04-21-2012, 09:39 AM
#1
  • Striky
  • Senior Member
  • Reipå, Norway
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I ask this question in an other thread, but thought I will make it a new thread.

I have never used a shaving soap before, and have a sample on the way. Until now, I have only used a bowl to lather my shaving cream. My question is: Is there any reason for not using a bowl when to lather a soap? I've seen in many videos people using their palm when lathering a soap, never a bowl.

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 04-21-2012, 09:45 AM
#2
  • freddy
  • Senior Member
  • San Diego, California, U.S.A.
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None that I can think of. It's personal preference.

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 04-21-2012, 09:48 AM
#3
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Well, yes, I think so. The first time I lathered I used a bowl, then I got to thinking... I was lathering in a bowl and wanting to prep my face/beard with water. Why was I doing 2 operations? Why couldn't I combine both into one operation and streamline the process. So I began face lathering. A few months after my first face lather I decided to revisit bowl lathering. That day I missed something all day. It was like I was in withdrawal. Since then I've always face lathered and haven't looked back.

When would I use hand lathering? If I was a bowl latherer and I was traveling I'd hand lather. I also hand lather to test soap w/o using my face, and also to help break a boar brush in quicker. I've also demonstrated lather making to noobs by hand lathering.

I hope that helps.

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 04-21-2012, 09:58 AM
#4
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I lather soaps in a scuttle because I like them to be warm. But I see no reason not to have equally good soap lather in a bowl.

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 04-21-2012, 10:18 AM
#5
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I face lather almost always, i only make lather in a bowl when i have time and i want to 'play' with the lather. Just for the fun of it.
I never liked to hand lather, and only make when I'm breaking in a new boar.

I think face lathering also helps preparing the face and removing dead cells and debris away before the shave.

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 04-21-2012, 10:47 AM
#6
  • Striky
  • Senior Member
  • Reipå, Norway
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Sounds good Smile Planing on getting a scuttle, but I understand I have to try face lathering (as it sounds like a good prep before shaving).

I think hand lathering is messy Undecided

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 04-21-2012, 11:03 AM
#7
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Re: the palm lathering and hand lathering you see in videos and forum pics...by and large people just do that for demonstration purposes to show the texture of the lather.

Most of those people that do those are either building lather in a bowl or directly on the face. I prefer doing the latter.

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 04-21-2012, 11:07 AM
#8
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(04-21-2012, 09:48 AM)ShadowsDad Wrote: Well, yes, I think so. The first time I lathered I used a bowl, then I got to thinking... I was lathering in a bowl and wanting to prep my face/beard with water. Why was I doing 2 operations? Why couldn't I combine both into one operation and streamline the process. So I began face lathering. A few months after my first face lather I decided to revisit bowl lathering. That day I missed something all day. It was like I was in withdrawal. Since then I've always face lathered and haven't looked back.

When would I use hand lathering? If I was a bowl latherer and I was traveling I'd hand lather. I also hand lather to test soap w/o using my face, and also to help break a boar brush in quicker. I've also demonstrated lather making to noobs by hand lathering.

I hope that helps.

Same here. I'm a face latherer too. When using soaps, I rub the puck directly on my face and let my whiskers pick up soap from the puck and then I start lathering on my face.

I like streamlining as well.

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 04-21-2012, 11:28 AM
#9
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Everyone ends up doing a little face lathering but I far prefer the consistency of building lather in a bowl and then working it in. Building lather on my face is something I don't care to do. Inconsistent and messy.

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 04-21-2012, 12:08 PM
#10
  • Songwind
  • Soap Slinger & Scuttle Pusher
  • Burnsville, MN
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Lathering in a bowl works just fine with soaps, especially when you're first learning your soap load times to water ratio.

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 04-21-2012, 12:30 PM
#11
  • Striky
  • Senior Member
  • Reipå, Norway
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I also think face lathering is a good thing when you're in a hurry, as you prep your face before shaving.

I just did a face lathering (with TOOBS cream Rose and Edwin Jeager Best Badger), and it was good as a pre-shaving treatment. However, I didn't manage to get a good thick lather, and as much lather, as I do when using a bowl. But it was my first time, and my technique isn't the best yet. But the shave was very good, my whiskers were very soft after the face lathering Smile

The brush I used is also soft and a bit big (I think). Maybe a smaller and harder brush is better for face lathering?

(04-21-2012, 11:07 AM)CyanideMetal Wrote:
(04-21-2012, 09:48 AM)ShadowsDad Wrote: Well, yes, I think so. The first time I lathered I used a bowl, then I got to thinking... I was lathering in a bowl and wanting to prep my face/beard with water. Why was I doing 2 operations? Why couldn't I combine both into one operation and streamline the process. So I began face lathering. A few months after my first face lather I decided to revisit bowl lathering. That day I missed something all day. It was like I was in withdrawal. Since then I've always face lathered and haven't looked back.

When would I use hand lathering? If I was a bowl latherer and I was traveling I'd hand lather. I also hand lather to test soap w/o using my face, and also to help break a boar brush in quicker. I've also demonstrated lather making to noobs by hand lathering.

I hope that helps.

Same here. I'm a face latherer too. When using soaps, I rub the puck directly on my face and let my whiskers pick up soap from the puck and then I start lathering on my face.

I like streamlining as well.

