Brushes made from animal hair will likely have a bad smell when new. Although the hair has been sterilized, this usually doesn't rid the hair completely of the animal smell. This is completely normal and to be expected. But don't fret, that smell will go away after the first week or two of regular use. Thankfully, there are a few things you can do to help expedite the process. Here are a few different things you can try that should knock that funky smell down considerably:
- Soak the brush for a few minutes in a cup of warm water with 1 teaspoon Borax
- Soak the brush for a few minutes in a cup of warm water water and an ounce of vinegar
- Wash the brush in warm water using your regular body wash/shampoo (animal shampoo is reported to work well too)
After any of the above, rinse thoroughly with warm water while squeezing water from the base of the knot to the tip, gently shake out the excess water, then fluff the knot a little to separate hairs and let air dry.
One more note on your new brush, it will likely shed a few hairs at first, this is normal.The shedding should subside within a week or two.