03-23-2017, 06:30 PM
#1
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I've been at this wet shaving for 47 years.

I'm a face latherer. No fuss, wet the brush, load the brush, and go.

I've tried bowl lathering before, and never found it added much to the experience. Not for lack of trying, mind you. I've tried every conceivable bowl, even used one of the bowls I used when I was studying the Japanese Tea Ceremony. I've had several custom bowls made by artisans, and while they're beautiful to look at, they really didn't add much to the save.

Of course, I've heard of the Captain's Choice bowls, and the raves some have posted about it, but I thought, eh, another shave bowl.

Don't know why, but the other day, I ordered one from a respected retailer.

A couple of days ago, after putting up my usual first-pass lather on my face, I whisked the brush and a few drops of water in the Captain's Choice bowl.

I was gobsmacked. The lather exploded.

I spent some time yesterday experimenting with different brushes, synthetic and both Manchurian and Silvertip badgers. Also with tallow and non-tallow soaps. In every case, the lather that I was able to produce in a very short time was just beautiful.

The size is perfect, and I may just have to incorporate this into my routine.

I just ordered a few more, large ones for my 30mm brushes, and a couple because my better half liked the colors.

Perhaps an old dog can be taught new tricks...

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 03-23-2017, 06:33 PM
#2
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Pictures Michael!

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 03-23-2017, 07:11 PM
#3
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Hi Ricardo,

Here are just a few of the bowls I've used with the Captain's Choice in the foreground, and a closeup of the Cobalt Captain's Choice that has changed my mind.

Just ordered some more, and I'll take a picture of the herd when they get here!

[Image: L2kMmUn.jpg][Image: mKsvWrq.jpg]

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 03-24-2017, 02:00 AM
#4
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Nice assortment of bowls Michael.  We'll look forward to the pictures of the other Captain's Choice bowls.

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 03-24-2017, 07:08 AM
#5
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Thanks, Ricardo. There are another dozen scattered around the den. The shaving bowl might be the 'Father's Day Tie' of shaving gifts. Family and friends who know I'm into shaving know I'm particular about soaps, razors, etc., but a shaving bowl? Easy call for them. 

My better half has also taken to browsing pottery stores, housewares stores, knick-knack stores, etc. for bowls she likes that she thinks will serve well as shaving bowls. Operative term is 'thinks'. 

She watched some of my experimentation with the CC bowls and how excited I was about the ease of lather production, and encouraged me to get more in different colors. (I'm a lucky man!) Naturally, I involved her in selecting the other colors!

The bowls shipped today from Captain's Choice, will post additional pics when they arrive.

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 03-24-2017, 07:45 AM
#6
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Captain's Choice was the first bowl I bought in 2014 when I started. Luckily I got it right the first time and haven't bought another bowl.
Congrats on the new find!

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 03-27-2017, 03:26 PM
#7
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Ricardo, the bowls arrived today. Clearly, an intervention is in order...

[Image: f15yFkJ.jpg]

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 03-27-2017, 03:32 PM
#8
  • NJDJ
  • Active Member
  • New Jersey
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Can ypu give us some feedback about which size you think is ideal?  Looks like you have a bigger one and a smaller one.

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 03-27-2017, 03:41 PM
#9
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i like the ship´s wheel... ;-)

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 03-27-2017, 04:00 PM
#10
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NJDJ, I will once I use the larger one. These are fresh out of the box.

I got the larger one because I thought it would provide more room for my 30mm brushes. I'll use it tomorrow, and I'm hoping it will work as well as the small one. 

Having said that, I used the small one with a 30mm brush this morning, and it was just fine and again the lather just exploded. I was concerned the larger one would be too big to hold in one hand, but it's just fine, very comfortable. Looking forward to using it.

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 03-27-2017, 04:37 PM
#11
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(03-27-2017, 03:26 PM)Michael P Wrote: Ricardo, the bowls arrived today. Clearly, an intervention is in order...

[Image: f15yFkJ.jpg]

Michael, the new bowls look great.  Now you need a family shot of all your bowls together!

