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Beginning to end - my DE journey and search for a RFL

After nearly 30 years of cartridge shaving, a misguided shopping trip for a bearded friend resulted in me being the owner of a KCG safety razor.
Not one to let an oppotunity pass I looked into whether anyone still uses safety razors to shave with and here I am taking my first steps down the rabbit hole.

I am very new to this having only been shaving with a safety razor for nearly two weeks. I was not going to start a journal but I have followed the advice of the forums and recently purchased a blade sample pack to see if there was any difference to the different baldes. I am now on to my third blade and thought given my advancing years it would be good to have a permanent record of the journey.

So my initial DE shaving was with the KCG razor and one of the KCG blades that it came with. Being new to the whole game I was not sure what to expect. The first day was a bit scratchy but the next was not too bad and whether it was technique or blade was feeling better smooth, not pulling but with blade noise on the stubble. By day five it was feeling less smooth so I switched to my first sample blade, a Muhle.

I was not expecting much as most posts do not rate these blades but the shave was smooth. Very smooth and little stubble noise. It was so smooth and the reviews that this balde was not sharp made me think it may not be cutting. However after the shave was finished, it was a DFS. The blade remained smooth for another coulple of days and after 4 shaves I was getting more feedback and noise on the blade. Overall a great little blade.

Today I started the next blade in my pack (moving in order of sharpness or that is what I am lead to believe anyway). The next blade is a Parker in a black packet. First comments is that the blade was nearly impossible to get out of the little black plastic thing. A similar design to the Muhle which you could just slide a blade out of, but the Parker appears to have wrapped their blades in paper wider than the plastic container. Anyway this has no effect on the shaving experience.

The shave was okay, the blade felt smooth, not as smooth as the Muhle, but smooth and less ragged than the KCG and my alum feedback at the end was higher than I had for the Muhle shaves so I was expecting a DFS. It was close but the shave does not feel as close as previous shaves I have had. Still well above a SAS but not as smooth, still a very slight stubble feel that I didn't have on the Muhle or on the good KCG shaves.

I will keep using the blade, usually get four good shaves per blade so far so will see how it goes. It may improve after the first shave.

Other than the initial two KCG shaves all shaves have been with the KCG razor using Tabac shaving soap applied with a Frank Shaving synthetic brush. Shave prep is a hot shower and splashing more hot water on face prior to shaving soap.
Good luck with your shaves Brother @PersistentlyBlunt!

You are on the right track.

This is a classic beginner's guide from a respected member. It helped me greatly!
The Wanderer's Guide To DE Shaving - https://www.badgerandblade.com/forum/threads/the-wanderers-guide-to-de-shaving.532194/
Thank you Alum Ladd,

I have read that post and it is most useful. I know it has been said many times before but the experience of shaving with a brush and DE razor is great and I can't believe it has taken me so long to get here. I look forward to the journey ahead.
Thank you for sharing your journey, @PersistentlyBlunt

The guide @Alum Ladd shared with you is excellent. Every bad shave I have neglects the helpful advice of @AimlessWanderer
Thank you @thombrogan, I agree, I read the post by @AimlessWanderer and found the peice about razor angle and blade obvious but something I had not properly considered, it immediately improved my shaving.

I will certainly keep cycling back to remind myself what I have forgotten or do not yet know or appreciate.

So much good information on this forum and experience. Thanks.
Today was day two on the Parker blade. The blade felt smoother than yesterday and was overall a comfortable shave. I noticed a lot of blade noise when slicing the stubble. I have assumed this is a bad thing but I have read others who consider this to be good.

It does help to have audible feedback to know when you are cutting but should a good razor/blade combination be able to be heard when cutting through the stubble or should it be quieter?

The final result was good maybe just a DFS but again doesn't feel like it is getting as close as the other blades. Alum feedback was not too bad only a couple of stings. I have been doing a two pass shave WTG and XTG.
So in the past few days I have completed days three and four with the Parker. The Parker razor was an enigma for me, it never really felt right and I was back to at least 3 knicks a shave while using it. Something I had not had for a period of time. Just when I was thinking of swearing to never use them again the final day four shave was one out of the bag, a very close shave but still one bleeder. I think that given the amount of skin lost over the trial they are not for me but not as bad as I was initially beginning to believe. The three prior shaves had felt close while shaving (including cuts) but never really lived up to the promise after wash up. The final parker shave was with two days growth which may have been why there were fewer cuts and a better shave inlcuding the odd BBS patch. The nice final shave has probably moved these from find them another home to keep incase I run out at a future time but will not be my daily shave at this point.

Today was the first day on the Lilvio Eco-Friendly Products blades that I got in a sampler. I had one and a half days growth today so a bit longer than normal but the Lilvio felt like it was pulling hair from the start. Not out by the roots, but more than I have had before. No cuts but alum feedback told me I got pretty close in places. The blade continued to feel like it was pulling but the final result was close to a DFS. I will still give it the four days but despite the result does not feel like a smooth shaving blade at the moment.
Day 2 with the Lilvio was an interesting one, the pulling was not as bad, although I only had one day of growth so that may have been a factor. The blade still had more noise and feedback than I have had previously. The shave was overall a DFS with alum feedback almost non-existant. The experience was much smoother but still not as smooth as the first few Muhle blade runs.

I think the one factor today was an improvement in technique. I am finding a better first and second pass standard path across my face. I also moved from soap-bowl/face lathering to bowl lathering today and the lather was better than I have had before.

