Purdy VS. Wooster Brushes, The Secrets Behind The Best Brush

Tyler Bains
May 09, 2024By Tyler Bains

Let's find out which paint brush is best, Woosters or Purdy? At BC Brushworks, we definitly have a pick, but we will show you why you would choose either.

Two giants in the brush industry, Purdy and Wooster, have long been at the forefront of creating high-quality tools for painters and decorators around the world. Today, we delve into the depths of this industry to unveil the truth behind these renowned brands.

The Origins of Purdy and Wooster

wooster and purdy paint brushes

Both Purdy and Wooster have deep-rooted histories that date back several decades. Purdy, founded in 1925, has built a reputation for producing premium brushes known for their craftsmanship and durability. On the other hand, Wooster, established in 1851, boasts a rich heritage of creating innovative painting tools that cater to the evolving needs of professionals and DIY enthusiasts alike.

History and Market Presence

history on market if paint brushes

Purdy and Wooster are longstanding competitors in the paintbrush industry, each with over a century of experience. Purdy, founded in 1925 in Portland, Oregon, has built a reputation for handcrafted quality and meticulous attention to detail. Wooster, on the other hand, began its journey in 1851 in Wooster, Ohio, and prides itself on innovation and high production standards.

Product Range and Specializations

Both brands offer a wide range of paintbrushes that cater to both amateurs and professionals. Purdy's notable innovations include the Chinex brush series, designed for faster clean-up and superior performance with all paints. Wooster has been a pioneer as well, with its Alpha series that promises superior cut-in capabilities and overall smooth application.

Cost Comparison

When it comes to brushes you want to make sure your not spending an arm and leg for every project, espically if your a painting contractor. Sometimes, going cheaper does end up costing you more when picking the right brush.

Price Points

Purdy brushes tend to be priced slightly higher than Wooster, reflecting their handcrafted assembly and lifetime guarantee. Wooster offers competitive pricing, making it a favored option for budget-conscious professionals. The average cost of a Wooster brush will be $15 to $25 depending on the brush you buy. The average cost of a Purdy brush will be closer to $20 to $40 depending on the brush you buy. These both will offer different levels of finishes, and other things to consider. 

cutting in with fine finish wooster brush

Value for Money

In terms of longevity and performance, many professionals find that Purdy’s higher upfront cost pays off in the long run. However, Wooster brushes also provide excellent durability and performance, presenting great value for their price.

Quality and Performance

Both Purdy and Wooster take great pride in the quality and performance of their products. Purdy's brushes are meticulously crafted to ensure superior paint application and smooth finishes, making them a favorite among professional painters.

Wooster, on the other hand, focuses on innovation and ergonomic design, ensuring that their brushes are not only effective but also comfortable to use for extended periods.

interior painting fine finishes

Build Quality and Material

Purdy brushes are known for their superb build quality, using only the finest materials like natural hardwood handles and stainless steel ferrules. Wooster brushes also boast high-quality materials, with firm formulation of synthetic bristles to maintain stiffness and control.

Professional Reviews and User Opinions

Reviews often highlight Purdy for its reliability and smooth finish, especially in high-end residential work. Wooster receives praise for its versatility and ease of use in various painting situations, including commercial projects.

We personally perfer to use Purdy as it typically is more avalible yet we find ourselves using a Wooster every once and a while. 

Range of Brush Types and Sizes

types of painting brushes, wooster and purdy

Brush Types Available

Purdy offers a comprehensive range of brush types, including flat, angular, and specialty brushes. Wooster, in contrast, provides a similar variety but is particularly renowned for its innovative cut-in brush designs, which are highly effective for detailed work.

Size Options and Specific Uses

Both brands offer multiple sizes, but Purdy’s range includes unique sizes and shapes for specialized tasks. Wooster excels with brushes that are specifically designed for speed and precision in larger jobs.

Production Practices

Purdy emphasizes handcrafted production processes, with each brush signed by the person who made it, symbolizing commitment to quality. Wooster manufactures its brushes in the USA, with a focus on innovative, automated techniques to ensure consistency. 

Both brands have taken steps towards sustainability; Purdy uses sustainable raw materials and practices waste reduction, while Wooster incorporates recycled materials in its products and packaging.

