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How much lather?!?!

That's usually the first thing that pops into my head, when I see pictures or video of someone knocking up lather in a bowl. Enough to shave an entire street, and thick enough for the razor to stay stood up in, should they happen to let go mid shave.

Conversely, I was just getting my lather ready for tonight's shave, and thought "If most of the folks on B&B saw this, they'd think I was completely mad!!! So, I did the honourable thing, and took a photo :)

This is my brush and bowl, lather built, and ready to go. Not a bowlful, just a brush full. No rich peaks and dense churning yoghurt, just ultra slick skin nourishing goodness.

IMG_20200824_224459.jpg

A few bubbles were visible in the brush, but none on the face. That lather gave me a wonderful three pass shave this evening (whole face and neck, bar the handlebarred goatee), and when I'd finished there was still enough left in the brush for another lap, should I have needed it.

IMG_20200824_224950.jpg

So for those shavers who are still finding their way, and looking to emulate the face meringues of YouTube, be aware that not everyone shaves like that.

After 30 years of DE shaving, I don't want traditional lather that looks like it just came out of an aerosolised can. I just want the razor to glide freely, and let my face feel fantastic afterwards. My non-photogenic lather of barely a brushful, does that perfectly!
 
That's usually the first thing that pops into my head, when I see pictures or video of someone knocking up lather in a bowl. Enough to shave an entire street, and thick enough for the razor to stay stood up in, should they happen to let go mid shave.

Conversely, I was just getting my lather ready for tonight's shave, and thought "If most of the folks on B&B saw this, they'd think I was completely mad!!! So, I did the honourable thing, and took a photo :)

This is my brush and bowl, lather built, and ready to go. Not a bowlful, just a brush full. No rich peaks and dense churning yoghurt, just ultra slick skin nourishing goodness.

View attachment 1144730

A few bubbles were visible in the brush, but none on the face. That lather gave me a wonderful three pass shave this evening (whole face and neck, bar the handlebarred goatee), and when I'd finished there was still enough left in the brush for another lap, should I have needed it.

View attachment 1144731

So for those shavers who are still finding their way, and looking to emulate the face meringues of YouTube, be aware that not everyone shaves like that.

After 30 years of DE shaving, I don't want traditional lather that looks like it just came out of an aerosolised can. I just want the razor to glide freely, and let my face feel fantastic afterwards. My non-photogenic lather of barely a brushful, does that perfectly!
I’m with you. When I finish up, it seems wasteful to wash leftover lather down the drain. When I use TOBS, I usually end up with too much lather because it’s too easy to load to much product into the brush. However, when I use The Fat, I have nothing left in the bowl and almost nothing left in the brush. I’m perfectly happy with that so long as I had enough for a close shave.
 
Back in the day when it was possible for a kid to go down a slide at the playground (now it’s considered too dangerous in many places), we knew that slippery was best. Didn’t need lots of fancy accessories. A sheet of wax paper would put a thin layer on the metal slide and away we went. Slick made the butt go fast. Get rid of the friction and it was smooth sailing down the chute.
Same with shaving. Get the face slick and let the razor slide.
 
That's usually the first thing that pops into my head, when I see pictures or video of someone knocking up lather in a bowl. Enough to shave an entire street, and thick enough for the razor to stay stood up in, should they happen to let go mid shave.

Conversely, I was just getting my lather ready for tonight's shave, and thought "If most of the folks on B&B saw this, they'd think I was completely mad!!! So, I did the honourable thing, and took a photo :)

This is my brush and bowl, lather built, and ready to go. Not a bowlful, just a brush full. No rich peaks and dense churning yoghurt, just ultra slick skin nourishing goodness.

View attachment 1144730

A few bubbles were visible in the brush, but none on the face. That lather gave me a wonderful three pass shave this evening (whole face and neck, bar the handlebarred goatee), and when I'd finished there was still enough left in the brush for another lap, should I have needed it.

View attachment 1144731

So for those shavers who are still finding their way, and looking to emulate the face meringues of YouTube, be aware that not everyone shaves like that.

