This wet shaving thing
I thought I'd just come straight to you and ask.
I was intrigued by the Shave With Nakiri thread and people's talk of DE razors. I've been shaving my head for over 10 years now and am always looking for a better way. My current way, that I have found to work the best, is with a Gillette Power Fusion. Note, I do think the best razor blade I have found for head shaving is the Schick Quatro. The Fusion is only best because it vibrates and the buzzing keeps the blades from clogging.
So with that discussion and reading forums ( Badger and Blade and others) web pages, etc. I decided to try. Originally I was going to go with a Merkur long handle. But I could not see an advantage to the double edge blade. Matter of fact it seemed inferior to the single edge blade. So I bought a GEM on eBay and some Persona blades off Amazon.
First face shave was ok. I had about 5 days growth you can read my comments on that Nakiri thread. Since then I have had about 4 shaves and I do think I am getting a better shave with the GEM, on my face at least. My head is a different story and I not convinced yet that the DE/SE razor is well suited to head shaving.
The other night I picked up a wet shave kit from Van Der Hagen for $8.95. I know this is basically crap but I don't want to invest a lot in wet shaving if I don't like it. Basically I bought an $8 bowl.
The brush sheds like my dog. I expected that. It does not reek of wild game as some reviews had me expecting. While it felt nice on my face I'm not sure it applied a lather any better than the hands I was born with.
The soap lathered no problem there. I was sorely disappointed with it's lubricity. Usually I use a canned gel. The best though I think is Head Slick which is a lotion. I am also trying some super expensive shaving lotion called Billy Jealousy Hydroplane. It's good but I don't think it's 4x as good as the price indicates.
It looks like you have 3 or 4 shaving soaps that you are selling. I assume all of them will be considerably better than the soap that came with my mug. But what about lubricity? Is the lack of lubricity I experienced indicative of shaving soaps or is it related to the quality of a shaving soap. The Gold Dachs is the one I was considering.
I know I bought a cheap brush. But what am I going to get from a $45+ brush? If it's just the hairs don't fall out, so what? I guess it depends too on the answer to my soap question. If the soaps can't perform as well as the Head Slick, I don't really need a brush do I? I was considering the Omega one you sell because I like the look. I have not read a good explanation yet at to which dead animal is preferable to use. Being a Badger from Wisconsin that seems preferable to me but then at the same time disrespectful :)
I have no idea how you can use any DE/SE to get up to under the nose and right next to the nose. I still have to pull out the Gillette Fusion for that task and use the trimmer edge on the back of the blade. Any suggestions?
Does anyone rehandle these? Some Merkur have detachable handles right? I definitely need a longer and lighter handle. Maybe I should talk to a pen turner. If I'm not the only one maybe custom handles is a future product for you.
Finally, I thought about getting a straight razor as a lame. Lucretia got one from Son I think. I picked up a cheap Parker that takes Shark blades. Definitely not going to work unless I can get a longer, taller blade that fits. Are those Dovo razors you show available? I think that would be the ticket though it's tough to beat a box cutter for a lame.
Thanks for your time,
I have a few sample soaps I'll gladly send out to you. As for which razor gets the best results, for under the nose, 5/8 and 6/8 straights generally do the best, but with a DE, you can get a quick and amazing shave, and yes, even get under (and in) the nose...seriously.
As for the benefit of a good brush, to be honest, you will get exponentially better results once you face-lather, in my opinon. By face-lathering, you get the pores stimulated, raise up the whiskers, and get an exfoliating scrub in. Long story short, your skin should improve, you will get less ingrowns, and much much less irritation. Bowl-lathering has its time and place (especially after a bazillion shaves in a row, or with a sunburn).
Also, I can get most Dovo razors and Merkurs (within days). If you have a price in mind, or specific characteristics you want, let me know and I'll get you some options and prices.
If you have more questions (I'm sure you will), let me know!
I am still working on getting under the nose decent, but have improved significantly with the rest of my shaving process in just a couple of weeks of doing this. I haven't hacked up the section above my chin for about two weeks so I view that as a huge success. I used to shave in the shower with quick touch up around the side burns after the shower with a Mach 3. I still do that if in a hurry, but am really enjoying the de shave. Hopefully Tom will steer you in the right direction, I will definitely be getting some soap from him in the future.
Well I guess for the nose area I will have to explore different techniques. Do the DE razors not have a comb or bar in front of the blade? It is the comb on the front of the GEM the gets in the way. Over all I like the GEM for the face. I will give the top of the head a few more tries though.
If you have a soap sampler I'd be willing to try it. Let me know how to order. I am curious to see how a quality soap compares to the shave lotions I have. I'm not sure what you mean by face-lather? Does this mean just use the soap like a bar soap and skip the brush all together?
I just looked on eBay and it looks like there are hundreds of inexpensive straight razors out there I could use as a lame. I would just have to sharpen it. Is that basically the same as sharpening my knives? I'll hold off on the Dovo until I see if a straight serves as a lame well.
Started shaving in the shower about a year ago. No going back now. Easiest way to head shave IMO.
Originally Posted by DeepCSweede
I'm heading to bed (I have to be up in about 5 hours), but pm me to remind me I want to talk a few things over with you.
One thing, though...you don't need to order a sampler. I'll gladly cut some pieces off a few different soaps, etc, so you can find the right one.
If your having a problem with the lubrication provided by your shaving soap/cream I would first try a higher quality soap like what lefty is offering see if that does it for you. Also don't expect to get it perfect right away making a good lather can be hard especially with some of the cheaper soaps, play around with your ratios of water to soap, and try lathering directly on your face as it seems to be a little more forgiving in searching for a higher quality lather. If you want to lather in a bowl i would pick up some glycerine, usually foumd mear laxatives in a pharmacy or near frosting in the supermarket, a drop or two when lathering really helps to build a thick, dense lather with good slick. Lastly the do make per-shave oils, basically scented oils (I think grape seed is fairly common) that work to both soften the facial hair and lubricate the razor as it does its work you apply it before lathering. Some people swear buy them I find them to be unnessecary and somewhat messy but to each his own. If that is a path you'd be interested in I would deffintely avoid the big name ones,art of shaving, Baxter as they are way over priced, I've heard people that just use olive oil, or grape seed oil for a 100th the price.
Ok, found a video demonstrating face-lathering. I see I do need a brush for that after all. Got it. :D