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ATT Calypso S1...A Differing Opinion

So, this is a review that should have been done a while ago. Background info is my neck skin is extremely sensitive to shaving (not shave products, only the act of shaving), so I scoured the internet looking for answers. Originally had a Merkur 34C but had Voskhod blades that weren't the best. Of course, I delved into buying new razors instead of new blades cause I thought all blades were the same at the time. I got a Merkur 37C slant, much better results, closer shaves, and not aggressive on my skin at all. Still some irritation in a few spots, however, and I decided to buy the "holy grail of slants".....the ATT S1. I'll be honest, presentation was amazing. The razor had a premium feel, and was very grippy in soapy water. You definitely get the feeling of "wow, why can't everything feel this nice in your hand?". I loaded up a Rapira Super Stainless and began to shave. I was in England at the time with extremely heavy water and had a hard time lathering my Stirling, which I'm sure played a huge part in this. BLAZING RED SKIN ALL OVER MY NECK. And man did it sting when I used the alum. I had used pressure since I wasn't used to the weight. Eventually, I got better with using no pressure, but I would still get redness in my problem areas. I came back to the USA where the water isn't as hard in my city and the Stirling was much better with the water. Also, synthetic brushes are better for lathering than boar brushes when it comes to hard water (review on that later!) I had perfected my lather, bought new blades that were Rapira Platinum Lux, showered beforehand and used Proraso pre shave. Shave was going great on my face and cheeks, super smooth riding the cap and took away a lot of hair growth. I remembered my neck was next to be shaved, and I've never focused while shaving this much as I used no pressure (sometimes not even making skin contact and gliding through lather as a result of trying to maintain no pressure), finished my neck up and washed away the soap to see......redness and irritation! So what does this mean for me? A failure to perform and me stuck with a beautiful razor that I can't shave with. :o10:

Shaving is a tricky skill to learn when your skin is so sensitive and honestly, it propelled me into the world of vintage razors (another review on those too!) If anyone has any tips for this razor, I'd still like to hear them. I currently use a Gillette Tech and it's brilliant with Platinum Lux blades and Wilkinson Sword blades too!
 
Here's my two cents worth. I have the same razor and a sensitive neck as well. I use the Astra blades that came with the razor. I find them to be a nice mild cutting blade but still effective. I also would suggest holding your razor with three fingers like a dart. This helps to eliminate the pressure you are putting on your skin even more. Let the razor do the work. No pressure just gliding. For the last pass, if you don't already squeeze your knot to remove the best and slickest lather for your neck. I do this with my third pass which is an against the grain pass. Lastly, I use a mild aftershave cream with no alcohol such as Nivea post shave balm for sensitive skin (white bottle). Great product, inexpensive and is available at Walmart and other stores. I never use an alum block, to hard on my skin. I can use my S1 as easily as my vintage Super Speed. Hope this helps.
 
It's tough to beat a good old Gillette tech. It's possible your ATT is just too aggressive for your skin type.
 
Here's my two cents worth. I have the same razor and a sensitive neck as well. I use the Astra blades that came with the razor. I find them to be a nice mild cutting blade but still effective. I also would suggest holding your razor with three fingers like a dart. This helps to eliminate the pressure you are putting on your skin even more. Let the razor do the work. No pressure just gliding. For the last pass, if you don't already squeeze your knot to remove the best and slickest lather for your neck. I do this with my third pass which is an against the grain pass. Lastly, I use a mild aftershave cream with no alcohol such as Nivea post shave balm for sensitive skin (white bottle). Great product, inexpensive and is available at Walmart and other stores. I never use an alum block, to hard on my skin. I can use my S1 as easily as my vintage Super Speed. Hope this helps.
Yeah, I went through shaving with the thing for about a month. It was really chewing up my skin no matter the blade type I used. I use B&M, Stirling Soaps, Speick, Tabac, and Soap Commander to see if the lather made a difference (Speick and Tabac did better in my water because of the Tetrasodium EDTA, but I was also using a boar brush at the time) and it didn't. It truly is just too aggressive for my skin, which is a shame since it's so pretty!
 
Usually, it is a technique issue that gives rise to problems a new shaver is having. Putting too much pressure on your razor will result in cuts, nicks, and irritation. Let the weight of the razor do the work for you. I find that using the correct grip can make a big difference. I use two fingers and my thumb to hold the razor with another finger resting on the tip of the handle. This results in holding the razor very lightly with no pressure on the razor. You want to hold the razor as lightly as you can so that it stays on your face and without it falling from your hand. The wiki deals with holding a razor and may help you.



