Shave Journal - Ed

Discussion in 'Journals and Diaries' started by erudolph, Apr 14, 2012.

  1. Howdy...

    1. yesterday i used that basic dovo razor for the first time following some of lynn abrams' advice. i wrote earlier that i didn't find his dvd too useful, not for the utter beginner, but there is some brief written material on his site that i found very helpful. such as, spend time getting used to the feel of the razor in your hand, which i did, and then for the first couple of days limit yourself to shaving a sideburn to jaw strip only on the side of your face of the dominant hand.
    2. okay, the awesome naked blade didn't break the skin in any way. did that for maybe a minute or less and then completed the shave with DE.
    3. did the same thing this a.m.

    4. here's where i need your help. i find it hard to see what i'm doing, my razor-holding hand is between the blade and my eye, thus making it hard to judge where the blade is in relation to my skin when starting a stroke. advice?
     
  2. Congratulations Ed, Not having seen your grip i will assume you mean the part where you have to shave from the sideburn down? That is a little tricky and can be done with some eye gymnastics? but as far as the rest of your face i assume you can see just fine? if not maybe the grip is off a little. That part by the sideburn really just takes a leap of faith and i put the blade up there and go by feel, truth be told i don't find it out of the realm to do the whole shave without looking now and after i got past the tenuous start point i did in fact do some of just that, by taking the vision sense out of the picture i found it to be very helpful for just focusing on the blade on face and what is was doing, it helped for me at least to dial in the angles i was comfortable with. Maybe save that for later. One thing you might find helpful is to flatten the blade as much as you can, the bevel on the razor is nearly enough angle for shaving. if you just lift the spine off to the point where it is not touching the skin you may find that is all you need and this will also go a long way to alleviate a few issues. I wish i could wave a magic wand and give you a lot of experience but alas that seems to be the only answer for your new discipline. It really is a shame get you only one shot at it everyday, hence the amount of time we speak about when giving realistic estimates. You are at a great spot now anyway and will be surprised at the rapid pace of progress for the near future. Good luck and safe shaving.

    Ian
     
  3. Thanks for the excellent thoughts Ian. Seems like reading straight shaving instructional material and posts is like going to one of those tech seminars where you sit there and sit there but every once in a while you hear one little thing that's more than worth your time and the price of admission.

     
  4. I have found if you tilt your head forward when starting your WTG on the side burn you can look "up" and see above your hand and to what is happening. It works for me. A few others who have tried this have said it has helped them as well.
     
  5. Nice tip, Grips. I will give it a try!

     
  6. 1. the first two days confined to the sideburn to jaw narrow strip. actually the first two days was like three days since i did that strip twice the second day, first in the morning and once late in afternoon, both times simple wtg passes, nothing real close

    2. today, day 3, i ventured beyond the strip, shaving more of the cheek area but stopping short of the jaw. the psychological aspect is interesting. on one hand, you want to keep on going! on the other hand, you remember that your hand holds a pretty dangerous instrument. at those moments i'd look closely, half expecting to find i'd removed a section of skin, but still haven't done any damage. completed shave with DE.

    3. today's lather wasn't slippery enough. easily remedied. the blade seems quite sharp, so that the side that's getting a straight pass is noticeably smoother than the side that only got the DE.

    4. over and out....
     
  7. sounds great Ed, I like your pragmatic approach, Good amount of respect for that blade will serve well also. stay with it and keep us in the loop.

    Ian
     
  8. 1. stropped before putting the razor away yesterday. at the moment i don't have any suitable razor oil so i am stropping in the belief that it has some drying benefit. so, stropping after shaving and then again the next day before shaving... so far, the stropping is time consuming and the one drag about this

    2. i've read that some vendors of shave-ready razors ask their newbie customers not to strop before the first shave, so that the newbies will have the benefit of at least once feeling a razor that is properly honed. this is a discouraging thought, that stropping, when you're inexperienced, is something that dulls your razor rather than sharpening it

    3. day 4 shaved right cheek sideburn to jaw all the way to the corner of the mouth using right hand. then, after hefting the razor a few times to get the feel of it into my left hand, i shaved left sideburn to jaw with left hand, then scraped around a bit around both corners of the upper lip. blade in right hand for both right and left corners of upper lip.

    4. can't say that the blade felt particularly sharp when shaving, but after completing the shave with DE (Fatboy and Personna 74 - by the way, this is shave #8 for the 74 and it's doing fine!) I'd say I have a DFS here. (am not a practitioner of the BBS.)

    5. once again the lather didn't seem slick enough or wet enough for the blade to move through easily, so i stopped added water and resumed

    6. on the left side of my face there must've been some little bump near the corner of my mouth because it's a little sore there and there is a tiny red dot, otherwise aok

    7. ---- i wonder if i'll actually notice that this blade needs to be honed. just the same way one notices it's time to change razor blades, i guess, and i also guess that if people send their razors out for honing, they must have at least two of them

    8. over and out
     
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2012
  9. Krodor

    Krodor Contributor

    You got it. Two razors...one with fresh hone-job, the other in use. When it feels not right, give the fresh blade a try. If a noticeable difference, it's time to touch up the user-blade....plus it's a good excuse to get more than one straight!
     
