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Thread: Creating the perfect lather

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    Senior Member S0LITARYS0LDIER's Avatar
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    Default Creating the perfect lather

    Gentlemen my lather's have been hit and miss sometimes they will stay frothy and on my face the whole shave. Then there are the times when I have to re-lather it seems every 5 minutes as the lather disappears before I can get to that side of the face. I'd like some tips on making the perfect lather. Any suggestions welcome.

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    Senior Member blabbermouth Haroldg48's Avatar
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    Try face lathering with a good cream. I rub some on my very wet face with my fingers first and massage it around and in, then begin to lather on my face with a damp brush, which I add water to a little at a time. I really work it until I can see the lather shining. It doesn't have to be whipped into a thick froth, just well distributed and worked in with just the right amount of water (which is an experiment every time). Enough usually stays in the brush to do a second pass and some touch ups.

    PS -- I use cold water too, cuts the irritation and feels good
    Last edited by Haroldg48; 08-27-2014 at 09:44 PM.
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    Sinner Saved by Grace Datsots's Avatar
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    This is more a tip on how to learn to make the perfect lather.

    Go buy a cheap but good soap, such as arko or williams mug soap. Proceed to make a lather and after evaluating it just rinse it down the drain. Repeat several times per day until you can make lather consistently.

    Jonathan
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    At this point in time... gssixgun's Avatar
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    I second what Jon just posted, Practice makes perfect..

    There was a time on this forum where we used to tell newbs to buy a puck of Williams and practice making lather until that puck was gone, you should have it down by then.. If you can get Willimas to lather well everything else should be easy

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    Senior Member criswilson10's Avatar
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    If your lather is disappearing, then you probably haven't added enough water to it. So add more water, it's worth the time to see just how much water you can add to lather before it collapses.
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    Senior Member kwlfca's Avatar
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    Sounds like too much water to me. MWF does this to me sometimes.

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    Senior Member JTmke's Avatar
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    Some lathers need more work. There is no button to push to get great lather. Keep the brush moving. If you need, add a few drops of water or pass your brush quickly under the tap and move the brush some more. Make sure you had a good amount of soap or cream before the bowl or face and then add water and keep the brush moving
    "The best way to have a good idea is to have a lot of ideas." -Linus Pauling

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    The Assyrian Obie's Avatar
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    Gentlemen,

    I gently shake and squeeze the brush knot to eliminate most of the water, then load it heavily. Whether using soap or cream, I then lather on my face, adjusting the water ratio until satisfied. From the beginning, this process felt natural to me, whether face lathering or bowl lathering, and I never saw the need to use the practice routine as noted. I still do not subscribe to that. Understandably, different soaps and creams have distinct characteristics, of which I am mindful, but the basics of lathering remain the same for me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JTmke View Post
    There is no button to push to get great lather.

    I beg to differ.

    Gents, I give you the Campbell Lather Machine:

    From the product description:
    "Shaving is so easy, with push-button instant flow of thick, hot, aerated, super-wet lather. Supplies two barbers all day. Completely enclosed universal motor protected from rust and corrosion. Famous Campbell stainless steel valve and extra large soap cup - easy to fill - trouble-free service. Waterproof heater. Colorful, high-impact, shock-proof."


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    Last edited by beluga; 08-29-2014 at 02:46 PM.
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    FWIW, I would start with a large coffee (e.g. cappuccino) mug and good, inexpensive (Nivea, some swear by Proraso) cream in the tube.

    - Squeeze a dollop* of cream into the mug and start soaking the wet but not dripping brush with cream.
    - If the brush doesn't take enough cream, add a small amount of water.
    - The brush should absorb most of the cream but it's o.k. to have some cream left in the mug, you pick that cream up later when you dip the brush in the mug for the second and third pass.
    - Add some more water to the brush and start face lathering.
    - If you don't get enough lather add a small amount of water.
    - Dip the brush into the mug as needed to pick up the remaining cream for subsequent passes.

    The trick is to increase the amount of water by small amounts until you strike the right balance between water and cream.
    This works for creams and soaps, but it is generally accepted that with creams it is easier to get it right.
    And what matters here is that you become familiar with the principle, so you might as well stick to creams in the beginning.

    Also water quality is often overlooked, and I just came from a part of the country where the water is extremely soft and I barely could wash the soap off my face, to a part of a country where the water is of normal hardness. The difference in lather is noticeable.
    * Water quality largely dictates how much cream you need to squeeze into the mug at the start.

    It's all trial and error; and remember the whole DE or straight razor wet-shaving thing is based on the assumption that you can't expect perfect results right from the start and need constant practice to reach the perfect shave.



    One last comment: Someone suggested Williams soap.
    Williams is a love or hate affair and IMHO it is not easy to get a good, long-lasting lather from Williams (I am sure some Williams lover will contradict me; hence the "IMHO"). Williams seems to be particular dependent on the right water/soap ratio and that is exactly where you appear to be struggling with.
    If you want to taste the sweet fruit of success earlier, stick to creams like Nivea, Proraso and the like.

    Some people may even suggest that for that very reason you should start with Williams. "If you can lather with Williams you can pretty much lather with anything."
    If that concept was true, driving schools would all have Ferraris, wouldn't they?
    "If you can drive a Ferrari, you can drive a Civic, no?"



    B.
    Last edited by beluga; 08-29-2014 at 02:57 PM.

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