GENTS/GBS Bans Badger-Hair Brushes After PETA Exposé

First-Ever Eyewitness Investigation Reveals That Badgers Are Violently Killed on Chinese Farms

For Immediate Release:
September 26, 2018

David Perle 202-483-7382

Cranston, R.I.

After PETA shared a horrifying video exposé of China’s badger-brush industry with GENTS Barbershop and Spa, Inc. (GENTS/GBS), the upscale Cranston barbershop and online retailer committed to no longer buying badger-hair brushes, stating, “We appreciate and honor the voices of activists who uphold animal rights and applaud PETA for shining a light on these cruel practices.” The company’s wide selection of cruelty-free vegan brushes will remain available.

PETA’s eyewitness investigation revealed that “protected” badgers are illegally captured in the wild using snares and other cruel methods and others are bred and confined to small cages on farms before being violently killed. Badger hair is used for paint, makeup, and shaving brushes sold by companies around the world.

PETA’s exposé—which is the first of its kind and encompasses Chinese badger-hair farms and live markets visited as recently as August—shows workers beating crying badgers over the head with anything they can find, including a chair leg, before slitting their throats. PETA documented that one animal continued to move for a full minute after his throat was cut and another was missing a foot, which the farm owner attributed to a fight with a badger caged nearby. Animals on the farms were held in tiny wire cages exposed to the elements, and the stressful conditions often led to injuries and severe psychological disorders.

“GENTS/GBS was quick to join the public outcry against capturing, caging, and beating gentle badgers for shaving brushes,” says PETA President Ingrid Newkirk. “PETA urges shoppers and retailers to follow the kind lead of the true gentlemen at this company and stick to soft and luxurious synthetic bristles that no animal suffered for.”

Badgers are extremely social animals who, in nature, construct elaborate underground burrow systems, some of which are centuries old and have been inhabited by many generations of the same badger clan. They are fastidious and have separate rooms for sleeping and giving birth as well as designated outside “bathroom” areas.

Procter & Gamble, the parent company of The Art of Shaving, also banned badger-hair products after seeing the video, followed shortly by The New York Shaving Company, Bonanza, and Beau Brummell. PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—is now calling on Baxter of California and Dick Blick Art Materials to follow suit.

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