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Mystery Brush

First, to get this out of the way, yes I'm an idiot.

Now then. I received a brush in the mail today. Nothing came with it. No named sender, no identifying mark on the brush, just a brush in a cardboard box mashed in with some pieces of styrofoam. I looked at my mastercard statement and can't figure out a match. The order must have been a month ago or so. It may have been Ace Shaving in China.

I do remember being seduced by words like mountain and silver and bands, etc. and thinking maybe I could get a $400 quality brush for less than $50. I don't remember what I ordered though or from whom. I just know I would not have paid more than $50.

So, my long-shot question for anyone is: any idea what I have? I'm confident it badger hair of some kind, but no detectable animal smell.

Second question, should it matter to me that it's been mashed out of shape into the oblong shown below? 20210311_185945.jpg 20210311_190059.jpg 20210311_190111.jpg
 
I may have figured it out. Found in my computer cache. " ABCRE Store " on AliExpress. "High Mountain Two Band Badger Knot Silvertip Badger Shaving Brush Men's Beard Barber Accessories"

The photo shows the identical handle and stamped on the photo is "Ace Shaving" advertised for $34.33 US (15% off). Too good to be true? I'll probably never know until I acquire other brushes and become a connoisseur.
 

FarmerTan

George Bailey Fanboy
I may have figured it out. Found in my computer cache. " ABCRE Store " on AliExpress. "High Mountain Two Band Badger Knot Silvertip Badger Shaving Brush Men's Beard Barber Accessories"

The photo shows the identical handle and stamped on the photo is "Ace Shaving" advertised for $34.33 US (15% off). Too good to be true? I'll probably never know until I acquire other brushes and become a connoisseur.
Well definitely let us know how you like it!
 
At last the brush got its maiden voyage.

I'm pleasantly impressed. I could smell no animal when it was dry and wondered if this label-less mysterious made-in-China brush was just a hoax. But once wet, I could smell the badger strongly. I won't have to singe any hairs to prove it's made of fur. I was amazed at how quickly and easily it loaded. I spent fewer twirls in the Proraso tub and wound up with enough soap for 5 passes easily. I was also amazed at how quickly it lathered. My method is to load the brush damp, apply to the face and dip and add water prior to thorough face lathering. I was surprised also at how much water was added with one little dip in the sink water. Lathering went also significantly quicker, even though I had added too much water while misunderstanding the brush. Proraso is easy to deal with though.

The brush had a radically different look after rinsed and shaken dry. Where before it was like a dense tight bulb, now it is splayed out in a wider diameter than the Semogue 2010 pure badger that is my only comparator. It is denser and softer and stiffer than the flippity-flop Semogue. It definitely is a step up from that one. Another thing that surprised me was the softness of the tips. While rinsing, I kept thinking there was soap on them that wasn't coming off. Then I realized that it was the soft slipperiness of the fur tips themselves. Today it shed two hairs.

Someday, I'll have to see one of these mega-pricey brushes up close to determine if it is anything like what I got for dirt cheap. For now, I am surprised and delighted to assume I have something in that league. Only the price and anonymity makes me suspicious. Could it be that I've simply found something that does not suffer from unreasonable markup because it is made in and sold from China?
 
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