Traveller’s shaving-mug

We can’t shave at home all the time. As I recently lived through, sometimes we have to shave elsewhere. And one thing I did miss was a traveller’s shaving-mug – like the one Henry E Biggins filed a patent for on 1911. It looks very neat and handy, even a hundred and twelve years later.

But first, let us see what Henry wanted to achieve. In the word of the patent text:

My invention relates to an improvement in travelers shaving mugs, the object being to adapt a shaving mug to receive and contain a razor, soap-box and brush, so that an individual shaving mug may be combined with the advantages of the shaving case ordinarily carried by the traveler for the reception of his shaving appliances.

From US patent 1,053,559

Henry’s traveller’s shaving-mug basically consists of a tapered shaving mug with a lid and a removeable container inside.

Henry's traveller's shaving-mug, from his 1913 patent.
Patent drawing from US patent 1,053,559

The inner container can be lifted out with the help of little finger-buttons.1 Inside the container there were holders for a brush,2 a cylindrical soap container,3 and a razor.4 there was a shaving mirror5 in the lid of the shaving mug. And while the patent text don’t specify, I imagine the soap might be in stick form – for face lathering – or as a powder.

To use, the shaver would lift the inner container out, take the brush, soap, and razor out of their holder, make lather in the mug, then shave while using the mirror in the lid. When done, he would clean and dry the mug before reassembly.

Nice, simple, and actually meets a need. I can easily see a similar concept being reasonable successful today. I can see it being marketed not just for travel, but also for people living in small apartments or who would like a compact shave set. It could even be sold as a gift for dad, complete with brush, soap, razor, and a pack of blades.

It would be reasonable easy to make today, after some initial investment, as the inner container of such a traveller’s shaving-mug could be moulded from plastic. The outer mug could be metal, plastic, or even ceramic. I know I would seriously considering buying one to keep at work.

You can read the full patent on Google Patents. Henry also had two other patents to his name. One design patent for a rococo mirror plateau. And a more interesting one for a percolating coffee pot.


  1. Marked “15” on the drawings.
  2. Marked “11” on the drawings
  3. Marked “13” on the drawings
  4. Marked “9” on the drawings
  5. marked “7” on the drawings

2 thoughts on “Traveller’s shaving-mug

  1. Pingback: Traveller's shaving-mug - Razors n Blades the shave that saves

  2. Pingback: Combined traveller's drinking cup and shaving mug - Wegian WetshavingWegian Wetshaving

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