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 03-28-2017, 04:13 PM
#12
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OK, Ricardo, here goes-these are the ceramic ones in the den. I'm not including the three Nuàvias (which I may use as shaving bowls if and when I ever finish the soaps), the bowls my better half bought that are not really suitable, and the wooden Saponificio Varesino bowls.

The sad thing about this is that I'm primarily a face latherer. As I said in the initial post, the Captain's Choice is changing my mind about this. Several of these were gifts, but still...[Image: ITGrZnY.jpg]

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 03-28-2017, 06:45 PM
#13
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Michael, that's a lovely collection of bowls.  I face lather exclusively, but there is always something appealing about a beautiful ceramic bowl.  Thanks for posting the picture so all of us can enjoy seeing it.

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 03-28-2017, 09:14 PM
#14
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Wow what a big collection of bowls, Michael !
You are sure you are a face lather by heart

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 03-29-2017, 07:28 AM
#15
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I know, Claus, I know! I'm not a 110% face latherer like you are, but I'd say 90% of the time. I have a bit more control over the mix when I take the brush directly to the face.

The bowls I had before I tried the Captain's Choice were all good, beautiful to look at, and perhaps most importantly my better half loves them. Green is her favorite color, as you might have guessed.

I had some issues with my larger (28 and 30mm) badgers and SMN 3.0, and started tinkering. That led me to the CC bowl, and I've become a big fan. 

I sometimes like to add 'extras' to the shave mix, and it's a little easier in the bowl. Sometimes I'll add something to the mix that could potentially 'gunk up'  the better badgers, so adding it to the lather in the bowl makes me more comfortable. I wind up doing a 'hybrid' lathering that is part bowl and part face.

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 03-29-2017, 07:35 AM
#16
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Thanks for the kind words, Ricardo.

NJDJ, I used the larger bowl yesterday and this morning with a 30mm M&F and a Chubby 3. There's definitely more room for the big brushes in the larger bowl, and it felt more comfortable. No issues with holding the bowl in one hand. Having said that, the smaller bowl worked well with the big brushes, really no issues. Because I use more soap when loading a large brush, the lather came up higher in the smaller bowl than the larger bowl, but again, they both worked really well.

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 03-29-2017, 07:57 AM
#17
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(03-29-2017, 07:35 AM)Michael P Wrote: Thanks for the kind words, Ricardo.

NJDJ, I used the larger bowl yesterday and this morning with a 30mm M&F and a Chubby 3. There's definitely more room for the big brushes in the larger bowl, and it felt more comfortable. No issues with holding the bowl in one hand. Having said that, the smaller bowl worked well with the big brushes, really no issues. Because I use more soap when loading a large brush, the lather came up higher in the smaller bowl than the larger bowl, but again, they both worked really well.


You have a beautiful collection. I heard about the CC bowls while watching YouTube videos (I have been wet shaving for 2 months now) and I ended up buying one from Maggard Razors; it arrived yesterday. I used it last night and you're right, the lather explodes. I can't wait to use it again tonight.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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 03-29-2017, 11:34 AM
#18
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Wow!  That last photo, with all its color, just makes me smile.  Well done, Michael.

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 03-29-2017, 12:45 PM
#19
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I used to bowl lather 100% of the time then one day being in a hurry I tried face lathering as my son suggested for me to try it when I was rushed, now I kind of do both, I fill my SWK scuttle with hot water then soak my brush while showering then do about what I would call a 1/2 bowl lather and let it sit and warm up in the scuttle while I strop my blade then i finish the lather by face lathering and it's perfect for me so now my Dirty Bird "Bill" Bowl sits in a drawer unused.

You have a wonderful collection of bowls and i like the blue one on the left that looks like a scuttle with a lid.

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 03-29-2017, 01:51 PM
#20
  • Mouser
  • Senior Member
  • Forest City, Florida U.S.A.
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I bowl lather half of the time. For me the value added by bowl lathering is both the ceremony of the lathering, (think tea ceremony) and the difference in the application of the lather. Easy back and forth paint strokes and with a softer, floppier (for the lack of a better word in my vocabulary) brush. Variety is the spice of shaving, if I may paraphrase.

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