Your Custom Brush

Custom Brush


One of a Kind & Hand Crafted

You’re going to keep your shaving brush for a very, very long time; it should be perfect for you.

Working with The Copper Hat’s owner and artist, Brad, to create your own custom shaving brush is easy and probably a lot less expensive than you would think.  The process of creating your own custom brush involves selecting a handle material type, brush hair type, and a general size and shape of the overall brush.  Brad crafts shaving brushes from a wide variety of materials both new and reclaimed and is constantly striving to develop new crafting techniques.


How cool would it be to give your Dad a shaving brush turned from a branch of the tree he built your treehouse in? What about framing timbers from a 100 year old hotel or antique acrylic insulating rod? Please contact us if you are interested in a beautifully unique, custom shaving brush.

Custom Projects



Engraving design for brush turned from Douglas Fir framing timber saved from the Boulder Hotel in Vancouver

Engraving your brush with a custom logo or design is a great way to personalize it even further.  We are happy to design custom graphics for you, or you may submit your own and the graphic will be laser engraved into the bottom of the brush handle.  Engraving is an additional cost.

Brush Restoration Services

Restored Antique Shaving Brush

Restored Antique Shaving Brush

Brad also restores antique shaving brushes, removing the worn out bristles, setting new bristles, and cleaning and polishing the handles.  We often have vintage restores for sale and also offer restoration services for your own shaving brush.  Since all brushes are in different conditions, before providing restoration services, Brad will take a look at your brush and and give you a quote based on the work you’d like done. Please contact us for more details.


Valentine’s Day Shave Sets

Valentine's Day Shave Sets

Valentine’s Day Shave Sets

February 14th… ugh.  We hate to do it, but we’re hopping on the commercial band wagon and embracing Valentine’s Day this year.  What could be more sexy and loving than giving your sweetie the gift of smooth, non-irritated, happy skin?  Our shave sets are completely customisable and we are more than happy to personally help you create the best shave set for your needs.  Just stop by our store or try filling out our custom shave set building form to get started.  We also have a wide variety of our most popular pre-built shave sets listed on the website.

And, just so we’re all on the same page, wet shaving and Copper Hat shave sets are awesome for anyone who shaves; men, women, Valentines and non-Valentines.  If you or someone you know is sick of the current shaving routine, come check us out; we’re happy to help and will give you 14% off any shave set you build until February 14, 2014!

Also, on Saturday, February 15th, our 3 Fan Tan Alley courtyard will become the studio of Photographer and Tintypist Ken Miner.  Ken with be using his 112 year old camera to shoot 1860’s tintype portraits of you (or you and your sweetie) on a first come – first served basis starting at 10:00am.  This event will also give you a chance to check out the creations of our lovely friend and neighbour, Radjuli Custom Designs, as well as pursue some fantastic shaving gear.  Please check out and share the event listing for more information.

Brad & Kate



Thank You!

Thank you to all of you who participated in our contest and campaign focused on raising awareness of men’s and mental health issues with the Movember Foundation and the Partners for Mental Health “Right By You” Campaign!  We believe that making these health topics better known is very important and we appreciate that you do too!  Congrats to the lucky winner of one of our complete cigar box shave sets!  He’s received the set and should be showing off the results soon!

Brad & KateSupport Mental Health Initiatives

Holiday Markets for 2013

We are excited to be setting up at a variety of awesome holiday markets this November and December!  Please read on to check out the different events and store closures.


We’ll be set up at the PNE Forum in Vancouver for Make It from Dec 28 – Nov 1.  This enormous show features talented makers from all across Canada and is sure to be a really great time!




On Dec 6 and 7 we’ll be set up at the one and only Owl Designer Fair at the Fernwood Community Centre in Victoria.  This show features local artists from Victoria and is a blast every year!





