01-31-2013, 04:37 PM
#1
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Out of curiosity, I picked up a cake of Williams Mug Soap at my local grocery to see for myself why this particular product is so reviled in wet shaving forums.

What I discovered is I can get a pretty darn good shave for a buck oh three. No, it's not the best smelling soap, but it doesn't smell bad at all. No, it's not the greatest lathering soap, but it really wasn't that much more difficult to work up than my Cella or Proraso. Honestly, I was really shocked at the price/value of this soap and figure to make it a regular part of my shaving time.

What say you?

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 01-31-2013, 04:39 PM
#2
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I like it. Some people have difficulty lathering it so it receives a lot of scorn

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 01-31-2013, 04:53 PM
#3
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(01-31-2013, 04:39 PM)SteelTown Wrote: I like it. Some people have difficulty lathering it so it receives a lot of scorn

I've read that, and I don't understand it. It's soap, water, and friction. It's gonna lather. It may not look like someone dipped a brush in a bowl of meringue, but I don't understand the need for that, either. Biggrin

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 01-31-2013, 05:45 PM
#4
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It is popular to dislike it.

My father gave me a puck of it when I was learning to shave. I used it for a couple of years and use it now and again. It works. It's cheap. Not a lot of cushion, but plenty of glide...

There are much better modestly priced soaps available that I would rather use, but I much rather have a puck of Williams than a can of goo...

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 01-31-2013, 05:48 PM
#5
  • JAYDEE
  • Israeli Ambassador
  • Montreal, Canada
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For me it smells nice and works, but it could drive me crazy getting it to lather well.

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 01-31-2013, 06:09 PM
#6
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With my water it is hard to lather. Also, I have a puck of vintage williams, which is a great tallow soap. You just can't compare the new formula to the old. For around the same price you can but VDH Deluxe, which is a great performing soap!

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 01-31-2013, 06:22 PM
#7
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No hatred here, there are just better soaps. But I can use it. I can even get an easy ultra lather out of it with no difficulty.

OK, plus Williams is too expensive and it's been made difficult for me to get locally. For less $ I can get ARKO delivered to my door and it works better.

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 01-31-2013, 06:39 PM
#8
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I've used it a couple of times and tossed it. I could make it work if I had to, but it just wouldnt' be as enjoyable as using any one of my other products that works so much better.

It's not a matter of will it work or not, or even if it's a great value or not. It's a matter of using what I enjoy instead of what I don't enjoy.

Speaking of value, for me, paying $10 for Mystic Water, or $15 for Tabac is a much better value than paying $1 for modern Williams. I don't care about cost per shave as much as enjoyment per shave.

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 01-31-2013, 07:15 PM
#9
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(01-31-2013, 06:39 PM)5Savages Wrote: I've used it a couple of times and tossed it. I could make it work if I had to, but it just wouldnt' be as enjoyable as using any one of my other products that works so much better.

It's not a matter of will it work or not, or even if it's a great value or not. It's a matter of using what I enjoy instead of what I don't enjoy.

Speaking of value, for me, paying $10 for Mystic Water, or $15 for Tabac is a much better value than paying $1 for modern Williams. I don't care about cost per shave as much as enjoyment per shave.
Absolutely!!

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 01-31-2013, 08:00 PM
#10
  • Johnny
  • Super Moderator
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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Don't hate it, but it was the only thing I used when I first started shaving. Back then that was all there was except for the occasional Old Spice. Even a worn out pair of shoes gets replaced now and then.

There are better soaps and creams available today.

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 01-31-2013, 08:10 PM
#11
  • Hanzo
  • Senior Member
  • Oakland, California
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I hated it, experimented with it, liked it,defended it and now I am indifferent to it.

My issues are the usual ones, it dries quickly on the face and the protection is subpar.

Melting a VDH around a puck of Williams gives a better soap, learned that from a forum goer.

I think vintage Williams is worth hunting down and using, now thats a great soap.

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 01-31-2013, 09:20 PM
#12
  • Arcadies
  • Senior Member
  • Greeneville, TN
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(01-31-2013, 08:00 PM)Johnny Wrote: Don't hate it, but it was the only thing I used when I first started shaving. Back then that was all there was except for the occasional Old Spice. Even a worn out pair of shoes gets replaced now and then.

There are better soaps and creams available today.

It was much better stuff back then though, you have to admit. I have 3.5 pucks of vintage that I use sparingly and absolutely love it. The modern stuff though.Dodgy I've gone through 3 pucks of it and I'm done, with enough puck soaking, loading and working on the lather it can work, but it's not worth it. All I know is it's not for me..a puck of VDH, also locally available, is comparable in price and much much better in performance and scent. Not that I use either, the internet, forums and enablers have ruined me!

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 01-31-2013, 10:57 PM
#13
  • Shaun
  • Senior Member
  • St Peters, NSW, Australia
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I bought a puck in the states and brought it back to Australia. Tried it. It's the only thing I have thrown out besides Nivea balm (the one with the blue lid on the glass jar. Nivea sensitive balm - with the white lid- is great, though). I loathed the Williams, persevered, but nah, tossed it. I liked the LOOK of the Williams in the card wrapper, blue on white etc, but the smell cheapened my experience. I want shaving to be an almost sublime experience; if not, I might as well go back to cheap old twin blades and canned muck.

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 02-01-2013, 12:16 AM
#14
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I'll stick to Krissy's faux vintage Williams, "Walters" soap instead, its soooooooooo much better.

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 02-01-2013, 02:08 AM
#15
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(01-31-2013, 08:00 PM)Johnny Wrote: There are better soaps and creams available today.

Hear, hear! Thumbup

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 02-01-2013, 03:44 AM
#16
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No hatred here!!


I've used it since 1976, and still use it regularly. I like it.. it smells and feels clean and light, and my face always feels great after the shave.
I don't really understand why folks are so concerned about the reputation of a product on the forums... Try it for yourself, and if you like it or loathe it, isn't that all that really matters?

Some folks just love to hate...

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 02-01-2013, 04:40 AM
#17
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I think that the widespread, but not unanimous dislike of Williams Mug Soap exists because it's the most obvious example of a once great shaving product that has been cheapened so that it's obviously much less effective.

I like to cook, so for me a comparable example would be comparing vintage cookware such as Revere ware with it's much thinner, cheaper contemporary pans. The modern pans look like the wonderful thick copper bottom clad pans, but are a thin, cheaper imitation of a once wonderful product.

Just as it's possible to heat a can of soup in a modern Revere ware pan, there are folks who can build a lather with modern Williams, and even folks who like it, but it is even remotely comparable to the grandeur of vintage Williams?

I think not.

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 02-01-2013, 05:01 AM
#18
  • Dave
  • Moderator Emeritus
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I don't dislike it. There's just too much stuff far better and for a bit more that works without all the fuss. Vintage Williams is wonderful and I'd love to see them go back to that formula.

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 02-01-2013, 07:08 AM
#19
  • Leon
  • Active Member
  • Porto, Portugal
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(01-31-2013, 08:10 PM)Hanzo Wrote: I think vintage Williams is worth hunting down and using, now thats a great soap.

Definitely. I have several vintage Williams and like them all.

I just received a puck of modern Williams and I'll be trying to lather it for the first time this weekend.

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 02-01-2013, 04:50 PM
#20
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The bottom line is that there are so much better alternatives. And as to cost, a better quality soap will last a longer time, and thus cost is not as big a deal as it first appears. For example, D R Harris at $15 per puck will last easily 4 months. So $<4 a month for DRH versus $2 a month for Williams. The difference won't break anybody's pocketbook, and the difference (to me) is verrrrry significant.

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