Exciting brush discovery
In yesterday’s shave, I was commenting on how my H.L. Thäter brushes seemed very like the Rooney Heritage Victorian that Todd O recommended: soft tips, resilient bristles, and a shape that somehow makes the brush work better—presenting instead of hoarding the lather, a shape that facilitates working the lather up and into the beard. I also noticed, but didn’t especially note, that when I rinsed the brush the tips had that “tacky” feeling that the Victorian has, which on that brush I attributed to the hooked tips of those bristles.
Lo! The H.L. Thäter brushes when dried presented the same “porcupine” appearance as the Victorian:
Take a look at Los Tres Amigos in the photo: all porcupine, all hooked tips, all exceptionally good-feeling (and good-lathering) brushes. Todd O awakened me to these brush properties, and we got to wondering why this quality of brush—and hooked tips—are relatively rare. Could it be that many brush makers trim the hooked tips, either to make the brush look better in the case, or as part of final shaping of the brush? No idea, but it does seem clear at this point that (a) hooked tips are a good thing for brush feel (if not appearance, though taking the dry brush and brushing the palm of your hand will unhook the tips, leaving the brush looking perfectly fine); and (b) hooked tips are relatively rare.
If you’re seriously interested in brushes, you should definitely think about getting a Thäter brush. At the link, Bullgoose Shaving has a selection of Thäter brushes on sale. I don’t know whether this is a close-out, but I suggest picking one up soon.
I used one in today’s shave:
The soap in the bowl is Geo. F. Trumper Eucris, which I’ve used previously. The lather this morning wanted to die toward the end of the shave, though it lasted, and some have reported Eucris lather problems. I’ll give it another go. I didn’t notice any lather problems previously, but (as you can see in the brush report) some things sort of sneak up on me and it takes me a while to recognize them.
The ARC Weber with its original Astra Superior Platinum blade once again did a terrific job for me. I don’t know whether the Advanced Razor Coating is contributing, but certainly I’m getting some mighty fine shaves from this razor and blade.
Three smooth passes, and then a bit of l’Occitane’s Cade shea butter aftershave balm, which is a very good balm indeed—I’m right at the end of the tube, so I’ve ordered more. Great stuff for the balm-oriented, particularly (I imagine) when facing cold, dry, windy air.