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How to make great lather from a soap ~ Tutorial

Mods, if this should be moved then please do.

I've never been displeased with the shaves I've gotten from my Fusion razor. It's never given me any discomfort and always left me with a smooth face. I've been using shaving soap and a brush for a couple of months now. After reading this tutorial I realized I was not creating a proper lather for shaving, but even with that, my shaves with the fusion were still very good.

I didn't need to switch razors for any reason other than I wanted to shave with a cool DE razor. So, I've used my new DE razor twice now and it's left my neck very sore. I've always had to reapply my lather several times throughout a shave because it seems to dissappear in 30 or 40 seconds, and after reapplying it, it seems to be a dryer shave for the remainder of the shave. With the fusion this wasn't a big deal, but with the DE it IS a big deal. If I can't get a good lather, then I won't use the DE anymore.

Sorry for the long post but here's my question(s). I have Ogallala soap, and a boar brush that I was told was badger, (I now know that it is not), and I try to make lather in a bowl. I get what I think is a good lather but like I said, it vanishes rather quickly. Since I'm having such a hard time creating a good lather with soap, would I be better off using a container of the cream instead of the soap? Or should I be using glycerin? Or is the cheap boar brush a possible cause? Or have some of you found that Ogallala soap is difficult to create lather with?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Chris
 
Ogallala makes only two soaps, both bay rum scented, of course. One is a shaving soap, the other is a bath soap. From your description, you are trying to shave with a bath soap. Really tough to do. :eek:
While you're trying to order some shaving soap, run out to a Whole Foods store and pick up some Kiss My Face shaving cream. Creams are probably easier to get a decent lather with by a beginner, anyway.
 
fritz, thanks for the reply. The Ogallala is Bay Rum and it is shaving soap, (or atleast that's what the box said).

I was thinking the cream may be easier to get going as well. I'll give the kiss my face a shot.
 
I tried this method this afternoon (working from home rocks :wink: ) and everyone who posted here is correct: it does indeed produce mounds and mounds of dense lather...much more luxurious and voluminous than the thin stuff I was getting before. However, I ended up dumping at least half of that gorgeous lather down the sink when I was done with the shave. So yes, I do end up with three times the lather, but I am taking three times as long and using three times as much soap as well, only to see at least half of that product and effort get rinsed down the drain.

I think I will stick to my usual method of using a wet brush, giving a dry puck of soap a few swirls until I see bubbles, and then face-lathering for my everyday shaves because it saves time, effort, and product, and on those days when I can afford the time to pamper myself a little bit I will use this method to do so.

If nothing else, it definitely proved to me that I can get a lather from a soap that is every bit as great as what I can get from a cream, and that is high praise coming from a former 100% cream guy. Great job on the tutorial!
 
ok i received a shaving soap made bt d.r. harris on friday and as soon as i got home i hit the bathroom with lather on my mind. it worked great! which tells me the ogallala soap i was using was the culpret. i'm stoked now.
 
ok i received a shaving soap made bt d.r. harris on friday and as soon as i got home i hit the bathroom with lather on my mind. it worked great! which tells me the ogallala soap i was using was the culpret. i'm stoked now.
If the box said shaving soap then they just got the wrong stuff in the box. I've used Ogallala shaving soap before and it lathers great. The symptoms you described really are exactly what I would expect from bath soap. If you drop John Marquis an email at [email protected] I'm sure he will replace it. You can use the one you have in the shower.:cool:
But in any case you're back on track now.:thumbup1:
 

Jim

Moderator
ok i received a shaving soap made bt d.r. harris on friday and as soon as i got home i hit the bathroom with lather on my mind. it worked great! which tells me the ogallala soap i was using was the culpret. i'm stoked now.
I'm glad to hear that you enjoyed the lather and your shave! Keep us posted.
 
Ahhh crap! :mad:

No one ever told me about a lather bowl when I was buying all this DE wet shaving stuff. ***-over? So I need another bowl now huh? Any other suggestions for the dumb new guy?

I have a Merkur 23c now. I brush and stand from Crabtree & Evelyn soap and bowl from Ogallala bay rum. Anything els I need to do this the right way?

:confused1
 
Goose, I've just noticed that Vintage Blades is carrying the same bowl that you use in this tutorial. Since you've actually used the bowl, and I assume use it pretty much everyday. Do you feel the ridges around the bottom of the bowl help with producing lather or have no affect? My lather bowl is BBS and I was wondering if a bowl like this would help with lathering.

