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Are you a common man shaver or a niche shaver?

lancre

Contributor
I'm in the niche of common man shavers. Nothing in the definitions of these words implies they are opposites.
+1

Except that once I set the razor down, I am a most uncommon man.
 
I really like this question and the way it's posited. i sit here trying to compose some sort of thoughtful, worthwhile response yet my synapses seem to fail me. i think what appeals to me most is the timeless aristocrat/pleb issue--not quite the 'haves' and 'have-nots'.

History is rife with examples, not the least of which is our own (American). The Founding Fathers all were aristocratic despite how well spun our school history and social studies textbooks were. They believed the common man, the poor laborer wasn't properly educated enough or experienced enough--certainly not wealthy enough--to properly understand, much less exercise, their voting power. The monarchical context of the word 'subject' illustrates the disdain the upper crust had for the broader masses.

I'm not entirely sure there is any such implication of snobbery where our hobby is concerned--not that I believe the OP intended nor implicitly stated such. But it is certainly within human nature to at least feel a bit more special if you get to use a high end/more expensive product, a little grander or slightly superior to shop at Whole Foods than Kroger/Walmart (though I am very reticent to shop at WF--I have a certain fondness for my money).

If anything, there's a certain tendency to fetishize blue collar and working class tastes. Aqua Velva or Old Spice being perfect examples. Or the seeming neverending obsessions with Williams Mug Soap. It's especially evident how people approach these products with unduly high expectations.

I love Old Spice (in any form) but the mystique with which some people approach debates about "vintage" formulas... you'ld think they were talking about Creed or Penhaligons and not drugstore toiletries.
 
Id say that Im somewhere in the middle. I enjoy some of the artisan stuff: Timeless razor, mostly artisan soaps but I do enjoy the common man stuff too: Omega and Semogue boar brushes, drug store aftershave (Aqua Velva or Skin Bracer) and I will buy VDH or Arko if there arent any current artisan soaps that Im interested in.
 
Id say that Im somewhere in the middle. I enjoy some of the artisan stuff: Timeless razor, mostly artisan soaps but I do enjoy the common man stuff too: Omega and Semogue boar brushes, drug store aftershave (Aqua Velva or Skin Bracer) and I will buy VDH or Arko if there arent any current artisan soaps that Im interested in.
I agree with this. Upon further reflection I find that I'm drawn toward artisan soaps, and a razor double in cost of what I thought was reasonable 10 years ago. But I use a boar brush and a cracked bowl from the kitchen for lathering. I have the need to rationalize, only way I can justify a "good"razor.
 
Shaving, as I believe Gillette himself said, was the one thing linking common working men with the working men who sat in an office and told the actual men who worked in factories what to do.

That theme was used in MANY of Gillettes pre 1940 advertisements. Some as simple as a "suit worker" standing in a subway bathroom getting loaned a Gillette razor or blade from an actual working man. Believe one phrase was "the one thing that links all men together, a good shave from a Gillette razor and blade".

As far as modern world goes, there is indeed a massive amount of self inflicted pretentious behavior in shaving. Especially the manufacturing and advertising end. Everyone remember the idiot guy in the yachting cap who had hundreds of fake facebook accounts being used to fluff his online image and his online commentary about wetshaving...

Last I remember of him, he had a company make a couple out of production razors in plastic and ended up being popular with a web cast and a couple of national level shave conventions.

Shaving is a very common thing, and a lot of people NEED to create self important about the things they shave with in order to feel better then everyone else. Its not a "oh I have better equipment" but a case of "im more important then you are because I just bought 10 different shave soaps this week that cost 30 dollars each, and bought 5 razors that cost 3-500$ each this week"
 
I am both in regard to fragrances..I have "English Leather" and "Brut" sitting next to "Dior Sauvage" and "Chanel Blue". However, I am probably more Common Man when it comes to razors and soaps. They are mostly inexpensive Gillette varieties bought off Ebay. No artisan pieces. Same with soaps. Mostly Drugstore aerosol shaving creams and some inexpensive shaving soaps that I only use occasionally. No pre-treatments.
 
I am not rich, far of that. Put I am a passionate person. I use proraso green, clubman, and medium quality foam, and soap. But I have invest in good quality razors. Shaving was a contraint for me before, and I had turn it in a full pleasure. Is there passion cheaper than other. Imho
 
Common man here, I think, but always searching for the perfect razor with the least problems for my easily pore blocked skin. All those cartridge years with ingrown and picking them out with tweezers. Something that doesn't do it too close or not too close seems to be perfect. And that best shave for me. Very hard to achieve, very hard to find that perfect razor. That's with Every single razor so far and that includes about everything over 50+ years. All seem to be a compromise. Some better than others. Everyone settles with some settling better than others. TMO!
 
I would say: “Common man with a taste for the finer things.” Got into DE shaving because having a beard for years made my skin lose it’s toughness. Now that I work for the DoD, shaving 7 days per is a job requirement, as is having good shaving equipment to go on the road with.

Col Conk or whatever will get the job done, but for weekend shaves or any days off, I’m reaching for my Siliski. Merkur 34C for home, Parker A1R for the road. Shark blades (cheap and last a long time).

Also could never resist a good fragrance. Just discovered that Davidoff Cool Water, Polo Red, and Burberry London all come in balms, so there goes another future $60.
 
I can positively say I'll never own a $300 razor. I do enjoy the artisan soaps and the unique and lovely scents that come with them, but as I recently found out, I'm perfectly happy with a stick of arko and an omega brush rather than my black badger and TOBS. It really depends on mood for what I reach for, but a super expensive razor can't out value my tech as far as I'm concerned. There might be a modern one that I'm tempted to pick up that people will tell me will outclass the tech by double for a smooth mild shave with no irritation, and if it's $40-60 so be it.

