and I was determined to kill it off and might have mentioned it to you in a previous thread. You might have a chuckle, but I was new to DE shaving and so I soaked that brush in regular shaving soap and let it sit for a day and it still had the funk smell and then I used mouth wash 3 or 4 times in a small glass. That smell was still there so I took out Mr Clean with lime and rinsed it a few times and still not satisfied and was going to toss that sucker so last resort mr clean in a small glass cup and micro-waved that sucker 3 times with a 25 second bursts, it was amazing that nature can retain that funk smell.:yikes: I noticed the handle got real warm and it was wood but the compound holding the knot together what was heating up is my best guess. Any ways nothing can survive the micro-wave bombardment is my best guess. That brush held together and I still use the brush once in a while and it seems all right.(I did not pay very much for the brush but it was a boar brush.(I don't think you would do this to a very expensive high end brush.):a22:
Great story, but did the funky smell so away?

Happy shaves,

Jim
 

Chan Eil Whiskers

Fumbling about.
The three brushes are fairly dry now. All three look great. I'd say the boars especially look better than the did before the Ship-Shape, Barbicide, Ship-Shape treatment.

Won't know anything certain about how they perform until I use them for shaving in April, but probably the next round for them will involve some hand lathering, just for the purpose of seeing how they lather. I fully expect them to show no adverse effects, but that expectation can be tested.

Happy shaves,

Jim
 

ajkel64

The Aussie Bulldog
Moderator
Thanks for all the information, I hope that the brushes turn out okay. I am always reluctant to use second hand brushes but after reading up on this thread I am leaning towards giving them a chance.
 

Chan Eil Whiskers

Fumbling about.
This morning I used the three brushes to build a lather. Each brush was soaked and used to hand lather and bowl lather MWF soap. Mostly I did this to wash the brushes again, but I also wanted to see how the brushes seemed to perform. As far as I could tell the brushes performed as they should.

There was no evidence of damage or functional change. However, the two boar brushes have an almost imaginary blue tint to the bristles. I've read that this happens to boars soaked in Barbicide which is blue, and I've read that the blue tint totally goes away after a number of uses. I don't know what that number is.

I will continue to shampoo, lather, or wash with Ship-Shape these brushes, putting them through a wet to dry cycle. I'm in the midst of a Fixed Four and can't use the brushes. Were I not doing a Fixed Four I'd probably do a few more wash and dry cycles with the brushes before using them just to get rid of any residual Barbicide. My guess is it is 99.9% gone now, but that's a guess.

I'm not worried at all about the blue tint. I probably wouldn't notice it at all (it is very subtle) except I expected it from my reading. I do want and expect the tint to entirely go away.

The brushes I've subjected to all this are the Omega 11137, the Omega 48, and an Art of Shaving brush which seems to be a silvertip (although I'm not entirely sure). If you know these brushes you know the 48 is considered to be a somewhat floppy brush by some people. The AoS brush is definitely floppy. It's not my most floppy silvertip, but it's probably about as floppy as my second most floppy silvertip.

Other than my MS 30mm fan silvertip I don't have a silvertip I really like all that much.

The MS has enough backbone by virtue of being seemingly much more densely packed than the other silvertip brushes I own (not that I have many at all). It also has more backbone because it is so large. The MS knot actually measures several mm more than the 30mm it advertised as being. It is a very large knot, but has a rather short loft which is, I think, exactly right for a silvertip looking to not be floppy.

Oops, I got way off track here. The three brushes are drying now none the worse, I think, for the sanitizing and disinfecting. The badgers were given to me by a member. The AoS was the gift of someone I know locally, and I know nothing of its history or antecedents.

I am not endorsing the use of Barbicide with your brushes. I am just reporting what I did and the results.

Ship-Shape is another matter. It is clearly the way to clean up your brushes. Cheap. Easily available. Easy to use. Non toxic. Effective. Designed to clean brushes. I used a plastic bucket I bought at Auto Zone, a gallon of warm water, and three tablespoons of Ship-Shape.

Happy shaves,

Jim
 
This morning I used the three brushes to build a lather. Each brush was soaked and used to hand lather and bowl lather MWF soap. Mostly I did this to wash the brushes again, but I also wanted to see how the brushes seemed to perform. As far as I could tell the brushes performed as they should.

There was no evidence of damage or functional change. However, the two boar brushes have an almost imaginary blue tint to the bristles. I've read that this happens to boars soaked in Barbicide which is blue, and I've read that the blue tint totally goes away after a number of uses. I don't know what that number is.

I will continue to shampoo, lather, or wash with Ship-Shape these brushes, putting them through a wet to dry cycle. I'm in the midst of a Fixed Four and can't use the brushes. Were I not doing a Fixed Four I'd probably do a few more wash and dry cycles with the brushes before using them just to get rid of any residual Barbicide. My guess is it is 99.9% gone now, but that's a guess.