Thanks in advance for your thoughts,

Chris
 
Ahhh crap! :mad:

No one ever told me about a lather bowl when I was buying all this DE wet shaving stuff. ***-over? So I need another bowl now huh? Any other suggestions for the dumb new guy?

I have a Merkur 23c now. I brush and stand from Crabtree & Evelyn soap and bowl from Ogallala bay rum. Anything els I need to do this the right way?

:confused1
Just use a large mug or bowl.

I currently use a bowl like this:



Also, some people don't use a mug or bowl. They build a lather in their hand or on their face.
 
Ahhh crap! :mad:

No one ever told me about a lather bowl when I was buying all this DE wet shaving stuff. ***-over? So I need another bowl now huh? Any other suggestions for the dumb new guy?

I have a Merkur 23c now. I brush and stand from Crabtree & Evelyn soap and bowl from Ogallala bay rum. Anything els I need to do this the right way?

:confused1
Not to worry. Most of what you read around here is tweaking and peaking. For well over twenty years I made lather in my Old Spice mug right on top of the soap. In fact I still do most days, because I don't like messing around with another bowl or mug.

Many of us are a little fanatical about getting the perfect shave and that also translates into getting the most out of the stuff we use. I'm a firm believer in keeping it cheap and simple. All a guy really needs is one brush, one razor and one mug. However, I do spend a fair amount on high quality soaps and creams, because that's where the fun is.
 

Jim

Moderator
Not to worry. Most of what you read around here is tweaking and peaking. For well over twenty years I made lather in my Old Spice mug right on top of the soap. In fact I still do most days, because I don't like messing around with another bowl or mug.

Many of us are a little fanatical about getting the perfect shave and that also translates into getting the most out of the stuff we use. I'm a firm believer in keeping it cheap and simple. All a guy really needs is one brush, one razor and one mug. However, I do spend a fair amount on high quality soaps and creams, because that's where the fun is.

I agree with Dennis-necessary No! a pleasure to use and enjoy? YES.

I used a cereal bowl and a coffee cup for 30 years with no problem.
 
I agree with Dennis-necessary No! a pleasure to use and enjoy? YES.

I used a cereal bowl and a coffee cup for 30 years with no problem.
Yep. My lather "bowl" is a big thrift store soup mug that from a thread a while back I understand originally came from some high class kitchen store. The important thing is to find something that works for you.

Gene.
 
This should help me with my Mama Bear soap I bought but was having trouble with. I was attempting to get the full lather there in the soap container and then transfer that into my bowl. Didn't know about the loading the brush part!

You can also use these soup type bowls that have a lid, they're ceramic, with vertical sides and aren't completely open on top. They have a lip all the way around that goes towards the center (hard to describe... I find that this keeps all the lather inside the bowl, whereas with something like a cereal bowl, if you're swirlin' too hard, the lather can and does fly right up and out the sides of the bowl!
 
I shaved with a soap today for the first time, and, being the dunce that I am, didn't know you load the brush up and move to a bowl to lather. I lathered up right on the soap.... The shave was good and the soap was just Williams, so if it messed anything up, I'm not out very much money. I spent forever trying to find the right way to make a lather with a soap, and this thread was right under my nose! If it was a snake, it woulda bit me!

Glad I found this, and even gladder that it was posted. Now I'll know the tricks for when I get my Mama Bear soap. Still need to decide what kinds to order, though....
 
Okay, I just made a lather the right way (this way) just for the halibut, and WOW! I showed both my roommates. My mug was behaving like the washer machine in that one Brady Bunch episode where Bobby tries to do laundry (but without the big bubbles)! Probably had enough lather for an army. An army of sasquatches!

Then I washed it down the drain. With Williams, you can afford to lather for fun.
 
Okay, I just made a lather the right way (this way) just for the halibut, and WOW! I showed both my roommates. My mug was behaving like the washer machine in that one Brady Bunch episode where Bobby tries to do laundry (but without the big bubbles)! Probably had enough lather for an army. An army of sasquatches!

Then I washed it down the drain. With Williams, you can afford to lather for fun.
How insane did your roommates think you were?:302:
 

Jim

Moderator
I can remember when I got my first really great lather from a quality soap, I was so excited and so mad at the same time, mad that I had wasted those decades on garbage shaving products,delighted with the luxury of my shave.
Enjoy your success!:thumbup:
 
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