However I'm not opposed to dropping $20 on an artisan soap that works really nicely and smells amazing to boot, because I know I'd buy 4-5 $3 cans of goo in the same time period. IMO It's a small step up in price for a luxury I'm willing to buy. For others that extends to hundreds of dollars on brushes or razors, but there's people out there with $1500, $2000, even $2500 TV's. To them it's worth it. Will I ever tell someone they're stupid for seeing value in those products? No. Will I ever see the value? Also no.
 
I'm not a minimalist, although I wish I was. I wish I could get rid of things to become a minimalist, but I become much too attached. As far as taste goes, I never buy a soap that is more than 5 dollars. I'm stocked with Arko, Williams, Top Ten, Bozzano, Proraso and MWF. The only soap I can see myself spending more than $5 on is MWF and even then, I don't know if I will, given the amount of soap I have to get through. My razors have almost all been under $50, and only have 1 razor that even reached $50 (used). 2 that were in the $30-40 range. I have 3 under $15. 8 are under $10. More blades than I need, Polsilvers, GSB's, Nacets and some other tucks here and there. I have more brushes than I can ever need for 5 lifetimes, but none of them more expensive than $20.

I think that makes me both, cheap, and a hoarder. And I use the term cheap loosely, because with the money I've spent on quantities of these things, I could've just as likely bought myself a $300 Razor, a $200 brush, and a $40 cream and possibly still had money left over. But I romanticize the 'working man's' gear a bit too much for my own good.
 
I am a bit in both camps, I like Proraso and TOBS Jermyn Street creams which are inexpensive in the UK. I prefer soap and use Tabac and MWF which is very inexpensive here; I grate MWF and add my preferred scent to it. My razors are a mixed bag, I have about a dozen but plan to sell a few. They vary from £5, to £100 which I paid for my Eclipse. They are all user grade and I use them all regularly. My taste in brushes is a bit more expensive with Simpson Manchurian and Semogue LE brushes but most were second hand. My most expensive was a NOS butterscotch Semogue 2016 Foro Afeitado which cost me £150. Again, I plan to sell a few as I have realised that chasing the perfect razor, brush, or shave will not bring me contentment. I am not sure how anyone who purchases 50 or more brushes or razors a year, can possibly be content, or really knows what they are seeking but if it brings them pleasure then that is reason enough. I like vintage Faberge Brut very much and this can get expensive in the UK with a 100ml reaching up towards £50 for the pre Brut 33 version. I am satisfied with what I have now and will only buy if the price is too good to refuse which is seldom if ever.
 
I would say: “Common man with a taste for the finer things.” Got into DE shaving because having a beard for years made my skin lose it’s toughness. Now that I work for the DoD, shaving 7 days per is a job requirement, as is having good shaving equipment to go on the road with.

Col Conk or whatever will get the job done, but for weekend shaves or any days off, I’m reaching for my Siliski. Merkur 34C for home, Parker A1R for the road. Shark blades (cheap and last a long time).

Also could never resist a good fragrance. Just discovered that Davidoff Cool Water, Polo Red, and Burberry London all come in balms, so there goes another future $60.
Can I ask you what Siliski soaps you use? I have Santa’s Pipe and Midnight in Tunisia. I like his soap and both those scents. I own balms in those scents too however I find the balms much too oily or greasy after they are applied. If you apply Siliski Balms how do you find them?
 
Can I ask you what Siliski soaps you use? I have Santa’s Pipe and Midnight in Tunisia. I like his soap and both those scents. I own balms in those scents too however I find the balms much too oily or greasy after they are applied. If you apply Siliski Balms how do you find them?
I have Santa’s Pipe as well! Had it since September and used maybe 1/2 an ounce. Impressive stuff. I don’t use Siliski balms; mainly PDP 63 and a couple of outstanding scents from Bath and Body Works.
 
Common shaver here, for sure. Tabac puck and Palmolive stick; omega boar for 10€ and another locally bought synthetic for 12€; bladea are polsilvers loaded in trusted EJde89; aftershave Nivea sensitive balm and alum block

I have Rockwell 6s on the way and I hope it turns out better than TTO Erbe DE razor bought this weekend for 40€... I got a close shave but it gnawed my neck. Alum stung like a m******** and had to apply balm twice
 
An Omega boar brush, a vintage Gillette Tech, inexpensive blades, Arko soap or Proraso peppered here and there for a basic old school experience for a timeless task.

Those who participate in wet shaving are already defined by being smartly uncommon. Whether one chooses to enjoy the classic experience as basic minimalist or immerse themselves into luxury, wet shaving like anything else in life can find people at all points of the spectrum. Enjoy it, whatever your flavor.
 
Interesting question!

I have a foot in both camps. I enjoy Pinaud clubman, Proraso green, Cella, Chinese blades and my Lord L6.
I also enjoy my 2-band badgers, Wolfman WR1 and MdC!! :a29:
I need to try the special reserve by pinaud
 

Brompton

Contributor
Common man when it comes to razors; I use a super speed most days. But when it comes to soap, I prefer the high end European stuff. I also prefer expensive cologne.
 
An Omega boar brush, a vintage Gillette Tech, inexpensive blades, Arko soap or Proraso peppered here and there for a basic old school experience for a timeless task.

Those who participate in wet shaving are already defined by being smartly uncommon. Whether one chooses to enjoy the classic experience as basic minimalist or immerse themselves into luxury, wet shaving like anything else in life can find people at all points of the spectrum. Enjoy it, whatever your flavor.
+1
 
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