Okay, so you’ve gathered all the different items you need for your first shaving kit – the safety razor, a good shaving brush, decent shaving soap or cream – but you may be forgetting one thing. The mug! “Now why the hell do I need a special mug to put my shaving cream in?” you may be asking me.
“Why can’t I just use this little plastic cup with the California Raisins on it that I got at a garage sale?”
Now, that cup sounds awesome, and I applaud you for finding such a good deal, but there’s a lot more to a shaving mug than just having a cuplike shape.
The materials, design, shape and size, among other things, are absolutely vital to creating an effective lather, and you also want that sense of style that comes with having a classy shaving kit.
Luckily, we’ve got a good guide for you to find some of the best shaving mugs out there; we’re positive you’ll not only have a better time shaving with them, but you’ll also love just looking at them. They’re so pretty!
Shaving Mug 101
We will get into some of the great shave mugs out there for you in just a few minutes, but first, we want to tell you how to use and care for them.
Take a few minutes to read along with us and we’ll reward you with our reviews of some shaving mugs after!
How to Use a Shaving Mug
The very first thing you will need to do when using your new shaving mug is to get your shaving brush nice and wet by running it under some super hot water.
Once you’ve sufficiently saturated your brush, just set it aside on the counter so that you can use it later.
Grab your shaving cream or shaving soap now. If you are using shaving cream, dispense about a quarter-sized amount at the bottom of your shaving mug.
The same process can be applied for those of you that are using shaving soap as well. You only need about a little bit of soap or cream to go a long way.
Reach for your wet shaving brush again because now is the time to use it. Stick the brush towards the bottom of your mug and allow the tips of the brush to touch the top of the shaving cream or soap.
Start whisking the shaving cream or soap just like you would eggs in a mixing bowl in the kitchen. We know that the space at the bottom of a shaving mug is much smaller than that of a mixing bowl, but we know you can produce the right amount of lather with a bit of wrist action.
You’ll need to whisk the shaving cream or soap for about a minute or until you’ve got a good amount of foamy goodness in your shaving mug.
If you feel like you need a bit more of a lather, no worries, just add a bit of water and get whisking again. You can use your shaving brush to remove the shaving cream from your mug and slap it on your face.
How to Care for Your Shaving Mug
Now that you know how to use your shaving mug, we figured that you’d probably like to know how to care for it to ensure that it lasts you a long time. Keep reading along to find out what you need to do!
Once you have used all of the lather that you worked so hard for, you will need to rinse out your mug.
Make sure that you give it a really thorough rinse and remove all of the dried shaving soap or cream that is hanging out in the mug.
You don’t want any of that stuff mixing up with your new lather each day.
Grab a moist washcloth and wipe your mug down, paying close attention to all of the nooks and crannies. There may be an extra bit of residue built up where the soap puck was, so make sure that you get that area nice and clean too.
Once your shaving mug is nice and clean you can hang it upside down or set it on a towel to dry.
Once your mug is totally dry you can place your shaving soap back in it for safekeeping. It’s a good idea to place you shaving mug into a safe place like a cabinet or special drawer too.
Tucking it away will keep dust from settling into it or on the soap. This will also keep it from getting broken, which is super likely if you have a clumsy lady friend, kids or nosey pets around.
1. Edwin Jagger Porcelain Shaving Soap Bowl With Handle
This one is a beauty – it’s made of a sleek black resin, with the classy Edwin Jagger logo painted on the side and very subtle ridging on the very tops and bottoms of the mug itself. It’s got a nice, wide rim so you can have plenty of room to work the brush, scrape and what have you.
This shaving mug, in particular, is awesome for wet shaving, since it’s got a little ball grip on the side you can use to hold it up as you work the soap around the inside of the mug.
As opposed to the little ring you get around your coffee mug, this ball grip is awesome, since you’re not worried about tipping the cup, just keeping it stable; holding the ball grip will allow it to be more steady as you lather. At $35, it’s a bit pricier than most, but you’ll really get some style points for this one.
The Shaving Factory mug is not dissimilar at all from the Edwin Jagger one, right down to the black stoneware look, the ridging and the ball grip.
However, it’s a lot cheaper at about $10; while that sounds like a great deal, it’s made with a little bit of cheaper construction, so you won’t get that high-class luxury feel that you do with the Edwin Jagger.
Moreover, the logo on the side is a little trashier than the sophisticated Edwin Jagger logo; the Shaving Factory logo is just a roughly handwritten, red signature on the side, as opposed to the small, crafted coat-of-arms of the EJ.
That’s essentially the main factor, and what you’ll have to decide when making your final purchase – do you care more about saving money, or getting a really classy looking mug for shaving?
It’s an honest question and one that’s more complicated than you might think: while your pocketbook might thank you, you’re also investing in something you want to look good and reflect who you are as a person.
For some, that just might mean getting the Edwin Jagger with the fun logo; for others, that means going cheap and investing that money into other awesome shaving kit components.
This one’s not quite as pretty as the first two, but man does it have some amazing advantages to it. Unlike the sleek, reflective stoneware you can basically see yourself in, Marvy gives us a rubber shaving mug that replaces the ball grip with a more traditional vertical handle.
After all the guff I gave you with the Shaving Factory mug about which choosing sophistication over value, you might be wary of me recommending this – however, it’s got one plus you might be interested in. IT’S VIRTUALLY INDESTRUCTIBLE.
That’s right; because it’s made of hardened rubber, it’s utterly incapable of chipping or cracking.
If you make a wrong move with your Edwin Jagger, it can fall on the bathroom floor, shatter, and you’re out $35; with the Marvy mug, you can just pick it up once it bonks safely on the linoleum. At around $13, it’s not a bad deal either.
This ceramic shave bowl is very similar to the Edwin Jagger and Shaving Factory mugs, especially with the ball grip handle, but it eschews the shiny aesthetic of those mugs for a flatter, earthier ceramic beige look.
This is a perfectly solid mug that you can put your 2 ½” round soap in, swish it around a bit, and get to work easily.
The ceramic is a great material by which to get a good lather since it interacts with the soap and the bristles very well since it’s a bit more textured. At such a price, it’s not a bad middle ground for a shaving mug.
This is the one you’ll want to get if you really want to go cheap, but care more about simplicity than sophistication.
This is a stainless steel mug that is more bowl than mug; there’s no handle, but the flat bottom gives it a great sense of stability, and it’s much wider than the other mugs we’ve shown you here in this review.
You can pick it up for a mere $6, so it’s probably your best option for affordability.
Can You Use Any Bowl For Shaving?
It’s a good idea to think about other innovative solutions and alternatives to shaving mugs, and a bowl sounds pretty great. Traditionally, just like mugs, people have successfully used bowls to build shaving lather. However, if you can’t get a shaving mug, make sure the bowl you buy is specifically built for that purpose to make your shaving experience a wonderful one.
Our friends at other shaving sites have also weighed in on shaving mugs:
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