If you are a fan of wet shaving, or you are thinking of becoming one – join the ever-growing club! The retro craze for wet shaving with straight razors or safety razors is not just a cool fashion thing, but has some reasonable logic behind it. This includes – the high quality close shaving experience, the lowered skin irritation from shaving as well as the much lower price of using a safe or straight razor as compared to using the disposable cartilage ones.
So, now that you have moved on to wet shaving, you may be wondering whether to get yourself some nice shaving cream or shaving soap to make the shaving experience as perfect as possible. There are pros and cons of using either one of them.
Head to head comparison: shaving cream vs soap
Unlike the popular aerosol or gel shaving creams available in nearly every store, the real classic shaving creams made for traditional wet shaving from reputable producers are soft and easy to lather, which makes the shaving experience less irritating for the skin, and much more soothing than using the inexpensive and in some cases harmful aerosols and gels.
The best known high-quality shaving creams for traditional wet shaving can be used with all kinds of shaving brushes and even without one. Just a drop or two is necessary to make a sufficient lather for a nice smooth and close shave. The good quality shaving cream offers extra moisturizing for the skin, and provides a safe and sufficient “barrier” between the blade and the skin during shaving due to the high content of glycerin in these products. This helps smoothen the glide of the razor and reduces the risks of cuts and nicks during shaving. In general, shaving cream is easier to use and takes little or no getting used to, unlike using shaving soap which takes some getting used to.
Also, with traditional artisan shaving creams, the ingredients are mostly natural, including various essential oils, butters, aloe vera and other healthy ingredients which can help soothe the skin.
Good quality shaving creams for traditional wet shaving tend to be on the high-end in regard to pricing. The average price is 15-35 dollars per unit, which can last for a couple of months if used daily. Also, the majority of the leading shaving creams are quite heavily scented, which can make them unsuitable for people with sensitive skin, smell or allergies.
Shaving soap for traditional wet shaving can make sufficient soft lather for a nice and smooth shaving experience. They usually have a milder scenting, which makes them perfect for people who have sensitive skin or allergies, or who simply don’t like the strong smell of some of the shaving creams. In general, when you get the hand of it, shaving soaps can provide even better and softer and cushioned lather than that made from shaving cream, which allows for a smoother glide and a safer close shave, especially when using a straight razor.
Shaving soaps have quite a wide price range with some starting at 5 dollars and reaching up to the hard-milled soaps which can cost about 30-40 dollars per piece. The good news is that the more expensive ones come with nice looking wooden bowls and have better smells which makes them so cool to have and use. One puck can last up to three months of daily use.
The problem which some newbies to traditional wet shaving have with shaving soaps is that they cannot get that perfect lather as easily as when using shaving cream. Some shaving soaps are quite hard, which requires more effort and some technique to be used with the shaving brush, so that proper lather is made.
Also, some people who have dry skin could find that the shaving experience with certain shaving soaps is not so satisfying, so it may take some time to find the most suitable shaving soap for each type of razor, skin type and hair coarseness.
So, shave soap or shave cream? It’s up to you now! Pick your poison, sir!