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  • Safety Razor Appreciation

    I've been shaving with a safety razor for about two years now and I'll never go back. Today's main page post got me thinking about some new things. For example, I haven't tried feather blades before but based on the article, I'm going to because my stubble is coarse. Also, I'm going to give a hard soap a try instead of a cream. I thought it would be fun to start a thread about wet shaving and the setups we use. Any tips/tricks for a better shave? Does anyone like a particular soap or cream?

    Razor: Muhle R89
    Blade: Personna Platinum
    Soap: Taylor of Old bond street Sandalwood cream
    Aftershave: Captain's Choice Sandalwood (but I don't mind Old Spice either)

  • #2
    Sounds like a fun thread idea! I've been wet shaving for probably about 3-4 years (though less lately, as I'm currently sporting a half-yeard). Still wet shave cheeks and neck though. Never going back to electric. Never.

    Razer: Gillette Fatboy Adjustable
    Blade: Astra SP
    Cream: TOBS Mr. Taylor
    Aftershave: Depends on my mood, typically Old Spice during cooler months and Aqua Velva Blue during warmer months.

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    • #3
      I've been using a safety razor long enough that I can't remember how long I've been using one. I have really sensitive skin and a pretty tough beard. Shaving used to be excruciating and I would bleed all over the place. Using a safety razor I don't really have any discomfort and I cut myself a lot less. I will say that there was a learning curve and it took me a little while before I got the hang of keeping the razor at the right angle to my face. It also took me a while to figure out what blades/soap worked best for me. For my face, a really sharp blade and glycerin soap work best. I get my supplies from https://www.classicshaving.com/ they have great house brand stuff for cheap

      Razor: Classic Super Knurl
      Blades: Feather
      Soap: Classic Shaving house brand https://www.classicshaving.com/colle...g-soap-3-large
      After: cold water to rinse and dab dry my face, I usually skip aftershave or lotion because the slight scent from the soap is enough and I don't have dry skin

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      • #4
        A great shave is less about the products/hardware used and more about the prep and technique. I've got just about every single style of shaving implement available (carts, DE, SE, injector, Artist Club, Straights, Kamisori), shave daily, and have a big enough stash of products to last me the next 5-10 years. Ensuring that you are not using more pressure than is necessary and that the blade is at the correct cutting angle are key. Right behind that in importance is making sure that the whiskers are actually hydrated and knowing which way your beard grows will take a shaver a very long way. Even if the whiskers are very coarse/tough, if there is enough water in them, they soften right up and you are rewarded with an easy, tug free shave.

        As far as my daily set up, I'd love to provide one, but I'm typically changing everything, but the soap and aftershave (both of which I try to use up before moving on to the next one).

        My latest shaves have been with a concoction of Williams Mug Soap and Razorock Mr. Pink aftershave, i.e. Pink Willy. Brush has been the H.L. Thater Fünf. Aftershave is Aqua Velva Musk. Razor has been either a Filiarmonica Straight (14 Especial Para Barbas Duras or a 14 Novodur) or my Gillette Fatboy with Wizamet Polsilver.

        As far as Feather blades go, I like them quite a bit, but tend to gravitate towards the Polsilvers since I can usually get 30 or more shaves out of a blade.

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        • #5
          Another Convert

          I also converted to traditional wet shaving about 2.5 years ago and it has greatly improved my shaving experience. I can't imagine going back to my old way of shaving using multi-blade cartridges and canned shaving gel. I also found that washing my face with an exfoliating facial scrub before beginning my shave routine significantly reduced my skin irritation and hair bumps. It also helps that I can get away with shaving twice a week. However, I can attest to wet shaving with a safety razor being a more economical, environmentally friendly, and healthier method of shaving.

          Pre-shave: Equate brand Skin Cream (generic Noxzema)
          Shave Cream: typically C.O. Bigelow by Proraso, but my wife bought me a tub of The Art of Shaving Lavender cream for V Day and it smells great and performs really well.
          Razor: Mehaz Safety Razor (nothing special, but it works just fine)
          Blades: Personna
          Brush: Edwin Jagger Best Badger
          Aftershave: Nivea Sensitive Post Shave Balm

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          • #6
            I started using a safety razor in high school after not having having good experiences with electric razors or cartridge razors. I got cut a few times starting out but now it rarely ever happens, and I've never looked back. I really appreciate the cost effectiveness of it, being a college student. Currently using:

            Razor: Muhle 33c (I had an Edwin jagger first but I dropped it and it broke. I've dropped the muhle a couple times and it's held up fine)

            Blades: Gillette Silver Blue ( I've used Derby, Feather, 7 O'clock, and maybe one other but silver blue always works best)

            Brush: Perfecto pure badger from Amazon

            Shaving cream: Taylor of Old Bond Street, St. James scent. (Went through a cheap vanderhagen puck and TOBS Eton College, and don't think I'll ever switch from TOBS, just change up the scent whenever I run out of one)

            Post-shave moisturizer: Nivea sensitive post shave balm


            Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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            • #7
              Originally posted by paintflinger View Post
              A great shave is less about the products/hardware used and more about the prep and technique. I've got just about every single style of shaving implement available (carts, DE, SE, injector, Artist Club, Straights, Kamisori), shave daily, and have a big enough stash of products to last me the next 5-10 years. Ensuring that you are not using more pressure than is necessary and that the blade is at the correct cutting angle are key. Right behind that in importance is making sure that the whiskers are actually hydrated and knowing which way your beard grows will take a shaver a very long way. Even if the whiskers are very coarse/tough, if there is enough water in them, they soften right up and you are rewarded with an easy, tug free shave.
              Technique and prep are definitely key ingredients.