Overall the shave was better than I expected and the blades in my mind have gone from bad to alright but still not the smoothest blade I have had in my short shaving career. Will see what day 3 and 4 bring.
So today was a bit confusing. Day 3 with the Lilvio and from the beginning it was horrible. Back to pulling and the balde generaly felt blunt. After the first couple of strokes I knew this would be the last time I would be using a Lilvio blade.

However, after wash up the shave felt really close. Alum feedback was considerable meaning I had gotten pretty close (no cuts or claret) but a very close shave almost a BBS, not quite but nearly. This didn't change how I felt about the blade as it still felt blunt throughout the shave but a surprising finish.

I think this result must be because of an improvement in technique. Bowl lathered again today and after some reviews used a wetter lather as well. This and a better pattern for my shave I think is the reason for the results because if shaving with what feels like a blunt razor is the answer to a good shave, I may need to rethink this hobby. Or maybe the shaving gods are laughing at me and my choice of username...

First blade to not make it to four days Lilvio.

Next blade 'The Royal Stallion' sounds impressive at least. Have a good day all.


Lounging On The Isle Of Tugsley.
Next blade 'The Royal Stallion' sounds impressive at least.

Most excellent!
Well the next blade out of the stable was 'The Royal Stallion'.

I had no idea what to expect from this blade as all of my research on the Google machine gave me no history, sharpness or origin for these blades.

The blades had a premium feel with a double wrapping on each blade, premium or wasteful, either way.

The initial feel was a bit like the Muhle as it started very smooth and I thought this could be a nice blade. Then, despite my growth only being one day, I had a bit of pulling and drag through the stubble. The blade felt very mild throughout the shave and I had no cuts or burn, just a bit of pulling on the stubble. Alum feedback was nonexistant. The final result was a good shave possibly a DFS.

For a first shave it was okay, concerned about the pulling and suspect it won't make the full four days if it is already pulling but I am willing to see how it goes. Compared to other blades (except the Muhle) it was smooth for a first day shave, I have found so far that the first day is a bit rough (ragged) before the blade settles in on day 2 onward.

I only have the KCG razor so can't try this on anything more aggressive.

Final words, more of a mild Stallion than a wild Stallion and smooth but without the kick of the Muhle.

Wild Horses.jpg
Day 2 with the Royal Stallion.

A very smooth shave, blade is very mild in the KCG razor. There was blade noise but did not feel like it was pulling as much as day 1.

Shaving around the top and bottom lips WTG and XTG felt very safe and no fear of nicks. Alum feedback was minimal with only a couple of areas indicating any overzealous shaving.

Final result was a near DFS, a very safe and comfortable shave.
Royal Stallion day 3.

Not much to report that is different to yesterday, a smooth and very safe shave. No nicks and alum feedback was clear.

There was very little feedback from the blade.

The end result was a DFS +, a very smooth shave and probably close to one of the best shaves I have ever had, certainly the best DE shave I have had and almost a BBS.

Nice blade that I can't fault at the moment other than low feedback can sometimes make me wonder if it is doing anything but clearly it was, on to day 4.
Day 4 of the Royal Stallion.

Another nice shave today, good lather from the Tabac and made the two pass shave very easy. Was a bit concerned that the first couple of strokes felt a bit tuggy but the remainder of the shave was smooth. There was little blade noise mostly which again given the tugging and day 4 shave I was concerned there may be less cutting but the final result was DFS+ and if I had done a third ATG pass would likely have been BBS.

I did carelessly take the top off of a long present lump on my chin causing blood loss, but this was entirely my fault. Perhaps one issue with having a mild safe blade in a mild razor you forget you are dealing with something that can easily take thin slices off your face.

Alum feedback was again minimal, except for the now shorter lump on my chin.

Inspired or corrupted by this forum I am now also using Thayers unscented witchhazel and Tabac aftershave as a post shave routine. I never previously had any post shave routine other than drying my face. Now it is alum, witchhazel and aftershave.:oops:

The Royal Stallion has been a good blade, I will definitely be keeping it in the stable for now and not sending it to the glue factory just yet.

Tomorrow I will be shaving 'Like a Tiger' with the Tiger Platinum premium stainless blades.

Happy shaving all.
So today was the first day with the Tiger Platinum stainless blades.

Initial feel of the balde was that it was a bit pulling and there was significant balde feedback and noise. Hopefully this will settle down after day 1. The blade felt fairly mild and the shave overall was uneventful. Alum feedback was non-existant and similarly no stinging was felt with aftershave.

On initial wash up the shave felt okay but after drying there were still a few patches of SAS but stubble feel all the same. This may be my technique and concern about not beheading the same lump on my chin for the second day in a row, but given my previous shaves have been consistently good and my pattern is now settled it could also be the blade.

On a side note have been really happy with the lather from the Tabac, have been bowl lathering and adding small amounts of water at least a couple of times during the lathering process, this has given me a consistently good lather. I am still only doing two passes, WTG all over, XTG on the face and ATG under the jawline. I still generally have enough lather for at least two more passes but not enough time on the week days, perhaps this weekend I will go for a BBS 4 pass shave. :001_unsur

I will see how it all goes tomorrow hopefully like many blades day 2 onwards is better than day 1.

Happy shaves all.

Razor - King C Gillette
Blade - Tiger Platinum
Soap - Tabac Original
Brush - Frank Shaving Synthetic
Bowl - $2 soup mug from Woolworths
After - Parkers alum block, Thayers unscented with WH and Tabac Original aftershave.

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