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SOC Boar

So my Omega 49 Pro has been shedding a bit lately. 3-5 hairs each use, and I’m considering replacing it. It was $10 and I’ve had it at least 3 years, most of that being used daily as my only brush. I feel like it no longer owes me anything. I don’t see any reason not to replace it with another Omega Pro, but the SOC boar with the cherry handle also appeals to me. Any thoughts on it? Are there other options I should be considering? Thanks in advance for your insight.
 
I do not have an Omega 49 but I have a 20102 that uses the Omega Pro knot and have the SOC boar in Butterscotch.

Both are excellent brushes, but I find them fairly different.

The Omega Pro broke in significantly faster, holds its shape “better” (doesn’t look moppish), and seems to release lather a slight bit easier.
The SOC has tremendous splay (even when dry) and a fabulous handle.
Both are excellent brushes, that have incredibly soft tips after a thorough break in using my face and lots of nice shaves. They are joyful to use.

I’m probably in the minority, but I prefer the Omega knots over the Semogue. I’ve had a few of each and just prefer the feel and look of the Omegas. However, the SOC is excellent and is the Semogue Boar that I kept and enjoy.

Am alternative might be the Connaught Omega Premium Jade Boar 011842. It has a nice resin handle, a shorter loft than the Pro, nice density, and once broken in is fantastic. It is priced between the SOC and Pro.

You really can’t go wrong with a SOC or another PRO/Jade. All are great and it will just be your personal preference.
 
I do not have an Omega 49 but I have a 20102 that uses the Omega Pro knot and have the SOC boar in Butterscotch.

Both are excellent brushes, but I find them fairly different.

The Omega Pro broke in significantly faster, holds its shape “better” (doesn’t look moppish), and seems to release lather a slight bit easier.
The SOC has tremendous splay (even when dry) and a fabulous handle.
Both are excellent brushes, that have incredibly soft tips after a thorough break in using my face and lots of nice shaves. They are joyful to use.

I’m probably in the minority, but I prefer the Omega knots over the Semogue. I’ve had a few of each and just prefer the feel and look of the Omegas. However, the SOC is excellent and is the Semogue Boar that I kept and enjoy.

Am alternative might be the Connaught Omega Premium Jade Boar 011842. It has a nice resin handle, a shorter loft than the Pro, nice density, and once broken in is fantastic. It is priced between the SOC and Pro.

You really can’t go wrong with a SOC or another PRO/Jade. All are great and it will just be your personal preference.
I’ve looked at the Jade before too, and I should give that some thought. I have an Omega 10066 as well, and I’ve been very pleased by the performance of the Omega brushes.
 

RenoRichard

Contributor
I was typing my post as @GNR was posting, so some is repetitive of his post.

If you just bowl lather, than IMHO nothing beats an Omega Pro for value. They whip up greet lather, paint great, and cost little.

Now, if you face lather there are IMO more factors to consider. Both the SOC and Omega Jade are better for me than Pros as face latherers, although quite different. The Omega Jade has the best characteristics of the Omega Pro knots in holding its shape, quicker than the SOC break in, while still developing those lovely soft tips. The Jade feels as if just the best bristles from the Pro were chosen and set a tad deeper. It feels to have seriously premium bristles and is less floppy than the Pro. Also less massive. In my collection, the Jade gets the number one rank for boars.

The SOC boar, I have both a cherry and an ash- one in each house, is a different experience; it will also develop very soft tips, but will spread a bit more than the Jade, and look a bit messier. It doesn't hold its shape as well. My SOC hasn't gotten at all floppy, and it delivers a really incredible face feel after break in. It gets the number two rank for my boars.

Either to me are slightly better options than the Omega Pro for face lathering. But, then again, both are premium boars, while the Omega Pros are not.
 
I have a Soc boar in .. I think its cherry, I keep forgetting, but I really like it. Its very soft on the face and while just brushing your hand over it you would think ultra backbone and prickly, once soaked it loses a lot of it. Its a lovely brush, and the handle just fit to the hand nicely. (so nicely I got the same shaped handle but in a butterscotch Mistura knot).

My first brush ever was a omega 49 (I think, it was a long long time ago) that I picked up at the local drugstore on sale. I passed it on to a sibling who still uses it today.

I don't think you will be disappointed either way you go.
 
While I think the SOC boar is a nice brush, there are two other brushes I bought in preference to it.

Zenith B03-A26 - about the same size as the Omega 49, with shorter 57mm loft, and somewhere between the Semogue SOC and Omega 49 in feel. Excellent brush.

Semogue C5 Torga premium boar - a brush with a dense 24mm knot, 50mm loft in Semogue premium boar bristle. It is like a shorter version of the SOC with more backbone. Great brush but somewhat slow to break in.
 
I sure hope my Omega boar doesn't start to shed! Fantastic brush, but I'm not sure I'd ever buy another one because I'm getting too old to wait for it to break in! But my absolute favorite boar is the unbleached Zenith. If it's true that they're out of production then the new boxed one I have in my drawer and intended to give to a friend before the virus started is going to have to stay with me.
 
I sure hope my Omega boar doesn't start to shed! Fantastic brush, but I'm not sure I'd ever buy another one because I'm getting too old to wait for it to break in! But my absolute favorite boar is the unbleached Zenith. If it's true that they're out of production then the new boxed one I have in my drawer and intended to give to a friend before the virus started is going to have to stay with me.
I didn't mean to suggest that all Zenith unbleached boar brushes were out of production. I was just looking to see if the unbleached 28 x 54 was still available, and that particular configuration does not seem to be sold anymore. Yourshaving.com, for example, has an unbleached Zenith 27 x 56 in an olive wood handle for only $18.
zenith-unbleached-bristle-olive-wood-handle-506u-xse.jpg
 
+1 for another Omega, maybe a Proraso boar if you found the 49 too high lofted.

SOC has its merits. When broken in is actually softer than most of my silvertips!

But, the SOC is a lather hog and for the life of me can't get anywhere near the creamy consistency lather that I can get with just about any other brush (yes even if I load the crap out my soaps). I rate the SOC as my least favorite in my entire collection.
 
While I think the SOC boar is a nice brush, there are two other brushes I bought in preference to it.

Zenith B03-A26 - about the same size as the Omega 49, with shorter 57mm loft, and somewhere between the Semogue SOC and Omega 49 in feel. Excellent brush.

Semogue C5 Torga premium boar - a brush with a dense 24mm knot, 50mm loft in Semogue premium boar bristle. It is like a shorter version of the SOC with more backbone. Great brush but somewhat slow to break in.

Another vote for the Semogue Torga C5 boar.
Great little brush, to give you a comparison here a picture with three Semogue SOCs, one badger and two boars and the Torga C5 second from the right.


1626602961131.jpeg

Silly, this morning I used my Omega 49 and should really have added that one to the picture for size comparison.
As you may also notice, the splay on the several year old badger SOC’s is not really that bad IMO.


B.
 
Well, I'm a bit disappointed, but at least you've been "pre-enabled" for next time.
:laugh:
I’m not saying Zenith isn’t on my radar. And part of the reason I moved away from Semogue is that I didn’t feel like waiting for a long break in period, not that the process isn’t fun. The Jade has always intrigued me, I just always assumed shipping from UK would be expensive, but it was cheaper than what many US vendors charge.
 
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