We agree that Downtown is a wonderful place to  be!  We’ll have a table at the Victoria Open Air Market Holiday Pop Up Market in Centennial Square on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from December 13 to 22, weather permitting.  This market will run along side the DVBA’s famous ferris wheel!



store closures

With all of these sweet events comes a bit of upheaval in our store hours.  We will be closed on:

  • Thursday, Nov 28
  • Friday, Nov 29
  • Sat, Nov 30
  • Sun, Dec 1
  • Friday, Dec 6 (open until 3pm)
  • Saturday, Dec 7

Our website is always open and we will do our absolute best to get back to you if you place an order or contact us through the website during these times.

We Support Mental Health Initiatives

Here at The Copper Hat we talk a lot about shaving, but we like to talk about a lot of other things, too.

This month, we’re talking about mental health, and we’d love for you to join us.  Both of us (Kate & Brad) are proponents of the de-stigmatization of mental health issues.  Right now we’re working to raise awareness about mental health issues, especially among men, through both the Movember Foundation and the Partners for Mental Health “Right By You” campaign.


Each November, the Movember Foundation changes the face of men’s health by encouraging men to grow out their moustaches and wear them loud and proud, prompting conversations about men’s health.  Participants, AKA Mo Bros, also raise funds for men’s health initiatives including those fighting prostate and testicular cancer.  This year, Movember has added mental health to their list of supporting causes and we are very happy to see it there.  Mental illness is a HUGE concern among men, and while we support increased mental health services for everyone, we recognize that it is especially difficult for guys to discuss mental illness.

Right by YouRight By You is the current campaign of Partners for Mental Health and is focused on raising awareness about the lack of mental health services available to young people in Canada.  Through this campaign you can learn more about mental health issues, tell your own story, generate important conversations and sign a petition in support of increased mental health services.

Where do I come in?

Do you agree that mental health, including men’s mental health, is an important issue and cause?  If you do, connect with one of these awesome organizations and put your name in our draw for a complete cigar box wet shaving set.  For the month of November, ahem, Movember, show us your support for either the Movember Foundation and/or the Right By You campaign and we’ll put your name in a draw for this awesome cigar box wet shaving set  to be drawn on November 30, 2013.

How does it work?


  • Support Mental Health SetJust send us an email with a link to your “Mo Space” Movember Fundraising profile page stating that you’ve raised $40 or more for the cause OR
  • If you’re not a Mo Bro this year, but have donated to a Mo Bro, just email us a confirmation of your donation of any amount or a screen shot showing your donation OR
  • If you choose to sign the Right By You petition, just send us a screen shot of the “Thank You” webpage that appears at the end.

We’ll compile a list of everyone who contacts us and shows us their support for these important mental health initiatives.  On November 30, 2013, we’ll put all of the names in a hat and randomly select someone to win the shave set.  If you have any questions about entering this draw, please feel free to drop us a line.

Thank you for joining us in supporting Movember & the Right By You campaign, and in turn promoting increased mental health services for everyone!

-Brad & Kate

Project Connect

The Greater Victoria Coalition to End Homelessness is hosting Project Connect, a project collecting donations to create care packs for Victorians experiencing homelessness and extreme poverty. To support this important project, we are collecting donations in our store until this Saturday, Oct. 19 at 2:00pm that we will then drop off at Project Connect. 50% of every Copper Hat Shave Soap purchased on line or in the store this week will go to Project Connect. Please see the poster below for a list of other donations. Thanks everyone! connect

About Us!

The Copper Hat is a husband and wife endeavor situated in Victoria on Vancouver Island, BC, Canada. We created The Copper Hat because of our own frustration that came from shaving with typical drug store supplies.


We each struggled with extreme skin types, one oily and one sensitive and dry. We were overwhelmed by the increasing cost of multi-blade cartridge razors and the terror cheaper razors reigned on our skin. When Brad started a job that required him to be clean shaven every day, he took matters into his own hands. He tracked down his first vintage double-edged razor and a shaving brush and, for the next several months, his most common saying to Kate was “feel how smooth my face is!” After observing Brad’s excitement, Kate began wet shaving and could also never go back to the drug store habit.

