Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Shaving Mugs ~

I have a few childhood memories of watching my Grandfather stand before a mirror in the kitchen, shaving with a straight razor, shaving mug and brush. My memories are too vague to recall the exact type of cup he used, but I was so excited to run across one recently at the Goodwill for only 50 cents!



 In the days when hot water wasn't available inside most households, men used a shaving mug or scuttle to provide hot lather. Shaving mugs looked like regular mugs or cups, except they had a built-in soap holder. A scuttle looked more like a teapot, with a wide spout where hot water was poured in. Both mugs and scuttles usually had handles, although some did not. Below are a couple examples of scuttles, so you can see how they differ from shaving mugs.


 Shaving scuttles courtesy Google images.


Early shaving mugs were traditionally used with a hard block of soap (instead of shaving cream or soft soap,) and therefore they had drain holes in the soap holder. Later mugs didn't have the holes so they could be used with creams. Therefore my shaving mug must be old! It has no markings on the bottom.


Hot water would be placed in the "cup" portion of the mug. Then the shaving brush would be dunked into it to soak up the water. One would then take the brush and rub it against the soap (placed where the holes are) and excess water would drain back into the cup. When I did research for my previous post about mustache cups (which can be found HERE,) I learned that some people mistake shaving mugs for mustache cups. Here you can see the difference:
Mustache Cup

Shaving cup

I find both fascinating examples of a bygone era, and can't imagine most men of today using them!


Have you had any lucky finds at the Goodwill or thrift shops lately?


Until next time,
Cindy

Linking to:
What's It Wednesday at Ivy and Elephants
Time Travel Thursday at The Brambleberry Cottage

30 comments:

smalltownme said...

I have my grandfather's shaving mug. My aunt had labeled it as from around 1900.

Brenda said...

My grandfather also had a straight razor and shaving mug, and I used to watch him shave.

Myric said...

I found a mustache cup at a thrift store and bought it for a $1.50. I did not hesitate to get it because it reminds me and my husband's honeymoon when we went to niagra falls' museum. I thought that is pretty cool!

Here it is!
http://myricandreasen.blogspot.com/2011/11/five-dollar-fun.html

xoxo
Myric

Ann said...

Your mug is a wonderful find. My grandfather had a shaving mug, too, but it wasn't the official type. It was one of his and grandma's coffee mugs--one with a small chip on the side, retired to the lavatory for shaving. I still have that mug. Thanks for sharing and bringing back the memories.

Blessed Serendipity said...

What a pretty collection and what a good buy on your newest addition with the roses.

Danielle

Cottage and Broome said...

Loved the info about the shaving mugs. I wish I could find one for 50 cents. Thanks for sharing, Laura

Gayle said...

I would have thought they were mustache cups!

Grandma Barb's This and That said...

Your shaving cup was a great find. Thanks for the info on them.
Barb

NanaDiana said...

Love your finds. They are quite beautiful. I still have my Dad's shaving mug-it is a heavy crockery piece and it holds his brush that he used. Love it. xo Diana

KB said...

I love the mustache cup.

Karen said...

Wow, what a great find!

Au and Target said...

I remember a plain cup with a lip that my great grandfather used. haven't seen once since! Great post, love it.

New End Studio said...

I can see my Father using his mug and brush now, thanks for stirring that memory to mind.

Ros said...

What a lovely find! ...

Jules said...

This brought back some wonderful memories of my grandfather...thank you so much and thanks for your sweet comments on my altered blog.

Jen @ Creating with the J's said...

I enjoy these stories. It definitely gives one a chuckle to think of today's men using these cups. Thanks for sharing!

Antiques And Teacups said...

Great post Cindy...They are so much fun! Great examples and history!
Ruth

Magic Love Crow said...

Cindy, this is really interesting! Thanks so much! You know, my brother, loves going to the old barber guys, because they still use this to shave the guys and they give them a nice hot warm towel after words too. My brother and all the other guys that go, say, there is nothing that compares to these shaves. I guess it's like us going to the spa ;o) Have a great day!

Queenie Believe said...

What an totally awesome find!!! I just love the little specialty items from days gone by made for daily rituals no longer performed or performed differently now. Very cool!
Have a great day,
Always, Queenie

Heather Jacob said...

such precious treasures .... how wonderful to have them.. hugz x

Shannon @ COZY HOME SCENES said...

Interesting info about the cups. I saw my grandfather use a straight razor once, but not the cup since there was no need for it since in this day and age, we have indoor plumping.

As you said it's hard to picture a man using one of those today, especially with those girlie flowers on the cup! *giggle*

Thanks for visiting my blog today!

Gattina said...

I have never seen such shaving cups in all my life ! My grandpa used a simple bowl, my father too, but then he switched to electric shaving. Honnestly I didn't even know that those cups exist ! Blogging makes intelligent, lol !

Sharon said...

What a beautiful mug and a wonderful price! MY husband started using a straight razor 2 years ago and absolutely loves it :) He highly recommends it (I'm not ready for that on my legs yet ;))

It has been a nice visit here. Have a blessed evening!
Sharon

Maria Andrade said...

Hi Cindy,
Congratulations for this precious find!
I also find these objects fascinating and your mustache cup is also a treasure. I only have a mustache cup, probably French.
I'll show it some day.
Hugs

Riet said...

My dad used to shave like that but I can't remember he had such a lovely shaving mug. They are gorgeous. Lucky you you found one and only 50 p.
Have a
nice week.

Cindy Adkins said...

Oh, how fabulous! And when I saw your header, I couldn't believe the book that says Adkins!! I hope you're having a good weekend!!!
XO
Cindy

Honey at 2805 said...

What fabulous sharing mugs! I appreciate you linking this lovely post to Potpourri Friday!

Ivy and Elephants said...

What beautiful mugs you have. I absolutely love collecting mustache and shaving cups. I use them as excuses for collecting with the male members of the household in mind. I found a shaving mug on eBay that was advertised as a tea strainer. No one bid on it and paid little of nothing for it, just shipping from the UK.

Thanks for joining our What's it Wednesday linky party!

Paula

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