Good tip with the soap Smile

Streamlining?

(04-21-2012, 11:28 AM)Island Dreamer Wrote: Everyone ends up doing a little face lathering but I far prefer the consistency of building lather in a bowl and then working it in.

Working it in in a minute or two, would be as good as a face lathering?

(04-21-2012, 12:08 PM)Songwind Wrote: Lathering in a bowl works just fine with soaps, especially when you're first learning your soap load times to water ratio.

Good tip Eric!

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 04-21-2012, 01:34 PM
#12
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Once you try face lathering, your hooked! Great massage!

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 04-21-2012, 01:44 PM
#13
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When I began face lathering I was using a big bowl lather brush and the problem I had was lather in the nostrils. It seemed I was always snorting and holding one nostril shut to blow it out.

Lofts near or less than 50mm and knots near 24mm and smaller seem to work best for me. My largest brush is a Rooney 3/1 and by measurement it appears to be 22mm in diameter and 45mm loft. Mt smallest brush is a Simpson Special Best with a knot of about 18mm and 40mm loft. I wouldn't want to go much larger or much smaller for face lathering. But a larger brush can be used. A friend made and sent me a badger with a 20mmm knot and 57mm loft. I would never have bought such a large brush for face lathering, but I have no problems with it. I suspect experience makes the difference. It won't take much experience.

Hang in there, you'll get it. Face lathering offers instant feedback on lather quality. It takes me minutes to face lather and I'm working it the entire time. Remember you're not in a hurry. The speed comes through efficiency and not rushing. It's face/beard prep and it takes time, so you have time to get it right. Make sure you load the brush (or the face) enough with soap and you'll do fine.

Tieste has some good face lathering videos posted. They'll walk you through it.

You asked about "streamlining". In this sense it just means working efficiently.

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 04-21-2012, 02:06 PM
#14
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Until I re-discovered wetshaving last year, I'd been always face lathering with brushes and creams for over 25 years. I used to do only one pass shaves and face lathering worked well for me. When I started multipass shaving last summer, I had difficulties with my lather for the second and subsequent passes using this method. Then I learnt how to bowl lather and liked it a lot. To me bowl lathering allows for preparing more consistent better lather for multipass shaves. For the last few months I've been switching to using mostly soaps. After working longer my brush on a puck, it kinda makes more sense to me to transfer building up the lather further to my face. This is particularly valid when creating proto-lather with soaps that need a little longer brush loading time like MWF, TOBS, and EJ. With these soaps I am almost ready with my lather on the puck, and then I finish it on my face. I don't feel the need to use a bowl in this case. When working with creams though, the lack of loading and preparation time makes me believe that bowl lathering is the more efficient method. Besides, I've read that some people face lather for their first pass, and then prepare further their lather in a bowl for the second and third passes. This is also a possible option IMO.

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 04-21-2012, 04:08 PM
#15
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I do both...face/bowl lather

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 04-21-2012, 06:44 PM
#16
  • wlmcad
  • Senior Member
  • Memphis, TN
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I have a question if you are using a bowl or mug does it matter if the interior of the bowl is smooth or a little rough? I've seen shaving mugs that had a pattern inside the bowl. It looked like lines running vertically from the bottle of the bowl to the top. I've looked at videos on You Tube and when they use a bowl to make a lather it appears that the interior is smooth. So are there advantages to a textured bowl or a smooth bowl?

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 04-21-2012, 07:50 PM
#17
  • kav
  • Banned
  • east of the sun,west of the moon
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People can justify a higher price for groovesBiggrin

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 04-21-2012, 08:40 PM
#18
  • CMur12
  • Semogueiro de Coração
  • Moses Lake, Washington State, USA
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I use soaps exclusively and I lather in a bowl exclusively, so yes, you can lather soaps very effectively in a bowl.

Grooves: Some say that groves in the bowl make for more efficient and quicker lathering. I can't speak to that because I have always used a bowl that is smooth on the inside. I have no doubt that both work.

Hand-lathering: It occurred to me to do this, years ago, when I realized that my skin was too sensitive for face-lathering. The main problem with hand-lathering is that you can't use that hand for anything else, forcing you to do a one-handed shave with the other hand. Lathering in a bowl was a big improvement for me.

I have tried all sorts of brushes to face-lather, and my skin has always gotten sore long before I got lather, so I finally gave up on the idea. I do all my lathering in the bowl and I just apply the lather to my beard - I don't work it in at all with the brush. Then I let the lather soak on my beard while I clean up the shaving soap container and wring out the once-hot towel.

If your skin will tolerate face-lathering - and it seems that most men don't have a problem with it - you might as well give it a try at some point.

- Murray

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 04-21-2012, 08:58 PM
#19
  • Brent
  • Active Member
  • Columbus, OH
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However you wish to work it- bowl, face, palm, etc - it'll work just as well with soap as cream.

I think of myself as a "combo" latherer. I lather in a bowl but spend a fair amount of time on my face, probably more than a fair portion of bowl latherers.

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 04-21-2012, 09:59 PM
#20
  • Snuff
  • Senior Member
  • Belgium
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It's just another way to add to the experience of shaving. You don't need a bowl but until you try it out you won't know if you prefer using one. Personally I like a bowl with some grooves in, but mine doesn't get used a lot, I prefer face lathering.

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