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How To Find My Holy Grail

Pretty much all of us on B&B were in your shoes when we started. Sure, it's fun to rotate razors and brushes and soaps, to use new stuff everyday, but that's counterproductive to learning to use what you have. Most if not all of us have chased that Holy Grail, only to find out it truly doesn't exist. It's not the destination, it's the journey. Proper technique, now that's the Holy Grail. Since there are multiple aspects of wet shaving, there are multiple things for you to master to get a great technique. IMHO, the razor and blade are secondary to a superior lather. Razors and blades don't shave your face, you do.


I shaved a fortune
You really have gotten a lot of good advice here. The one thing that keeps repeating is technique. To that end I would add go slow. When I go slow I can keep my focus and bad things don’t often happen.

With regard to shaving hardware, we hear the back and forth on cost and quality and how to sort through it all to find a tool that will work for us. The one thing that usually works for me is “longevity“. It doesn’t matter if an item is expensive or not, if it has stood the test of time it is probably worth the cost.
I only buy razors that have the B&B seal of approval... I'm spent a fair amount of money.... but no mistakes this past year or so. I couldn't be happier with my little family of razors and brushes.
I have been a safety razor shaver for a while. Originally bought a Schick Krona, lost it when I moved, bought a slim adjustable, like an idiot, tried it at like level 6 or 7 first, hated it, then got a 40s super speed which was my best shave but still not amazing. I ended up selling all of these, trying a parker variant, a merkur progress, and a rockwell 6c all with the same blade once. It was all pretty close but I chose the rockwell because it's used as a measurement for other razor aggressiveness and I think will help me dial in to find my razor of choice. As for my blades, I got the GBS 120 count variety pack and that's what i've been using. I also recently ordered a razor emporium beginner variety pack but i am yet to use that. As for brushes, I have a Proraso boar, AP Shave Co G5C, Maggards Synthetic, and Yaqi 24 silver tip. As for my cream and lather, I don't really know how to use soap well and use cream with face lather which works decent for me. Anyway, all i'm trying to say is how do I find what I like. I feel like I try something and I like it then I don't and I just constantly go back and forth on what to do. What steps should I take (technique, dialing in razor, brush choice, blade choice, etc.) and what order in order to find what works for me? I'm so lost.

I am also new to this, and making a lather is still an ongoing process for me. I only shave 3 times a week, but what I have been doing for the last month is this: I have a bunch of soap samples and on the days I don’t shave I still go through all the steps, wash face, preshave, bowl lather, apply to face, rinse, then apply for a second non existent pass. This has helped me with how much water to use, what each brush likes ( I have 4) and how the lather and brush feel on my face. Good luck!!
A few things that might help...

You didn't mention how your whiskers grow or whether they are coarse or not. I have experienced blade chatter though and you did mention that. I have thick whiskers that lay flat against my skin in some places. I've always struggled with blade chatter in those spots. The only solution I've found is a razor that clamps down on the blade very well near the cutting edge. A Fatip Piccolo is a very inexpensive razor that does this very well. Not saying you need another razor, it's just something to consider if you're experiencing chatter and have very thick whiskers that lay flat against the skin.

Second, please take @blethenstrom advice and map your beard. Just knowing what direction your whiskers grow can make a huge difference when learning. Focus on getting a decent shave going only with the grain and then branch out from there.

Good luck and welcome to the forum!
What @gpjoe & @silverlifter said.

Stick with one setup that works. Dial that in to perfection. Then decide if it's worth chasing a better aspect of that setup.

For reference, it took me just under 8y of daily and then every second day of shaving, to find my ultimate razor setup. That was 6y ago and it's been my main razor since. It probably sees 98% of my shaves.

It ended up being a $50 razor, so it doesn't have to be $$$ if you don't want it to be. I don't believe $$$ razors shave any better and some aren't even built any better.
I'm curious to know what is your main razor?

For me, it ended up being the Ikon Shavecraft Tech. I can shave with it everyday and get excellent BBS Shave very consistently in 2 passes.
You can try to stay away from this forum lol. Like the others have said, stick to one razor but try different blades. I have been DE shaving for 13 years now and I started with the 34C HD, my second razor was the Fatip OC v1. I hated it, it felt so weird shaving with it and I shelved it. Couple months later I decided to give it an another try and I fell in love with it. It's my favorite razor. The reason why I hated it is because I didn't knew how to use it properly. Later I only used the Fatip with the Astra SP blades, then I found out about the Permasharps and I started to use them only. Later I gave the Feathers a try and I thought I found the perfect combination. This is my setup for so many years. Often I still use different blades or go trough my sample pack to see which blade I haven't tried yet.

I think expensive razors are overrated. The most expensive razor I own is the Merkur Progress, I got it for around 70 euros. The cheapest razor I own is the Fatip OC v1 which I got for 19 eur. IMHO the Fatip OC is a better razor for me. YMMV but don't let anyone tell you that an expensive razor is better, it's BS. You can better spend that money on shaving soaps and aftershaves.

The Progress on the lowest setting is super mild, IMHO it's the same as the 34C HD. It's very hard to mess up with this razor on the lowest setting and it's super forgiving. I would stick to that razor and practice lathering first, then map your beard out so you can do the passes properly.

I think I know what you mean with blade chatter, you'll get that when you're using the wrong angle or your lather is poor. Watch a couple YouTube videos on how to lather properly. Hard soaps are harder to lather compared to creams, I would start with a shaving cream first. Or you could use some "soft" hard soap like the Vitos Super, Cella both are very easy to lather even for a beginner.

Once you get the hang of it you can use every razor with any blade but there is always a chance your face won't like the blade you're using.
That's interesting you said that. The Ikon Tech was one of my early razors I first tried. I felt it was too harsh of a shave back then. Couldn't use it more than once a week. Decided it must be a terrible razor for me. Sold it.

Fast forward about 6 months later I decided to buy the Tech again from a fellow forum member because it was out of stock.

It's my favorite razor to this day.
RazoRock Mamba (53)
From Italian Barber website:


The RazoRock Mamba 53 is the ultimate mild safety razor, perfect for people seeking an ultra-safe and gentle shave, especially for those with softer facial hair. If you are looking for a more aggressive Mamba we also sell the Mamba 70 & 92 which have more blade gap and exposure."

I'm on the opposite end of the spectrum with my razor. Gotta love it. YMMV
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