  10. 1. i was going to take a day (or more) off from shaving. instead, this afternoon, i decided to explore just shaving the jawline with the straight.

    2. with a straight, prep seems more important, or put another way, maybe DE shaving is more forgiving of hasty prep. i lathered with proraso aloe/green tea, which i haven't used for a couple of years, but it was sitting there and i thought why not. it lathered up nicely, moister than other soaps and soft soaps i've been using, but what i mostly noticed was how quickly it got cold on my face. during the shave i kept thinking "where did i put my scuttle?"

    3. explored the jaw line, then explored further.... a little around the mouth, the cheeks, the left side of the neck. somehow looking at the right side of the neck in the mirror made me think of slashed jugulars so i skipped it.

    4. did not complete the shave with a DE. thus i can easily tell what kind of a shave i got in the areas where i did shave, by comparing to where i didn't. i was telling my brother, also a DE shaver, that there is a perception that straight shaving is closer shaving. whether or not that's true, it certainly seems like more meaningful shaving!

    5. have to go back and look at some video to see how to approach the chin.

    6. still wonder if i have a sharp razor or have i already stropped away some of its sharpness?

    7. thanks fellow B&Bers. over and out...
     
  11. Sounds Great Ed, chances are the blade is just fine, I think if you were to look at all of the shave journals, everyone seems to think the blade is just not sharp enough. Sure happened to me that way, not saying it isn't but the likely culprit is just technique, Flatten that blade more and things will ease up a bit, it took a long time for me to get that through my thick skull but in the end it was the catalyst for me. That and a bunch more stuff anyways. Welcome to the madness and stay with it, tomorrow will be better, and the next even more so. Good luck and stay safe.

    Ian
     
  12. 1. Took the advice of doing no DE touchups. Decided I'd scrape away at the whole face today and whatever doesn't get shaven stays there.

    2. Kept the blade angle as flat as possible on all parts of the face. Tried to remember that no matter how comfortable it may feel in the hand to go in a certain direction, the WTG direction is the way to go.

    3. As usual with the straight, the lather seems too thick. Often stopped to add water to lather.

    4. Spent a relatively long time on this shave, trying for neck, jaw, chin, just everywhere.

    5. Hardest spot: chin. I mean that chin is a continuous curve, there isn't 3 mm of plane there. Fact is, I always had a hard time shaving chin, even with DE.

    6. Most dangerous spot: upper lip. Getting the blade to the skin to begin the stroke seems like the trickiest part, i.e., once the blade is on the skin it's easier. For two days in a row my approach of the blade to the upper lip has been at too great an angle, causing a minute skin break as the blade touches the skin. Gotta watch that.

    7. Most scary part? Right side of the neck. I'm a pencil-necked geek and when that chin is tilted back and up and the neck stretched out, I can see the big blood vessel prominently.

    8. Ambidextrous shaving? I did use my left hand for the left side, but then sometimes during the lengthy shave I would use my right hand. E.g., using the right hand on the left side of the neck seemed to work pretty well. Maybe the left hand will work well for right side of neck?

    9. Pretty darned erratic shave. Skin feels a little sore for the first time in years! I guess all that scraping... :lemo:

    10. Over and out...
     
  13. Ed it sounds like you are exactly on track, don't sweat the razor burn it will subside in a short while,it was the starting with straights that eventually got me to give balms a shot, wish i would have started that years ago. All of the things you are experiencing would mirror nearly all who have started this discipline. I know what you are saying about the lather, I eventually got mine down to the point where it nearly drips off of my face and if it does Meh, You are definitely on the right track here though as that thin lather is a big help. Great job anyway and now you have one more under your belt. Gonna take time thats all.

    Ian
     
  14. Yeah!
     
  15. there is a difference between sending it out for a rehone and refreshing the edge... i think having 2 isn't strictly for that moment when one is out. it certainly makes it easier, but if you switch off every couple of days, you'll "prolong" the time needed to rehone an edge..
     
  16. hmmm, jon.... i'm not sure of the difference between a rehone and a refresh.
     
  17. A rehone would involve resetting the bevel of the blade and totally rebuilding the edge. A refresh would just be taking a few laps on a high grit stone like a cnat or coticule to repolish the edge and bring back the keenness.



    Jim
     
  18. Gotcha, Jim, thanks. Is a refresh something that a newbie might try? And, if worse came to worse, then send it off to a pro?
     
  19. In my opinion, I would say a newbie could give a refresh a shot. Depending on what your using, it's pretty simple. What type of honing equipment, if any, do you have?
     
  20. I've got nothing but one razor and a 2" strop, Jim.
     

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