Shaving soap is all about the lather. Allow me to relate a story of a recent impromptu experiment I performed. A closed Facebook group I am a member of, had a tongue in cheek “Sh%tty SOTD” (SOTD = Shot Of The Day: Post a pic of your gear that you used that day) contest.
As part of my entry in the contest I submitted a photo that included a really poorly made, cheap as cheap can be, boar bristle shaving brush. The brush heralds from my very first wet shaving attempt. “Attempt” is a polite way to say “disaster”. I had a hard puck of god only knows what kind of soap, the el cheapo brush and a new straight razor, all courtesy of ebay and my ignorance.
That was five years ago. The puck and razor are long gone, but this lonely boar brush has been sitting in the back of my medicine cabinet all this time.
What the heck I thought. I've got great soap, a good razor and I know what I'm doing. How bad can it be after all? With the right technique and a little patience even a bad brush can produce good lather, right?
WRONG! To be fair, it did produce lather. I used a Cooper & French soap, which should produce a great lather normally. With this brush the lather was difficult to work with and a chore to apply evenly. To top it all off, the brush shed hair like crazy, which as I recall, it did when it was new. After five minutes of working with it I started shaving.
It was by far the most irritating pass I have had in quite awhile. So much so, that after the first pass I unceremoniously tossed the old boar brush in the trash and grabbed my trusty synthetic. I re-lathered and could immediately see and feel the difference. Pass number two was as smooth as silk. The only variable that changed was the brush!
The takeaway here is this: If you are having trouble with your lather, it may not be your soap or your technique. It may quite possibly be your brush.
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