Purdy: What’s the difference?

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Purdy: What's the difference?

Purdy believes that your choice of paintbrush can make a real difference to the quality of your work – affecting finish, productivity, and comfort during a job. Here, Andrew Cummins, Senior Product Manager at Purdy looks at the makeup of the Purdy paint brush range and how the elements combine to create the ideal brush for any task.


Purdy brush bristles are made from thousands of individual filaments, fixed into place using bolstered epoxy, which guarantees filaments do not fall out and ruin your work. The filaments themselves are a blend of synthetic nylon and polyester which simulate the characteristics of natural bristles. They are also always Solid Round Tapered (SRT) in terms of shape. Unlike hollow filaments, SRT filaments have excellent bend recovery and abrasion resistance.


Depending on the job and the paint required, you should select a brush with the appropriate thickness of filaments. Thicker and stiffer filaments, like those in the Purdy XL Elite – Monarch, are better for thicker paints like emulsion, while slimmer filaments work best with thinner, water-based paints. The finest, softest filaments of the Purdy Syntox are ideal for varnishes and wood stains, leaving a mirror-like finish.

Flagged ends

As well as being ‘tipped’ to create an extremely fine filament end, all Purdy brushes are ‘flagged’ – meaning the filament ends are split into three to five filament ‘fingers’. This flagging process helps the brush to pick up and lay off paint more effectively and without overworking the paint. Purdy brushes are also designed to be ‘self-flagging’, so the flagging is renewed as the brush filaments wear down over time, ensuring performance is maintained throughout the brush’s lifespan.


The ferrule – or metal collar – is crucial to the structure of the brush. Its shape dictates the shape of the bristles, with a square ferrule creating a crisp bristle edge ideal for cutting-in, while a round ferrule allows the bristles to spread more easily and a greater surface to be covered. Purdy uses only strong corrosion-resistant stainless steel or copper ferrules which are then attached to brush handles with three similarly corrosion-resistant, nickel-plated reinforced nails to prevent impact or rust damage.

Hidden details

A wooden plug within the ferrule of all Purdy brushes creates a chamber allowing the brush to hold more paint. A convex chisel shape also hidden within the ferrule then ensures that paint flows evenly throughout the filaments. Finally, an aluminium bridge provides additional strength to the body of the brush.


Purdy brushes use Alderwood handles, harvested in the Pacific north-west of the USA. Alder is an abundant, renewable and lightweight hardwood that is durable and absorbs moisture. The four handles in the range are ergonomically shaped to aid application: ‘rattail’ which is long and skinny and designed to be held like a pencil, ‘fluted’ which is square with rounded corners to sit comfortably in the hand, ‘beavertail’ which is thick and rounded for good grip, and ‘short’ which is ideal for manoeuvring into tight spaces.


Purdy recommends keeping its brush packaging – the keeper. Keepers help guide brush bristles back into their original shape and protect the filaments from damage between uses. Wax covered to avoid moisture retention, the keeper has also been designed to ensure airflow to the bristles to help prevent mould growth.

For more information about the difference Purdy products could make to your work, please visit www.purdy.co.uk.





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