Should You Buy A Synthetic Fibre Shaving Brush?
UPDATED 4th July 2019
In recent years we have seen sales of synthetic fibre shaving brushes go from tiny, almost insignificant numbers to 78% of all shaving brush sales, (January - June 2019).
Why is this? I reckon there are two main reasons.
The entry of Vulfix, Simpsons, Executive Shaving Company and German giants Muhle to the synthetic brush market is one factor, the other being there is a growing number of ecologically aware people who for ethical reasons don't want badgers killed for their hair to fill shaving brushes.
Vulfix, Simpsons & Muhle
These premium shaving brush manufacturers have introduced ranges of exceptional quality synthetic brushes that are super-soft on the face and mimic the qualities of high-quality badger hair brushes. Previously synthetic brushes were scratchy on the face and didn't retain heat and water, not so now as I can testify. I have a medium size Vulfix synthetic brush and a Muhle synthetic travel brush and both perform in much the same way a badger hair brush does.
Executive Shaving Synthetic Brushes
Our Big Jock synthetics (pictured above) are at least as good as you'll find anywhere in the world, feedback from buyers has been very favourable. They are mid-priced for synthetics but when compared to badger hair brushes they are an absolute bargain. Big Jock is available in faux horn, black and cream. For those who prefer a smaller brush, the Executive Shaving Budget Synthetic Shaving Brush is the one for you. We also have two Medium Jock Brushes in faux horn and black, these brushes have a 23mm knot which is a fairly standard size.
Alpha Rubberset Tribute Brushes
June 2018 saw us stocking Alpha Rubberset Tribute Synthetic Shaving Brushes for the first time and sales for these brushes have been very high from day one. These brushes are true to the originals which were popular in the 1930s-1950s except some are now filled with a high grade synthetic fibre head.
The Ethical Factor
It's true that badgers are killed in China for their coats but how is this done? Is the killing done humanely? Are the badgers farmed for their coats or are they hunted in the wild? Are farmers and hunters working to quotas to maintain sustainability or can farmers and hunters breed and hunt at will without any controls? I've read that badgers in China are bred for their meat and that the hair is a by-product of the meat. Is there any evidence that this is true? I often wonder if the rising price of badger hair is down to dwindling numbers of badgers or is the price rising in line with demand?
I love my two badger hair brushes and I really enjoy using my two synthetic brushes. To be frank, both types of hair effortlessly lather up shaving creams and hard and soft shaving soaps, they are all also very soft on the face. My personal preference is for synthetic fibre for the following reasons:
1) Synthetic brushes dry almost immediately after use, this is a huge benefit when you're travelling
2) Synthetic brushes don't suffer from 'damp dog' smells
3) Synthetic brushes don't shed hairs as many badger hair brushes do
4) No badger died to make a synthetic hair shaving brush
Browse our range of synthetic shaving brushes here.