We started The Copper Hat because we know that we are not the only people who are tired of spending too much money on large blade cartridges that will just be thrown away. Although recent technology has brought us 5 blade razors, vibrating blades, and razors with built-in shave foam, the finesse of this personal care routine seems to have been lost in the fast-paced chaos of our daily lives. We craft and stock high quality brushes, razors, blades, soaps, and other shaving supplies so that you can enjoy a personalized shave that is suited to your hair and skin type.


We started out selling Brad’s handcrafted shaving brushes and a handful of antique safety and straight razors on our simple website.  Brad’s first “commercial” wood shop consisted of all of his tools on a rolling cart that he would wheel down the hallway out of our apartment building when he turned brushes.  Later we got more impressive and built a little wood shop into our bedroom closet!  Over the years Brad’s work shop has moved around, but it is currently housed in a very unique space in Rock Bay Square, in between a honey dispensary and 2 craft breweries!  Soon we began sharing our passion for wet shaving at local craft fairs and seasonal markets in Victoria, Vancouver and Edmonton.  We LOVE craft shows and markets, but also wanted a space from which to sell our wares all year round.  Our first permanent retail space was approximately 25 square feet and shared with Brad’s wood shop.  In the summer of 2013 we moved into our first official store front, a less than 100 square foot shop in Fan Tan Alley, Victoria.  We spent a roller coaster of a year in that space and then moved into a 300 square foot space in nearby Market Square, just off of Johnson Street.   We are currently open 7 days a week in our brick-and-mortar store and also ship all of our website orders from here.

We feel incredibly lucky to have met so many wonderful, supportive and interesting people on The Copper Hat path.  Whether you are a customer, fellow vendor or small-business owner, market coordinator, family member, friend or someone else who has cheered us on along the way, THANK YOU, we truly couldn’t have gotten The Copper Hat to this point without you!  We are passionate about grassroots economies and encourage you to support small, local businesses whenever possible.  We adore this Coast and natural environments everywhere and are so happy that through The Copper Hat we can provide people sustainable shaving practices while working within our small business community.

Thank you so much for stopping by – Happy Shaving!

Kate & Brad

About Us

Soap & Skin Care


Soap & Skin Care

A key element of the wet shave is a good quality soap or cream. Shave specific soaps and creams are formulated to generate a thick lather that lasts much longer than canned shave foam. This allows the soap or cream to protect and moisturize your skin as you shave. Shave soaps and creams come in a multitude of scents (including unscented) and formulas for people with various skin types. In general we have found that traditional soaps and creams are much gentler and less likely to irritate sensitive skin.

Shave soap commonly comes in puck form that you build lather on top of inside a bowl or mug. Shave creams often come in tubes or tubs and a small amount is lathered in a separate bowl. Soaps and creams have many of the same characteristics, and we do not recommend one over the other. We sell our own all-natural, hand-made soap as well as many brands of traditional soaps, aftershaves and balms.

Our Copper Hat soap has an all-natural base and is complimented with natural butters and essential oils. It comes in a variety of fun and exciting scents that invigorate your skin but wash off cleanly when you’re finished. We love our shaving soap because we’ve tested it over and over to make sure it is moisturizing without being oily and easy to lather without over drying the skin. The traditional soaps and aftershaves we sell are from tried and true shaving companies that have been around for decades. Most of them are not all-natural, but are a treat just the same.

A Quick How To

If you are using a shave puck (a hard bar-type soap), put the puck in your lathering bowl/mug and fill it with warm water for a few minutes. Soak your brush (always pointing down) with warm water either in the stream from the tap or in another bowl/mug (this will fill the bristles with water and help lather the soap). The brush only needs to be soaked for 30 seconds or so. Before lathering, shake most of the water off of the brush and empty the water from the bowl containing the puck. Next, swirl the brush around the puck of soap quickly until lather appears (if you are using a cream from a tub or tube, put a quarter-sized amount into your bowl to lather). A good lather should take about 1 minute to build. If it seems like not much is happening after a few seconds, add a few drops of water. If the lather is very bubbly, there is too much water in the mixture and you should shake the brush out a bit more. The optimal lather will look just like whipped cream, fluffy, thick and white, but few bubbles.

