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Can I switch to DE after 25 years with an electric? One man's dilemma

Thanks for the welcome and encouragement, gentlemen. You're pushing me even closer than when I wrote all that. At least you're not telling me it's a one-way trip where I would mess up my current endurance/tolerance for the Braun if I needed to come back to it.

And I have a reply from Mantic himself, whom I didn't realize was a "reformed" electric shaver? That seems like a good sign. :thumbup1:

Items sitting in my West Coast Shaving shopping cart (away from that computer right now) if memory serves:

Merkur 34C (big hands, though...maybe I need the longer version?)
one of the larger blade assortment packs...of course, I'll start with the Feathers (just kidding)
Simpson Colonel X2L Best Badger Shaving Brush (I'm probably pushing it buying one at this $64 price point, but I guess I want something better than the most basic while still sane enough to avoid a true premium one)
Proraso Pre & Post Cream, Menthol & Eucalyptus
Proraso Shaving Cream, Sandalwood
Thayer's Witch Hazel (one of the alcohol-free ones)
alum bar
Ogallala Bay Rum Shaving Soap
Col Conk Shaving Soap, Lime
an after shave that escapes me now
okay, I made those last two up

I figured I would try cream and soap for the sake of comparing them. I already bought a big espresso mug for lather use. Even picked up a Wiliams Mug Shaving Soap at the grocery because the scent was familiar to me and it was so cheap.

That's a great kit. I started with a Simpson and a 34C too. You won't be sorry.
It's not rocket science, just remember NO PRESSURE!!!!
A twofold admonition there...no pressure, just enjoy it; no pressure applied to the head of the razor. :laugh:

No one here was born knowing this stuff. And unfortunately there's no longer a "community body of knowledge" in most places in our lives, so this community is a lifeline. No question is too trivial to ask. And the guys who seem to know everything are the most helpful rather than elitist.
I have participated in various forums and this one seems to be a lot more patient with the new people, and less snobby in general. Obviously makes for a welcoming, civil atmosphere.

Having said that, you guys around here apparently won't go more than two syllables on proper nouns before substituting an acronym! Glossary overload at first. :001_smile For some reason, it took me a while to remember TOBS/Taylor of Old Bond Street.

Not sure it's a good idea facilitating SWMBO full access to B&B....:scared::lol:
You make an excellent point. I handed over the iPad rather than sending her a link. She likely wasn't paying enough attention to the site itself to investigate me in the future. :blush: I hope.

Congrats on making the jump. Your shopping cart looked awesome, but I'll advise that you don't expect too much from the Col. Conk Lime soap. It was also one of my firsts, and I had high hopes. It was OK, but not great. If you love lime, I'd suggest Razorock King of the Castle Lime...beautiful lather and scent and a great value. The biggest thing, though, is that you've joined the fold...enjoy yourself, take your time and in short order you'll wonder how you ever managed the old way.
Yeah, I threw in the Conk lime as a low-risk item. I did order a RazoRock, but not lime. That brand seems to have some eclectic offerings, so I imagine I'll try others.

Give it a shot. It's certainly affordable to try. Hopefully someone posted a link to Gary`s Sample Shop for a very inexpensive starter kit.
Two of you have mentioned it now, and I'll have to check that out.

That's a great kit. I started with a Simpson and a 34C too. You won't be sorry.
Okay, here is the actual order versus what I posted before:

Merkur 34C Heavy Duty Safety Razor
Proraso Pre & Post Cream, Menthol & Eucalyptus, 100ml
Proraso Shaving Cream, Sandalwood, 150ml
Shavex Jumbo Alum Block with Plastic Case, 125g
Simpson Colonel X2L Best Badger Shaving Brush (X2L)
Col Conk Shaving Soap, Lime Small 2.25 oz
Ogallala Bay Rum, Limes & Peppercorns Shaving Soap
Ogallala Bay Rum and Orange Shaving Soap
Thayers Alcohol-Free Unscented Witch Hazel w/ Aloe Vera Toner
Taylor of Old Bond Street Shaving Cream Tube, Eton College Collection, 75ml
DE Blade Sampler Pack, Everything
RazoRock Artisan Bee's Knees Shaving Soap, 150ml
Bigelow Shaving Cream

Hopefully no major duds in there. I suppose the most complicated was picking a brush. I opted for cream/soap variety with less expensive items rather than a few true premium ones. If this works out and I'm like any of you, those upgrades will come soon enough. :blink:
I have participated in various forums and this one seems to be a lot more patient with the new people, and less snobby in general. Obviously makes for a welcoming, civil atmosphere.