Finally, look here for blade angle.
 
Usually, it is a technique issue that gives rise to problems a new shaver is having. Putting too much pressure on your razor will result in cuts, nicks, and irritation. Let the weight of the razor do the work for you. I find that using the correct grip can make a big difference. I use two fingers and my thumb to hold the razor with another finger resting on the tip of the handle. This results in holding the razor very lightly with no pressure on the razor. You want to hold the razor as lightly as you can so that it stays on your face and without it falling from your hand. The wiki deals with holding a razor and may help you.



Finally, look here for blade angle.
Thank you for the article, it never hurts to reread it occasionally. I should have prefaced my initial post with that I now shave with a Gillette Tech and my shaves have never been better. Simply an aggression issue, as a Gillette Pre war and Post war both work great for me.
 
The Tech is very light so razor apply little pressure while S1 is stainless steel and much more heavy so I would recommend you to try lighter titanium handle. Timeless makes one and you can either get it from them directly or few online stores such as Maggard for example. Also there are 2 well-known Russian sellers on Ebay who can make you custom lengths handles
 
Pressure aside the Calypso has a healthy blade exposure, i.e. 1.5mm which may be causing the problem.

When I had my M2 Calypso it delivered close shaves but irritation used daily, no matter how light a touch was used.
 
I was wanting to try the S1, because I wondered if the S2 might not be a little too "toothy" for me. But as it happened, the trade I eventually made was my SE1 for the other guy's S2.

For me, it's the Holy Grail of slant razors: high quality, stainless, open comb, and gives me an excellent shave. While I am not an "A to Z" collector of Above the Tie's work, I have S, SE and G models and am finding love for all of them.

Like others, for me it's technique. It changes as we learn and as we try different razors. One thing I do with a razor that doesn't give me satisfaction at first is to put it away for a month or so, then when I pull it out again do that on a day when I can spend a little extra time on prep and technique. Often I find things get better when I do that.

O.H.
 
1. The S1 really is a reduction razor. After the first pass, I always have remaining stubble in all directions. Then after the second pass most is gone, and after pass three smooth as can be. Don’t try to make sure you can’t notice growth in the direction of you shavingpass after said pass. That will lead to pressure, and to mowing over the same spot too often.
2. Try shaving before your shower, and shave with cold water.
 
Should have clarified, my ATT S1 is aluminum. I do not really like the light weight of it, and I never got it to agree with my skin. I have been wetshaving for over 1.5 years now, and know that my skin just doesn't agree with some razors. Of course, I am sure some of my initial issues with it are that I didn't have a good lather with my Fen water in the UK, but I honestly think I should have went with an M1 instead. Also note is that I tried shaving before showers, cold water shaves before showers, hot water shaves after showers, and cold water shaving after showers too. The full shebang! Still didn't work. My Gillette Techs serve me with amazing shaves with no irritation, so I have no qualms there. Different skin reacts to different razors.
 
A! But there I can join you. I do not like the aluminium S1 at all. It is too rough on my skin. The SS one I like a lot better. This surprised me very much, as the geometry is the same, and as I use a lot of lightweight plastic and bakelite razors, I wouldn't think its lack of weight is a problem for me.
 

Chan Eil Whiskers

Fumbling about.
Should have clarified, my ATT S1 is aluminum. I do not really like the light weight of it, and I never got it to agree with my skin. I have been wetshaving for over 1.5 years now, and know that my skin just doesn't agree with some razors. Of course, I am sure some of my initial issues with it are that I didn't have a good lather with my Fen water in the UK, but I honestly think I should have went with an M1 instead. Also note is that I tried shaving before showers, cold water shaves before showers, hot water shaves after showers, and cold water shaving after showers too. The full shebang! Still didn't work. My Gillette Techs serve me with amazing shaves with no irritation, so I have no qualms there. Different skin reacts to different razors.
Very interesting. SS not the same as aluminum in this kit even though the geometry is the same.

A! But there I can join you. I do not like the aluminum S1 at all. It is too rough on my skin. The SS one I like a lot better. This surprised me very much, as the geometry is the same, and as I use a lot of lightweight plastic and bakelite razors, I wouldn't think its lack of weight is a problem for me.
If possible would you measure with calipers the diameter of the aluminum handle and tell me what it is?

Many thanks and happy shaves,

Jim
 
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