Shaving Brush Tips & Advice
While using a shaving brush may not be mandatory, there’s no doubting the enhancement it can bring to any shaving experience. Besides the classic, regal feeling shaving brushes provide, a brush also clears away facial dirt and oil, lifts the stubborn whiskers and softens beard hair for an easier, smoother shave. So, if you have a tough time shaving, or are just looking to upgrade your routine, check out our tips and advice on shaving brushes.
What Type of Shaver Are You?
From beginner to shaving aficionado, a brush can be used by anyone to improve their bathroom décor, enhance their shave and eliminate that feeling of dread for the next shave.
If you’re new to brushes, welcome to the world of old-school, classic shaving. As a beginner, go with a brush that will get the job done without breaking the bank. Boar or horse bristles lather shaving cream or soap well and raise whiskers for a more comfortable shave. Once the shaving brush becomes a staple in your shaving regimen, upgrade the bristles quickly (generally badger hair -- and honestly they are not that much more expensive) for an even better experience.
Our recommendation for a beginner brush:
If you’re tired of the coarse and brittle boar and horse hair brushes, step up to a badger brush. Badger hair is softer and retains water much better than boar or horse hair, which equates to a smoother shave for you. The hair is also stronger to resist fallout over time and last longer.
If you shave your head, we recommend upgrading your brush one more time to ensure the best shave and minimize nicks on the dome. You’ll need a thick brush that can spread the lather evenly and efficiently. Silvertip badger hair is very soft and dense to ensure your head is completely taken care of before touching down with a razor.
How To Use A Shaving Brush
Using a brush is relatively simple; the key is to take care of it. Improper maintenance can damage the bristles and over time hurt its efficiency.
- First start by washing your face, getting rid of dirt and oil build up that hinders your shave.
- Wet your brush and begin lathering your shaving cream or soap. It’s important to note that not all shaving creams are suited for a brush. Take our Beard Destroyer Shave Cream for example; while it’s a great, rich-lubricating cream, it’s not a brush’s best friend.
- Once you’ve built a lather to your liking, brush across your mug, against the direction of hair growth, to apply the cream and stand up hairs.
- Reapply shaving cream throughout the shave as necessary.
- Once you’re finished, rinse out the bristles well and hang the brush upside down to dry. Having the brush dry downwards allows for excess water to drip off of the brush and increases its longevity.
Why Go With A Shaving Brush?
Old-School Manliness: Using a shaving brush gives a man that classic, old-school shaving experience. Building a rich lather and spreading it across the mug will make any man feel like their bathroom has been sent back in time.
Better For Your Skin: Using a brush removes dirt and oil from your face that may cause pimples or ingrown hairs.
Better For Your Shave: Using a shave brush lifts and softens whiskers so that your razor can swipe through more easily – reducing irritation as well as the time it takes to shave.
Better For The Earth: Aerosol cans of shaving cream are not only typically poor quality, they’re also bad for the giant spinning rock you’ve been living on. Chemicals in aerosol shave creams are damaging to the ozone layer and these cans pile up in landfills as well.
Picking The Right Shaving Brush
Brushes use an assortment of hair for the bristles from boar and horse to varying badger hair that all differ in softness and durability. This variability allows for a man with any skin type or price range to find a brush that will enrich their shave.
Horse & Boar Hair – Stiff, natural hair
- Pros: Provides the benefits of a shaving brush without the higher cost of softer bristles.
- Cons: Lower quality bristles have a scratchy feel as the lather is applied and are more susceptible to falling out. These brushes tend to have a lower life expectancy.
Pure Badger – Dark colored badger hair
- Pros: Very affordable, soft brush that will last a long time and is a much better option than using your hand.
- Cons: If not rinsed out after each use and hung to dry properly, bristles can stiffen and the brush is less effective.
Best Badger – Softer, more water-absorbent bristles
- Pros: Softer and more water friendly than pure badger hair, this brush creates and maintains a stronger lather.
- Cons: Retains some of the same, albeit lesser, scratchiness of pure badger and lower quality bristles.
Silvertip Badger – Highest quality badger hair
- Pros: Ultra thick, soft bristles provide unparalleled lather for the best prep out there before blade meets face.
- Cons: Given it is of the highest quality, it’s also the priciest – but hey, you get what you pay for.
Still looking for more information on shaving brushes? Check out our Brushing Up On Badger Shaving Brushes article or reach out to our grooming experts. We’re happy to answer any questions you may have and help guide you to better shaving.