Williams shaving soap

Pros: Cheap
Cons: Difficult to lather initially
This soap is different from pretty much every other one I have used to date. The smell and packaging are both really basic. Soap. Lathering it can be a trick, mostly because the approach is quite different to most other modern soaps/creams. I soak the puck in a mug with my boar brush while I'm in the shower to give it plenty of time to soften up. After that I lather right in the mug with the soap and only lightly lather on my face. Once the first pass is done I squeeze the remaining soap from the brush and run my finger around in the mug to get lather for the second (and final) pass. It performs well, even though the lather looks lighter than I would like from other soaps. Even with this amount of work the lather I get makes this soap worth using, especially at the ridiculously low price it comes at. The only downside is that it dries my face out, but that's easily fixed by some decent aftershave.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
3.00 star(s)
Lather
3.00 star(s)
Quality
3.00 star(s)
Efficacy
4.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
2.00 star(s)
Pros: Very inexpensive
Cons: dries out quickly
I had a difficult time raising a decent lather with my badger brush, however was able to create tons of lather with a stiffer, cheaper boar bristle that I had. As soon as the lather is on my face it starts to dry out. Post shave my skin feels tight and dry. Not recommended unless you are on a budget.--
Following up after learning more about proper lathering techniques. It's still drying and I definitely need a moisturizer after shaving with this. On the positive side, it's not bad for the price. It's cheaper and better than the VDH line and the ideal soap for budget minded shavers.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
3.00 star(s)
Lather
3.00 star(s)
Quality
2.00 star(s)
Efficacy
3.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
1.00 star(s)
Pros: price, availability, performance
Cons: can be tricky to use, scent is mild but not for everybody
9.5 rounded up to 10 for awesomeness.

Williams was the second shaving product I've tried and its performance has set a high bar for slickness.

I will concede that it can be tricky to figure out how to bring together the required product and water to get a great lather. If you take a little product, add lots of water and work it well you can end up with a lot of pretty but useless lather.

However start with a well pre-soaked puck, take a wet brush and make a runny, soupy proto-lather on the puck then move to a bowl or your face and work in a little more water.

You are rewarded with a slick wonderful lather and a great shave. It will be a little thin and not mounds of meringue. I find the more volume I produce the less slick the lather will be.

I wish I could smell like Williams all day but that may be a personal problem.

What's not perfect? It comes in a cardboard box, it used to be even better supposedly, there are products that moisturize better and I have heard there are some high end soaps that have the slickness AND meringue like lather AND are easy to use AND smell more decadent.

I'll stick with Williams and buy fancy beer instead.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
5.00 star(s)
Lather
4.00 star(s)
Quality
4.00 star(s)
Efficacy
5.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
4.00 star(s)
Pros: Price Slickness
Cons: Lather sometimes does not last without adequate water
I tried this soap when I started shaving with a DE. My mistake was using a badger and a bowl. I was frustrated with it and threw it out. After a few months and reading other reviews I decided to give it a try as a test of my skills. What I found was that it loves to be face lathered with a boar brush. Loads of lather and excellent slickness. The lather can be finicky but if you hit the sweet spot it really works.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
4.00 star(s)
Lather
4.00 star(s)
Quality
3.00 star(s)
Efficacy
4.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
3.00 star(s)
Classic scent. Takes a little more work to lather than more expensive soaps, but once you get a decent lather it provides as close a shave as you're going to get with any other soap. There is not much "moisturizing", but that's because this is a bare bones classic product, nothing added. And you cannot beat the price.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
5.00 star(s)
Lather
3.00 star(s)
Quality
4.00 star(s)
Efficacy
4.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
2.00 star(s)
Pros: Inexpensive, nice scent.
Cons: Not as much protection as better soaps
Look when you use a shavette or barber razor you don't want too much lather. This doesn't give you a lot of protection, but it's enough. It has a nice clean scent. For the price, it works.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
4.00 star(s)
Lather
1.00 star(s)
Quality
4.00 star(s)
Efficacy
3.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
0.00 star(s)
Pros: Price and long lasting
Cons: Not as moisturizing as other soaps
I've been using Williams shaving soap for a numbers of years and it is a mainistay in my soap rotation. You cannot beat the price at $1.09/puck and it lasts me at least 4 - 6 weeks of daily shaving. It is a lathering machine and I can build enough lather for a three pass shave. It is my every Monday morning 3 day beard soap. It does fall short of the moisturizing side, but I use preshave oil and aftershave balm so this is not an issue for me. At such a cheap price, you have to try it at least once to see if you like it enough to add it to your rotation.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
2.00 star(s)
Lather
5.00 star(s)
Quality
4.00 star(s)
Efficacy
5.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
2.00 star(s)
Pros: Closeness
Cons: Slightly drying
I have tried lots of different soaps and creams, but I always have a puck of Williams in my medicine cabinet. Maybe it is because the city water here is quite hard, but Williams combined with an Omega boar hair brush makes heaps of lather. It doesn't linger like glycerine soaps, but it gives a close shave
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
5.00 star(s)
Lather
4.00 star(s)
Quality
3.00 star(s)
Efficacy
4.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
3.00 star(s)
Pros: Low price, good lather, ok scent and slickness
Cons: Dries my skin
As a total noob, I decided to enter the hobby as cheaply as possible. I didn't know if I would appreciate the ritual. So, this soap made it an easy choice. I got it at CVS and it was $1.19! I also got a cheap boar brush.

