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"Extended Use" Rotations

Vaporstang

Contributor
Since the shaving bug hit me earlier this year (after decades of shaving), I am questioning my rotation technique. To me the primary parts of a shave are the shaving cream/soap, brush (if used), and razor/blade. Then secondary is the pre-shave cream, toner, aftershave balm/lotion, etc. As my hobby has taken off, I have acquired quite a few options. For the most part I have been rotating all of these tools/accessories on a daily basis.

I am thinking to really understand each soap, razor (SR, DE. SE, etc.) and blade, I should use them for a few days or more straight. I tend to use an SR, then rotate to a different SR - mixed in with DE shaves - and visa versa. On the SR side, I don't really remember how I stropped it the last time. Did I do a quick paste strop, etc. On the DE side do I remember how the blade at that setting/gap perform. And for soaps, especially new ones, does it perform more dry, does it have good lasting characteristics, etc.

I am thinking that I should use items for several days in a row to really understand them, or re-connect. [I would say it makes sense to let a brush rest for more than a day to make sure it is completely dry. But maybe rotate between two brushes for a week.]

Am I over thinking this? Your thoughts?
 
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Sometimes I'm adventurous and pick whatever gear to use and go with the flow.
Right now I'm a bit more structured/goal oriented about finding the best blades for New Improved, New Deluxe razors, occasionally I'll put one of those blades into a new razor to get a comparison. I'm also trying to burn through some over-stocked creams, and that leads to using certain brushes more than others.
I have a dormant den of razors and blades I haven't used properly, but their time will come.
 
I have way more razors than I need. I currently rotate only six. I use each razor for four shaves before moving on to the next razor. No special reason.. just the way I do it. My soaps? I use a different soap each day. I enjoy looking forward to the various scents. Currently I am in a boar brush phase and rotate all seven of the these.
 

AimlessWanderer

Contributor
I don't do "rotations". To me, that word implies set sequences or schedules for change. I do like having a few options, but am too freethinking/impulsive to tolerate "systems". I generally tend to pick a full set, and stick with it until I get bored/frustrated with something, or have a specific reason to make a change.

More specifically...

Blades: I'll usually change the brand when it comes time to move to a fresh blade, which is usually every 10-14 shaves, but some last longer. Sometimes I will stick with one brand for a few blades, but not often.

Soap: I serve up a portion of soap in a dish, and stick with that one till it's used up, then serve up another portion which is most likely to be something else. Some soaps sit completely unused in a drawer, and won't be opened until I have specific need of them (i.e. I've used up some of the "live" soaps). If I get bored partway through a serving, I might use something else for a few shaves.

Razor: I tend to stick with my primary razor, and only use the others occasionally. That will either be because I have a specific need for one, such as shifting heavy growth, or redefining the goatee, or simply because I'm in the mood for something different.

Brush: For several months now, I've had one for hard soaps, one for soft soaps, and one for travel. No decision making required. The soap in use dictates the best brush for the job. I have just ordered a couple more brushes though, and will be testing these out to see if they'll replace any of the primaries, or just sit in the drawer as spares.

Post shave: I'll make the decision based on how my skin feels when I've finished shaving.
 
I only rotate soaps and razors as I only have one brush and use one brand of blade (Currently Astra Green, but looking at the Lord Big Ben)

I rotate through all my razors from oldest to newest and use each for two weeks. I rotate soaps every week except when its a new soap I have not tried which in that case, I will use it for two weeks and try to split it between two razors (one week each if that makes sense).

I do this mainly for variety and to remind me what each soap and razor is like. Since I have over 50 soaps and over 20 razors, it takes about a year to rotate through them all. :001_tongu

Starting in the new year, I may make the rotation based on the season and only rotate soaps that remind me of the season (ie. flowery for spring, fruity or tropical for summer, pine or woodsy for fall and winter). Still thinking that out though.
 
I'm on the same boat. I go through rotations based on the product's physical location but when I struggle to shave with a certain product, I'll put some "extended use" on it. Basically, my idea is that every item in the rotation should work well; if it doesn't, I'm passing it on. Therefore, if the product doesn't work well after the extended use, I'll put it aside for sale.

Most of the time, I use a product for 2-3 days and then rotate. I spent more time with certain products (MWF, RR Eco, FOSC, etcs) and I was able to get good shaves out of them in the end.
 

FarmerTan

George Bailey Fanboy
I don't do "rotations". To me, that word implies set sequences or schedules for change. I do like having a few options, but am too freethinking/impulsive to tolerate "systems". I generally tend to pick a full set, and stick with it until I get bored/frustrated with something, or have a specific reason to make a change.

More specifically...

Blades: I'll usually change the brand when it comes time to move to a fresh blade, which is usually every 10-14 shaves, but some last longer. Sometimes I will stick with one brand for a few blades, but not often.

Soap: I serve up a portion of soap in a dish, and stick with that one till it's used up, then serve up another portion which is most likely to be something else. Some soaps sit completely unused in a drawer, and won't be opened until I have specific need of them (i.e. I've used up some of the "live" soaps). If I get bored partway through a serving, I might use something else for a few shaves.

