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Bowl lathering vs Face lathering

I have mostly been doing face lathering since I started wet shaving. It works very well because I can control the consistency while building the lather to the perfect finish.

But with bowl lathering, it's different. I can make a perfect lather in the bowl, but the lather changes completely when I start face lathering. I have tried two methods.

1. I paint the lather on my face with a little pressure on the brush, but the lather can't get through or between the beard growth ( two days growth)
2. I put more pressure on the brush in circles, but then the consistency changes completely, which means that the perfect lather I built in the bowl is wasted. I don't know what else to do.

What are your experiences?
 

Alacrity59

Wanting for wisdom
Moderator Emeritus
Unlike yours . . . you might not have perfect lather in the bowl. I mostly paint on.

What are you using? Any chance of a picture of your lather?
 

Avi

Contributor
I had that same take... I called it "cartoonishly" good lather but its not enjoyable to use on the face, My only hypothesis is I might purposely like slight under lathering and the reason for that might be the residual soap/cream left on the face is an accidental awesome preshave?
 

Alacrity59

Wanting for wisdom
Moderator Emeritus
That is very good lather. It might be a issue of how much time the lather is on your face. Perhaps try Kyle's prep. I'm not quite as obsessive but really the idea is to let moisture get into your whiskers so that your razor can more easily cut them.

Link here

Also Ackvil mentions Noxzema in that thread. That to me feels so so nice.
 
If you're getting good face lathers, why bother with the added step and bother of a bowl?
I could use one type of razor, one blade and one soap that works just fine. I could also stick to face lathering but this has become a hobby for me where I also enjoy exploring parts that do not work.

That is one of the reasons why I visit this forum, to share and read about good and bad experiences from members with the same interest.

Face lathering is something that works perfectly for me, and it's something I'm going to do most of the time but still I think it would have been fun to manage bowl laterhing.
 
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What a remarkable problem. I can only imagine two things that might cause this problem:

1. Lather is too dry - but it sure doesn't look too dry.
2. You're trying to apply the lather to a dry face.
 

JCarr

Contributor
Contributor
Lather looks good...rich, thick, creamy. It looks protective. I use OPR soap as a pre-shave. It's loaded with a number of oils/lubricants. I put that on, no building of lather for it...just slap it on, and then I put the soap over top of it. End result is super-slickness. Doing this has helped me with a trouble spot, irritation on my lower neck. I bowl lather and apply/paint my face/neck from the bowl.
 
What a remarkable problem. I can only imagine two things that might cause this problem:

1. Lather is too dry - but it sure doesn't look too dry.
2. You're trying to apply the lather to a dry face.
I don't know exactly how to explain it but when I put the soap on my face it feels like it is on top of the beard growth as a layer, it feels like the soap does not stick to the skin. And if I continue to massage with the brush that already has the right consistency of lather from the bowl then it changes to a thicker or drier lather

One theory might be that it is much easier for me with face lathering because the beard growth is so dense that it gives more resistance as the lather explodes to the right consistency?
Maybe i should try as it was mentioned earlier in the thread to build up an underloaded lather in the bowl
 

BigJ

Ambassador
Interesting discussion!!

I prefer to face-lather and go for more slickness and ‘sheen’ (higher water content). The process of building lather on my face also assures that my beard is well-hydrated.

BUT I love bowl lather photos with that thick ’yogurt!’

Unfortunately, that just does not work as well for me as slick lather that I build on my face! :a29:
 
Maybe it's just me, but I find that even with a less "cartoonish" lather, if I face lather, I can still get a very good shave. My guess is that it has more to do with the viscosity of the soap/cream/lather rather than how much air has been pumped into it from the brushwork. One of the reasons I face lather is that even if I get a great lather in the bowl, if I just paint it on, it does not protect as much as working up a lather with less volume from face lathering
 
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Lather looks good...rich, thick, creamy. It looks protective. I use OPR soap as a pre-shave. It's loaded with a number of oils/lubricants. I put that on, no building of lather for it...just slap it on, and then I put the soap over top of it. End result is super-slickness. Doing this has helped me with a trouble spot, irritation on my lower neck. I bowl lather and apply/paint my face/neck from the bowl.
I will try, thanks for the tip. Do you use the soap continuously or do you vary on brands?
 
I prefer to face-lather and go for more slickness and ‘sheen’ (higher water content). The process of building lather on my face also assures that my beard is well-hydrated.

BUT I love bowl lather photos with that thick ’yogurt!’
Good to know that it works for you. This is exactly what I don't get with bowl lathering. I get a yogurt lather when I build in the bowl but after applying on the face it changes
 
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