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Am I an exception? (immunity related)

Just about two months into DE shaving now and am really pleased with my progress and more importantly, the results = DFS, close to BBS most days.

I usually check the B&B daily to read what's going on. I always click on posts that have pics of shaving dens or equipment found at antique stores or flea markets. I've read a bunch of reviews on all the products available.

However, I think I'm immune to the majority of the "xxAD's".

I have one DE razor (EJ DE87) that I really like.
I have one brush and bowl (CVS branded Van der Hagen kit)
I bought a puck of Williams soap and have the soap that came from the CVS kit.

I have bought the following:
Col Conk Bay Rum
Thayer's witch hazel AS
Brush stand

I enjoyed trying different razor blades. So, it's possible I had a minor touch of RBAD. But, I like the Personnas (US) that came with the razor and I tried Wilkinson Sword (Wal-Mart) that were OK. Did not like the Gillette Bleu, really like the Timor. So, considering cost, I'll probably stick with the Personnas.

To be honest, I've pretty much given up on using soaps with the bowl & brush. The Barbasol works fine. I do keep practicing but have not mastered the technique. Perhaps the hard water or my own ineptitude.

So basically, I use one razor, I'll stick with one brand of blade and if I find a soap that works up a lather, I'll stay with that.

What's wrong with me? :blush:

How's this for a lame "den"?
Instead of the hard soaps, why don't you try an inexpensive, readily-available, and easy-to lather cream? You may find that a high-quality lather makes a huge difference in the quality of your shave. You may end up stashing those squirt cans in the back of the closet!

Three that should be easy to find, should be under $10, and give great results are:
  • C.O. Bigelow (rebranded Proraso) - Available at any Bath & Body Works shop...check your local mall.
  • Kiss My Face (KMF) Moisture Shave - Available in many health food/natural products stores...try Whole Foods if one is in your area.
  • Real Shaving Company cream - Sold in Rite-Aid Drug Stores.
I'm still testing but expect to end up with a single razor (and maybe a spare of the same type) sometime next week, one brand of blades and a couple of soaps/AS because I like a bit of variety, smell-wise.

So no, you're not really an exception. However, we're certainly a minority on this board. :biggrin1:
If it works for you, then don't change anything. I have spent a fortune and a lot of time looking for the best, when the cheap stuff I already had is hard to beat. My list is too long to put in a post, yet I go back to my HD, VDH Deluxe, Astra blade, skin food and an Omega brush. If you get good consistant results, you found your groove. Other then a blade sample pack, you have a good set up.
In the end it is just the mundane act of shaving.

As long as you are getting good results then by all means stick to what you use.

As far as the soap goes, lot's of people don't like William's, but you should be able to get a good lather with the Arko.
It's just something fun to rap about, that's all. It's a hobby that while it may have it's expensive things, a whole lot more of the things are pretty cheap, and it's a hobby that rewards patience, because you never know what's on the shelf at the next weird little store you step into.

I mean seriously, where else could you find a bunch of guys to celebrate the mid-70's Avon decanter you just picked up at Goodwill? This is truly benign good stuff. And if you've found your perfect BBS, I, for one, salute you sir.
I went for a long time without succumbing to too many ADs. I did start ordering razor sample packs from the get-go, they are all cheap and I had to buy blades anyway.

I think that the ADs come in waves, you experience your first when you get your first DE. After that there is a lull while you familiarize yourself with your new routine and work on technique. Then after a few months have gone by, you find yourself sitting in front of the computer with no real desire to purchase anything, that's when a hot flash comes over you. Then you blackout, the next morning you wake up and remember nothing, but you keep getting these packages in the mail. :thumbup::thumbup: You gather yourself and find room for the new acquisitions, then hope wave three is gentle and wait .... :001_huh:
I plan on trying the cream as my luck with soap has been poor.

And, when following my wife around flea markets and junk shops, I do find myself looking for razors (which I never did before). In fact, not far from me is an antique "mall" and one of the stalls has an old (probably mid-60's vintage) Gillette display case like what would be used in a barber shop.

