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I have a basic shoe shine question.

I realize you should have a separate applicator brush for each color polish. However what about the horsehair brush you shine with, can you just use one brush for say black and brown or would you get a separate for each?
 

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I have a basic shoe shine question.

can you just use one brush for say black and brown or would you get a separate for each?
Yes you can use the same brush. Just don't do it.:icon_smile_big:
Like Mitchell said you'll get some discoloration on your shoes.
You can't see the polish/wax inside your brushes but it's there.

I use 5 brushes for the various shades of shoes.
 

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It is only with great trepidation that I contradict the advice already offered by this esteemed group of fellow AAAC'ers. But I must say that in my 50+ years of shoe polishing I have used my horsehair brushes to buff my shoes without regard to the color of the shoe, and it hasn't made an iota of difference.

But in fairness, I must confess that most of my shoes are brown, and I stopped using paste wax for the most part 20 years ago. I suspect that it is possible if the ends of the bristles of a brush are befouled with thick clumps of black shoe wax, it could be detrimental when used to buff lighter brown and tan shoes. But then I would also have to question how one managed to accumulate those clumps in the first place?
 

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My grandfather had a nice shoe shine kit in a wooden box - it had a small foot rest on top so one could shine one's shoes while wearing them.

There was a black horsehair brush and a brown one. I think he got this set right after WWI and I still have them and use them.

My home shoe-shining has dropped off dramatically since I saw the fantastic job that the guy at my local Nordstrom does for $5 (with tip).
 

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Horsehair itself is a fun subject covered in a marvelous book called - the colour of Horses.
It isn't necessary to have brushes physically matching your shoe colour, but it helps remember what goes with what.
However, with hats a hat brush must match, simply because the sometimes loosened hairs will show against the felt.
Your stiffer hairs come from the tail, whilst finer products are made from the mane.Everything in between simply gets in everything.
Several years past, women discovered a horsecare product called 'Mane and Tail' gave superior results to all the human products.For awhile, you couldn't buy any for an actual horse, though the brand name gave some fodder for crude jokes.
I just used bulk cheap stuff anyway, scented strawberry and WD 40 for really bad knots.
This Dressage gal made a rude comment about my strawberry smelling strawberry roan.
I reminded her ( she rode a french Selle Francais) of the comment in a classic british book on horsecare, by an officer killed at Balaclava.
It is a almost forgotten anecdote of Waterloo, that the french cavalry's arrival and movements were preceded by the general stink of their poorly cared for mounts.
Get two sets of brushes, and avoid any Waterloos with your shoes.
 

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I use one brush for everything but then I only really use it to dust shoes with - I apply polish and shine with the same selvyt cloth. I use a yak hair brush and I purposely bought one in a light colour so that I could see if it picks up any colour from shoe polish - none so far.
 

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It is only with great trepidation that I contradict the advice already offered by this esteemed group of fellow AAAC'ers. But I must say that in my 50+ years of shoe polishing I have used my horsehair brushes to buff my shoes without regard to the color of the shoe, and it hasn't made an iota of difference.

But in fairness, I must confess that most of my shoes are brown, and I stopped using paste wax for the most part 20 years ago. I suspect that it is possible if the ends of the bristles of a brush are befouled with thick clumps of black shoe wax, it could be detrimental when used to buff lighter brown and tan shoes. But then I would also have to question how one managed to accumulate those clumps in the first place?
Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Only Flanderian, and I, seem to know the true answer to the question asked! I've been to the back of shoe repair shops, for years! I've seen the brushes and what not used to polish shoes. All of you with multiple buffing brushes will be quite disapointed!!!
 

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I use a different brush for black, browns, cordovon, white, and miscellaneous.
 

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I use one brush for everything but then I only really use it to dust shoes with - I apply polish and shine with the same selvyt cloth. I use a yak hair brush and I purposely bought one in a light colour so that I could see if it picks up any colour from shoe polish - none so far.
+1

I wouldn't apply polish with a brush. I use an old t-shirt to apply and a selvyt cloth to buff or bull. The only brush I use onmy shoes is a welt brush.

W_B
 

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It is only with great trepidation that I contradict the advice already offered by this esteemed group of fellow AAAC'ers. But I must say that in my 50+ years of shoe polishing I have used my horsehair brushes to buff my shoes without regard to the color of the shoe, and it hasn't made an iota of difference.

But in fairness, I must confess that most of my shoes are brown, ?
Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Only Flanderian, and I, seem to know the true answer to the question asked! I've been to the back of shoe repair shops, for years! I've seen the brushes and what not used to polish shoes. All of you with multiple buffing brushes will be quite disapointed!!!
One reason I don't let the shop shine my shoes when they asked me.
I always decline to have shoes polished when I dropped them off at the repair shop. One time they took the liberty to polish a pair of my shell cordovans after they put on new heels. When I picked them up they felt sticky.

^With all due respect to Flanderian and Scoundrel, I must admit to using multiple brushes for buffing my shoes...one for black and a second, for all other colors.
Seems like everyone here whether they use 1 or many brushes does the right thing.
If you have only black shoes you need one brush. If you have several brown pairs of shoes you don't need a brush for each shade.
I have several brushes due to the wide variety of shades and colors.
Brushes for
1-black
2-cordovan/burgundy/darker browns
3-lighter browns/tan/ Allen Edmonds chili
4-A brush for spectators. I use colorless leather balm with wax or neutral wax.
I made the mistake of using a brush used for color and brushed a shade of brown onto the white part of my spectators. Spent awhile getting it off.
So now it's neutral wax for my 4 pairs of specs and a separate brush.
5-A brush for suede
I keep a brush in my car in case I get an emegency scuff. I don't use it on my tan shoes.
I occassionally use a small nylon bristle brush for all my shell cordovan.
It seems to give my shell a better shine than my horsehair brushes and its good for removing the white tanning oil that comes to the surface.

Looks excessive I know. But my shoe wardrobe is too.
 
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