What are animal hair brushes made of - what types of animals provide the hairs? What's a "sable"?
The majority of traditional cosmetic brushes use animal hairs such as Goat, Pony, Ox, Badgers, and Weasels for example. But some companies claim may use other animal hairs such as Mink, Squirrel, Ferrets, "Sable", and even Dog and Cat. A true sable is a small carnivorous animal mostly farmed these days in Russia. It was used traditionally in the past because of its longer hairs and the fact that the hair shaft had a hollow space inside and the hair comes to a point. They are rare and only thrive in certain geographic areas and climates. Because of its great expense, sable fur is typically integrated into various clothes fashions: to decorate collars, sleeves, hems and hats. The so-called Kolinsky sable-hair brushes used for cosmetic brushes, and watercolor or oil painting are not actually manufactured from sable hair, but from that of the Siberian weasel.