face lathering a cream

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notthesharpest
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Post by notthesharpest » Fri Jun 04, 2010 11:31 pm

95% wrote:I think you folks are over-conceptualizing the matter. You put a dollop of cream - any cream - in a bowl, mix it up with a wet brush for half a minute, and voilà! You've got a good lather. What could be simpler?
... and that's exactly how face lathering works. There is no difference, except for (obviously) the location.

I think a lot of this discussion comes down to preference and/or what one has become used to. While each of us has a method that works best for the individual, I really don't think there's a provable winner in lather quality for everybody. Face lathering uses less gear; bowl lathering wastes fewer skin cells. :)

To any newbie reading this thread with interest: pick whichever side of the debate you like. Use a bowl, or don't, or try them both. Use what works for you. You'll do fine.

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Post by Dale » Fri Jun 04, 2010 11:36 pm

The method I use depends on the brush I use. Either way gives me an excellent lather.
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Dale

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Post by brothers » Sat Jun 05, 2010 12:56 pm

I've done it all different ways, but when using a soap, I'm pretty well settled into loading the brush from the soap and then face-lathering. With creams these days I prefer to use a bowl to make the lather. It seems that there's an awful lot of brush action involved when I'm building my lather, and I'd rather not be having to do that on my face.
Gary

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Post by Flash G » Thu Jun 10, 2010 2:30 am

When I started out I didn't enjoy face lathering. It irritated my face. I stuck to hand lathering in the beginning to get a better feel for the lather before starting with bowls. Later I found that the reason for the redness was the way I used the brush, in scrubbing motions. Swithing to paint strokes solved this and also gaver me better lather. I now mostly lather up soaps with any kind of brush on my face and lather creams in my hand before moving to the face.
Eric

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Post by Gareth » Thu Jun 10, 2010 3:57 pm

Gordon, I've also gone off face-lathering of late and have returned to using a bowl. I find there is much more control in terms of the lathering process, which is good. When I'm away from home, I also do the Trumper 'palm lathering' routing which works like a charm too. I'd highly recommend this to people who can't/won't travel with a suitable bowl.

Gareth

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Post by a-cut-above » Fri Jul 02, 2010 11:06 pm

I feel the same way as Porter, about face lathering. I take a well shaken-out brush, coat the tips lightly with cream (or apply a pea-sized bit from a tube) and face lather. It's rapid, easy to adjust, feels good, and does a good job softening the beard. The one advantage I can think of for bowl lathering is that if you start out with too much water, the mess is contained in the bowl, instead of on your neck, chest, feet.....
Dave

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notthesharpest
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Post by notthesharpest » Fri Jul 02, 2010 11:49 pm

I have been a face latherer for most of the time I've been doing this, and probably that's why I'm missing something - namely, using a bowl gives better control of ... what? Many of those who prefer to use a bowl say it gives better control, but they aren't usually more specific.

When I use an unfamiliar brush or a cream or soap that I've never tried, I (nearly) always get the lather wrong the first time. Maybe I'm a little off the second time as well. But after that everything is fine - and I'm not a fast learner by any means. Now, if I used 365 different brushes every year, or bought a new brand of soap or cream every two days, then admittedly my shaves would be a horrible mess; but in practical terms I use mainly one brush and occasionally a couple of others which I know well enough to make them work. Likewise, I have a favourite few soaps that I stick to; they may all be a bit different but I'm familiar with each one and they work fine as well. I don't find anything that I want to control that I don't control already.
What am I missing?

SiR-ed8

Re: face lathering a cream

Post by SiR-ed8 » Sat Jul 03, 2010 2:36 am

gil3591 wrote:just for the heck of it, the other day i face lathered a cream and was quite impressed with the results. i have always built the lather in my dirty bird scuttle so the lather would be nice and warm. i soaked the brush in hot water, gave it a shake and litely dipped the tips of the brush in the cream. i used about 1/4 to 1/2 of what i usually use. it went on my face warm and was really easy to work into a great lather. i think it was easier to make a good lather in this way than stirring and adding water in the scuttle. so i'm hooked and will use the warm scuttle as a warm resting are for the loaded brush. if you have not tried face lathering a cream i highly recommend it.
Gil,

For the life of me I wish I'd discovered it sooner. Of course I took it upon myself to try it because I remembered my old barber face lathered everytime. Of course he'd already prepped cream via Campbell lather machine with Latherking cream. Only after the fact did I discover Mark ( mantic59's videos ).

Bowl lathering cream almost always proved challenging feat for me. Bow lathering soap not so much. In truth loading the brush with cream or soap and then rotary motion on face makes life so much easier.

I reckon for those wishing to build lather in bowl with soap is fine but with cream doesn't make sense ( at least when I did it ). You're taking so much time doing so when you can be applying that on the face thus saving considerable amount of time. I know wetshaving's supposed to be a ritual you enjoy a shave but there's a difference between being effective and being ineffectual and not enjoying the shave.

After realizing this it made sense to always face lather with cream. After much success with face lathering soap, I continued this tradition. Funny considering I have sensitive skin. Brushes be it boar or badger didn't irritate me at all. Those with tough bristles were painted to and fro style instead of rotary motions. As the latter would be ineffective.

