I did a lot of research before splurging on a silver tip. And having recently purchased Kent combs and brushes, I felt really good about choosing the Kent BLK8. The density is excellent. The bristles are like a pillow on my face. Probably a little less stiff than is ideal for soaps, but I'm a cream man so no issues there. The handle is a good size and fits well in my hand. Overall, the fit and finish are on par with what a high-end shaving brush should be. I was tempted to go with the BLK12, but I'm glad I didn't (there's always next time, lol). The BLK8 is a plenty large brush and can hold a ton of water and lather. Whipping the cream takes a little more time, product and water but once you're there the retention is excellent and oh baby, does putting the lather on my face feel good. I forward to waking up to this beauty for many years. Easily a 5-star shaving brush.