I'm not worried at all about the blue tint. I probably wouldn't notice it at all (it is very subtle) except I expected it from my reading. I do want and expect the tint to entirely go away.

The brushes I've subjected to all this are the Omega 11137, the Omega 48, and an Art of Shaving brush which seems to be a silvertip (although I'm not entirely sure). If you know these brushes you know the 48 is considered to be a somewhat floppy brush by some people. The AoS brush is definitely floppy. It's not my most floppy silvertip, but it's probably about as floppy as my second most floppy silvertip.

Other than my MS 30mm fan silvertip I don't have a silvertip I really like all that much.

The MS has enough backbone by virtue of being seemingly much more densely packed than the other silvertip brushes I own (not that I have many at all). It also has more backbone because it is so large. The MS knot actually measures several mm more than the 30mm it advertised as being. It is a very large knot, but has a rather short loft which is, I think, exactly right for a silvertip looking to not be floppy.

Oops, I got way off track here. The three brushes are drying now none the worse, I think, for the sanitizing and disinfecting. The badgers were given to me by a member. The AoS was the gift of someone I know locally, and I know nothing of its history or antecedents.

I am not endorsing the use of Barbicide with your brushes. I am just reporting what I did and the results.

Ship-Shape is another matter. It is clearly the way to clean up your brushes. Cheap. Easily available. Easy to use. Non toxic. Effective. Designed to clean brushes. I used a plastic bucket I bought at Auto Zone, a gallon of warm water, and three tablespoons of Ship-Shape.

Happy shaves,

Jim
One thing I can say Jim that you are very thorough in research and follow-through, when I was tinkering around cleaning my brush months back,a thread on brush care recommended that a hair conditioner(natural hair only) be applied to the bristles to keep them soft pliable also after cleaning. Chemicals for cleaning can be harsh so it might be a good idea to condition them when completed?
 

Chan Eil Whiskers

Fumbling about.
One thing I can say Jim that you are very thorough in research and follow-through, when I was tinkering around cleaning my brush months back,a thread on brush care recommended that a hair conditioner(natural hair only) be applied to the bristles to keep them soft pliable also after cleaning. Chemicals for cleaning can be harsh so it might be a good idea to condition them when completed?
I'm sorta thinking that building lather with some rich soaps might do the same thing.

Today's MWF use was partially because I figured lanolin might be good for the bristles. I'll use a variety of soaps. It would be good to know more about the natural oils and such of the badger and boar bristles, but I imagine the chemicals I used are not something I'm going to use on the brushes I bought new.

I have now five, I think, brushes acquired from other people as opposed to purchased new. All have been Barbicided. It just seems prudent to me.

Ron, I'm not sure what actual hair conditioner might do to my brushes. I've read various opinions, but I really don't know anything.

Happy shaves,

Jim
 
I give a couple of good cleanings with hand soap and warm water. Then let the brush dry thoroughly for several days. I’m not too worried about what’s in there once it’s clean and dry.
 

Chan Eil Whiskers

Fumbling about.
Today I lathered up all of my boar brushes (not just the two I sanitized and disinfected in this thread), so it was a pile of brushes. I also lathered up my AoS badger. I used a Proraso Wood and Spice soap. See Cal's thread on making soap from the cream. Anyway...

I'm as sure as I can be without shaving with the brushes (face lathering with them I mean) that the badger brush is just fine. It is not a dense brush, this AoS badger, and the backbone is far from stellar, but it is a lather monster, and it is soft. I think I might end up liking it pretty well. It is not worth what it costs, but everybody already knows that.

The boars are now looking just fine. There is no remaining trace of the blue tint (nor any on the AoS badger). I'm not entirely sure how they lather yet. Jury is out on them until I get a chance to use them for actual face lathering duty.

The boars seem okay, but neither are brushes I really know (never used either of them), so I'm not entirely sure about them. I think they're fine.

I'm putting all these brushes in my rotation, and I consider that they are finished with the clean up procedure and are as free as I can get them (visually, etc.) of the residuals from Barbicide.

If I get a wild hair I'll wash them again later this month, but I don't think they need any more work related to the cleaning. Actually, I have a few brushes in transit. When they have all arrived, I'll probably wash every single one of my brushes with Ship-Shape. Why not?

With the caveats noted, I'm pleased with the outcome.

Happy shaves,

Jim
 
For some reason when I follow the link no pictures are displayed of the products being used, except for the gross infected guy. Hmmmm....

Anyway, this may be a bit pricey for those who don't CPAP. I have one and it's ozone.

So Clean.jpg
 
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