Some more Yaqi brushes reviewed (including Panda and Mink)...

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This will be my last purchase/review as we are going to travel for 4 months to stay with relatives.
As always, my hope is that my reviews help others to decide on which Yaqi brush may be suitable for them.

Shedding:
Out of the several brushes in this order, only one brush shed a little, the butterscotch handle boss knot. It shed about 3 fibres per use for about 6 uses and then completely stopped. None of the other brushes shed even one fibre nor did the badger brushes shed any hair (except the initial couple which were short hairs so didn’t get caught by the glue at the base of the knot).

Softness:
So, synthetics are basically at a point where we can’t really say one is soft and another is not soft, or is prickly, or scritchy etc. They are all luxuriously soft!

I really can’t tell the difference in softness with the current generation of synthetic knots. By softness, I am referring to the tips, not the scrubby feel which can still be influenced by factors such as knot density, loft and glue bump (i.e. “free loft”).

Review of the Tuxedo knot brushes:
We are all probably aware of the characteristics of the tuxedo knot. These tuxedo brushes are no different. They retain that scrub and backbone that tuxedo knots are known to have.

The splay is mid-range relative to other synthetics. When I load the synthetic, the initial splay is difficult but loosens up as I add water to the brush and work it into a lather.

The Panda tuxedo is similar in feel to the blue/white tuxedo with a bit more backbone. The handle is really ergonomic and looks fantastic!!
The ruby red had the most backbone of these tuxedo brushes with the blue/white having the least relative to the other three.



Review of the Boss knot brushes:
As mentioned above, the butterscotch shed a little in the first few uses but hasn’t shed any since. The boss knot splays out really well. It has a natural splay that doesn’t require much effort to achieve. The butterscotch has the least amount of backbone and I must say, I really enjoy this one!

The 30mm Boss knot is a monster! Still splays out nicely but yeah, it’s huge! Holds a ton of lather and definitely has a hefty feel to it in the hand. It’s quite luxurious on the face! I could see this one coming out more often in winter months when used with a bowl/scuttle.

The 24mm Boss knot has the most backbone of these three. Nice and scrubby and generates lather in no time!



Review of the Plissoft and Cola brushes:

OK, so I am leaning more and more towards regarding the Yaqi Plissoft as my favourite knot type. It seems the most versatile in terms of backbone, splay and face feel. The handle is beautiful and comfortable. It reminds me a lot of the RR Bruce Plissoft but the Yaqi has more density and a much smaller glue bump than the RR.

The Cola brush is just awesome! Look at that handle, it’s gorgeous!!
The knot itself is unique for Yaqi as I haven’t seen it in any of their other brushes but it’s really dense and feels good on the face! The knot size of 22mm is small for my preference. I really don’t like smaller than 24mm for synthetic brushes.

If this had a 24mm knot, it would have been magical! But in any case, I use this for when I load samples into a small bowl to load from and load some more for the 2nd and 3rd passes. I just couldn’t pass up on it due to the beautiful handle!



Review of the Badger brushes:
I’ll group the blue/white and the Panda two band badger brushes as they felt exactly the same to me. The Panda handle is brilliant! One of my favourites since I’ve always liked the panda plus I liked the Kung-Fu Panda movie so I just had to grab both the Panda handle brushes!

Both the two bands are dense, more so than the older Yaqi two bands. The tips are also lighter in colour and are soft, ready to go after just two test lathers. The older two bands needed about 6 lathers to get them to the point they were broken in enough for use on the face.

The backbone is strong on both the brushes but being badger brushes, there’s no issue with this at all as they still splay out well. Synthetics having a low loft tends to fling lather all over the place.

The 24mm knots are big! I feel Yaqi are generous with their knot construction and I have a feeling that these would be closer to 26mm knots. If a knot ever falls out, I’ll be sure to measure the diameter at the base of the knot to confirm my feeling.

The pure badger is probably the nicest pure badger I’ve used…relative to other pure badgers of course! It has nice, tapered tips that are definitely not clipped.

