#1
We have hard water in our house. We have to use a descaler in the electric kettle to stop the kettle getting furred up. Is this hard water going to damage my brush?
Wet Shaving Newbie
#2

Member
Virginia
(This post was last modified: 06-12-2015, 02:56 PM by Owba.)
I dont think it will damage the brush but along with the soap buildup from use it will leave it feeling more stiff than when you first got it. You will need to clean your brush regularly which you should do whether you have hard water or not. There are many recipes out there on what to whip together to make a good brush cleaner, some folks just use shampoo or dish detergent. I like this recipe here:


For the hard water I would recommend a quick diluted vinegar soak and thorough rinse before you wash the brush with whatever solution you choose. This will help break up the hard water deposits that the cleaning solution probably won't get. Do this every month or when you start to feel your brush stiffen up.
[+] 2 users like this post
#3
My water measures 12+ grains. Anything over 10 is considered very hard. This is one reason that I prefer synthetics over natural hair brushes. Both badger and boar need a lot of care to keep them up when your water is this hard. Boar absorbs water so in hard water I could hardly ever get a good lather from a boar brush that wasn't brand new, and I know how to lather. Badger doesn't absorb the water but rather it traps it. If you don't dry it out well then it could lead to problems eventually. A diluted vinegar wash is recommended regularly (more often the harder the water) to keep the scale from damaging either the bristles/hairs or the glue in the knot.
>>> Brian <<<
Happy beeps, buddy! Happy beeps!
[+] 1 user likes this post
#4

Member
Virginia
An excerpt from my counties 2014 water report:

The water provided by the Sanitation Authority is hard at an average of 321 ppm or 18.76 grains
(1grain = 17.118 ppm) and can be expected to cause calcium buildup and glassware spotting. This is an
aesthetic problem, but it has no harmful health effects. Water hardness is not regulated by the Virginia
Department of Health (VDH).

They forgot to add, may be detrimental to your building of thick rich shave lather and cause your shaving brush too feel like a loofah.

Our water is stored in old limestone quarries here.....ugh.....
Bob from Virginia
#5

Super Moderator
San Diego, Cal., USA
San Diego has hard water but with just normal rinsing and complete drying I have not noticed a problem so perhaps the water here isn't as hard as other places. As Brian suggests, consider giving synthetics a chance. They have come a long way in just a few years. I picked up a Plisson synthetic that was made for L'Occitane for only $30.00 and the performance and face feel are just amazing.
[+] 2 users like this post
#6
(This post was last modified: 06-12-2015, 05:01 PM by RzaRazor.)
What I tend to do is boil my water in a kettle then pour it in a mug and let the water sit until luke warm. I believe this helps "soften" the hard water. I still do maintenance cleaning on my brushes every few months but it seems to work

(06-12-2015, 04:03 PM)Freddy Wrote: San Diego has hard water but with just normal rinsing and complete drying I have not noticed a problem so perhaps the water here isn't as hard as other places. As Brian suggests, consider giving synthetics a chance. They have come a long way in just a few years. I picked up a Plisson synthetic that was made for L'Occitane for only $30.00 and the performance and face feel are just amazing.

Hey Freddy,

Where did you get your Plisson for at that price? I thought they were noticeably more expensive?
#7

Member
Virginia
(06-12-2015, 05:00 PM)RzaRazor Wrote: What I tend to do is boil my water in a kettle then pour it in a mug and let the water sit until luke warm. I believe this helps "soften" the hard water. I still do maintenance cleaning on my brushes every few months but it seems to work

Where did you get your Plisson for at that price? I thought they were noticeably more expensive?

Wouldn't boiling your water make the hardness worse by removing water and leaving in the minerals that make it hard?  I have heard adding a teaspoon of citric acid to your shaving water will soften it a bit as it does something to the ionic bonds between the water and the minerals in it but I haven't tried it.  Perhaps someone with a head for science can help out.

Call round to the L'Occitane stores, some still have them in stock for $30.  I scored two myself this way.
Bob from Virginia
#8

Super Moderator
San Diego, Cal., USA
(06-12-2015, 05:00 PM)RzaRazor Wrote: What I tend to do is boil my water in a kettle then pour it in a mug and let the water sit until luke warm. I believe this helps "soften" the hard water. I still do maintenance cleaning on my brushes every few months but it seems to work

(06-12-2015, 04:03 PM)Freddy Wrote: San Diego has hard water but with just normal rinsing and complete drying I have not noticed a problem so perhaps the water here isn't as hard as other places. As Brian suggests, consider giving synthetics a chance. They have come a long way in just a few years. I picked up a Plisson synthetic that was made for L'Occitane for only $30.00 and the performance and face feel are just amazing.

Hey Freddy,

Where did you get your Plisson for at that price? I thought they were noticeably more expensive?

I purchased mine on line through the L'Occitane web site. For some reason, while the in-store price was $55.00, the on-line price was only $30.00.
#9
(This post was last modified: 06-12-2015, 09:50 PM by RzaRazor.)
(06-12-2015, 05:57 PM)Owba Wrote:
(06-12-2015, 05:00 PM)RzaRazor Wrote: What I tend to do is boil my water in a kettle then pour it in a mug and let the water sit until luke warm. I believe this helps "soften" the hard water. I still do maintenance cleaning on my brushes every few months but it seems to work

Where did you get your Plisson for at that price? I thought they were noticeably more expensive?

Wouldn't boiling your water make the hardness worse by removing water and leaving in the minerals that make it hard?  I have heard adding a teaspoon of citric acid to your shaving water will soften it a bit as it does something to the ionic bonds between the water and the minerals in it but I haven't tried it.  Perhaps someone with a head for science can help out.

Call round to the L'Occitane stores, some still have them in stock for $30.  I scored two myself this way.

It's my understanding that when you boil water in the kettle and let it sit for a while, the hard minerals actually accumulate to the bottom of the kettle. 
If you've ever used a metal kettle, after some time you notice the lime scale (minerals) build up at the bottom of the kettle. 

I'll defintely look into the L'Occitane stores, thanks for the tip.

(06-12-2015, 06:29 PM)Freddy Wrote:
(06-12-2015, 05:00 PM)RzaRazor Wrote: What I tend to do is boil my water in a kettle then pour it in a mug and let the water sit until luke warm. I believe this helps "soften" the hard water. I still do maintenance cleaning on my brushes every few months but it seems to work

(06-12-2015, 04:03 PM)Freddy Wrote: San Diego has hard water but with just normal rinsing and complete drying I have not noticed a problem so perhaps the water here isn't as hard as other places. As Brian suggests, consider giving synthetics a chance. They have come a long way in just a few years. I picked up a Plisson synthetic that was made for L'Occitane for only $30.00 and the performance and face feel are just amazing.

Hey Freddy,

Where did you get your Plisson for at that price? I thought they were noticeably more expensive?

I purchased mine on line through the L'Occitane web site.  For some reason, while the in-store price was $55.00, the on-line price was only $30.00.
Sounds good, i'll give it a look
[+] 2 users like this post
#10
(06-12-2015, 05:57 PM)Owba Wrote: I have heard adding a teaspoon of citric acid to your shaving water will soften it a bit

I did some experiments with citric acid a while back, and it works really well to make lathering easier. But you have to use just a tiny amount. Just 1 gram in a liter of water was plenty, and adding too much made it completely impossible to make lather.
-Chuck

"No one wants advice, only corroboration." -John Steinbeck
[+] 1 user likes this post


Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)