06-14-2015, 07:02 AM
#1
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I've at best gotten mediocre lather from Mystic Waters Bay Rum and was wondering if "blooming" the puck might help. I understand this involves putting some water on the puck and leaving it to soak for a while. I've never done this before and was wondering how much water and for how long. Feedback from other people who have used this technique would be appreciated.

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 06-14-2015, 07:30 AM
#2
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(06-14-2015, 07:02 AM)gordon55 Wrote: I've at best gotten mediocre lather from Mystic Waters Bay Rum and was wondering if "blooming" the puck might help. I understand this involves putting some water on the puck and leaving it to soak for a while. I've never done this before and was wondering how much water and for how long. Feedback from other people who have used this technique would be appreciated.

Gordon, this is a process that I always do with Mystic water soaps, even though it is already soft. Firstly, I "rough up" the surface by repeatedly pressing a thumb in to it. This makes it easier for the brush to pick up the soap. I then put a thin layer of warm water on the soap that just barely covers it. This, I leave for no more than a minute, and then tip away the water.

I have over a dozen of Michelle's soaps, including the Bay Rum, and can't honestly say I've noticed any difference between that and the others.

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 06-14-2015, 07:34 AM
#3
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I'm not a fan of this, did it once and I wasn't impressed in how the soap performed after the process. I've seen people do it with Harris, Williams, PdP and other hard soaps too. MW is soft enough to begin with, I wouldn't mess around with soaking.

It changes the soap makers intentions and the actual performance. If they wanted more water in the puck, they would have added it and made it softer.

Sure, a few drops on the puck while you brush soaps or you shower, but not overnight so it absorbs. You could always try roughing up the top layer as sometimes it is firmer and develops a rind of sorts.

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 06-14-2015, 07:38 AM
#4
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I think I have misunderstood Gordon's question. I certainly wouldn't leave the soap to soak overnight. I've only ever done that with MWF, which works wonders, IMO, but definitely not any other, and most certainly not MW soaps.

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 06-14-2015, 07:39 AM
#5
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David, 


Thanks for the tip. I'd been soaking the puck for five minutes before getting your post. And let it soak a couple of minutes more after roughing up the surface with my thumb. It made a significant improvement in the lather. Thank you very much. 

Bruce, 

It agree it would be easier if the soap maker put more water in it. But, I'm happy to have learned the trick of getting a decent lather out of this puck.

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 06-14-2015, 07:46 AM
#6
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Here's my technique. It has served me well and is, IMO, very reliable.
1) Soak Brush Well
2) When ready to load, cover the MW puck to the BRIM with warm water (Notice I did NOT bloom the puck beforehand)
3) Lightly shake out the brush. Do not squeeze the water out. 
4) Holding the tub level, begin swirling the tips of your brush onto the soap. This will be messy.
5) When all of the water has been spilled out of the puck and you begin to feel the bristles "bite" into the soap---then begin a 30 sec load. Don't be shy. I don't believe in being frugal with the shave soap. There's plenty more where that came from.
6) With the über-loaded brush, paint your entire shave area and get that sticky soap distributed evenly all over.
7) Now you should have a shiny, albeit thinnish covering.
8) Using strong oval circles-alternating with very strong "slapping" motions WORK that lather.
9) You'll be able to add water at this point. Add it sparingly, you can always add more.
With practice, MW will become one of your top lathers and favorite soaps. Guaranteed.
Good Luck.

