Done with cartridge razors. Tell me about DE Safety Razors for beginners

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by cometazzi, Jul 31, 2020.

  1. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Yeah, I have to agree with that. I dont shave very day and often will use one Bic 4-5 times! Still....
     
  2. Stanford Guitar

    Stanford Guitar Tele-Meister

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    Yep, with a straight razor there is close to zero waste. And, they last longer than a lifetime. I have one that is over 200 years old and still shaves perfectly.

    Also, with shaving soap there is almost zero waste vs. tons of aluminum cans of disposable shaving cream over a lifetime. And a FAR, superior shave, people who say otherwise really don't know what they are talking about.
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2020
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  3. Stanford Guitar

    Stanford Guitar Tele-Meister

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    Another thing is a good shaving mirror, if you really want to start down the rabbit hole! You'll be surprised at how bad your shave is, under a magnification mirror! Here's mine, note the water splashed on the wall, don't do that!!
    51831DA9-3BC7-4C16-8540-1D0046AADD34_1_105_c.jpeg
     
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  4. cometazzi

    cometazzi Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    Maybe? Here is my technique:

    1) I get into the shower and do the shower part first. I wash top down, meaning, hair, then face and neck, armpits/torso, and so on down to my feet.

    2) When I'm done with all the washing, I'll lift my head up and hold my lower face and neck in the shower stream. Sometimes I'll nudge the temperature up a little. I'll hold it like that from anywhere between 2-5 minutes (guessing, I don't have a stopwatch).

    3) I'll lather up some shaving lubricant, either Barbasol cream or Aveeno Sensitive Skin gel with my hands. I'll apply it to one half of my face (usually my right).

    4) I rinse off my right (dominant hand) and use the Mach 3 to shave. I go from top of the cheek down to the jawline and move forward. I don't put a lot of pressure into it. Mostly I let the blades pull the head close as they're slicing into the hairs. Sometimes it takes two or three passes, usually not more than that. I wipe some shaving cream on from my left hand between each pass, and rinse the razor in the shower stream as needed.

    5) For the neck I go from the bottom up to the jawline. Here I do have to put some pressure to ensure the razor stays in contact. I don't press hard though, just enough to let the razor pull itself against the skin. Again, I go two or three passes, replenishing the cream between them.

    6) When the right side is done, I rinse my face, re-wet/reheat the scrubble on the other side and repeat the above on that side, using the cream in my left hand.

    7) All's done, rinse my face again. Sometimes I nudge the water cooler for this, but it's never cold. Lukewarm-ish.

    8) After the shower, I dry off, and use the razor to touch up things in the mirror- usually sideburn lengths and edges of the goatee (I don't generally shave my mouth and chin). A thin application of lotion goes on my face and neck (I have some skin oil issues and must do that)

    The result is a clean, close shave. Can't feel any stubble whatsoever. However, as I said it's about 24-48 hours afterwards that my neck gets red and itchy with little bumps. It takes a couple of days for that to go away. So generally by Thursday or Friday I could shave again, but usually I just wait until Sunday. Wash/shave/rinse/repeat

    Most of what I've read about the rash that happens later states that I'm shaving too close, and the rash is actually hairs getting caught in the follicle on their way out. Once they burst through, the rash goes away. Were it an infection, I'd think that it wouldn't go away on its own, and it wouldn't be localized to my neck only. Everyone's face is different, and multi-blade razors like what I have are often seen as a culprit of this (as are 'lift-n-cut' electric systems). I did buy some cheapo store brand single blade disposables a couple of years ago, and they felt very dull. I got actual razor burn from those all over my face, even when using a particular one for the first time. Most of what I've read also says the single-blade disposables are nowhere near the quality and sharpness of steel that you get with safety razor blades.

    What I'm looking to get out of a DE Safety Razor is hopefully a shave with less irritation. I've also felt a bit duped by buying disposable cartridges @ dumb prices all these years, even if I buy the Up&Up brands from Target instead of the Gillette. I'm also not crazy about throwing away all that plastic all the time, whereas blades from the safety razor are easily recyclable.



    For the beardy weirdies, I can't actually grow a proper beard. Two years ago in the fall I tried it again. Not only was I disappointed in the amount of grey that came out, but after about 10 weeks about all I could do was look like a dirty homeless guy. My beard is sparse and unruly. Some people have great beards, and my dad was one of them. During his working life he had a great, thick beard that was trimmed and well-kept. After retirement he went full Gandalf.

    My maternal grandfather couldn't really grow a beard. He'd get little bits of stubble here and there that he'd take off with a dry razor every couple of months, but he never really had to shave properly. I actually didn't have to start shaving until I was around 25 or so. Grandaddy never went bald in the typical pattern, but all of his hair just thinned over time, and it seems like mine's starting to do the same. So when it comes to hair and skin I think I got more from him than I did my dad.
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2020
  5. Stanford Guitar

    Stanford Guitar Tele-Meister

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    I think the issue is many people THINK they are getting a good shave, until they actually get a good straight razor or DE shave. It's like putting on reading glasses for the first time!

    As one may understand, I got a bit nerdy about shaving for awhile. Japanese stones, custom strops, the whole nine yards!
     
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  6. RobDaglish

    RobDaglish TDPRI Member

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    3) Does it have to be "shaving soap"? What if I lathered up regular old Dove Sensitive Skin bar soap and used that as a lubricant?

