07-04-2020, 10:04 AM
#1
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Here in the vicinity of the Mississippi River, we have some of the hardest water on the planet.  But hey!  We have water!
Some soaps will do fine with lathering, some just don’t.  I’ve been trying to use distilled water and it seems to work.  I do also believe that wam/hot water is better.  No, I’m not running downstairs back and forth to the microwave, or using a hot pot in the shave den.

Has anyone used citric acid in the sink to reduce the minerals in water?  I’ve heard somewhere that it can be done...

[Image: BXN2UaD.jpg]

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 07-04-2020, 10:19 AM
#2
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yes, you can add a pinch of citrus acid to your hard water and it will work. I would really just suggest having a mug full of filtered or distilled water that you soak your brush in and then your brush will be in much better condition as well as your lather.

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 07-06-2020, 03:35 PM
#3
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Our Lake Erie water is extremely hard, too.  I've not found a tremendous benefit in using citric acid, but it's cheap enough, so there's no real harm in seeing if it will work for you.  I pretty much stick to soaps that work well in hard water.  As you've said, you can find them.  I bet if you cross check a list of artisans you want to try with a water hardness map, you'll find a bunch who have cracked the code. Smile

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 07-06-2020, 08:54 PM
#4
  • Mr_Smartepants
  • Senior Member
  • Cambridgeshire, UK (CONUS post address)
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Most water companies publish their water quality results online.  Where we are in the UK we have hard water and we have to descale our appliances about once a month.
I've never used citric acid, but "cleaning-strength" vinegar works great for cleaning kettles, pots, shower heads, etc.  I just buy a few gallon jugs from the shop at a couple of bucks and fill a bucket to soak things in overnight.  I use a diluted mix of vinegar/water to soak my brushes periodically.  I even switched to using apple cider vinegar as a hair conditioner in the shower.
Here's the report from our water company.

The water in your area is hard.

To help set your domestic appliances, the water hardness in different units is:
   
292 mg/l (or parts per million)
Calcium Carbonate
   
116.8 mg/l (or parts per million)
Calcium
   
20.323 °C
Degrees Clark
   
29.2 °F
Degrees French
   
16.586 °dH
Degrees German
   
2.92 mmol/l
Millimoles

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 07-07-2020, 10:32 AM
#5
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I have been using distilled water to soak my brush in while I shower.  It works great especially with Mitchell's Woolfat and other tippled milled soaps.  I have purchased a gallon for as low as $.89 up to $1.10.  No fuss no muss.

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 07-07-2020, 11:03 AM
#6
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(07-07-2020, 10:32 AM)Tidepool Wrote: I have been using distilled water to soak my brush in while I shower.  It works great especially with Mitchell's Woolfat and other tippled milled soaps.  I have purchased a gallon for as low as $.89 up to $1.10.  No fuss no muss.

3 gallons for $2.10!

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 07-07-2020, 01:18 PM
#7
  • garyg
  • Senior Member
  • Great Lakes
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(07-06-2020, 03:35 PM)Shannon Wrote: Our Lake Erie water is extremely hard, too.  I've not found a tremendous benefit in using citric acid, but it's cheap enough, so there's no real harm in seeing if it will work for you.  I pretty much stick to soaps that work well in hard water.  As you've said, you can find them.  I bet if you cross check a list of artisans you want to try with a water hardness map, you'll find a bunch who have cracked the code. Smile


I grew up with Lake Erie water, now its from Lake Huron .. same stuff.  I am too lazy & cheap to import water, or supplement what comes from the tap, so I just have kept soaps that perform with the water I'm dealt.  As Shannon so aptly points out, there's a bunch that work .. no need to worry about those that don't .. 

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 07-07-2020, 05:26 PM
#8
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I have hard water in Miami, and there are a few soaps which will not lather here.  I could add citric acid, use distilled water, or use an elaborate lathering process.  I have opted to do none of those things.  If a soap does not lather well, I just don't use it.  There are numerous other options which lather fine in hard water.

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 07-08-2020, 05:09 AM
#9
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(07-07-2020, 05:26 PM)TheLegalRazor Wrote: I have hard water in Miami, and there are a few soaps which will not lather here.  I could add citric acid, use distilled water, or use an elaborate lathering process.  I have opted to do none of those things.  If a soap does not lather well, I just don't use it.  There are numerous other options which lather fine in hard water.

Well, Im certainly not interested in making my lathering process more like some govt protocol.  
First, even soaps that will work in the hard water, work significantly better in distilled water.  
Second, if I buy a soap and discover it doesn’t work (BTW, how do you know before you buy?) then what?  Just toss a $30 soap?  Sell it on BST for $20?  Spending time at the blackjack table at the Bellagio would be cheaper.  Maybe we need to be able to short sell shaving soaps!
Finally, I would be hospitalized if Beaudelaire or Kaisen were unusable.

Pete

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