One question we’ve been getting frequently from customers involves one very specific, popular soap: Geo F. Trumper Hard Shaving Soap. It’s a gorgeous, beautifully scented soap from one of England’s oldest barbers and perfumers. However, the puck is known for being stubborn and generally hard to maneuver if you haven’t had experience with it before.
Thankfully, we’re here to help! With the right method, tools, and patience, you can most certainly achieve a thick, luscious lather with this soap – many men already have! We’ve spent time testing and getting feedback from customers who have successfully lathered with Geo F. Trumper, and the resulting method is below.
We’ve also included a primer on why the type of water you’re using makes a BIG difference, and tips for modifying the technique to suit your needs.
We hope you find this helpful, and we welcome any further suggestions not mentioned here!
Here is a well-tested method we’ve gotten from customers:
Soak the puck in water (preferably hot) for at least 10 minutes prior to shaving. Then, dump the excess water from the puck and begin loading in your shaving bowl. From there, it may take anywhere from 40 – 60 seconds to a couple of minutes to create enough lather. Keep in mind that how successful you are at creating lather also depends on the type of shaving brush you’re using and whether you’re working with hard water or soft water (more on that below).
During this lathering process, add small amounts of water as needed. How much water you need to add will vary on a case-by-case basis. We suggest adding small drops of water until you reach a satisfying amount of lather.
Things to remember
- The Geo F. Trumper Soap is a hard soap that can be stubborn, so be persistent and patient when loading. Don’t worry if you feel like you’re lathering for quite a while – this soap can take the beating.
- If the methods mentioned above are still not working for you, dip the brush in hot water and run it in a circulation motion over the soap.
- Apply pressure to the soap when building lather, but not too much pressure. Doing so can pack the soap into your brush too densely, preventing it from getting on your face.
- Try the above method with a wet brush and then a dry brush to see which works better for you.
A quick lesson on hard water vs. soft water
Hard water is water with high mineral content. When you’re trying to lather a shaving soap using hard water, you’ll notice it’s hard to produce lather. That’s due to the minerals in the water reacting with the soap. You’ll really only see these detrimental hard water effects when you’re working with a soap, however, since shaving creams already contain water and thus lather much more easily.
The ideal water for lathering is distilled water, which is soft water not keeping minerals in solution. You need far less soft water to achieve substantial lather.
To learn more about the type of water you’re using and how it’s affecting your shave, check out our post on Hard Water and Insufficient Lather.