    Personally, I wasn’t able to get enough lather off dove to make it a terribly pleasant experience with a safety or a cut throat. Your experience may differ depending on water hardness/softness (although ours is about 0 on the hardness scale)[/QUOTE]
     
  7. Piggy Stu

    Piggy Stu Friend of Leo's

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    DE is def the way to go. Been using a Merkur Futur for about 10 years, but have owned a few other razors as well. Don't get anything very aggressive to start with. My Futur is adjustible but I keep it on the least aggressive setting

    Asking someone the best shave is like asking the best sandwich: bread and fillings differ for different people. I even prefer different soaps at different times of the year, and different brushes

    The only thing I don't really swap around is Astra Platinum blades. i buy 100 at a time, hand some round my buddies, then buy again a few years later. Costs pennies. After shaving I wipe the razor backwards down a towel, cleans off any skin fudge. Blades last much longer - imagine scissors covered in fudge cutting papers

    Brushes go rougher or smoother. Rough to exfoliate my face some days, superfine others when it is already soft. I have expensive English stuff and cheap Chinese, and find the Chinese good enough, despite it being a tenth of the cost

    Greasy skin gets hard soap, dry skin gets oily soap. The soap does not just hydrate the skin, but lubricates the razor and softens the whiskers, which is also why a hot towel beforehand helps. Sometimes, I grind the soap direct on my face, against the grain, to lift the hair and this works well for me

    Tiny little razors are useful for travel, so I have a 1904 style Gillette in my travel bag as a spare. These are so cheap you could enter the market with this before committing later to something exotic

    As said above, the difference with DE is NO PRESSURE. practised first on the back of my hand. I would not go back to the multiblade/foam nonsense if you paid me 100 gbp a year
     
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  8. nobis17

    nobis17 Tele-Meister

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    I have a merker and I use feather razors. They are great. I haven't used a Bic multi blade razor for probably 15 years.
     
  9. KevinB

    KevinB Doctor of Teleocity

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    Japanese Feather blades are notoriously sharp, probably the sharpest you can buy. I find I have to be extra careful with my first shave with a new Feather but that first shave seems to hone the blade and from then on they are super smooth and efficient.
     
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  10. Piggy Stu

    Piggy Stu Friend of Leo's

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    The problems you describe are due to the modern razor pulling the hair first, then cutting it, then the stump is pulled back up into the skin. It gives an illusion of a close shave, but it is a quick way to a face of ingrown hair and folliculitis. I knew a load of people with the same problem

    Old razors, with no pressure, cut the hair at its base, no lower, so there should be no ingrowing hair

    Coarse badger brush with a drying soap for a couple of minutes will aid this a huge amount, even if you just want to keep using the modern rubbish razor

    As someone said above, correctly do DE and you won't look back
     
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  11. Stanford Guitar

    Stanford Guitar Tele-Meister

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    Also, your face has to get used to the DE or straight razor blade, so expect a little razor burn in the beginning. Afterwards, you'll have the softest skin ever on your face, as the razor takes off that very thin layer of dead skin with every shave.
     
  12. T-Bone

    T-Bone Tele-Afflicted

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    I’ve been using double edge safety razors for years. I have a nice collection of vintage razors. Good technique and good blades are all you need.

    lately I’ve been using Derby blades. Available on Amazon dirt cheap, and they’re the best blades I’ve ever used. I shave my face AND my head!
     
  13. cyclopean

    cyclopean Friend of Leo's

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    deleware razors? dead end? deep emu? damp emotion?
     
  14. jumpnblues

    jumpnblues Friend of Leo's

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    I really like shaving with a straight razor too. It's fun. But, I'm pretty slow at it. And I have to stop in the middle of my shave and strop the razor because I have a thick, wire-y, beard.

    I have several high quality straight razors. I've read a lot about sharpening straight razors. I even have a video on straight razor sharpening. I've had some straight razors professionally sharpened but I've been able to sharpen most of them myself just fine. I'd probably be faster at shaving with a straight razor if I shaved more often with one. But from the time I wash and prep my beard and shave start to finish it takes me about 40 minutes. If I try to rush it, that's when I nick or cut myself. But straights do give you a great shave.
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2020
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  15. David Meiland

    David Meiland Tele-Meister

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    After much encouragement from my wife to stop using disposable plastic razors from Costco, I started seeing ads for Rockwell razors popping up and finally bought one. $50 with 200 blades, delivered. It came with six different inserts for degrees of closeness, and the closest one works well for me. The hardest part has been learning to use it slowly and carefully. My neural pathways are finely tuned from decades of using lightweight plastic multiblade razors. I cut myself less with the Rockwell, which is nice because I have to take an anticoagulant for a while since having a heart procedure, and any cut takes a while to stop. The other hardest part was admitting to wife that she was right and I should have just tried it as soon as she suggested it.
     
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  16. Stanford Guitar

    Stanford Guitar Tele-Meister

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    It takes me no more than 10 mins start to finish with 2-3 passes. You'll get faster the more you do it. Like many things, the less afraid you are of getting cut, the less likely you will get cut. Confidence is big with a straight razor.

    If I'm in a hurry, I will do one pass with straight razor and finish with DE.
     
  17. Squawker

    Squawker Tele-Meister

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    I got fed up with the stupid price of Gillette Mach cartridges and went back to the old ways of a safety razor. Bought a Parker model about ten years ago and a box of 100 Wilkinson Sword blades. The razor died earlier this year, and I have a few blades left. Will definitely replace it, but for the last few months I haven't really needed to, due to Corona Beard (c).
    I've always shaved in the shower in the morning, with no mirror, using whatever soap is in the soap dish. Works for me.
     
  18. KevinB

    KevinB Doctor of Teleocity

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    DE = double edge, as in razor blades.

    There are also SE (yep, you got it) some single edged blades...but not many razors for them.
     
  19. cometazzi

    cometazzi Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    It's important to note that the Single-edged blades aren't hum-cancelling.
     
  20. cometazzi

    cometazzi Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    Or if you can switch to another razor, and strop them both afterwards?
     
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