The best way to ensure your skin is ready for an optimal shave is to start with a shower. This fully moisturizes the skin and makes your hair softer and easier to shave. Using an exfoliating wash is also a great way to get your skin ready. If you cannot shower first, try a simple hot towel treatment, soak a barber towel with hot water and place it on your face/skin for a few minutes. At the very least, splash your skin several times with warm water and rub it into your pores. Skin should be damp when you apply lather. After you shave, rinse your skin thoroughly with lukewarm water and splash it once or twice with cold water to close the pores. Some people can go without any after-shave moisturizer, but we do recommend using something. There are many options available, but any cream/lotion/balm that cools your skin and leaves it moisturized is perfectly fine.

Razors & Blades


Razors & Blades

What you are about to read is a deep dive into traditional razors!  If you’re not interested in all of the details and just want a great shave, head over to the razor or shave set section of our shop.  Otherwise, here we go!

There are a lot of razors out there, so let’s clear up the mystery. A straight razor is the oldest and most notorious razor out there. Sometimes referred to as a straight edge or knife, the straight razor has been given a bad rap thanks to horror movies like Sweeney Todd. This type of razor consists of a single, permanent blade that folds down into its scales, or handle. A straight razor is sharpened using stones once every 60 or so shaves and is then stropped on a piece of leather, or strop, each time it is used. The younger brother of the straight razor is referred to as the Safety Razor, deemed such since it is in fact safer than a straight razor. The 2 main types of Safety razors are double edged and single edged (DE’s and SE’s). Both types take single replaceable blades and are shaped more like the razors common today, like a T. Single edged razors have one cutting edge on the side of the head while double edged razors have 2 cutting edges, one on each side of the razor head. SE and DE safety razors are fairly similar in operation, but DE’s are more common. There are more divisions and varieties of razors, but these are the basic classifications.

At The Copper Hat we have collected and tested razors in every category, and we are always happy to answer any questions you may have. Below is a detailed description of each type of razor.

Double Edged Razors

Double edged razors (DEs) differ from razors available at the drug store because their precision comes from the weight and angle of the razor, rather than the number of blades. While newer cartridge razors may boast multiple blades, they often contribute to sloppy technique that can leave you with razor burn and ingrown hairs. When the first of multiple blades drags the shaving cream in front of it, the remaining blades actually dry shave the skin; not something you are looking for in a good shave. Our razors are a perfect example of quality over quantity.

Double Edged Safety Razor

Double Edged Safety Razor

The 2 sided double edged blades allow double the shaving time before rinsing and generally last for 4 to 7 shaves. Our razors range in age from brand new to almost 100 years old and were built to stand the test of time. They make excellent daily shavers and are very inexpensive to maintain (see Blades to purchase), not to mention beautiful additions to your shave den. DEs typically come in 2 styles: 3 piece and twist-to-open. It is very simple to put a new blade into either style of DE. With a twist-to-open you simply twist the lower portion of the handle and the head of the razor (silo door style) opens up. To open a 3 piece you just twist the head of the razor until it comes off of the handle and place the blade between the 2 head plates.

DEs are fantastic for any experience level shaver and are one of the styles that we most often recommend for new wet shavers. Most DEs place the blade at an angle that is very easy to shave with, and those that have more extreme angles are listed as such in our descriptions.


All of our double edged razors take standard double edged blades.  We stock a number of different brands of blades and recommend trying a variety of them. Every shaver reacts differently to particular blades and it is a good idea to try a few to pin point your best combination. For example, double edged “Feather” blades are extremely sharp (yes, all blades are very sharp, but these guys reach a new level), so we recommend getting some experience with other blades first. On the other hand, some people prefer an extremely sharp blade, so they may want to start right off with Feather. To make this easier, we also offer sample packs so you can try a bit of this and a bit of that before you choose a favourite.

