12-08-2016, 02:00 PM
#1
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Hello All,

So, I have been wet shaving for over 10 years.  I've tried a fair amount of soaps & creams, both the major manufactures and quite a few of the artesian ones. Not everything, of course, but a good cross section.

So I would like to try a thought experiment here.  Let's assume that all of the different products have no scent (or exactly the same scent).  Let's also assume that the post shave performance is identical for all.  That being said, I think you get either a product that gives you a good shave or a bad one.  Do all of you feel the same or do you think their are degrees involved?

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 12-08-2016, 02:24 PM
#2
  • iamsms
  • The Patient Disciple
  • New Jersey
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I have less experience than you (about 2 years, only 1 as a hobbyist.), and have tried only about 25-30 soaps/creams.

I have found, if I take out scent and post shave, and want to achieve similar level of closeness from a shave (same brush, razor, blade), some soaps are better than others when it comes to the level of comfort.

Meaning, some soaps can help me get the same shave with less irritation - if that makes any sense. I believe that's what is called cushion/protection - i can be wrong. 

Of the soaps/creams I have used, the following three are the best in this 'no so well understood (at least by me)' criteria, IMO. (These are not my favorites when it comes to over all performance of a soap). I am still working on formulating an objective understanding of this.

1. CRSW
2. AoS tallow
3. Castle Forbes

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 12-08-2016, 03:59 PM
#3
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I like the different soaps and how each has its own unique qualities and needs. Mystic water lathers different than Mitchell's and cella etc. I also enjoy some soaps are really slick , some are very thirsty , some lather in about ten seconds. It's fun to use diffierent items for me.

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 12-08-2016, 04:25 PM
#4
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I personally like trying different soaps, creams, aftershaves and balms and like the challenge to see what it takes to make them work well, this of course applies more to the soaps, creams. it has always puzzled me on scented soaps, creams as when you rinse your face after the shave there is not much scent left so I am guessing it's more for the experience during the shave.

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 12-08-2016, 04:30 PM
#5
  • Nero
  • ACV is my new BFF
  • le montagne
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To start a list of the things already mentioned above, the soap/cream qualities consist of:
-Lathering time
-Slickness
-Scent
-Post-shave feel (re: irritation sensation)
-Closeness of shave (says the hand and the mirror, and the ears)
-Protection during shave (re: nicks/cuts)
-Comfort during shave (meaning the blade stroke isn't "ouch")



I'll add a few things:
-Post-shave skin complexion
-Non-usage related lather qualities: appearance (shiny, creamy, tiny bubbles, no bubbles), volume, creaminess, firmness, etc.
-Lather face feel (sting? menthol? calming? Etc.)

I'm sure there are still a few others....

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 12-08-2016, 04:41 PM
#6
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I don't think it's as simple as good vs. bad. I also think it depends on whether you use said product every day, or feature it in a large rotation. Only the best soaps will stand the test of regular use, whereas inferior products will provide a day or two of good shaves before stumbling in day 3+

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 12-08-2016, 04:54 PM
#7
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I feel that there are various levels of performance from horrible to reasonable to quite good to very good and also of course top notch.

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 12-08-2016, 11:13 PM
#8
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(12-08-2016, 03:59 PM)ultra~nova Wrote: I like the different soaps and how each has its own unique qualities and needs. Mystic water lathers different than Mitchell's and cella etc. I also enjoy some soaps are really slick , some are very thirsty , some lather in about ten seconds. It's fun to use diffierent items for me.

+1 this

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 12-09-2016, 03:36 AM
#9
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So I had not considered technique in making the lather.  I agree, some soaps need a different method of producing the best lather.  This does indeed add a new variable!

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 12-09-2016, 05:16 AM
#10
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(12-08-2016, 04:54 PM)nsavage Wrote: I feel that there are various levels of performance from horrible to reasonable to quite good to very good and also of course top notch.

I agree with this.  There are soaps that I would prefer to use over all, then there are soaps I would prefer to use over some, then there are some soaps I will use because I have it and a few I really do not get even a reasonable shave with.

But soap is not the only variable so I cannot blame the soap, the water, equipment, me (the shaver) and possibly the weather may contribute to what I end up with.  So when I do not like a soap I say I do not like it or it did not work for me, not that it is a bad soap.

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 12-12-2016, 11:17 AM
#11
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If post shave is a variable that is assumed to be identical, one way I look at performance is in terms of passes.

Most soaps are fine for the first ATG pass.  If you're a one pass shaver then soap performance should be fungible.

It's on the second and/or third passes where soaps distinguish themselves -- better residual slickness, protection, more stable lather.  A higher quality soap will give you the protection you need to do multiple passes in comfort without irritation.

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 12-12-2016, 11:36 AM
#12
  • Steelman
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  • Delaware
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Look...,it's all good.

Are some soaps better than others....yes. But there are very few bad soaps.

My father shaved with Ivory soap and Old Spice Aftershave.

Almost any software I use today is better.

Keep this perspective and be happy with what's available today. There's no need to dissect the hell out of shaving. Buy a soap or cream that smells nice and protects the skin. Plenty to choose from.

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 12-12-2016, 12:49 PM
#13
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(12-12-2016, 11:36 AM)Steelman Wrote: Look...,it's all good.

Are some soaps better than others....yes. But there are very few bad soaps.

My father shaved with Ivory soap and Old Spice Aftershave.

Almost any software I use today is better.

Keep this perspective and be happy with what's available today. There's no need to dissect the hell out of shaving. Buy a soap or cream that smells nice and protects the skin. Plenty to choose from.


I like your way of thinking.
Wish I could adapt to it, but I tend to overthink things.

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 12-12-2016, 05:37 PM
#14
  • SRNewb
  • Senior Member
  • No. Va, USA
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(12-08-2016, 03:59 PM)ultra~nova Wrote: I like the different soaps and how each has its own unique qualities and needs. Mystic water lathers different than Mitchell's and cella etc. I also enjoy some soaps are really slick , some are very thirsty , some lather in about ten seconds. It's fun to use diffierent items for me.


This hits it right on the head for me. So many different scents, but it's the differences in the soap formula that I love so much.
I actually lather differing soaps just to "play" with them. Yes, I'm touched. I know, but it is great fun. Biggrin

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 12-12-2016, 06:34 PM
#15
  • Nero
  • ACV is my new BFF
  • le montagne
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(12-12-2016, 05:37 PM)SRNewb Wrote: I actually lather differing soaps just to "play" with them. Yes, I'm touched. I know, but it is great fun. Biggrin

I used to do this a lottttttt!! I agree it is fun.

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