Razor: I tend to stick with my primary razor, and only use the others occasionally. That will either be because I have a specific need for one, such as shifting heavy growth, or redefining the goatee, or simply because I'm in the mood for something different.

Brush: For several months now, I've had one for hard soaps, one for soft soaps, and one for travel. No decision making required. The soap in use dictates the best brush for the job. I have just ordered a couple more brushes though, and will be testing these out to see if they'll replace any of the primaries, or just sit in the drawer as spares.

Post shave: I'll make the decision based on how my skin feels when I've finished shaving.
My friend: do you realize that your post cracks me up?!?

That is the definition of a system to a person like me: ADHD, dyslexic, early stage dementia.

What I read was, "this dude needs to loosen up!"

Lol, next time you need to feel "impulsive" read my drivel!

On a positive note, if I can capture a thought I am a "freethinker!" so we do have that much in common!
 

AimlessWanderer

Contributor
My friend: do you realize that your post cracks me up?!?

That is the definition of a system to a person like me: ADHD, dyslexic, early stage dementia.

What I read was, "this dude needs to loosen up!"

Lol, next time you need to feel "impulsive" read my drivel!

On a positive note, if I can capture a thought I am a "freethinker!" so we do have that much in common!
:lol:

There's no real system, Dave. I just managed to briefly capture my sporadic changes of everything at different times, in a string of words that almost made it sound logical. 🤣
 
I like to use the same razor, blade, and soap for a week. My brush rotation may vary from three to seven different brushes during the week. I feel this routine provides both consistency and variety.
 
Anyone reading this forum is overthinking shaving:) When I use a DE I use the same (only) DE with Gillette Silver Blue blades. When I use a straight I just pick whatever appeals to me out of the 10 that are ready to shave. Some times it's a random one each time and sometimes I'm develop a favorite for a few times in a row.

I only have one brush and soap is random (out of 10).
 
I under think all of this. Not much of a rotation at all: one razor, a Fatboy; vintage (50 year old) Floris brush; Utilemud lather bowl; GSB blades, a new one every 3-5 shaves. Listerine art deco blade bank. I have 10 soaps and two creams on my sink, and I pick out whatever appeals to me each shave. 4711 cologne is my everyday AS splash; I have 2-3 other aftershaves. That's it.

Mind you, I have a hall cupboard shelf full of soaps and creams, rejected for now, not cause I hate them, just because I like the ones by my sink much better.
 

FarmerTan

George Bailey Fanboy
I under think all of this. Not much of a rotation at all: one razor, a Fatboy; vintage (50 year old) Floris brush; Utilemud lather bowl; GSB blades, a new one every 3-5 shaves. Listerine art deco blade bank. I have 10 soaps and two creams on my sink, and I pick out whatever appeals to me each shave. 4711 cologne is my everyday AS splash; I have 2-3 other aftershaves. That's it.

Mind you, I have a hall cupboard shelf full of soaps and creams, rejected for now, not cause I hate them, just because I like the ones by my sink much better.
I'd love to see that Listerine blade bank!

You don't sound like you have "underthunk" your shaves; you know what you like my friend!
 

AimlessWanderer

Contributor
Mind you, I have a hall cupboard shelf full of soaps and creams, rejected for now, not cause I hate them, just because I like the ones by my sink much better.
That's one thing I'm specifically trying to avoid. If I start it, I finish it, or dispose of it. I'm not having part used soaps lurking that I'm never going to finish, just because I like something else better. I have four part used tubs open at the moment, and won't open another till one's finished.

Similarly with blades, I'm using ones that aren't favourites, at least as often as those that are. So I'm gradually working my way down to just having my favourites, but without completely denying myself any favourites till the crappy ones are used up.

I can often get some truly fantastic shaves with some of the "lower" tier items, and make a point to keep using them for that reason. It serves as a good reminder that it's mainly the operator that determines that a shave is good enough, not the stuff the postman brings.
 
I don't rotate as such. With five M7DS's of SR's, I normally pick one set and stick with it for the week. On an occasional week I will forego using a M7DS and use some of my single SR's for that week.

What you need are some M7DS's!
 
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I have too many aftershaves and colognes. I keep my favourites for special occasions, which never seem to happen, and try to use up least favourites. As a result, for the vast majority of the time I am wearing a scent that do not care for while my favourites sit on the shelf unused. Where is the sense in that? 😆
 
When I was about 4.5 years into DE shaving and after trying about 30 razors I simply quit rotating. I had found a combination I really liked and standardized upon it and I have been sticking to it for several years. Since then the shave I have had with other razors could probably be counted on my fingers and they just reaffirmed that nothing is gained by swaying from my standardized routine. I want the most optimal good shave and because of that I do not "experiments" anymore. Experiments means risks, and I do not want to risk a shave.
 

JCarr

Contributor
I've recently limited my rotation to four different DE safety razors, two of which will always use the same DE razor blade. Everything else will change daily based on personal desire. I may use a soap or cream multiple days in a row, but again, that's based on if I feel like it.
 
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