I just can't pull the trigger on any new purchases right now.........but it looks like I may be doomed in any case!
Nothing at all wrong with you. You AD is in full remission right now. Unfortunately it is not cured as I am sure you will come to realize in time.:001_smile
Nothing at all wrong with you. You AD is in full remission right now. Unfortunately it is not cured as I am sure you will come to realize in time.:001_smile

+ many,many,many here. I like to think mine are taken care of, or over, but they rear their ugly head from time to time. :thumbdown Good luck in the future. :scared:
Give it time.. The longer you are here the more tempting it will be to try "those" products that are being talked about in threads....
I'd go with a better brush. I used a VDH boar for about three years with Surrey and VDH soaps. Then my wife got me an EJ Best Badger. I didn't realize how much different the brushes were until I went back to the VDH boar. It just doesn't generate the same amount of lather. It doesn't hold as much lather. Therefore, you don't get an effective amount of lather transferred to your face. I wouldn't necessarily recommend the EJ Best, but there are much better brushes out there for not much more coin, and they will allow you to maximize your soap's lathering potential.
Whatever you're happy with is fine. If you do want to get some use out of those soaps, then without buying another thing, you might do better with face lathering than bowl lathering.

I was going to say this myself. I find face lathering pretty easy with both Omega/Proraso soap and Mitchells Wool Fat. Using a cream will make it even easier still - get your hands on some Proraso cream and give it a shot.

I only have one razor and have settled on my blade of choice only after joining the DE brigade about 5 months ago. My razor is a Muhle R89, which I love and which gives me a great shave. I don't intend to buy another razor because this one is just fine. My only real weakness is that I have discovered the Taylor of Old Bond Street Jermyn Street range which smells great. I now have the shaving cream, aftershave balm and new aftershave lotion. They are also about to release a cologne ... I must be strong and resist ...

If you don't 'need' anything new, be happy with what you have. If it ain't broke, don't fix it!
If it works, don't fix it.

There's nothing wrong with your present set-up, although you are in the minority with your resistance to ADs. By the time I was at the 3 month mark like you are, I had 3 brushes, 3 razors, 2 soaps and 2 creams, and my den has multiplied many times over in the 3 years since I started.

Welcome to B&B, and Happy Shaving!
I agree with those above that say there is nothing wrong with your den, but... give it time.

I started like you but have acquired based on my (perceived) practical "needs".

I have three razors - one to cover multiple-day growth (Slant), one to cover everyday (Progress) and one for travel/fun (Merkur Fakelite). I'm done.

I have three brushes (I face lather) - one for face scrubbing (Shavemac 2-band), one for luxury (Semogue 2010 LE silvertip) and one for travel (Semogue 620 boar). I'm done.

I have stocked on razor blades I like to take advantage of lower unit costs with a bulk buy - 270 Super Iridiums, 100 Astra SPs and 200 Feathers. I'm done for many years.

Soap (perhaps my one weakness) - I have 8 types of soaps because I just love the variety. Never the same soap two days in a row, say I. I may be done for a while... I would say I have a minor case of soap AD, but nothing crazy. My soaps are all relatively inexpensive, but good.

All up my kit is maybe worth $300. But I can amortise that over many, many years.

At the end of the day, YMMV, but it comes down to your own perception of your needs. If you like what you have already, so be it. If you want to experiment more to see "what could be," just do it on your own terms.
Resistance is Futile

Nice starter den.

Your VDH Boar looks nicely broken in, the split hairs are visible in the photo.

A word about AD's. You may be less resistant than you think. I see four different soaps/cremes. Surely you must already be experiencing a little, "hmm, I think that I'll use the Williams today".

If you are going to focus on anything, prep and technique are much more important than building up a collection of different soaps, cremes and brushes.

Being about a year and a half into wet shaving and having kept a pretty minimal den for most of the first year. I have realized that because the basic costs are so low that it's okay to indulge occasionally.

My original soap was VDH. Although I've added some more fragrant soaps, I still keep VDH in my regular rotation.
I have only 2 razors ,2 brushes, 1 soap and 1 cream. I have had this set up for 1 1/2 years and have no desire to add anything. In fact I just PIF,d away my last puck of Tabac (just using VDH and Bigelow cream now). No AD,s for me.
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