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Shaving Soap vs. Shaving Cream

Shaving Soap vs. Shaving Cream

Some may argue that shaving is a tedious chore, a daily drudgery we could all do without. But for those of us who take pride in a clean-shaven look, shaving is not just a routine, it's an art. And like any art form, it requires the right tools, the right technique, and of course, the right lather. A good lather is the secret sauce that turns a run-of-the-mill shave into a spa-like experience.

The debate between whether to use soap vs shaving cream has been around for quite some time now. Both these products offer unique advantages and disadvantages, and often it comes down to personal preference. In this article, we will examine each option in detail - considering factors such as ingredients, affordability, and convenience - so you can determine which one will work best for you.

We’ve compared shaving soap vs. shaving cream based on:

  • Ingredients
  • Consistency
  • Convenience
  • Cost

Quick Take

Our Overall Choice: Shaving Soap

One can achieve a comfortable shave with either a soap or a cream, and oftentimes it comes down to personal preference, but for experienced wet shavers who value a traditional and luxurious shaving experience, we think shaving soap with a good quality shave brush is the way to go.

Shaving soap is typically made with natural ingredients and often comes in a puck or disk form that requires a shaving brush to create a rich, creamy lather. This extra step in the shaving process can feel like a more indulgent and nostalgic ritual that some people enjoy.

Shaving soap can also be more economical in the long run. While the initial investment in a shaving brush and a puck of soap may be higher than buying a can of shaving cream, shaving soap can last longer and provide more shaves per ounce. This can result in cost savings over time.

In terms of performance, shave soap can offer a closer shave with less irritation. Shaving soap provides a thick, cushiony lather that helps to protect the skin from razor burns and nicks.

The Most Effective Shaving Method: An Overview

An effective shaving routine can help to provide a closer and smoother shave. Using the right products can help to soften your hair, making it easier to cut and resulting in a closer shave. Developing an effective shaving routine can also help to provide a relaxing and enjoyable experience. Shaving can be a daily chore, but it can also be a chance to take some time for yourself and indulge in some self-care. By using the right shaving products and taking the time to perfect your technique, you can turn your daily shave into a luxurious and enjoyable wet shaving experience.

Shaving Cream

Shaving creams tend to be more moisturizing and easier to lather up quickly, making them a good choice for those with dry skin. They often come in a tube or canister and can be applied directly to the face or with a brush. Shaving creams can also come in various scents, making them a good option for those who enjoy a bit of fragrance during their shaving routine.

Shaving Soap

Shaving soaps, on the other hand, tend to provide a richer lather and a closer shave. They require a bit more effort to lather up and usually need to be used with a shaving brush. Shaving soaps can also be more natural and contain fewer artificial ingredients, making them a good choice for those with sensitive skin.

In the end, the choice between shaving cream or shaving soap comes down to personal preference, skin type, and individual shaving routine. Some men prefer the ease and convenience of shaving cream, while others enjoy the traditional feel and closer shave of a good shaving soap. Ultimately, it's up to you to experiment with both and decide which one works best for your needs.

Ingredients

Shaving Cream

Shaving cream typically has more water content than shaving soap, which helps to create a rich lather quickly and easily. Shaving cream often contains additional ingredients such as emulsifiers and thickeners, like triethanolamine and stearic acid, to create a dense foam. Shaving cream may also contain additional ingredients like menthol or aloe vera for added benefits.

If you have sensitive skin, be sure to check the ingredients list and look for a quality shaving cream that is free from parabens or allergens, and instead use natural ingredients like aloe vera, coconut, or seed butters. We love the Taylor of Old Bond Street Jermyn Street Shaving Cream, which is derived from natural ingredients and is a great choice for those with sensitive skin.

Shaving Soap

Shaving soap contains more fat than shaving cream, usually in the form of natural oils like coconut oil, castor oil, or shea butter. Shaving soap is often formulated with bentonite clay or other natural ingredients that help create a slick surface for the razor to glide over, so it's often preferred for those who want a natural product free from allergens or synthetic ingredients. Shaving soap may also contain essential oils for fragrance and added skincare benefits.

If you're looking for an organic option, try Taylor of Old Bond Street Organic Shaving Cream, which is made from 95% natural raw materials, making it gentle on the skin and kind to the environment. 

If you want a quality shaving soap with a nice wooden bowl, check out Taylor of Old Bond Street Sandalwood Shaving Soap, which is supplied in a handmade wooden bowl.

Winner: Shaving Soap

Consistency

Shaving Cream

Shaving cream typically has a thick and creamy consistency, similar to whipped cream or frosting. It is designed to be applied to the face using a shaving brush and then lathered up with warm water to create a dense foam. The foam provides a cushion between the razor blade and the skin, helping to prevent nicks and cuts while providing a smooth and comfortable shave.

Shaving Soap

Shaving soap, on the other hand, typically has a harder texture and can resemble a bar of soap. It is designed to be used similarly to shaving cream, but used with a shaving bowl and a shaving brush and water to create a rich lather. Because shaving soap is harder than shaving cream, it may require more effort to create a nice lather, but once a lather has been formed, it tends to be more stable than shaving cream, offering a thicker lather. 

Winner: Shaving Soap

Convenience

Shaving Cream

Shaving cream is designed to be quick and easy to lather up with or without a shaving brush, and can often be applied directly from a can or tube. This makes it a convenient option for those who are short on time or don't want to spend a lot of time preparing for their shave. Shaving cream can also be found in travel-sized containers, making it easy to take with you on-the-go.

Shaving Soap

Shaving soap, on the other hand, typically comes in a bar or puck form, which requires a separate container and a shaving brush to lather up properly. This can be more time-consuming and may not be as convenient for those who prefer a quicker and more straightforward shaving routine. However, some people may prefer the ritual and process of using a shaving soap and brush and find it to be a relaxing and enjoyable part of their morning routine.

Winner: Shaving Cream

Cost

Shaving Cream

Shaving creams can vary widely in price, depending on the brand and formulation. Some affordable shaving creams can be found for as little as a few dollars, while high-end luxury shaving creams can cost upwards of $30 or more. 

Shaving Soap

Generally speaking, high-quality shaving soaps tend to be more expensive than shaving creams, as they often contain more natural and expensive ingredients like essential oils, shea butter, and bentonite clay. But a little goes a long way with a good quality shave soap, and you typically end up saving money in the long run because a puck of shaving soap lasts much longer than a can or tube of shave cream.

Winner: Shaving Soap

Which is Best For You: Shaving Soap or Shaving Cream?

When it comes to choosing between shaving soap and shaving cream, it all boils down to personal preference. Shaving soap usually comes in a hard puck that requires a bit more preparation - you need to lather it up with a brush and water. On the other hand, shaving cream is usually softer and can be applied directly to the face without needing a brush.

Many people prefer the ritual of using a shaving soap as it gives them a better sense of control over their shave. However, others prefer the convenience of shaving cream as it is quicker and easier to use. Ultimately, both options offer excellent lubrication for your shave while reducing razor burn or irritation.

For those who love the experience of a good wet shave, we think shaving soap is the way to go. Invest in the right tools: a nice straight razor or safety razor, good shaving soap, and a high-quality shaving brush—like this Yaqi Obsidian brush—and let the magic of a luxurious lather transform your morning routine into a daily dose of pampering.

  • Overall Winner: Shaving Soap
  • Ingredients: Shaving Soap
  • Consistency: Shaving Soap
  • Convenience: Shaving Cream
  • Cost: Shaving Soap