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General shaving from experience (3 months of DE shaving) & Fatboy VS. Slim review

I have been DE shaving for about 3 months now and all that I use is either a Fatboy (aka 195) or the Slim. And while shaving on and off with the 2 razors and using the same blades I have come to share a review of the differences between the two razors are with daily use. Lets start out with the Fatboy, besides it being heavier then the slim and the Fatboy is shorter, I have noticed that the TTO knob is much easier to use then the slim while adjusting in the middle of a shave. In other words, when your hands are slightly slippery, I'd rather change on the fly my Fatboy over the Slim for the closeness settings. With the Slim I need to use a towel to do the finishing 1/4 turn to tighten down the blade, while my Fatboy takes what ever I can throw at it in stride. The larger head of the Fatboy does make things harder around the nose area, but with practice you can work it through. Now with the two there are blade differences, here is what I have found; the Fatboy LOVES the sharper bades (i.e. your feathers, yellow gillettes, bolzanos, polsilvers and your astras) while the Slim really performs with these blades (rapiras, personna reds, perma sharp, voskhods). As always this is truly YMMV and totally up to personal preference as far as blade vs. razor and closeness goes. I use both razors depending on my mood and what blade I have on hand, plus since I have 2 of each slim and fatboy. I rotate razors per blade change and clean the one I am not using and put it into rotation. I have also found out that both types of razors really excel when you really open them up, i have used feathers and yellow gillettes on setting 8 on my fatboy and same for the slim when using voskhods and rapira and perma sharps. Less strokes means less irritation and the better I can make one stroke, the better the shave and less irritation. I started out using both razors anywhere between the 5 and the 3 setting then one day I said ya know what, let crank this sucker up, if i cut myself then I know not to go that high. Well I haven't regretted it since and I now really enjoy my close shave...closer then the Mach 3 that's for sure! But as you go for the higher settings on these razors #! NEVER shave an area without any lather, you will regret it and #2 never rush the shave, always take your time and remember technique with the blade position. In the end practice practice practice.

Now onto the other experiences.... I have found that beard mapping is VERY important in getting the best and the closest shave possible as well as beard prep too. As I load my brush with soap any of the foam that builds up on my hand from loading I use as a preshave. During my application of preshave foam (lets call it that) I am mapping my beard and as I rub my preshave foam I can really feel the direction of my hair growth. For soaps I vary between artisan soaps (bearded Jack, found on ebay), to razorock, to proraso and I vary my brushes between a Semogue 620, the Semogue 830, and the Ambroley silver tip badger. The boar brushes when broken in are the softest I have have and really excel when face lathering. The silver tip badger, great on the weekends when you have the time to bowl lather and whip up some hot lather. Practice makes perfect with loading the brush, the tip I use for loading the brush is swirl for at least 30 seconds...when lather builds up on the outside and over your hand holding the soap, take the brush and push it into the soap GENTLY....if the brush has a sticky feel to it when you pull back its ready for lathering. It takes some time to get it and find that sweet spot...but when you do I have gotten consistent lathing day after day.

Now onto the finishing touches....I really didn't appreciate the DE shave until I brought on board Lucky Tiger and the Alum block. When the shave is done to me nothing feels as amazing as putting an ice cold Alum block around my face, allowing it to dry for a min or 2. I then follow up with a hand rub (which you get the sting again BTW) to really spread the Alum around, and then cold water rinse. After that dry off and follow up with Lucky Tiger (warmer months) or Proraso shave balm (colder months). When its all done...enjoy

So far as of today's date of this posting..BBS shaves, my usual 12 o'clock shadow (non existent). I have shaved this morning at 7 am, it is currently 10 PM and i am STILL BBS! The shave equipment of the day, Gillette Fatboy with Gillette super sharp yellow, setting #8 , 3 pass shave (with the grain, across the grain, then against it) soap was Bearded Jack (Kentucky Bourbon) bowl lathered with the Ambroley silver tip. All equals total shaving bliss!

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