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 06-14-2015, 07:51 AM
#7
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(06-14-2015, 07:46 AM)primotenore Wrote: Here's my technique. It has served me well and is, IMO, very reliable.
1) Soak Brush Well
2) When ready to load, cover the MW puck to the BRIM with warm water (Notice I did NOT bloom the puck beforehand)
3) Lightly shake out the brush. Do not squeeze the water out. 
4) Holding the tub level, begin swirling the tips of your brush onto the soap. This will be messy.
5) When all of the water has been spilled out of the puck and you begin to feel the bristles "bite" into the soap---then begin a 30 sec load. Don't be shy. I don't believe in being frugal with the shave soap. There's plenty more where that came from.
6) With the über-loaded brush, paint your entire shave area and get that sticky soap distributed evenly all over.
7) Now you should have a shiny, albeit thinnish covering.
8) Using strong oval circles-alternating with very strong "slapping" motions WORK that lather.
9) You'll be able to add water at this point. Add it sparingly, you can always add more.
With practice, MW will become one of your top lathers and favorite soaps. Guaranteed.
Good Luck.

Good write up primo :-)


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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 06-14-2015, 07:53 AM
#8
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Thanks for the tip Primo; I'll give it a try next time.    Smile

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 06-14-2015, 07:58 AM
#9
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(06-14-2015, 07:53 AM)gordon55 Wrote: Thanks for the tip Primo; I'll give it a try next time.    Smile
You are welcome. Keep in mind there are many ways to "skin a cat". This method works well for me. Others smear the softened soap directly onto their skin. That works better, I would imagine, with the MW sticks, two of which I just happened to pick up this morning from Jason. (Sandalwood Rose and Lilac  Thumbup )

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 06-14-2015, 08:04 AM
#10
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MW soaps had a very narrow range of soap water ratio.
If not lather properly, it turned out too thick or too watery.
Some Stirling soaps had the same issue.
I always start from damp brush and slowly add drops of water till it blooms.

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 06-14-2015, 08:12 AM
#11
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(06-14-2015, 07:39 AM)gordon55 Wrote: David, 


Thanks for the tip. I'd been soaking the puck for five minutes before getting your post. And let it soak a couple of minutes more after roughing up the surface with my thumb. It made a significant improvement in the lather. Thank you very much. 

That's great to hear, Gordon. Thumbup


(06-14-2015, 07:58 AM)primotenore Wrote: You are welcome. Keep in mind there are many ways to "skin a cat". This method works well for me. Others smear the softened soap directly onto their skin. That works better, I would imagine, with the MW sticks, two of which I just happened to pick up this morning from Jason. (Sandalwood Rose and Lilac  Thumbup )

What's your initial impression of the Lilac soap, Primo? Don't want to derail this thread but just curious.

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 06-14-2015, 08:18 AM
#12
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(06-14-2015, 08:12 AM)Optometrist Wrote:
(06-14-2015, 07:39 AM)gordon55 Wrote: David, 


Thanks for the tip. I'd been soaking the puck for five minutes before getting your post. And let it soak a couple of minutes more after roughing up the surface with my thumb. It made a significant improvement in the lather. Thank you very much. 

That's great to hear, Gordon. Thumbup



(06-14-2015, 07:58 AM)primotenore Wrote: You are welcome. Keep in mind there are many ways to "skin a cat". This method works well for me. Others smear the softened soap directly onto their skin. That works better, I would imagine, with the MW sticks, two of which I just happened to pick up this morning from Jason. (Sandalwood Rose and Lilac  Thumbup )

What's your initial impression of the Lilac soap, Primo? Don't want to derail this thread but just curious.
By "pick up" I meant paid. When I receive the soap, I will report my findings... Sherlock

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 06-14-2015, 08:33 AM
#13
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(06-14-2015, 08:18 AM)primotenore Wrote:
(06-14-2015, 08:12 AM)Optometrist Wrote:
(06-14-2015, 07:39 AM)gordon55 Wrote: What's your initial impression of the Lilac soap, Primo? Don't want to derail this thread but just curious.
By "pick up" I meant paid. When I receive the soap, I will report my findings... Sherlock