Please remember that the blades we sell are individually wrapped, but are still very dangerous if not unwrapped

Astra Double Edged Blades


carefully. Make sure you never touch the sharp edge of the blade (remember, DE blades have 2 sharp edges) and always dispose of used blades in a sealed container marked “sharps”, or better yet, in a handsome blade bank (see ACCESSORIES).

Single Edged & Injector Razors00183

The single edged razor (SE) is another option for shavers who prefer not to use a straight razor. SEs in our store come in 2 major categories that are really quite different: regular and injector. Both use a blade with one edge that lasts 4 to 7 shaves and tend to be slightly more aggressive than our double edged razors. Regular SEs are very straightforward to reload; you simply open the hinged head plate, pop a blade in, and close it. The angle of the head can present a challenge for new wet shavers; while those with some experience boast the regular SE shave as being superb.

The other SE style is the Injector razor. This type of razor requires a blade injector (available in the BLADES section) to push an old blade out while simultaneously inserting the new one. We love the injector razor because it is very easy to use and light weight. This style of razor is excellent for women because its ease of use provides excellent control on hard to reach/see areas and long straight aways. 00174

Like double edged razors, our SEs make excellent daily razors and are very inexpensive to maintain. They differ from razors available at the drug store because their precision comes from the weight and angle of the razor, rather than the number of blades. Remember, multiblades act like little snowploughs, dragging the shave soap off of your skin. Say no to dry shaving, say no to multiblade cartridges.

Straight Razors

These razors may conjure up images of horror movies, but in reality, a straight razor is an important skin care tool. If you ask a straight razor shaver why they do it, they will most likely tell you it is because they could never go back to anything else: the straight razor shave is an extremely close shave. Unlike most razors, straights do not use replaceable blades. The blade of a straight razor is generally sharpened using sharpening stones and pastes every 60 shaves (this varies person to person depending on coarseness of hair, type of razor, etc), like a knife. To keep a straight razor blade in optimal condition, it should be cared for by stropping it before (and for some people) after each shave. Your straight razor shaving and care techniques may be different than other peoples’, but we highly recommend that you do your research before using a straight razor if you are inexperienced. Better yet, find a barber in your area who specializes in straight shaving and treat yourself; once you learn and practice the techniques yourself you will never go back!

Straight Razor

Straight Razor

Some straight razor terms: A strop is the piece of leather used in the process of stropping a razor, or realigning the fine burrs on its shaving edge. The width of the razor is measured in inches (ex: 3/8″). Very wide (7/8″) and very narrow (3/8″) blades can be a bit of a challenge to wield, so we generally recommend 5/8″ or 6/8″ for first time straight shavers. The scales of a straight razor are what some would call the handle; the material that protects the blade when the razor is closed. Some of our straight razors have been restored by talented craftsmen while others are listed as-is with the option of a custom restoration. If you have any questions about straight razors or restorations, please let us know.

A Quick How To

Remember, your Copper Hat razor is probably a lot heavier than the one you bought at the drug store. Because of its weight, your razor will easily do the work for you; be sure not to push your razor down onto your skin or hold it too tightly. The best way to hold a double/singled edged or injector razor is to grasp it at the very end of the handle with your thumb and a few fingers. For men, it is best to start by shaving the entire face with the grain. Usually one pass will achieve optimal smoothness, but if another pass is needed, we recommend re-lathering the entire face and shaving once more across the grain. For many women, however, shaving against the grain on the first (and usually only) pass works just fine. Straight razors are a bit of a different story; please contact us for straight razor how-to information.

The Brush


The Shaving Brush

Shaving foam from a can is gross. Canned foam is largely made up of air bubbles and therefore has a very hard time lubricating and protecting skin. Foam also tends to soak into skin, leaving an itch-causing residue when you rinse. A shaving brush, on the other hand, will leave you with smooth, irritant free skin.