After a couple of tries using the conventional lathering methods I was already looking for other alternatives. Then I found an article saying how much water Williams needed to create a lot of lather. Bingo! The lather was unbelievable! It was rich and thick!

If I can point to one minor drawback is that it dries my skin. But at that price, I can splurge on a good moisturizing after shave balm. The scent doesn't bother me. I wear cologne so I don't care for other strong smells. Besides, it smells clean.

Overall, I am pretty satisfied with this product.
Price
0.00 star(s)
Scent
4.00 star(s)
Lather
5.00 star(s)
Quality
4.00 star(s)
Efficacy
5.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
1.00 star(s)
Pros: Inexpensive, smells like my Grandfathers aftershave.
Cons: Inexpensive, smells like my Grandfathers aftershave.
Williams gets a lot of bad press, some of it dead on, some of it I think a bit unfair. I break one out once in a great while just to relive the old college days.

It is what it is, a cheap shaving soap. It gets the job done if you work at it. The problem with Williams as I see it is that many better soaps are readily available for delivery to your front door via the internet. Back in the '80's when I was a poor college student, WIlliams was the only game in town. And lucky for me it was cheap. As the 80's and early 90's rolled by, I could afford more expensive soaps, but they were difficult to find in my neck of the woods....and the internet as we know it was not available. So I leaned on Williams once again.

Now it's 2014, and I can have hundreds of different soaps delivered to my doorstep. So Williams collects dust in the back of the drawer and rarely sees the light of day, except when I take a stroll down memory lane.

I shaved with Williams the night of my first date with my future wife....I shaved with Williams the day I asked my wife to take my hand in marriage.

No, it's not the best shave soap, not even close. But it will always have a place in my heart, and my bathroom. Take it for a spin once in a while, it won't break your budget and the scent is clean and classic.

