I think if you had asked me two years ago which shaving brush I would take with me on a desert island, I would have quickly replied (as fast as Ralphie and his air rifle), “The Kent BK12 silver-tipped badger brush!” I mean, back then it stood to reason that the softest, biggest, most expensive shaving brush from a brush company founded in 1777 would be my go-to choice. Today, I am not so sure.
I bought my Semogue 1305 Boar Brush over the summer looking forward to the opportunity to try out a boar brush and prove to myself that badger brushes were, in fact, better. I had heard that boar brushes were stiff, scratchy and smelled like a wet dog for a while. I expected that I would make it a few shaves before starting my Kent BK12 savings fund. Well, if you follow Tailor & Barber on Instagram (and you should!), you have probably already figured by the number of times I use my Semogue 1305 that I was dead wrong. By the time I was a few shaves in, my Semogue 1305 Boar Brush was breaking in nicely and getting as soft as my silver-tipped brushes. I never once found the feel scratchy. Yes, it was a little stiffer at first, but that only really helped to pick up some of the harder soaps I use. And as far as the wet dog smell, I never once smelled that (I wonder if that has anything to do with having three dogs…).
Okay, so the Semogue 1305 felt great and evolved to fell better and better as I used it, but how did it perform when I tried building my lather? As some of you may know, I am a face-latherer. That means I pick up my shaving soap or shaving cream on my brush and build my lather directly on my face, not in a bowl. Well, this brush has yet to let me down, not that I expect it to at this point. Creams, soft soaps, hard soaps, this shaving brush handles them all beautifully. Although I do think soft soaps are this brush’s sweet spot. But do you know what I like best about this brush? The price. It’s available at Smallflower for $19.00. That’s an incredible value considering the quality of this brush!
So what about my Kent BK12? Well, the savings fund is still there, however it’s being diverted for other uses at this time. As we speak, a Semogue 620 is en route. I’ll be sure to share my feelings about that new brush too as soon as I get used to it.