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Soaps Vs Creams and aftershave things


Well-Known Member
Hey all, thought id start a brief discussion about soaps and creams - would like your input on what you prefer.

Im new to straight shaving and use mitchells wool fat soap with silvertip brush - love it!

I was in london the other week (jermyn street has Geo f Trumper and Taylor of old bond street - fantastic shops), and I bought some taylor of old bond street lemon and lime shaving cream.

It smells great and is refreshing, but allthough its very (bad use of word) creamy, and gets good coverage on the face, i found that it was nowhere near as good at lubricating and moisturising the face as the mitchells soap.

What do you guys think? Prefer the soaps or the creams? What scents, brands etc.

I also bought some Geo F Trumper limes skin food - i love the scent, fresh and zesty - infact i'm planning on getting some limes aftershave too when i have the cash!

(also looking forward to the arrival of my first coti before xmas - fresh from ardennes :)


I think most people don't care for creams, but I'm biased because the only cream I have ever used is TOBS Avacado. I like creams because they are really easy to use. Just stick yer finger in there and scoop up some of that creaming goodness and wipe it on your brush. That said, I think Avacado is regarded as one of the best creams out there. I'm really pleased with it, I don't feel like I need to try anymore creams.

As for soaps, I've only tried DR HARRIS. I find the lather to be really rich, and creamy. It provides a magnificent shaves. The scent is toned down a bit, which I didn't like at first, but now I find to be rather pleasant, since I find my Avacado to be a little overpowering at times. I don't really care for the part where your actually have to get the soap off the puck. My badger brush works just fine, but I think a boar would make it easier.

What I'm really looking forward to trying is some of the Italian soap (it falls under many names, particularly Cella). I'm thinking it might be the end-all soap for me. Super cheap, soft, good lather, etc.. I also want to check out La Toja.

Definitely check out TOBS Avacado, and DR Harris. I've been very pleased with both.

I actually prefer creams, I use palmolive, erasmic, ingram and, tobs in lemon and lime, the secret for me is to add a squirt of glycerine, especially to the tobs, it stops the lather from drying too quickly, and helps with the glide.

I also use soaps, Kent luxury is my fave stand alone (almost the same as mitchells wool fat apparently?) I also use palmolive, erasmic, and I have some wilkinson sword blue that I keep meaning to try.

But my preferred lather is uberlather, I always always make my lather in a bowl, and its no big deal to mix a little soap with the cream, a squirt of glycerine and whip it up. I use same brand cream and soap a lot of the time, but also mix it up a bit, one I do seem to use again and again is the tobs lemon and lime cream with kent luxury soap, I found that choosing creams and soaps that compliment each other works well, e.g. the tobs lacks glide and the kent soap adds that to the mix, whereas the kent is not overly creamy but the tobs is, ingram on its own has good properties but its menthol is a little harsh for me, so a mix with palmolive cools it nicely etc etc.

And best of all, apart from the tobs they all cost very little too, I pay £1 for the erasmic cream, and a shave stick is less than that, so I dont have to break the bank in order to try a few different soaps and creams
I came home from work Monday, and as usual, stopped the car at the end of the drive, put it in park and started to get out to fetch the mail from the mail box. Something caught the corner of my eye though. A back and forth movement on the neighbors porch, oh great, a new dog moving like it had just drunk several beers and needed to get rid of the excess.
I opened the door, got out and headed to the mail box door open radio blasting same as usual. When I made it to the mailbox it hit me. I stepped in some dog crap. Damn, must have been one of those people who like to walk their dog late at night or early in the morning so they don’t have to remove its mess. I picked up my left foot and checked the bottom of my shoe, it was clean. I did the same with the right, nothing. The smell was still there and I checked both again, nothing.
I looked over towards that new dog and our eyes locked. The dog stopped moving, her eyes were staring and no tong was out and her tail was stopped. There it was, I could read her mind – Yep that’s me, might as well get use to it, this is my territory now so up yours.
I suddenly had to shake my head from side to side to get my senses back. I broke eye contact with the dog and opened the mail box. I reached in and there were 4 packages and some advertising from JC Penney and LL Bean. The packages looked like razors being sent for honing. I walked back to the car, got in, closed the door, hit the garage button and drove back into the garage.
When I got out of the car, a vw bug, I popped the truck and walked to the back with my packages. Damn….I could smell that dog crap again. I re-checked my shoes, grabbed my computer and coat and went into the house.
I put the packages and mail on the kitchen island, gave the wife a peck on the cheek and started telling her the story. She picked up the mail and suddenly, her arm went straight out with one package in her hand between two fingers, her other index finger and thumb squeezing her nose and said “this smells like dog shit”. I grabbed the package and said, “Maybe someone was mad at me and sent me a box of crap”. She smiled and said “maybe you better open it and see what it is”.
I cut the end open and slowly poured the contents out. 5 bars of soap I had ordered from Classic Shaving rolled out on the counter. 4 bars were for my scuttle, 2 Sandalwood and 2 Vanilla, and 1 large bar was for my mug, Sandalwood. After sniffing each one, the large bar was the culprit. I took them all into the bathroom and laid them out on the counter. Changed my cloths and came back later.
I checked the bar about 1hr later and it smelled like Sandalwood and the others were ok too. I couldn’t help but think about the mail lady who had to drive around most of the day with that box in her car delivering mail, all curb delivery here in AZ.
I put the scuttle bars away and took the big bar and my mug into the kitchen, laid out a piece of wax paper and got out the cheese grater. I then cleaned the small amount of Mitchell’s wool fat from my mug and wiped it clean. Then I grated the Sandalwood bar into a pile and poured it into the mug. I folded the wax paper and used it to press the shredded soap into the bottom with a bowl like shape. This eliminates the possibility of any water working under the soap and wasting it.
Later on it was time to try the soap. I would usually put in a dollop of Trufitt and Hill unscented cream once a week to make a really thick lather. This time, however, I wanted to see how this relatively inexpensive soap worked on its own. I was absolutely taken aback by the rich creamy lather that was produced. Applying it to my properly prepped face was an enjoyment. It was much the same as the Fat + cream, only maybe a little thicker. This soap provided an enormous amount of lubrication and the fragrance was much better than the experience in the driveway.
If you get the chance to try this the $6 is a great investment.
Thought you might enjoy the whole story.

Great little story Ray:)
While reading the first part, I though you were going to advocate the use of dog crap on top of our whetstones, for improved sharpness and better draw.:D
I could never imagine you'd eventually talk us into lathering it.:lol:
Have you considered that one of the employees of the soap factory might have had a bad day and wanted to get even with his dog-mannered boss by adding crap to the recipe.:scared:

(I just love to read such novel-like posts)