Having said that, you guys around here apparently won't go more than two syllables on proper nouns before substituting an acronym! Glossary overload at first.
We so pride ourselves on being quite the civilized bunch.

The fascination with acronyms is a cultured idiosyncrasy.
That's a great kit. Higher end/deeper than most new guys would dive into, but more power to you. You should be set for a while. Now all you need are more aftershaves. And a boar to accompany your badger...
I haven't even received my main order or performed a DE shave yet, but last night I ordered some Mike's.

So this is how it begins, eh?
You're one of us now. Resistance is futile.
This. The good news is that we're much better company than Pod People or the Borg. :thumbup:

Mike's Lime and Peppermint Rosemary are really nice soaps, in my humble opinion.
Just like several others have said, you just described my story. The blades in my Norelco needed replacement and it never gave me a lasting shave. At 5pm, I looked horrible. One morning, i tried an old multi blade cartridge and can o' foam and liked the much better shave. It took off from there. I had read that the DE razors worked better and were much cheaper. I got a vintage SS off of Ebay and used it with the can o' foam and liked it much better. Then I started to look at the can o' foam with skepticism and got a puck of Williams and learned how to lather off of youtube. Then I found this place. It's all downhill from there. Shaving is now an anticipated event and I take my time and enjoy it. It's been around 3 months. Go for it, get a starter razor/kit and see if it talks to you. Just don't get discouraged with the inevitable cuts and nicks. Work through them and perfect a technique and you'll never look back.
The good news: tracking says my toys were delivered today! That was less than 72 hours after ordering.

The bad news: out of town until Sunday evening.

Hopefully the neighbor checked my door for a package delivery like I asked and squirreled it away until my return.
Well, now, this is very exciting! :w00t:


I don't know if I should tackle a shave yet tonight or not. I used the Braun this morning.

There's no harm in a test lather or two, though, right? RIGHT? :laugh:
Well, now, this is very exciting!

Oh my. You don't mess around when you get into something new, do you? You have a wonderful assortment to work through!

I would hold off on a shave until you actually need it. In fact, it may help the first time to let your facial hair grow out a little more than usual, since it'll make that first shave a little easier.

But, no, there's no harm in a test lather or three! Just make sure to leave enough time between shaves to let the brush dry out completely. If you shave every day, you may need multiple brushes, depending on how quickly things dry in your particular environment.
I attempted my first-ever manual lather, using the Bigelow. I think it was thinner than it was supposed to be, but I still put it on. Felt nice! The act drew the attention of both kids, which amused me. Son absolutely wouldn't let me brush his cheek, but daughter asked for it, and then of course the son DEMANDED a brush swipe. Maybe a little more product, and a little bit more water, and I will have something a bit thicker.

I wiped it off without shaving; I think the first shave will be on 1.5 days' growth tomorrow evening.
First shave a success! I'll call it a solid CCS. Certainly better than the Braun. WTG, WTG, XTG, and some touch ups.

Was nervous as hell but impressed with the results.

Used a Derby Extra and the Bigelow. Lather was a bit thinner than I hoped, but I pressed on. Couple light nicks, minimal bumps, which the alum helped. Put on some witch hazel after, too.
Forgot to mention I used the Proraso preshave, too.

Bumps seems a little more irritated now. Hopefully that's just learning curve (skin and technique).
Welcome and enjoy! For starting out, I'd try sticking with 1-2 WTG passes and gradually work your way up. Comfort first, patience, then closeness. The closeness will come.

Watch the angle, minimal pressure, good lather and prep.
Welcome to the wonderful world of wet shaving !:thumbup:
Ask questions and you'll get solutions, opinions, and some arguments i.e. DE vs. SE etc

learn from Mantic59, his videos got most of us hooked.
His technique on soaps, lather, prep is very important.
I have mainly been a wet shaver and never liked the electric ones I tried.

you can get good deals on the website for used shaver or buy new inexpensive to very expensive new ones from the vendors on our site.
good deals to be had. If you see my signature, you'll see what I use.

my go to razor is a 1956 Red tip Gillette but I use a single edge Gem or Cobra as well.


I'm a little late to the conversation, but I too came from 20+ years of electric shaving. I am now a convert to DE wet shaving and it's been a fun transition. Took me about a month to start getting really good shaves with little to know irritation. Have fun with all your new acquisitions....made me laugh a little...I bought a bunch of the same stuff.

I don't regret the switch.
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