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Why are my new brushes so stubborn to give up their starch?

DH bought me a nice set of brushes for Christmas.  Amagic I think they say.  I have soaked and washed them at least 6-8 times but when they dry they are hard as they were originally.  So hard I'm afraid to force with my fingers as I don't want to harm them.  They are acrylic/nylon or some similar material.  Yesterday I soaked them in Dawn solution over night and today cleaned them in my palm as I was taught in high school 40 years ago.  I spent 30 minutes at least, swishing and rinsing.  I checked this evening and they are starting to harden up again as they're 75% dry now.  I'm very new to oils so I've not done something right.  Tell me what it is? 


  • PaulBPaulB mod
    DH designated hitter?

    We need more info.  Can you take a photo of these brushes, including the writing and the bristles?
  • JenniferTaylor

    Never seen a new synthetic brush with gum Arabic or starch protection. This product has fairly durable bristles, unlike squirrel or sable types. Perhaps there is no starch to remove?


  • @PaulB    "DH" means Dear Husband.   Just like BIL and FIL mean Brother-in-law; Father-in-law etc...  "DW" is something I have never seen referred to before for some reason. 

    @JenniferTaylor ; it sounds like you are trying to get your brushes to be like sable - hog's hair are very stiff - short flats are stiff...…..   I think there is nothing wrong with your brushes.  The different qualities help with various applications.  The stiff, hard bristle brushes are great for impasto and light areas and holding and applying paint in a bold manner.

  • Thanks guys for considering my question.  They were hard this morning but I decided to force the bristles this time and I was able to bend those bristles without hurting them.  Also, I found them on Amazon and they are nylon.  A reviewer complained the starch was hard to remove so I guess with use they will get better. 
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