Cheers!
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
3.00 star(s)
Lather
2.00 star(s)
Quality
3.00 star(s)
Efficacy
2.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
2.00 star(s)
Pros: Great aroma, and an excellent lather.
Cons: Takes some time to get to know it.
It was one of my first soaps when I threw the canned lather awayTakes some time and expertise to get used to. It is a water hog. I fill my mug with hot water and let the brush soak in it for about 5 minutes. I then pour off most of the water and lather on top of the puck. It makes excellent lather to do a 4 pass shave.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
5.00 star(s)
Lather
4.00 star(s)
Quality
4.00 star(s)
Efficacy
4.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
3.00 star(s)
Pros: cheap, slick, skin tightening effect, softend beard fast
Cons: can be drying, takes some practice
I can't use it every day because my skin would be pretty dry after a week or so in our weather. But it can make a pretty darn slick lather, and it seems to make the beard much softer than many other products. A bit of glycerin or something would probably make it a little less drying. But it's always a good Shave when it comes around in my rotation.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
2.00 star(s)
Lather
2.00 star(s)
Quality
4.00 star(s)
Efficacy
4.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
1.00 star(s)
Pros: It is cheap and can be used if it is all that is available...
Cons: It does not protect the skin.
I have purchased this soap several times, thinking that each time the experience will be different. After reading the reviews above I regret that I have thrown each puck away in frustration and not used them in the shower. I believe it is an inferior shaving soap because I have tried it and retried it with similar bad results. If I want to keep an economical spare puck around in case I run out of Tabac or Cella, I can have on hand a VDH puck from Wal-Mart that only costs me $1.58. The VDH at least lathers well and protects my face. For those that like Williams, my hat is off to you, no disrespect. Life is too short to shave with it. I buy good razors to enhance my shaving experience. I guy good brushes to pamper myself and enjoy the shaving experience. I buy blades that work well and that are comfortable. I buy shaving soap and cream that make the shaving experience something to look forward to. Williams is not going to be given another chance in my lather bowl.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
3.00 star(s)
Lather
1.00 star(s)
Quality
1.00 star(s)
Efficacy
1.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
0.00 star(s)
Pros: Cheap, smells nice.
Cons: Latheing is tough, and when produced is not long lasting.
It is what it is. I'm still new at this, but with a decent brush and a little practice, I was able to produce a lather that did the trick. I'm sure there are better options out there, but at $1.29 you can't be too picky. I'll probably keep it around to practice lathering with new brushes, etc.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
3.00 star(s)
Lather
2.00 star(s)
Quality
2.00 star(s)
Efficacy
3.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
2.00 star(s)
Pros: cheap
Cons: scent is weak
even though its cheap spend 3 more bucks and get a better glycerine based soap like conk.
Price
4.00 star(s)
Scent
1.00 star(s)
Lather
3.00 star(s)
Quality
2.00 star(s)
Efficacy
2.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
3.00 star(s)
Pros: Price, scent, ubiquity
Cons: finicky
I love this soap. I get nice, soapy, extremely slick lather, some of the most slippery lather I've seen. The scent is light lemon verbena and pairs quite well with Aqua Velva Ice Blue. It does not moisturize like Mike's soaps and for me that's a good thing (I have oily sking and live in a very humid climate). There is not much cushion here, but again I find that a good attribute as it forces me to be mindful of blade pressure. All in all I get close, consistent shaves with Williams. It's fun to bash, but is works very well for me. YMMV and happy shaving!
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
5.00 star(s)
Lather
3.00 star(s)
Quality
3.00 star(s)
Efficacy
4.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
3.00 star(s)
Pros: Good scent; inexpensive
Cons: Poorish lather; some skin irritation
I used this soap for some time; I liked the scent (and the price). Once I tried other soaps like Proraso or Omega, which cost significantly more, there was no way back. The more expensive stuff far exceeds Williams in moisturizing my skin and preventing irritation.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
4.00 star(s)
Lather
2.00 star(s)
Quality
3.00 star(s)
Efficacy
2.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
1.00 star(s)
Pros: cheap
Cons: cheap quality does not work well at all
ok so here I was before I ever even began traditional shaving but I always watched my grandfather shave and I saw him using soaps ( not Williams). Fast forward I start traditional shaving and want to be like my grandfather but I have no idea where to go so I go to the grocery store and there it is some soap called Williams mug soap !!! what do I know and I buy it. well at first I could have blamed it on my newb technique but not after so many tries and success with different soaps even VDH deluxe. here's what I don't like about Williams #1 it just does not make a stable lather #2 when you finally do get it to lather it turns to dust 2 minutes later #3 lets say you actually get it to lather and actually stay in lather by the time it hits your wet face it turns to almost a dried up foundation within a minute or two # 4 you finally give up and the stuff won't rinse off your face and leaves a residue and dries your skin up !!!!! Forget it I was almost about to give up and then bouht another brand of soap just to make sure I wasn't doing something wrong and guess what the other brand was awesome !!!!!!!! I am going back to soaps as I was using creams as I thought I couldn't effectively use a soap because I was so discouraged by Williams. I would use Williams mug soap maybe to clean a slop sink or it may be good if you have oily skin to dry it out but besides that go to McDonalds and use the $1.50 to get a cheeseburger it's equally as bad for you but at least tastes good.
Price
0.00 star(s)
Scent
1.00 star(s)
Lather
0.00 star(s)
Quality
0.00 star(s)
Efficacy
0.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
0.00 star(s)
Pros: Price, lubrication, ubiquity
Cons: Price: no snob appeal
I've been DE shaving for years. I started out as all the connoisseurs recommended. That is with an expensive badger brush, Prorasso cream, and The Art of Shaving soap. After the Japanese earthquake I had to leave all of my possessions, including my shave equipment, behind. After that I just needed a shave, so I picked up a VDH boar brush and a puck of Williams. I was a amazed to get a better shave than I ever did with those prissy products costing much much more. The trick is with this soap is to make sure it is very wet, and you are using a BOAR brush. Badger holds too much water and doesn't dig into the soap the way boar does. This stuff lubricates better than anything I've tried and doesn't dry out my skin. There should be a disclaimer on the box that warns against using badger brushes with this. This soap proves to me once again that only a sucker believes that "you get what you pay for."
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
2.00 star(s)
Lather
4.00 star(s)
Quality
3.00 star(s)
Efficacy
5.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
2.00 star(s)
Pros: Very slick, leaves skin very soft.
Cons: Bad reputation for hard to lather correctly.
This is my favorite soap currently made. I have tried a lot of soaps: tabac, mwf, proraso, arko stick, Palmolive stick, klar kabinett, vdh, all c&e soaps, truefitt and hill, you name it and I have probably tried it. This is my favorite soap. The old stuff is even better but no longer around.

The smell is personal, some love it others hate it. I like it.

Lather gets a bad rep because it takes practice on how to know how much water to use. Once you figure that out and lather on the puck in a mug with a stiff brush you are golden. Its never airy for me or thin, it does not dry on my face either.
Now i admit I used to hate this soap, I was ignorant on how to use it. Now I am wiser.

This leaves me softer and smoother than any other soap plus the shave is ALWAYS closer because of the slip you get under the blade.

This soap is truly a gem and only a dollar plus change.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
5.00 star(s)
Lather
4.00 star(s)
Quality
4.00 star(s)
Efficacy
5.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
5.00 star(s)
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