Ahh, and my second misunderstanding in this thread. Rolleyes

That pub lunch must have been even better than I thought!  Cheers Biggrin

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 06-14-2015, 12:03 PM
#14
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(06-14-2015, 07:46 AM)primotenore Wrote: Here's my technique. It has served me well and is, IMO, very reliable.
1) Soak Brush Well
2) When ready to load, cover the MW puck to the BRIM with warm water (Notice I did NOT bloom the puck beforehand)
3) Lightly shake out the brush. Do not squeeze the water out. 
4) Holding the tub level, begin swirling the tips of your brush onto the soap. This will be messy.
5) When all of the water has been spilled out of the puck and you begin to feel the bristles "bite" into the soap---then begin a 30 sec load. Don't be shy. I don't believe in being frugal with the shave soap. There's plenty more where that came from.
6) With the über-loaded brush, paint your entire shave area and get that sticky soap distributed evenly all over.
7) Now you should have a shiny, albeit thinnish covering.
8) Using strong oval circles-alternating with very strong "slapping" motions WORK that lather.
9) You'll be able to add water at this point. Add it sparingly, you can always add more.
With practice, MW will become one of your top lathers and favorite soaps. Guaranteed.
Good Luck.
interesting. one problem with this method is that as you use the soap, the distance between the top of the puck and the top of the container will grow; the volume of water you are using at the start of your lathering is, therefore, by definition going to change over time.   
iI assume you adjust for that?

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 06-14-2015, 12:29 PM
#15
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(06-14-2015, 07:02 AM)gordon55 Wrote: I've at best gotten mediocre lather from Mystic Waters Bay Rum and was wondering if "blooming" the puck might help. I understand this involves putting some water on the puck and leaving it to soak for a while. I've never done this before and was wondering how much water and for how long. Feedback from other people who have used this technique would be appreciated.

Gordon, you just might need to work the lather more; load for longer until you get a sticky proto-lather (30-60 seconds), then work it for longer than usual while adding water little by little. Most folks don't work it for long enough and they run into the issue with the dissipating lather. If you face-lather, use much more paint-brush strokes, than you would imagine after starting with circular motions. 

Good luck and there are a few good videos on Michelle's website and on YouTube if you need more help.  Smile

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 06-14-2015, 01:49 PM
#16
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(06-14-2015, 12:29 PM)celestino Wrote:
(06-14-2015, 07:02 AM)gordon55 Wrote: I've at best gotten mediocre lather from Mystic Waters Bay Rum and was wondering if "blooming" the puck might help. I understand this involves putting some water on the puck and leaving it to soak for a while. I've never done this before and was wondering how much water and for how long. Feedback from other people who have used this technique would be appreciated.

Gordon, you just might need to work the lather more; load for longer until you get a sticky proto-lather (30-60 seconds), then work it for longer than usual while adding water little by little. Most folks don't work it for long enough and they run into the issue with the dissipating lather. If you face-lather, use much more paint-brush strokes, than you would imagine after starting with circular motions. 

Good luck and there are a few good videos on Michelle's website and on YouTube if you need more help.  Smile

I tried David's suggestion and it made a big difference in the quality of the lather. I had planned on using Geo F. Trumper's Sandalwood shaving cream as my "soap of the week" for this week, but in light of the progress on lathering MW Bay Rum I'm going to switch and use it as my soap of the week. Between David, Primo, and your suggestions implemented over a week I feel confident the lather will be fine by the end of the week. Thanks  Smile

