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Basics of Shaving Brushes

Silvertip Badger: These are generally the most exclusive of badger hair shaving brushes. They are called "Silvertip" because of their color toward the end of the hairs which is also very fine and feels the softest when lathering directly on the face. They also have a 3-band appearance with the dark (most times, black) band running through the middle. Most manufacturers use the badger's neck hair when assembling silvertip brushes and leave the ends untrimmed for that soft feel.

da Vinci UOMO 294 and Muhle Sophist 93K44
2-Band Silvertip Badger: Very few manufacturers use the 2-band technique of assembling shaving brushes. It uses the same hair as the silvertip badger as listed above, but it is packed into the knot higher to expose more of the dark band. Consequently, these brushes are also very luxurious, but have more of a backbone and feel a little stiffer on the face. These brushes provide a gentle massage and act as an exfoliator for those that apply lather directly to the face.

30 Degree Contour and Thater 4125 Finest Fan

Super Badger: The Super Badger hair is similar to the silvertip in that it has a visible 3 band appearance with a soft feel. The tips are also left untrimmed, but have a whiter appearance than traditional silvertip hairs. The dark band is often closer to the tips of the hairs, leaving the white tips the smallest in terms of color ratio.
Simpsons Chubby 3 and Vulfix #375 

Best Badger: These brushes are among the most favorited by users for the economical factor. These hairs are harvested from larger areas such as the badger's belly and don't have as distinct color separation as seen in Super Badger or Silvertip Badger brushes. When lathering on the face, the best badger still maintains softness, but it does also have light scrubbiness against the skin.
RoyalShave PB2 and Simpson Classic CL1

Pure Badger: Pure Badger hairs are harvested from the largest parts of the badger and are the most widely available. It is the least expensive of Badger Hair Shaving Brushes and great for any user considering a starter badger brush. The hairs are slightly stiff and can be used as a natural exfoliant feel when lathering on the face. Shaving soap users often favor Pure Badger brushes due to their ability to hold against hard soaps.
Muhle HJM and Vulfix #2197

Pure Bristle (Boar/Hog): Pure bristle brushes are taken from boars/hogs. They are the most economical in terms of price and are ideal for people that have just switched to wet shaving or prefer a more stiff brush. Face lathering with a Pure Bristle brush may often feel like a massage.
Omega Professional and Omega Boar 
Note: Each manufacturer refers to their brushes with different verbage, but the classifications as listed above are a general summary of shaving brush types. Please refer to each individual brush or brand for further information regarding a specific shave brush.


Synthetic: The majority of shaving brushes are constructed of synthetic handles. Since the handle doesn't hold any other function to the performance of the brush, synthetic materials such as resin or plastic are the easiest to mold and shape and consequently, the most widely available.

Metal: Metal brush handles are preferred by those that require a more industrial look and heavier feel. Often constructed of solid stainless steel, these have a sleek finish and are consequently heavier than the other handle types.

Natural: The use of animal horn or wood raises the cost of a shaving brush, but often makes the brush lighter. Often times, shaving brushes that incorporate natural materials require metal inlays to keep them from cracking and also weight to the brush. The uniqueness of the elements used makes each brush one-of-a-kind. 


Most brush manufacturers import their badger hairs from Asia, where the trade of badger fur is no threat to the sustainability of badger populations. In these regions, badger hair is a historic commodity and is deeply respected among breeders. Its high price along with strict environmental controls adhered to by exporters and imports, insist on the livelihood of badger populations as well as the dignity of commerce with badger fur trade. 
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