The Plisson Synthetic brush is probably the most talked about shaving brush over the past year or so. It gets rave reviews and the hype surrounding it is palpable…..but should you believe the hype?Since I began wet shaving over a year ago the popularity of synthetic brushes has skyrocketed. There are the Omega hi brushes, Plisson Synths, Muhle, and many other synthetics to choose from. They can range from a few bucks on eBay($4 shipped) to over $100 bucks.
Today I want to focus on the Plisson which is the most talked about of these brushes. I have owned 3 of them and currently do have one that I use maybe once a week. When I first became aware of the Plisson and how soft it was it became the first brush I ‘HAD TO HAVE’. I got taken on a trade so i had to actually buy another one. However the initial trader, after months of hounding, eventually sent the brush so I wound up with two. At first I was in love with this brush. Is it soft? Oh wow is it soft. Can it lather hard soaps? Sure can with relative ease. I was loving the brush and adding to the hype with every Shave of the Day picture and forum thread I could. to me the brush was amazing. What could be better? Simple answer a lot of brushes……any decent Badger and even many boars including my beloved Semogue Owners Club. But I digress.
Once I got my hands on a couple of quality badgers and boars I realized that maybe the Plisson wasn’t all that great once I compared it to other quality brushes. The big down fall was backbone and face feel. there just isn’t any backbone. I see guys arguing this point, but this isn’t really an aspect that can be argued. Sure there is a tiny bit, but compared to most brushes it lacks backbone. Also with the face feel I just felt like it was nothing compared to boars and badgers. I like some face feel. I want to have a bit of feeling of the brushing lathering the soap on my face. I also found lathering of shave sticks to be harder work with the Plisson compared to my other brushes.
Let’s list the POSITIVES of this brush:
Price – This brush can be had for around $30 which is a good price for a brush of this quality
For Travel or Daily use – this brush dries ultra quick so it is my choice of brush when I travel. Since it dries so quickly it could also be a daily driver for someone who only wants one brush to use daily.
Handle – I’m not a fan of how light it is, but the handle does feel really nice in the hand. it’s a great shaped handle.
Value – in all honesty its a nice brush for the price
***After re-reading the post and talking to some people I realized I left out a couple of other positives.
No Shedding! No Animal hair stink!! No Break-in period
Now onto the NEGATIVES or Drawbacks of the brush
Backbone – this brush is way to floppy for my liking
Face feel – Along with super softness comes zero face feel in my opinion
Weight – in hand this brush feels cheap and very light. This may not be the case, but it is the in hand feeling.
Hype – I think the hype clouds what this brush actually is.
So let’s do a Review
Softeness – A+….not sure if there is a softer tipped brush out there
Backbone – D-, It has more than nothing, but not much
Face feel – B- , Despite its pillowy softness I don’t really enjoy the face feel very much
Price – A, when its $30 at L’Occitaine. B when its full price or being sold for profit on a BST
Value – B, decent brush that should be tried
OVERALL = B,
Not a bad score but not the A+ you would expect from a lot of the talk. I hear the term ‘brush of the gods’ used by more than just Chris Bailey(The Shaving Evangelist) and I wonder how many brushes these people have used? If it’s not even the best brush you own why would you use someone else term to describe it? this is not a jab at Mr.Bailey, I actually really like Chris and I have chatted on messenger with him a few times and he is a very, very nice guy. Nor is it a jab at people who call it ‘the brush of the gods’. I just don’t think this moniker fits for everyone including people who use the term. Clearly to Mr.Bailey it is HIS brush of the gods and its great he has the perfect brush for him. but I beg everyone else to try other brushes….especially new guys who haven’t tried many brushes. Sure you may love this brush but don’t be blinded by the hype and not try the other amazing brushes out there. Sure if your first brush was a Wilkinson sword from WALMART like mine was this brush is 1000 times better. But like all things wet shaving it’s your results may vary…..a LOT. There is a reason not everyone has this brush and you see them on the BSTs, it’s just not for everyone.
***I just want to say that this is my opinion. I hope it generates some conversation, but again it’s not a slight to anyone at all. Just my opinion.
“Shave me my friend” – Nirvana