Mister The Plague's shave writing down thingy

Discussion in 'Straight Razor Shave Clinic' started by Mister The Plague, May 21, 2012.

  1. I posted my first shave in a different thread, but I find it would be a lot easier to keep my questions and your responses together. I guess you could say it would be sort of a journal.............

    Just to recap, my first shave was "ok", I had a pretty nasty cut on the base of my neck from not pulling my skin tight enough. Since then I have had a few good nicks. Certainly not getting close as my DE. Still using it to finish up.

    My main question right now is razor burn. I never really experienced razor burn with a cart or DE. My skin is pretty tolerate. Since using a straight, I am getting razor burn bad enough to hurt several hours into the day. Am I pressing too hard? Is my angle off? Am I trying to shave too quickly? Maybe all the above but any advise would be helpful.

    Looks like I be watching some more videos tonight.

    Thanks Guys.
  2. Yes, yes and yes... where did the edge come from?
  3. +1. If you are getting burn then I it could be a duller razor (causing you to scrape harder to get the fur off) or bad prep, too. Take it easy at first - make sure you have a good edge on the razor - don't try for a great shave, just go for 'good enough'. Great will come with time.
  4. Here's what I've noticed - I'm only 4 shaves in so take all this under advisement :)

    If angle is wrong, trying to compensate with pressure gives burns. I find the sound is the best guide here, but that might be razor dependent (only used one so I've no comparison) - but I know if it sounds like I'm sandpapering my face I get a gentler better shave than when the blade is quiet.

    If the razor is going dull then it feels like it's sticking rather than gliding over face - I postponed my fourth shave and stropped for the first time because of this. When it unsticks the blade jumps and I knew I'd get cut if I continued. After stopping I finished the shave without getting cut.

    Not sure about speed, my best shave was the quickest but I learnt more on the longer ones. So maybe slow down until you figure out the angles and let speed come with improved technique.
  5. About 3 shaves into the great edge Larry put on it. I have been stropping about 50 strokes on a flat surface before and after a shave. It still feels pretty damn sharp and performs pretty similar from the first shave. No noticeable tugging.

    Maybe a few rounds on the balsa just to be safe?

  6. Thanks for the insight. Tonight will be my 4th shave. Thinking I will go first pass with the DE. I have quite the stubble since my straight skills aren't there yet.

    I think there is still a little shyness from my first shave. It seems any time I place the blade to my face without moving it, I'll get cut. So I'm trying to keep it moving.
  7. I'll leave that question to more experienced shavers.. Mine's from Larry too, and the original edge handled three shaves. I could just tell it was fading towards the end of the third, but promptly forgot to strop before starting the 4th. I'll be stropping from now on, but I'm glad I now know how a edge going dull feels compared to a sharp one. I have really fine arm hair and even when I first got the razor it didn't pop hairs for me there, so one of the standard sharpness tests isn't available for me. I might have to grow my hair out for a while so I can stockpile some head hair for testing next time I get it cut :lol:
  8. Sharpness probably isn't the issue then. In areas where I'm less confident and I'm not sure how to position the razor I do it heel first - when I'm happy I lift and rotate to cutting angle before bringing back to skin. It lets me experiment without doing anything daft with the cutting edge on my skin.
  9. Much better shave tonight. No nicks at all. First pass was with my EJ89. After that I did a 2nd and 3rd pass WTG with my straight. I made a point to really concentrate on what it sounded like and kind of hyper focus on it. Zen if you will. I could certainly feel after the 3rd pass my skin was burning. I think tomorrow I will focus on pressure.

    Thanks for the input guys.
  10. Glad it helped :001_smile

    I did a little research on the forums about sound this morning and apparently full wedges are near silent, so it does vary with the razor. There's a short but interesting thread on sound mostly about DE, but there's a comment about hearing but not feeling the strokes that seems a good goal to aim for.
  11. If the razor is sticking and not gliding your lather may not have enough moisture.

  12. As far as pressure is concerned use a feather light touch. Just barely touch the blade to your face.

    +1 to EvilZeg, lather has to be good and wet. If you rinse it off under warm running water and it comes right off then lather is good. If some is sticking to the blade it is too dry.

  13. Shave #5 tonight.

    I'm not sure if my technique is improving or the blade feels less sharp. But the blade definetely felt better tonight. Since I gave a once over with my DE last night, by beard was the perfect length not to need it tonight.

    Began with the usual prep. Just a simple face lather for some AoS Sandalwood with my cheapy brush from my walmart special kit. Began with the usual WTG pass. It felt great! It didn't fell like the blade was going to cut me from looking at it wrong. some I worked through my first pass. paying attention to pressure and stretching. First pass done. Only blood was from a decent nick I gave myself trying to adjust my grip.

    Since the 1st pass was so good, I dared fate and went for an ATG pass. Blade position seemed simpler for me but I could certainly feel and hear each hair being cut. ATG pass complete without incident.

    Overall, I feel like its a DFS with a couple spots I need to work on. I rate about the same shave I would get with a cart. Pretty much the shaves I've had until finding B&B and wet shaving in April. So things are progressing nicely. I am stropping 50 before and 50 after on my poor man's strop. Put some nicks into it on each end trying to remember to turn the blade on the spine. I'm happy I am able to maintain the edge easily. One less thing right now.

    Awesome advise. I tried it tonight and sure enough, the lather slid right off under the faucet, no residue on the blade. Razor burn feels better tonight. Although I can't imagine using any less pressure. I am thinking I will pay more attention to the pitch and yaw (I guess) of the blade. Maybe that has something to do with it.

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