Our new friends at Grizzly Jack Beard Co. have been running a Kickstarter campaign for their new beard brush (the Militia brush) and comb (the Wrangle beard comb). Bearded consumers have loved the campaign and it was fully funded (plus some). There are a few days remaining in the campaign and a number of different backing options left, and having sampled both the brush and the comb, I would like to take this opportunity to recommend that all of you back the campaign and take the opportunity to get your own brush and comb in the pre-release period. Here’s a quick video showing the efficacy of the brush vs a traditional boar bristle brush:
The Militia Brush
When I first received my brush, I was first pleased with the shape of the brush. Its ergonomic design made it easy to hold and work through my beard from all directions. I immediately started running it through my beard and was pleased to see that it didn’t get caught up in my beard once – it glided through effortlessly. Grizzly Jack was kind enough to engrave TitleBeard.com on the top of the brush, which made for a really sharp presentation.
The biggest test I put the brush through was on a recent trip I took to New York. I was there for a trade show and had styled my beard using something in the area of a gallon of hairspray. After about ten hours of walking around with the styled beard, I took a shower to wash out all the hairspray. I applied a lot of beard balm and then spent about fifteen minutes brushing my beard with the Grizzly Jack Militia Brush. It worked like a charm. The bristles went through my beard easily, evenly distributing the balm throughout my beard. After styling my beard and subsequently washing it, my beard usually appears flat as the hairspray has dried it out so much. However, the combination of the balm and Militia Brush gave my beard a lot of volume and had it looking great again.
Even regular daily brushing without the application of oils or balms added volume to my beard while working out any tangles. The bristles are spaced far enough apart to allow the brush to easily move through a beard of any length, but close enough together that they will work out any tangles without pulling on the beard in an unpleasant way.
The bristles on the brush have two features that I noticed are distinctly different from some other paddle brushes I have used. First, the combination of the bristles with the wooden handle allow the bristles to hold their position better than on some paddle brushes where there is a sort of padding on the back of the bristles. That padding allows the bristles to move and sometimes depress depending on the amount of pressure applied. While you might think the wooden handle on the Militia Brush would make the bristles more rigid, that is not the case. The bristles still have enough flexibility so that it doesn’t feel like you have to force the brush through your beard.
Second, many bristles on brushes like this have small knobs at the end that help facilitate detangling, but the knobs on the Militia Brush are smaller than what you’ll find on an average paddle brush. I found this to be a great feature because the knobs on other brushes can sometimes make cleaning the brush harder as hairs and residue from beard balms or oils can build up and the larger knobs make it harder to remove this residue – I didn’t have that issue with the Militia Brush.
On the whole, I would highly recommend the Militia Brush and you can get one through the Kickstarter campaign for a little as $30. This price is comparatively lower than similar high quality paddle brushes, and I much prefer a wooden handle to a plastic one, both for general construction purposes and for the “lasting” factor.
The Wrangle Comb
In addition to the Militia Brush, Grizzly Jack is also offering backers the chance to get one of its combs, either the Wrangle (larger version) or the Traveler (smaller version). I was very intrigued when I first unpacked this comb because I had never seen a comb design like it. There are three rows of bristles, and the middle row is slightly shorter than the outside rows. Here’s a quick video demonstrating the comb in action:
I want to put it out there that I’m not typically a comb guy when it comes to my beard – I much prefer using a brush, especially since my beard has gotten longer. I find that most combs (with the exception of some hand-cut ones) get caught up in my beard too easily and pull on my beard way more than I would like. Even with a vigorous brushing, I seem to lose more beard hairs through combing than brushing.
That being said, I liked the Grizzly Jack Wrangle comb. I imagine that it would work on beards of any length, but my suggestion for longer beards would be to use the brush first and then use the comb to give your beard a great finished look for the day. Even without brushing first, I found that the comb went through my beard fairly easily without getting snagged, I just prefer to use combs after brushes as part of my daily grooming. That may sound like a lot of steps for those who are new to beard care, but something important that I have learned throughout my three years of growing a beard is that daily beard care is multi-step process if you want to bring out the best in your beard.
The comb is generally more flexible than most beard combs I’ve tried and it was easy to comb my beard in any directions. The comb I sampled, the Wrangle, is the longer comb, which may make it a little harder to carry the comb in a pants pocket if that’s your thing, but given the choice, I would purchase the Wrangle over the Traveler simply because the longer surface area allows for a good grip and to cover more beard area with each stroke.
On the whole, I would absolutely recommend the Grizzly Jack Wrangle Comb, and you can get yours on the Kickstarter page (for $15 plus shipping), but if you could only choose one, I would recommend the Militia Brush for longer beards and the Wrangle comb for shorter beards – but with the number of deals available through the Kickstarter campaign, you can easily get both at an affordable cost.
Just the other day, I was having a discussion with a bearded friend about beard care and we were discussing beard brushes and combs and he said “Hey man, have you heard about that Grizzly Jack brush? I backed the Kickstarter campaign because I thought it looked like a good brush”. I told him I had heard of the brush, that it was a good decision to back it, and that based on my own experience he wouldn’t be disappointed – if you pick up one of these brushes or combs, you won’t be disappointed either.