By June 12, 2012

How I Use Arko Stick Shaving Soap

Two weeks ago I wrote about Arko stick shaving soap, which is a really great, easy way to generate shaving lather.

However, Arko and similar stick-shaped products are a little weird to use, especially the first few times. I’m used to SPURRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRTHing a handful of shaving cream or gel from a can or whup whup whupping the soap puck in my Van Der Hagen scuttle. The Arko arrived with no directions, and I had to step to the Internet to see how to use it.

“Apply directly to face, then use the brush.” Seemed simple, but how much did I apply to my skin? At first I put on just a little bit, and it wasn’t enough. Then I spread plenty on my face, but my brush was too dry. Over time, I found what worked best for me, and hopefully I can de-mystify the use of such a foreign way to soap up your face.

  1. Make sure your face is damp. I don’t dry my face when I get out of the shower, and I also splash two handfuls of warm water on my face before applying Arko.
  2. Wet the end of the shaving stick. Not a ton, just a little bit of water to get you started. I dip the end of my Arko stick in a cup filled with warm water.
  3. Apply a light film of Arko just about everywhere on your face and neck. I don’t put any Arko on my upper lip, as I generate more than enough lather otherwise, and I found whipping the Arko up with the brush to be problematic on such a small area.
  4. Soak your brush. I run my brush under hot water until it’s soaked, and then I whip my wrist twice. I’ve found that this gets just enough water off the brush, but not too much — at least to start. Your mileage may vary based on the stiffness of your brush bristles and how thick or thin you like your lather.
  5. Start making lather. I make slow, gentle circles on my throat to start. If you are too fast you may whip some of the lather onto the floor. Bummer. Start slow, and then build up force and momentum as the soap starts to puff up on your face.
  6. Re-wet your brush if necessary. You can always add warm water to your brush to make more lather. It’s hard to take water “out” of a face-applied soap like Arko. You can easily add more soap to your brush via a scuttle with a traditional soap puck, but not so with Arko because your face is already covered in soap.

That’s it — and it’s pretty simple to do although a little weird the first few times. If you want to see Arko in action check out this video, and let me know if you have any questions.

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