A shaving brush creates a thick, skin protecting lather and distributes it evenly so that your razor does not shave exposed skin. The bristles of the brush exfoliate your skin, effectively removing dead skin cells right before you shave, ensuring your razor has the clearest path possible. A shaving brush also lifts each individual hair (by running it against the direction of hair growth after you lather) so that the razor slices through them rather than over them. Another bonus of the shaving brush is that by combining its exfoliation and distribution of soap it can greatly improve skin affected by acne.

By trading in your canned chemical goo for a shaving brush and luxurious soap you can go from a mediocre, irritating shave to a “feel how smooth!” spa-like experience. Who knew such a little brush could do so much!

Shaving Brush Experts

In the beginning of The Copper Hat, Brad made all of the shaving brushes we sold by hand on a wood lathe.  Each brush was one-of-a-kind and made without patterns.  For the most part, Brad uses reclaimed materials, like upcycled denim, styrofoam and windfallen trees, to make the shaving brush handles. He has also had years of experience refurbishing old shaving brushes.

As The Copper Hat became busier, Brad didn’t have time to keep up with making brushes by hand, so we began to design our own production shaving brush. Creating this brush was a wild adventure, so we thought it only fitting to name it after the Journey to get here!  “The Journey” is our very own Canadian-manufactured shaving brush and we’re confident you’ll love it!

This shaving brush features a heavy-duty anodized aluminum handle with a modern, easy to hold shape.  We’ve designed this brush to easily whip up a thick lather in both shaving creams and soaps.  Each brush handle is manufactured, anodized, and engraved at small, Canadian shops. Then Brad sets the handles with the highest quality bristles.

Shaving Brush Bristle Types

Many wet shavers will tell you that you must go with a badger hair shaving brush, and for many years, we kind of agreed.  That being said, after 10 years of manufacturing and setting people up with shaving brushes, we’ve learned that Synthetic bristles outlast natural bristles and are easier to care for.  They are lovely and soft, making them excellent for those with sensitive skin.  Synthetic bristles are also vegan.  

Badger hair is harvested from badgers and is typically sourced from China where badgers are considered invasive species.  While harvesting badgers/badger hair may be considered sustainable, it’s definitely not cruelty-free.  So, after many years of selling badger hair brushes and weighing other options, we’ve chosen to no longer use it in our brushes.  

Over the past 10 years, high quality synthetic bristles have come a long way and are now softer than any natural fiber.  They age really well and look pristine, even after many years.  A good quality synthetic bristle will not shed and is easy to keep clean.  They also have great back bone, meaning that while they are soft on the skin, they aren’t floppy!

We believe in the quality of our synthetic bristled, solid aluminum Journey shaving brushes so much, that we guarantee them with a 5 year warranty.  That is unheard of for a shaving brush, but we stand behind our brushes 100%.

We also offer shaving brushes set with Boar hair.  Boar hair is coarser than badger hair and synthetic bristles.  It is excellent for leg and body shaving, but most face shavers find it a bit too rough.  Boar hair exfoliates very well, so is great for covering large surface areas quickly.  

If you have any questions about shaving brush bristles, please let us know!

A Quick How To

If you are using a shave puck (a hard bar-type soap), put the puck in your lathering bowl/mug and fill it with warm water for a few minutes.

Soak the shaving brush bristles with warm water either in the stream from the tap or in another bowl/mug. The brush only needs to be soaked for 10 seconds or so. Before lathering, shake most of the water off of the brush and empty the water from the bowl containing the puck.

Next, swirl the brush around the puck of soap quickly until lather appears (if you are using a cream from a tub or tube, put a quarter-sized amount into your bowl to lather). A good lather should take about 30 seconds to build. If it seems like not much is happening after a few seconds, add a few drops of water.

If the lather is very bubbly, there is too much water in the mixture and you should shake the brush out a bit more. The optimal lather will look just like whipped cream – fluffy, thick and white, but few bubbles. Make sure your skin is damp, then swirl lather onto your skin moving your brush in a circular motion. Once you have distributed a thick, even layer over your skin (you may choose to go over the same spot with your brush more than once), pull your brush over your skin against the grain of your hair growth (this lifts the hair so that it is easier to cut). Now you`re ready to shave!