Pertaining to bowls

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Jan 19, 2018
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Newbie question. Previously I have only ever lathered on my face directly off the stick and after joining here have decided on trying a bowl.I have an old mortar bowl (as in mortar and pestle) made from marble that had a chipped base/stand that I cut off,it's 55mm deep,pretty steep sides as it is a mortar after all, and 80mm wide on inside edge at top.

I tested my new brush in it and the lather keeps rising to the top and basically,overflowing. Does this happen with most bowls? Or have I made a newbie mistake using a non suitable vessel?



 

Mark1966

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A 'dedicated' lather bowl or scuttle will have ridges in the bottom to heap in the lather making process. I'd also suggest the marble is just too slippery.

Look at the designs here to understand what I mean - https://www.shavingscuttlesaustralia.com/
 
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Sep 21, 2017
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Newbie question. Previously I have only ever lathered on my face directly off the stick and after joining here have decided on trying a bowl.I have an old mortar bowl (as in mortar and pestle) made from marble that had a chipped base/stand that I cut off,it's 55mm deep,pretty steep sides as it is a mortar after all, and 80mm wide on inside edge at top.

I tested my new brush in it and the lather keeps rising to the top and basically,overflowing. Does this happen with most bowls? Or have I made a newbie mistake using a non suitable vessel?



That might get slippery when it get covered with lather...you wouldn't want that dropped on your toe :nailbiting: The lather will go up the sides of your bowl, scuttle or mug...I just try to push it back in as much as possible. There's a bunch of videos on YouTube that can give you an idea on what its all about -
 

RustyBlade

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@pvsampson to answer your question. Yes it does and will. As you create the lather in the bowl it will want to crawl up the sides. This is a technique thing that you'll get over time where you can make the lather stay where you want it.

As you have noticed most lather bowls are and have ribbed or textured sides or bottoms to aide the production of lather and you can easily do without them but it helps a lot.

That size and shape of the bowl will matter and to you alone as it is a technique, brush size, soap and hand size/handicap thing. However most of the lather bowl designs work the way they are intended.

Basically I think your brush maybe too big for the bowl and shape so your technique is pushing the lather away from where you want it. I too use 'any' bowl as I don't have a dedicated lather bowl and have this problem. So whip it back in and swirl it over kind of technique is used :)
 
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Inside of bowl isn't polished. I think the narrow bottom conical shape forces the lather to rise,and just keeps pushing it up. Just too small internally to be a decent bowl,which is a shame because I like the stone. I will play with it and if I can't get it right then look around and find something to use.
May pay a visit to a monumental mason and see if I can get a decent stone slab then make a bowl myself.
 
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Oct 3, 2015
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Inside of bowl isn't polished. I think the narrow bottom conical shape forces the lather to rise,and just keeps pushing it up. Just too small internally to be a decent bowl,which is a shame because I like the stone. I will play with it and if I can't get it right then look around and find something to use.
May pay a visit to a monumental mason and see if I can get a decent stone slab then make a bowl myself.
What I'd be concerned about when using a mortar bowl, is the sandpaper like finish of the surface (like mine have anyway). The shaving bowls and scuttles I've seen, have ridges and aeration points, but are still a smooth, sealed surface. I'd be concerned that the rough surface might act a bit like sandpaper and hurt the tips of decent brushes.
 
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What I'd be concerned about when using a mortar bowl, is the sandpaper like finish of the surface (like mine have anyway). The shaving bowls and scuttles I've seen, have ridges and aeration points, but are still a smooth, sealed surface. I'd be concerned that the rough surface might act a bit like sandpaper and hurt the tips of decent brushes.
That's a good point.There are sealers available,like a liquid glass but getting ridges/bumps on the bottom would be the difficulty in the grinding process,though I have a wheel I could do it with.
Need to think on it as I will make one.Just a matter of waiting for the right piece of stone to show up.
 

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I have used smooth kitchen bowls (plastic and porcelain) for lathering and they all work. Just don't use anything with a rough surface, as @Korbz rightly mentioned...

But if you have a nice brush, why waste precious face time on a bowl :D :D :D
 
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Went to the big smoke today,well big for us anyway.Had a look around,even have a Shaver Shop but didn't see anything I could justify spending money on,but I bought some styptic liquid just in case I may need it.Even went to an antique store to try and find a decent bowl but the prices he wanted for even a basic pottery job were a bit high. I'll use an old soup cup I have for the time being as the marble is too harsh.Thanks for input everyone.
 
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Jun 18, 2016
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Definitely go for a bowl with a lump in the base at lease
My first bowl was a smooth stone option lathered ok I though,
then a replaced it with a shaving bowl with a lump in the bottom to help it aerate
the lather exploded in comparison to the smooth bowl,
So I can only imagine how much better the bowls with the dots all over the bowl also would work even better again
Agree also but that it must be polished type surface, I like the though of bashing a brush in a bowl with rough gouges etc all through it
 
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Oct 13, 2017
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Perth
Picked up the red dot mug

110mm ID, 70mm high. 500ml capacity. $2

Normally I would face lather if using badger brush and a decent soap, but I used to use a mug like this with boar brushes and old soaps. Lost the old mug so I needed a new one.
(I could lather on the puck of these old dry soaps but one is a small ss bowl, another ceramic and the rest wood - hard to hold, don't want to drop and break and don't want the wood to warp respectively)
A large mug with a handle for grip, something to soak, rest or drain the brush is good enough for me.

E: if lather isn't good enough in a plain bowl/mug you can always finish on your face or in your hand
 
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Oct 13, 2017
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red dot bowl lather #1. I chose the brush you bought, Soap was 3mm off the tip off a la toja shave stick. (anyone that knows shave sticks knows if you face lather off them you end up with a pointy pointy bit. I just chopped a bit off the tip then went to town in the plain mug)

 
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May 1, 2020
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Sydney
I have been on an endless hunt for the "perfect bowl" ever since i first started this wet shaving journey a few months ago! I prefer to bowl lather rather than face lather. There is something therapeutic about seeing the lather gradually "pile up" in the bowl - and for me, it's part of the joy of the wet shaving experience. I originally had the same issue as the OP when i started but with a bit more experience I have started to notice that i seem to have more control now and its not quite as bad as when i first started.

I currently use a "Edwin Jagger" porcelain bowl. It fits in the hand really well and at approx 4cm deep and 9cm inner diameter it's a reasonably good size. It's actually very smooth, except for the big bump in the center. But i always worry about dropping it or accidentally chipping it.

I recently purchased one of those collapsible plastic "doggy bowls" of Aliexpress (approx AUD $3.50 i think) It's the one with all the lumps n bumps at the base of the bowl. One of the YouTube shaving "guru's" sells them as a shaving bowl for aound USD $10 i think - but it's actually a rebadged "doggy food" bowl as found on Aliexpress. My observation is that its actually a perfect size with an internal depth of 5cm and internal diameter of 15cm. Because it's plastic its very light, easy to hold and as i sit it in the wash basin with hot water it keeps the lather nice and warm. I'm not sure if it's the shape of this bowl or just because I'm getting better at the process but in this bowl lather rarely spills out over the top of the bowl. And it whips up the most super dense lather in seconds. I'm sure that's because of the mountainous bumps positioned all around the base of the bowl. And no worries if i drop it, as it's plastic.

It's the one in this link here The lather that this bowl whips up in seconds is amazing!

However, I am a bit concerned that the huge lumps / bumps on the bottom of the bowl will rip up my nice brushes so have become a bit hesitant to use it. Otherwise it's perfect!

Is it a concern that a bowl with features like this can damage the bristles or am i being a bit too precious about the brushes.
 
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