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Favorite Lather Consistency and Feel

I bought a marble bowl which has a rough texture to the inside. Makes it so that the lather tends to build up as much into the brush as in the bowl. At first I was put off by that…but have since found that it’s a nice midway between face and bowl lathering. A change of pace. And the consistency is pretty easy to manage (I like it just as it’s beginning to peak).
 

AimlessWanderer

Remember to forget me!
The wetter, the better. A thin mix, and a thin application too. Maximum slickness with maximum shave feel/awareness. I am far more interested in the luxurious feel when removing It, than when applying it.

Also, very importantly, minimal air content. I don't want it to look like beaten egg whites, nor whipped cream. It's air that gives it that structure, but that air does absolutely nothing to help the shave. I'd rather have it like non-whipped cream than yoghurt, even if it's a bit runny. In fact, it's not uncommon for the water on a freshly rinsed razor to cause runs down my face and neck.

There's a simple way to know if I've got the lather wet enough, which seems to work with most lathers. I rinse my razor in a mug, and as soon as I dunk the razor (before I "swish" it), if the lather floats on the surface like a mini iceberg, it's not wet enough. When I've got it right, the lather just about holds together on the razor, but collapses instantly on contact with water, and the water in the mug looks more like dirty dish water. There may be some scum and detritus on the surface, but no lather clumps. Clumps means that I either got it too dry, or got too much air in it.
 
I like lather that is wet but not runny and lather that will remain with sufficient water throughout the shave. Lather that looks like it came out of a custard machine does not do it for me.

In fact, over the years I have gotten a number of PMs from new shavers who saw lather photos on B&B and said they could never make lather that looked like that. My advice to them was not how the lather looks but how it performs. For me, that lather must be sufficiently hydrated.
 
Thanks for the post, Sir rally!

TBCH, I can't figure out what is hydrating my top layer or my bottom layer!

I do know that sometimes the lather gets dry and I have to add some water and refresh it.

Otherwise, I just lather and enjoy!!

View attachment 1456321
Have you tried making lather with that same consistency, but no bubbles? Whenever my lather has visible bubbles it usually results in a lackluster shave. Maybe the soaps I use just dont do well as foam. In order to reduce the bubbles, I add water slowly, churn slowly, and sometimes use slow back and forth painting strokes in the bowl instead of fast circular motion.
 
A lot of good notes in this thread, thanks to all who contributed. I'm excited to branch out and try my hand at your preferred lathers to see if my tastes change.

After reading some of the bowl lathering comments on here, I decided to revisit it today after many months. I loaded my brush straight from the soap tub and started my lather off in the bowl. I kept it low structure and did not splay the brush once to avoid introducing unwanted air and volume, and I added roughly 7-10 drops of water from my fingertips every so often when the lather started to increase in volume. I kept it dryer than I normally like so that I could finish off on my face. I squeezed out all the soap from the brush into the bowl, picked up roughly a third back into the brush, and switched between painting and splaying with generous additions of painted water on my face.

This was performance-wise one of the most interesting shaves I've had. Because I didn't have nearly as heavy of lather buildup that I normally get from a pure face lather, I was able to hydrate much more consistently with this "hybrid" lather. An added bonus was that my brush was not dripping wet when I set it down since I didn't need as much water to dial in the hydration due to less soap in the brush. My second and third passes weren't nearly as thin as they normally are either because I had wasted less soap on the first pass.

I'll definitely try this again for a few more shaves to see if I feel like adding this to the mix. Now to try the thin/wet lathers and the thin/dry lathers.
 
A lot of good notes in this thread, thanks to all who contributed. I'm excited to branch out and try my hand at your preferred lathers to see if my tastes change.

After reading some of the bowl lathering comments on here, I decided to revisit it today after many months. I loaded my brush straight from the soap tub and started my lather off in the bowl. I kept it low structure and did not splay the brush once to avoid introducing unwanted air and volume, and I added roughly 7-10 drops of water from my fingertips every so often when the lather started to increase in volume. I kept it dryer than I normally like so that I could finish off on my face. I squeezed out all the soap from the brush into the bowl, picked up roughly a third back into the brush, and switched between painting and splaying with generous additions of painted water on my face.

This was performance-wise one of the most interesting shaves I've had. Because I didn't have nearly as heavy of lather buildup that I normally get from a pure face lather, I was able to hydrate much more consistently with this "hybrid" lather. An added bonus was that my brush was not dripping wet when I set it down since I didn't need as much water to dial in the hydration due to less soap in the brush. My second and third passes weren't nearly as thin as they normally are either because I had wasted less soap on the first pass.

I'll definitely try this again for a few more shaves to see if I feel like adding this to the mix. Now to try the thin/wet lathers and the thin/dry lathers.

And now you know why I like to bowl lather. See, isn't it awesome! I love it when others can help open a new world into things for us to try here at B&B. I was really hoping that you would try out bowl lathering. I hope that you like the experience, it sounds like you do though. And I thank you for delivering your report, I love to read updates on people's shaving journey's. Its in my opinion, that you are doing amazing! :thumbup1:
 
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