              Comment


              • #8
                I have been doing the safety razor thing for a couple of years now. My beard is coarse and my skin is sensitive so I had constant irritation and ingrowns. Safety razor and good prep has made a world of difference. I have some feather blades but havent used them yet. They are very sharp (by reputation) and I dont have great luck with super sharp blades. Here is what I use right now

                Razor: Razorock Jaws or Edwin Jagger ED89
                Blade: Crystal (Israel)
                Brush: L'Occitan Synthetic
                Soap: Taylor of Bond Street "Mr Taylor"
                Post Shave: L'Occitan

                I have a few other blades I use sometimes like Wilkinson Sword, Lord, Astra, Personna, and some Russian assortments but the Crystal are my favorite by far. I also have a drawer full of soaps, creams and aftershaves and mix them in on occasion but the Taylor lathers so quick and easy, it is what I use for the most part. I went all in for a while and purchased a lot of samples and assortment packages but I dont think I have bought shaving supplies in over a year now. I did get a fresh tube of the L'Occitan balm for Christmas. It works so well and my wife likes the scent so when she saw me running out, it was an easy choice for her to stick in my stocking.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by idvsego View Post
                  I have been doing the safety razor thing for a couple of years now. My beard is coarse and my skin is sensitive so I had constant irritation and ingrowns. Safety razor and good prep has made a world of difference. I have some feather blades but havent used them yet. They are very sharp (by reputation) and I dont have great luck with super sharp blades. Here is what I use right now

                  Razor: Razorock Jaws or Edwin Jagger ED89
                  Blade: Crystal (Israel)
                  Brush: L'Occitan Synthetic
                  Soap: Taylor of Bond Street "Mr Taylor"
                  Post Shave: L'Occitan

                  I have a few other blades I use sometimes like Wilkinson Sword, Lord, Astra, Personna, and some Russian assortments but the Crystal are my favorite by far. I also have a drawer full of soaps, creams and aftershaves and mix them in on occasion but the Taylor lathers so quick and easy, it is what I use for the most part. I went all in for a while and purchased a lot of samples and assortment packages but I dont think I have bought shaving supplies in over a year now. I did get a fresh tube of the L'Occitan balm for Christmas. It works so well and my wife likes the scent so when she saw me running out, it was an easy choice for her to stick in my stocking.
                  Good to know about the feathers. I've tried going to a sharper blade(Gillette silver blue) and they shred me to bits.

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                  • #10
                    I am sure we could master sharper blades with different pressure etc but honestly, I have a combo that works for me so I don't feel the need to rock the boat. And my crystals are way cheaper than feather.

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                    • #11
                      I've been using a safety razor for about 3 years now. I had a full beard for about 30 years before that but accidentally went too far trimming a side and the only fix was to take most of it off ( I left a chin beard). The wife really likes it and now it has to stay that way.

                      Razor: Feather twist to open
                      Blade: Feather or Personna, got a 100 pack of the Personnas for $11 on Amazon
                      Soap: Crema coconut mango cream
                      Aftershave: alum block and sometimes Nivea sensitive skin aftershave balm

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by winghus View Post
                        I've been using a safety razor for about 3 years now. I had a full beard for about 30 years before that but accidentally went too far trimming a side and the only fix was to take most of it off ( I left a chin beard). The wife really likes it and now it has to stay that way.

                        Razor: Feather twist to open
                        Blade: Feather or Personna, got a 100 pack of the Personnas for $11 on Amazon
                        Soap: Crema coconut mango cream
                        Aftershave: alum block and sometimes Nivea sensitive skin aftershave balm
                        I have an alum block but pretty much just use it for grip now. If your hands are damp and your razor feels a bit slippery you can just rub your fingers on the alum and get a grip again.

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                        • #13
                          So what roughly is the entry cost for this method? The large number of variables and the amount of different items you all mentioned is what has always caused me concern with going to the safety razor method. I reluctantly still use cartridge razors but it's never as smooth of a shave as I'd like. Electrics are never an option. It feels my face is chewed up and hairs remain.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by hockeysc23 View Post
                            So what roughly is the entry cost for this method? The large number of variables and the amount of different items you all mentioned is what has always caused me concern with going to the safety razor method. I reluctantly still use cartridge razors but it's never as smooth of a shave as I'd like. Electrics are never an option. It feels my face is chewed up and hairs remain.
                            You can get a safety razor for as little as $20.00. A badger brush can be had for about $20.00 as well. Soap and blades might run you another $40.00. So to get started, you are looking at $80.00, perhaps. Of course, that's all dependent upon what you choose. I choose a slightly more expensive razor and brush. Check out www.westcoastshaving.com. I think someone else posted another link as well. Once you buy a razor and a brush, you will only need to repurchase blades and soap from time to time. I buy 100 blades at a time and replace them every year or year and half. Soap usually last me about 6 - 9 months. Compared to those cartridges, replacement costs are significantly lower and justifies the entry cost, in my opinion.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by hockeysc23 View Post
                              So what roughly is the entry cost for this method? The large number of variables and the amount of different items you all mentioned is what has always caused me concern with going to the safety razor method. I reluctantly still use cartridge razors but it's never as smooth of a shave as I'd like. Electrics are never an option. It feels my face is chewed up and hairs remain.
                              I got going with a vintage Gillette Tech razor for $10 that inclused a pack of 5 Astra blades, a Wilkinson Sword boar bristle brush for $5 from Walmart, a tube of Nivea Men shaving cream for $4 from a drug store, and a bowl from my cupboard for free.

                              Since then, I've picked-up a sampler pack of twenty-some blades from Amazon for $10 and I've changed to Proraso shaving soap which can be had at many drug stores for less than $10.

                              My point is, I suggest treading lightly to see if wet shaving is for you and then spend more dough on more and better paraphernalia once you're committed.

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