After 30 years of DE shaving, I don't want traditional lather that looks like it just came out of an aerosolised can. I just want the razor to glide freely, and let my face feel fantastic afterwards. My non-photogenic lather of barely a brushful, does that perfectly!
I might not be that thin, but I definitely don’t build much for three passes. If it’s as deep as my whiskers and slippery, I’m good.

At times it’s translucent, but it still does the job. My straights prefer it a little wet, so it lasts.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
In case there's any confusion, the first photo is before lathering for the first pass, and the second is after the third pass.

I this instance, I used St James of London cream (excellent product). I typically face lather soaps rather than bowl lather, which tends to just be for creams, but using lather of roughly the same density - providing it's slick enough.

Some products (ToBS and Salter creams, and some soaps too) need to be denser in order to be slick enough for me... so I don't use them.
 
I'll be the first to admit that I usually wash too much lather down the drain after I'm done shaving. You've inspired me to use less soap now and cut down on the waste. :thumbsup:
 
I’d say i’m somewhere in the middle. I’m not building lather mountains but i wouldn’t say i’m super sparing either. I generally build on the puck so i just work the lather till i think it’s right and then stop. It’s usually enough that i could do 4 full passes but i only do 2 1/2. I find pucks last around 3-4 months which is plenty long enough in my opinion. But i agree that aiming for slickness over density is the way to go. I think all soaps have a break point where more agitation just adds volume and diminishes slickness. Once i find that point with a soap that’s what i aim for each time.
 
@AimlessWanderer Would you like to say more about your lathering technique? I quite interested, I was o e of those people who make a half of metric ton of lather that has to have peaks like Alps.
I put less than 1ml of cream in the bowl, dipped the brush, and gave it a quick swirl. Just for two or three seconds. It needed a little more water, so I dipped the brush again, and when back to work. It maybe needed 6 - 8 seconds after that. No fancy technique, just less of everything - cream, water, time, and effort. This cream makes it ridiculously easy.

Some products do seem to take a little longer to incorporate, but I don't "work" through that time, just wait. I'll sometimes load the brush, if say for example I'm using Mitchell's that hasn't been used for a while, then return it to the brush stand, bristles down. Then I'll do my prep, check my blade - maybe clean it - then pick up the brush and start to lather, adding water as needed. A bit of time on the stand to let the water and soap incorporate is all it needs, not chasing round a bowl for three minutes. That just fills it full of air. Think of it like "blooming" a soap, but on the brush.

Waiting is a good way to recover an over beaten lather too, when it's bulked up and lost slickness. I discovered that from third pass lather being better than first pass lather. It just needed the elapsed time over the first two passes to settle. Sometimes it can need another little drink if it's lost its shine. On occasion, when I've made a hash of things, I've dumped the brush on the stand and gone to make a coffee. By the time I've come back, it's in a more cooperative mood.
 
Back in the day when it was possible for a kid to go down a slide at the playground (now it’s considered too dangerous in many places), we knew that slippery was best. Didn’t need lots of fancy accessories. A sheet of wax paper would put a thin layer on the metal slide and away we went. Slick made the butt go fast. Get rid of the friction and it was smooth sailing down the chute.
Same with shaving. Get the face slick and let the razor slide.
We used the wax paper some brands of sliced bread came wrapped in. Worked a treat.
 
Well I absolutely agree that slick later is a way to go, and I always aim for best slickness I can get. However my face requires a bit of protectiton and here is where some density comes handy :D
 

JCarr

Contributor
You may generate too much, but it's how much you put on that's important. I wouldn't describe the goal as a "thick" lather, but more of a "rich" consistency. Most shaving videos I watch show the shaver either working up a thick, rich lather in their bowl or on their face, but then...before they shave...they paint their face with it...generally using their brush. This thins out what's on their face and creates a more consistent application overall. So, a rich, slick lather, yes...but painted on...not ridiculously thickly applied in gobs and heaps. Because if you have gobs and heaps on your face...you can't even really see where you're shaving.
 
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