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 06-14-2015, 01:51 PM
#17
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(06-14-2015, 12:03 PM)kingfisher Wrote:
(06-14-2015, 07:46 AM)primotenore Wrote: Here's my technique. It has served me well and is, IMO, very reliable.
1) Soak Brush Well
2) When ready to load, cover the MW puck to the BRIM with warm water (Notice I did NOT bloom the puck beforehand)
3) Lightly shake out the brush. Do not squeeze the water out. 
4) Holding the tub level, begin swirling the tips of your brush onto the soap. This will be messy.
5) When all of the water has been spilled out of the puck and you begin to feel the bristles "bite" into the soap---then begin a 30 sec load. Don't be shy. I don't believe in being frugal with the shave soap. There's plenty more where that came from.
6) With the über-loaded brush, paint your entire shave area and get that sticky soap distributed evenly all over.
7) Now you should have a shiny, albeit thinnish covering.
8) Using strong oval circles-alternating with very strong "slapping" motions WORK that lather.
9) You'll be able to add water at this point. Add it sparingly, you can always add more.
With practice, MW will become one of your top lathers and favorite soaps. Guaranteed.
Good Luck.
interesting. one problem with this method is that as you use the soap, the distance between the top of the puck and the top of the container will grow; the volume of water you are using at the start of your lathering is, therefore, by definition going to change over time.   
iI assume you adjust for that?
Even though the water amount increases through usage, it still spills out at a very fast rate. It shouldn't be assumed that I am stirring a porridge of soap, on the contrary, just as Celestino points out, I too am creating that sticky goo that after 30 secs really fills up the brush. Some people use a few drops, I don't bloom so I just fill er up and go. I wasn't the first person to do this. I saw someone on a Youtube video do it (sorry to the originator, I don't know remember your name) and I copied it. I had been having the typical MW issues with the lather. I have a few sticks coming. I am eager to try the "smear it all over your face" technique.  Biggrin

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 06-14-2015, 03:45 PM
#18
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There are a variety of methods that work well; it depends on so many factors (brush type, knot size, presumably water, age of soap, etc).  I soak my puck before loading the brush - fairly haphazardly, to tell the truth - at market I get distracted, am having conversations, making change, whatever, so I'm not necessarily being consistent from one day to the next yet it always works just fine.  You learn to adjust by how the soap feels under the brush, and by what the lather looks like.  In the little card I enclose with orders, there's a pretty detailed set of instructions gleaned from my own experience and advice from some of you, and one thing that I recommend is putting some water on the puck surface to soften it a bit.  If you find that it's not necessary, by all means skip that step, but if your brush isn't filling up with a thick creamy lather then give it a try, rough up the puck, put some water on it, try some of the suggestions that others have made.

Primo, I often will slice a new puck in half crosswise and keep one half in reserve, so that there'll be more "head room" in the tub, to keep it from overflowing during loading.

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 06-14-2015, 05:15 PM
#19
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(06-14-2015, 03:45 PM)Mystic Water Wrote: There are a variety of methods that work well; it depends on so many factors (brush type, knot size, presumably water, age of soap, etc).  I soak my puck before loading the brush - fairly haphazardly, to tell the truth - at market I get distracted, am having conversations, making change, whatever, so I'm not necessarily being consistent from one day to the next yet it always works just fine.  You learn to adjust by how the soap feels under the brush, and by what the lather looks like.  In the little card I enclose with orders, there's a pretty detailed set of instructions gleaned from my own experience and advice from some of you, and one thing that I recommend is putting some water on the puck surface to soften it a bit.  If you find that it's not necessary, by all means skip that step, but if your brush isn't filling up with a thick creamy lather then give it a try, rough up the puck, put some water on it, try some of the suggestions that others have made.

Primo, I often will slice a new puck in half crosswise and keep one half in reserve, so that there'll be more "head room" in the tub, to keep it from overflowing during loading.
The water bubbling and frothing over has become zen-like for me. Some people don't like to work too hard for great results; not I, the resulting lather makes every effort more than worthwhile.  Sbathroom_grooming_shaving_100-100

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 06-14-2015, 05:39 PM
#20
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(06-14-2015, 01:49 PM)gordon55 Wrote: I tried David's suggestion and it made a big difference in the quality of the lather. I had planned on using Geo F. Trumper's Sandalwood shaving cream as my "soap of the week" for this week, but in light of the progress on lathering MW Bay Rum I'm going to switch and use it as my soap of the week. Between David, Primo, and your suggestions implemented over a week I feel confident the lather will be fine by the end of the week. Thanks  Smile

Excellent and I wish you the best of luck! You have picked a great scent to try for the week! Remember, just keep working that lather!  Thumbup

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