Practical Applications

Now what really matters is knowing which brand to use for which project, like anything there are trade offs for everything. We have complied a detailed list on which is best for when.

Best Uses for Each Brand

Purdy brushes are ideal for projects requiring a fine finish, such as cabinets and trim. Wooster brushes are best suited for large areas and rough surfaces where speed and paint pick-up are critical. 

We use all sorts of brushes for projects everyday but here are our core recommendations: 

Staining: Wooster Bravo Stainer, this line up does nothing but impress us, and for our fine finishes hitting it witha Silver Tip is the best way to have a perfect stain job. We would argue it is the best brush for staining. 

To clean the brushes is simple, all you have to do is rinse with warm watter and use a simple painters comb, making these brushes some of our best investments under $25.

Interior Painting: The Purdy Clearcut Glide is by far the best interior paint brush, it allows you to cut into areas and leave an amazing finish every single time. This brush deserves an entire post on its own with how many projects we use them on.

Cabinet Refinishing: The Purdy Angular is our go to, with the synthetic bristles, it allows us to cut into each fine finish area while being extemily easy to use. If you want the best finish, use the Purdy Angular. It best for semi-gloss and satin finishes, proviing extra flex for smooth application.

stain brush wooster painting

Which Brush is Best for You?

Purdy Brushes Best Features

different purdy brushes laying around the shop

Purdy paintbrushes are renowned for their exceptional craftsmanship and the fine finish they deliver, making them a top choice for professionals and discerning amateurs alike. Here are some standout features of Purdy brushes:

Handcrafted Quality: Each Purdy brush is handcrafted by skilled artisans and comes with a sticker bearing the signature of the craftsman who made it. This level of personalized craftsmanship ensures a high-quality, reliable tool.

Superior Paint Release and Smooth Finish: Purdy brushes are designed to hold more paint and release it evenly, which minimizes drips and provides a smooth, flawless finish. Their brushes are especially effective with oil-based paints, where precision and smoothness are paramount.

These are used on nearly all of our projects as they last long, work well and dont cost an arm and a leg.

Wooster's Paint Brush Features

Wooster brushes in different tips

Wooster paintbrushes are appreciated for their innovation, excellent performance, and great value. Here are the key features that make Wooster a preferred brand among many painters:

Innovative Brush Design: Wooster has been at the forefront of paintbrush technology with innovations like the FTP (Firmness and Tip Precision) series, which features a blend of nylon and polyester bristles designed to maintain stiffness and precision even after repeated use. This is found to be our favourite use for Wooster, staining decks and fences.

We typically would use these for these kinds of projects or a cheaper project that needs less care and attention.

Our Choice

The choice between Purdy and Wooster ultimately depends on your specific painting needs and budget. For fine, detailed work, Purdy may be the better option.

A Purdy brush will leave an amazing finish for interior painting and is typically the gold standard within painting meaning it will be more accessible. For everyday use and larger projects, Wooster offers great performance at a more accessible price point. If you need to paint a room quickly and do not care as much about overall finish, Wooster is your go to. 

We will choose Purdy as it leaves the best finish always and no matter what, quality is our most important metric, rather than saving a few bucks. Espically with heritage homes in Victoria, you need to use top notch products on.

Frequently Asked Questions

How should I clean and maintain my Purdy or Wooster brushes to ensure they last long? Proper care extends the life of any paintbrush. For both Purdy and Wooster brushes, cleaning immediately after use is crucial. For water-based paints, wash the brushes with warm, soapy water and rinse until the water runs clear.

For oil-based paints, use a solvent like mineral spirits or paint thinner, followed by soap and water. After cleaning, use a brush comb to straighten bristles and remove any remaining paint particles. Finally, hang the brushes to dry to maintain their shape.

Can I use these brushes for both indoor and outdoor painting projects? Yes, both Purdy and Wooster manufacture brushes that are versatile enough for both indoor and outdoor use.

Their synthetic bristle brushes are particularly effective for exterior projects due to their durability and ability to handle heavier, exterior paints. However, selecting a brush should also consider the paint type and the surface being painted to ensure optimal results.

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