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Post by a-cut-above » Sat Jul 03, 2010 7:27 am

I get "control" by starting with a well shaken "dry" brush and adding water by dipping the tip as I face lather. But preferring one or the other method doesn't make it better. If you like it, do it. If you got the shave you like, you did it right.
Dave

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Post by Squire » Sat Jul 03, 2010 11:33 am

Bowl lathering allows me to control the texture of the lather and is more precise than face lathering as well as faster.
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Squire

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Post by 95% » Sat Jul 03, 2010 11:50 am

Creating lather on the face is a little like mixing an egg on a plate. It can be done, but a bowl makes the mixing process easier. With a bowl, I can get more air into the soap and more soap into the brush, especially if the brush is large.
Porter

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Post by Squire » Sat Jul 03, 2010 12:16 pm

Porter I should have mentioned air as well as the essential purpose of a brush is to mix air with the soap/cream in order to create a lather. The tapered sides and general confines of a bowl/mug allow me to make lather in a more controlled manner than the flat surface of my face.
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Squire

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paddy
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Post by paddy » Sat Jul 03, 2010 12:59 pm

i've been an exclusive face latherer (?) for years. soaps and creams. i find that when lathering in a bowl and then transfering, the lather and shave isn't as slick.

for creams, rather than dip the brush in the cream, i prefer to get a dollop of cream out of the pot with my finger and and then place this directly on the tips of the brush and push the dollop down towards the breach of the brush a little bit, close up the tips of the brush behind it a bit and then go to it.
Bowl lathering allows me to control the texture of the lather and is more precise than face lathering as well as faster
in my experience bowl then transfer is not faster. when you face lather you're both working it into your bristles and creating the lather at the same time. 2 jobs done in 1.
Remember: this is all just wasted time and lives talking nonsense to strangers about pieces of metal, hair and chemical compounds.

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Post by a-cut-above » Sat Jul 03, 2010 1:16 pm

Interesting thread as there are experienced wet shavers on both sides of the argument. I can feel the lather develop as regards to air and water content as I face lather and it is faster for me. The goal is that perfect shave, and the fun shave experience each morning, so whatever works. If newbies are reading, they should try both and see what causes all the stars to line up for their shave.
Dave

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Post by brothers » Sat Jul 03, 2010 3:35 pm

I've been all over the board, and there's no saying I won't keep changing up the way I do it, depending on my mood. As of late, I've been going straight from the tub or tube or soap bar to the face. I've had some great lathers and some great shaves, but!, not so fast, I've lately been observing that it is indeed far too easy to get too much water into the mix, and end up with a crappy lather. I'm going to drop back a few yards and call a play that involves going to the bowl again from time to time, and see how this alters the control I have over the thickness and richness of the lather before it goes on my face.
Gary

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SiR-ed8

Post by SiR-ed8 » Sat Jul 03, 2010 5:31 pm

paddy wrote:i've been an exclusive face latherer (?) for years. soaps and creams. i find that when lathering in a bowl and then transfering, the lather and shave isn't as slick.

for creams, rather than dip the brush in the cream, i prefer to get a dollop of cream out of the pot with my finger and and then place this directly on the tips of the brush and push the dollop down towards the breach of the brush a little bit, close up the tips of the brush behind it a bit and then go to it.
Bowl lathering allows me to control the texture of the lather and is more precise than face lathering as well as faster
in my experience bowl then transfer is not faster. when you face lather you're both working it into your bristles and creating the lather at the same time. 2 jobs done in 1.
That's exactly my point!

After becoming proficient face latherer there's no way I'm going back to bowl lathering cream. Perhaps bowl lather soap when I'm in the mood but most definitely not cream.

I find that the skin's texture help work that soap/cream in your face as you generate lather versus the bowl's surface. The latter you'll eventually produce usable lather but so much time has been wasted ( at least for me ).

Some gents prefer to create lather via palm and that's fine. It's messy but advantage is you can feel the slickness and what not as you create it. To each his own.

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Post by Big Swifty » Sun Jul 04, 2010 8:38 am

Face lathering is the only way to go!
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Post by mikeny278 » Sun Jul 04, 2010 10:05 am

I love face lathering, but my skin gets less irritated when I use a bowl (I just use a cheap, plastic cereal bowl). I like the idea of palm lathering while travelling.

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Post by ThePossum » Sun Jul 04, 2010 1:45 pm

Had to try face lathering with a cream. So this morning I gave it a try.

Used Tabac SC and my Knotty Roddy Chubby 2refurb. The brush has a TGN Sivertip Knot set a bit lower than normal for a bit more density.

WOW! Made some great lather although the last of my 3 passes was a bit sparce on the lather. Need to work it a bit more while making the lather for the first pass on my face.

Had no problem of too much water. Just very carefully dipped the tips of the brush in some hot water in the sink and made the lather. Gonna give it a try tomorrow as well. This time with a brush refurbed with a TGN Grade A Silvertip not set so low.
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Post by a-cut-above » Mon Jul 05, 2010 10:42 am

I remember now why I switched from bowl to face lathering. My whiskers were not staying wet and soft after the shower. The air is dry in Central California and I spent too much time trying to re-wet my whiskers. I was impatient; I wanted to get on with the fun part, playing with my brushes, creams, and razors. Painting the lather on didn't do enough. By face lathering I was working moisture back into the whiskers as I worked up the lather. After a while, I learned to "control" the lather, a central point in this thread. It worked, so I stuck with it.
Dave

"Sanity is a madness put to good use." - George Santayana (…like a wet shaver with an acquisition disorder.)

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