What's new

B&B Radio's Pre-Shave Product discussion

"Fact, Fiction, or Marketing Hype"? For me, it's "marketing hype". I've used pre-shave oil before, and I could not discern any benefit. As a matter-of-fact, it just gunks up my brushes. IME, it defeats the whole purpose of a brush and shaving soap - lifting and hydrating whiskers. If there is a layer of oil, then the brush and soap seem to be deprived of their ability to do their job effectively.

However, I do think that certain pre-shave products can be used effectively to thoroughly clean one's mug if washed off completely, prior to applying the shaving soap.

YMMV, of course! It's all good. :thumbup1:
Also in a warped sense of Humor anyone who comments will be entered into a PIF to win a pre-shave product, LOL

A puck of Willie's!? I'm in!! =) While I don't specifically use William's as a pre-shave,I will brush scrub some of the soap I'm using on any given day on my face while I'm working up the lather. =)
I will have to check out the Williams approach...never thought of that.

Okay, so here is my two cents...and it's a big two cents. I have used several different Pre-Shave "Oils" (PSO). I like some and others I absolutely hate. I pretty much dislike anything with castor oil in it...way to thick, doesn't absorb into my skin very well, and really doesn't do anything for me. I have used some PSOs from manufacturers and some that I have made on my own. There are some good ones out there.

I don't use PSOs for added slickness or another in shave quality...I use it for my skin and whisker conditioning. The PSOs I tend to like will absorb into my skin almost entirlely by the time I shave. Right now I am going back and forth between a PSO made by The Grooming Lounge with a little extra added glycerin, and just plain glycerine and a drop or two of Jojoba oil. These seem to work about the same for me. Some other PSOs I have made, I use from time to time (because I don't want to waste them), but most leave a sticky/greasy residue on my hands and in my bowl.

So by using these PSOs, my face feels very moisturized and supple. I do have to agree with the comment above that PSOs work differently for different people. I do extensive prep for my shave and I think everything contributes to my great morning shaves. I have to say, I will not shave without showering first. I also have a very thick and coarse beard (yeah I know every one says this...but I really do), but I have very normal skin. It's not dry, nor is it oily...it's Goldie Locks...just right.

I first shower and in the shower, I do my shower things. Just before I get out, I will wash my face again with a glycerin soap. I leave the lather sit on my face while I stretch my legs (yes I do a quick stretch of my calves...plantar fasciitis really sucks), and then rinse. Once I get out of the shower I put a PSO on and go fix my coffee and give the dog a scratch behind her ears. By this time there is almost no PSO left on my face...it has all absorbed in. Then I go about my normal shave routine.

When I don't use a PSO for whatever reason...I definitely can tell a difference. Also, I pretty much think that straight up glycerin might really be all you need for a PSO. I know this is long, so i apologize.

I hope this clear things up...because, you know...my word is rule...right? :thumbup:
I've tried a pre-shave oil and it didn't make that much of a difference for me at all so I dropped it out of the routine. It was nice and all, but I've found that if I just get a good lather going, I get great shaves in the end.

Although, I may have to try the rubbing a puck of Williams on my face first. A presoaping before working up the lather may just make the lather that much better.
Gentlemen Due to time Contraints the Discussion of Pre-shave Methods and products will be held off until the next show, so pleae keep the comments coming as we wanted to ensure we had a good cross-section of opinions. Please look for the merged thread
B&B Radio's Pre-shave discussion

My two cents or from the length of this post, my $10!

Pre-shave oil is one of those things that is an individual thing. Some on B&B think it is a waste of time while others think it helped them get a better shave. Some say it clogs their razor and ruins brushes and some say it does no such thing. Pre-shave oil is one of those things that brings out controversy - almost as much as honing techniques or whether alum is needed!

When I first started shaving in the 1950s my teenage skin was very sensitive but I had a wiry beard. The result was irritation after I shaved, particularly on my neck.

The barber I went to, Sal, gave many straight shaves to his customers. I noticed he had an elaborate procedure in which he massaged some cream onto the face of the men being shaved and then put a hot towel on their face and neck. Next, he would take the towel, dip it in warm water and take off any of the remaining cream he had applied and then wet the customers face and neck. Next, he took a substance in a bottle and would apply that to the individual's face and neck, apply lather, and shave.

I told Sal my woe of irritation and he gave me a sample bottle of this mysterious substance, which turned out to be a pre-shave oil used by some barbers. He instructed me on how to apply it: wet my face and rub a few drops of the oil onto my beard before lathering. For the first time, I was able to get irritation-free shaves. It may have been that my technique was not the best but I am reasonably certain my lathering and shaving skills did not develop overnight. Sal ordered a large bottle of PSO and that lasted for many years. Eventually, I ran out of the oil Sal gave me and I began to use other products including the PSO made by T&H. Later, I made my own. Eventually, I did not use it all the time but when I had to shave twice a day I did use it.

As I got older a lot of things changed. [One thing that hasn't changed is that I usually shave and then shower.] First, my skin is not as sensitive as when I was a teenager. When I was younger if I put a finger on my neck a red mark would be there for several minutes. Second, my technique changed in many respects. I now use a 4 pass shave instead of 2. Not putting undue pressure on the razor has become second nature to me. I now wet my face in between passes and I use a wetter brush when loading the soap. Unlike in my teenage years, now I do not see much of a difference in shaving with pre-shave oil. However, after I shave I do feel a difference on my face. For some reason, the skin on my face feels smoother when I use PSO.

So, in summary, I don't think there is an easy answer on PSO. For some, it may be a benefit. For others, it is not necessary. So my definitive answer is that "it depend on the individual."
Thanks Jim, That was Awesome, Do you mind if I read that entry on air?

and thank to everyone else so far that has commented!
Top Bottom