Shaving Mirror for Shower Guide

Hi, there. Welcome to my little website dedicated to shaving mirrors for the shower. These are shaving mirrors which are held or installed in the shower and typically are advertised as fogless or fog free (a feature which some perform better than others). Besides shaving, they are also used to aid in makeup removal, tweezing, and the like.

Below is some information about shaving mirrors for the shower, which I’ve split into various topics—I call it the Shaving Mirror for Shower: Guide. But I also have Shaving Mirror for Shower: Reviews, in which I review some mirrors that I purchased and tested. Enjoy!



Why Shave in the Shower?

Shaving in the shower can provide several possible benefits. For one thing, you may experience an easier, more comfortable shave due the fact that your beard and your face’s skin is at its softest right at the end of a hot shower. It is more convenient because it is easier to rinse the shaving cream off your face when you’re done. It is less messy because the shower itself rinses the whisker dust down the drain. Finally, shaving in the shower can possibly shave a minute or two off your morning routine (pun intended). But if you are going to shave in the shower, you’ll definitely want to use a fogless mirror…or else you’ll miss patches of hair. (Click here to read about my favorite shower mirror.)

Of course, everyone’s a little different, so not everyone is going to enjoy shaving in the shower, and it might not fit every shaving routine…but I certainly like it.


How Does a Mirror for the Shower Stay Fogless?

Two things work together to cause “fog” to form on your shaving mirror in the shower: condensation and droplet formation. Condensation is water settling out of the air onto objects (like a mirror). But, condensation by itself just makes a mirror wet, not foggy. But, as the water in the air condenses on your mirror, it settles into thousands and thousands of really tiny droplets. Each droplet acts like a little lens bending the light. All those droplets work in concert to make the “fog” effect. So, a mirror can stay fogless by one of two methods: (1) by preventing droplet formation or (2) by preventing the condensation itself.

Anti-fog Coatings. This is the most common method used to help a shaving mirror for the shower to achieve “foglessness.” I’m not exactly sure how defogging coatings work, but I know what they do: they prevent droplet formation. The mirror will still get wet, but the water will spread out into a (more or less) even film across the mirror allowing you to see a clear—or, at least, a clearer—image.

Because water still condenses on a coating-type of shaving mirror when in the shower, the coating eventually wears off and the mirror has to be retreated with more anti-fog solution.

Tip:
Anti-fog coatings can actually be washed off. So place these coating-type mirrors where they are less likely to get water splashed on them or to come in contact with running water—toward the back of the shower, for instance.

Heating. Heating prevents condensation. There are two common ways to heat a shaving mirror in the shower. One is by filling a reservoir behind the mirror with warm or hot shower water. The other is by connecting the mirror to the shower head and diverting some of the hot water to the mirror.

The anti-fog coating type mirrors are adequate. However, after the initial coating wears off (and it eventually will), you will have to use soap or an anti-fog solution, and it will be a bit of a bother. So, in general, I prefer the type of shaving mirror that, in the shower, you fill up with warm water…like this one.


Types of Shower Shaving Mirrors

When I say “types,” I’m referring to how I personally choose to classify shower mirrors in my mind and in this web site. I’m not referring to any sort of industry-standard classification system or anything so technical as all that. Basically, I tend to classify them based on the method used to stay fog-free.

Reservoir-type. These shower mirrors have a built-in reservoir that one fills with warm water by holding it under the shower for a minute. I find the reservoir types to be a good and convenient way of keeping the mirror fog free. This is my favorite type of shaving mirror for the shower. My favorite shower mirror is a reservoir-type mirror.

Running-water-type.These have a tube that connects to the shower spigot. The tube diverts some of the warm, running water to behind the mirror in order to heat the mirror and keep it fogless. These mirrors do well at staying fog free but are limited in placement because they are connected to the shower spigot. Also, the few models that employ this method seem to have severe quality issues.

Coating-type. These are shower mirrors that utilize a coating to prevent fogging. Typically, the coatings work by preventing droplet formation. High-quality coatings will last for quite awhile as long as they are not exposed to running water or don’t get water splashed on them routinely. However, once the coating wears off, the mirror will have to be “re-conditioned” and typically the solutions available to the consumer are not as durable as the initial coating; so, you will find yourself having to treat the mirror fairly frequently—either with a commercial anti-fogging solution or with soap, shaving cream, or shampoo. Once the coating wears off, they become quite bothersome, in my opinion.


Methods for Installing a Shaving Mirror in the Shower

There are two main ways to mount a shaving mirror in a shower: (1) suction cups or (2) double-stick adhesive strips. There are other mounting methods, too, but those are the two main ways.

Suction cups. Suction cups are probably the most common method used to mount a shaving mirror in a shower stall. However, they work only on smooth, non-porous surfaces. For showers, this is going to mean glass, fiberglass, and glazed tile. Most natural stone surfaces, like marble or slate, are porous and, therefore, the suction cups cannot form a suction on them. Surfaces that would normally work but that are badly scuffed or scratched or that have mineral deposits or soap scum build up may also prevent suctions from being formed (as they make the surface non-smooth); so, you may need to clean the surface really good, but take care not to use products that may scuff or scratch your shower stall’s surface in the cleaning process.

Double-stick Tape. Double sided adhesive strips are also commonly used to mount a shaving mirror on shower walls. These strips will mount to more surfaces than suction cups and are fairly permanent; so, make sure you put the mirror where you want it. Also, residue from double sided mounting tape can be difficult to remove.

Other mounting methods. Other ways to mount a shaving mirror in a shower include connecting the mirror shower spigot (for the kinds that use warm, running water to prevent fogging), silicone adhesives (which may be extremely difficult or even impossible to completely remove and which may stain certain surfaces), various hooks, and ropes.

The best little shower mirror I know of is this one. One of the things that makes it such a nice little mirror is you can use the provided suction cup OR you can use a plastic, self-adhesive hook (which you can pick up at Walmart or a hardware store). This means the mirror can be installed on a wide variety of surfaces. You can read my full review of that mirror here.


How to Make Any Mirror Fogless

You can actually make any mirror fogless by treating it with an anti-fogging agent. You can use anti-fogging solutions, but you can also use some things you probably already have at home like soap or shaving cream.

Soap. For a single shower, you can actually just smear a fine layer of soap on a wet mirror and (in my experience) it will stay fogless for the rest of the shower. The trick is in not getting too much soap on the mirror. I just touch the tips of my index and middle fingers (held together) on a bar of soap and then smear them across the wet mirror. If you do get too much soap, the mirror will be a bit sudsy. Just hold it under the shower for the briefest split second to knock off the suds…or just let the suds settle out.

Shaving cream. Shaving cream (a type of soap, really) works better on a dry mirror. Smear it on and wipe off the excess. Let it dry a minute, and then buff it clear. A mirror treated with shaving cream may stay fogless for several showers.

Both soap and shaving cream work by preventing droplet formation, just like the defogging solutions you can buy.

Warm water method. A lot of mirrors you can heat sufficiently to prevent fogging (long enough to shave) just by letting lots of warm shower water run over them for a good 30 to 60 seconds. I’ve got several mirrors I do this to and I seem to get about 5 to 10 minutes of foglessness that way…depending on the size of the mirror, how long I let the water run over, and things like that.


Shower Mirrors to Avoid

I recommend avoiding any shower mirror with electronic gadgets of any sort including lights, clocks, mp3 players, radios, or whatever. Based solely on the reviews, it appears one should also steer clear of the running-water-type mirrors that connect to the shower spigot as they seem to be of low quality with valves popping off, tubes bursting, water spraying everywhere…


Comments are closed.