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Difference in Bulb vs. Fan shaped brush

Hey guy,

I am new here and am still trying to figure it all out. I wanted to know what difference the bulb shape of a brush makes vs. a fan shape of the brush. Thanks.
 
Hey guy,

I am new here and am still trying to figure it all out. I wanted to know what difference the bulb shape of a brush makes vs. a fan shape of the brush. Thanks.
For me the difference is, Fan= covers bigger area of face, Bulb= more precision when applying lather. My Silver tip is Fan shaped and my other 6 are bulbs, but I don't favor one over the other despite the ratio of 6:1, they both do the basic job of lather application. :biggrin1:
 
Based on a good video from Mantic59 he explains one does not work better over the other, unless of course you are method shaving. However that will prove to be a different topic :lol: And as I have now been learned you can not stray away from YMMV!

Introduction to "Method" Shaving, Part 2: Building the "Mix"
[YOUTUBE]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mec_uHFuhUc&feature=relmfu[/YOUTUBE]

Intro to "Method" Shaving, Part 1: Concepts

Introduction to Method Shaving, Part 3: The Shave
 
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Wow, thats the first time I've read or heard anything about method shaving. Looks like a waste of time but I guess thats where the YMMV comes into play.

Fan vs Bulb is a matter of preference and given the time either one maybe the flavor of the month in the shaving brush world.
 
For me the difference is, Fan= covers bigger area of face, Bulb= more precision when applying lather.
I would agree with this with the addition that a bulb seems to use the shorter, outer hairs to support the middle, giving the impression (illusion?:lol:) of greater backbone to the part you're actually applying to your face.

In reality, many brushes seem to fall somewhere in between these two shapes. I have several fans that are kind of "bulby?" and I've seen bulb shapes that aren't really all that extreme. I would recommend one of these "in between" ones if you haven't yet formed an opinion, then you may find yourself wanting to move one direction or the other. The only way to do this is to see the actual brush you are buying. B&M, BST or a site that shows each individual brush is the only reliable way to know before you buy.

I do have several of each but tend to fan shapes, myself. They are just a better fit for me. But if all I had was my M&F (bulb) I wouldn't be unhappy:laugh:

Ken
 
Bulbs can create more backbone then the hair or density would predict. Ken is correct that the shorter outside hairs do support the inner hairs better. Just keep in mind that some extremely tall bulb shapes can feel "sharp" on the face. The high ridge in the middle (especially with a stiff hair like two band) are thrust out from the rest of the brush and poke your face slightly. This last bit is rarely a problem especially with softer grades of hair, but as shown by some of the newer Simpson brushes its a factor to keep in mind. The bulb feels slightly smaller than a fan as less hairs are ever in contact with your face. Denser brushes cost more, and at a certain point start to hog lather. So being able to simulate some extra backbone, you can save your self the money of a slightly more dense fan brush.

Fans give a slightly bigger feel to the face than a bulb does. The equal length hairs tend to give each other less support than the short loft hairs on the outside of a bulb might. That is not to say that fans are floppy feeling, but its good to keep in mind that many fan shaped brushes benefit from being extra dense and/or set at a low loft to counter balance this. Another bennifit from a fan shape is that they load soap faster than a bulb. With more hairs in contact with the face of your soap, it will pick it up better (even if only marginally).

There are many implications of bulb/fan choice, but most are not the end of the world. I own, use, and love brushes of both types. If I had to chose one, I'd choose a fan shaped knot. I face lather with soap almost exclusively and a large, ultra dense, fat, flat, squat knot suites me best, but I have many bulbs that work just as well.
 
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