Having said that, it was too much for my skin to handle. I’m quite bummed out about this because I really wanted to like it but by the second pass, it felt very scritchy and my skin didn’t appreciate that at all.




Review of the Mink knot brushes:
The mink knot is a new release from Yaqi. I haven’t used the original “motherlode” knot but the Mink knot looks just like it, but more in the shape of a shaving brush rather than the make-up brush look of the motherlode.

I left this for last because it really took me by surprise! The brush basically takes all the best points of the Tuxedo knot but gives it the ability to splay out easier. It’s really a remarkable knot because it requires much less effort to splay it out (like the cashmere for example) but retains the nice backbone of the Tuxedo.

It has a presence on the face like the Tuxedo knots do so yes, while I could have said it feels like a silksmoke or synbad etc, I find these to have less presence on the face in the sense that they feel feather soft. The Mink has a presence but good splay.

I liked the new Mink knot so much that I’ve packed the green handle one in my travel kit (along with a Yaqi two band) for an upcoming extended trip!

 
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The pure badger is probably the nicest pure badger I’ve used…relative to other pure badgers of course! It has nice, tapered tips that are definitely not clipped.

Having said that, it was too much for my skin to handle. I’m quite bummed out about this because I really wanted to like it but by the second pass, it felt very scritchy and my skin didn’t appreciate that at all.
Some great reviews.

Funny you should mention it was too much for your skin to handle, I tried a Yaqi Badger today for the first time and it really did not feel good on the skin. First time I'd ever used a badger and the sensation was not one my face could handle. Like yourself I was a bit disappointed as it's a very good brush otherwise.
 
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Some great reviews.

Funny you should mention it was too much for your skin to handle, I tried a Yaqi Badger today for the first time and it really did not feel good on the skin. First time I'd ever used a badger and the sensation was not one my face could handle. Like yourself I was a bit disappointed as it's a very good brush otherwise.
Yeah, I think I'm done with pure badger brushes for good.

The Yaqi two band and silvertip are another story! I have about 25 of them!
 
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Review of the Mink knot brushes:...


It has a presence on the face like the Tuxedo knots do so yes, while I could have said it feels like a silksmoke or synbad etc, I find these to have less presence on the face in the sense that they feel feather soft. The Mink has a presence but good splay...
:unsure: Help me out with this choice of wording, please. To my face, the SynBad/Mew Brown is a tad scrubbier than the Cashmere and with slightly more backbone. Before I splurge on a new YaQi I want to make sure that it's not simply a "rehash" of an older knot in a different color scheme.
 
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:unsure: Help me out with this choice of wording, please. To my face, the SynBad/Mew Brown is a tad scrubbier than the Cashmere and with slightly more backbone. Before I splurge on a new YaQi I want to make sure that it's not simply a "rehash" of an older knot in a different color scheme.
Yaqi posted up a while (it might have changed by now) that they actually only have 2 different fibres (the one used for plissoft, and the black one) that are dyed. However, I've used a few of them and I find the Plissoft and Tuxedo to be different, but that could be down to the impact of the how the fibres are chemically treated.
I've owned a few Tuxedo knots as well, and I've found the glue bump makes a huge difference to how much backbone the brush has.
FWIW, I find the differences between the few Yaqis I have to not be as significant as some others seem to find, as long as the glue bump isn't too high (was sent a replacement the time it was) then the brush is generally a good one.
 
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:unsure: Help me out with this choice of wording, please. To my face, the SynBad/Mew Brown is a tad scrubbier than the Cashmere and with slightly more backbone. Before I splurge on a new YaQi I want to make sure that it's not simply a "rehash" of an older knot in a different color scheme.
I find the mink has good presence on the face, like tuxedo but with better splay.

I'd rank face presence as follows:
Tuxedo
Mink
Boss (the low loft version)
Synbad/silksmoke/timberwolf
Plissoft
Faux horse
Boss (the higher loft version)
Cashmere
 
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