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I tried the smoothest blade on the market (Derby) and it was a bloodbath. Now what?

Razorock is available in at least 3 Dutch shaving shops, so it wouldn't be hard for me to find. Yeah, I recognized the models. Baili makes clones, I think. Weishi too, maybe?
Some members talk about get a DSCosmetic line on AliExpress. Seems to be good clones, but I never tried one. I think Razorock prices in US are the best cost benefit in razors, CNC razor, good quality control, price around U$55.00. Probably in EU is not so cheap.

I never get a vintage because in my country is very expensive and hard to find. I never find good things in thrifts stores here, only junk 😅

I saw you helping another member in another thread. Very kind of you, from newbie to teacher in a very little time 🙂 A lot of newbies buy a defective first safety razor. It’s impossible to get a good shave using a misaligned razor😆.
 
The only thing I can add to this fantastic thread is when you do your underarms bend the elbow so your hand can flatten the cup shape a bit. I use clippers on mine to avoid antiperspirant clumping on the tips of the hairs and this makes the process much less hassle. Congrats on your progress.

Thank you! I did some contortions trying to find the best possible angle of the elbow. The combination of shaving with the arm almost closed first, and then lifting the arm with a bent elbow works very well. If I make an L-shape with my hand on the shave-side I could even straighten the skin some more. But if the part of the shave with the almost-closed arm was successful, I hardly need to, actually.

It sounds like I'm describing how to tie shoes- very complicated in words.😅 But it's pretty simple. I had a great shave today!😄 Better than I had in a long time. Something's happening with the skin too; it feels better and looks healthier. I never thought 5-blade cartridges had a negative effect on my skin, but clearly, 1 blade is better. I'm enjoying the process as well. Definitely an SR convert.😄
 
I'm confused. After 3 months of using several razors and double-edge blades, I really thought I was getting the hang of it. Then I tried the Derby Extra (which my local shaving expert considers a 1 on a sharpness scale of 1 to 10) and my 'shaving experience' turned into a horror movie. Now I have questions. Like 'what?!' and 'HOW' and 'why'? I don't even know where to begin. I thought beginners should only fear the Feather. Am I misinterpreting the qualifications 'smooth' and 'sharp'?

As to what I've been using so far: I took a picture of the stash that I didn't really plan on accumulating.🙃 This experiment started because of money and curiosity, but I'm staying for the fun and the challenge. I didn't think I'd enjoy it, but I do.

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Last year I got married and, as everyone will tell you, weddings are expensive. (Worth it, but still.) Our savings account had already taken a hit during the covid-crisis and after the invasion of Ukraine, inflation and sky-high gas prices, I started to be a bit frugal with the Gillette Venus Olay razorblades that I've been using for the last decade. A single packet of 3 cartridges was never budget-friendly to begin with, but the price has roughly doubled in a short amount of time and one package now costs € 19.- in local drug stores (1 Euro currently has the exact same value as 1 US dollar). Gillette claims that a cartridge should last you 2 weeks, but the blade gets pretty dull after 4-5 uses. As a skirt-wearing girl, one does shave pretty much of the body, pretty much daily. But if I really were to change those blades once a week, as I should, it would cost me 329.- euros a year. So I started to postpone changing the blade, to the point where my husband would get this concerned look on his face inspecting the bright red spots of irritation on my legs. Even though Gillette Venus was all I'd ever known shaving-wise, the idea of having to keep paying such a staggering amount of money plus 'Pink Tax' made me angry. Then I saw an ad on Instagram for razor blades I didn't know still existed outside of the set of Peaky Blinders. 'SMOOTHER AND CHEAPER', the ad promised. I had to know. For less than 10 bucks, I ordered a safety razor which came with 15 DE blades and I was so excited when the package arrived that I immediately hopped into the shower, placed the razor on my ankle and on auto-pilot drew it straight up whilst pressing down, just like in the commercials. HOOO BURN. That was pretty dumb, especially since I'd already seen some YouTube videos of a happy man who kept saying: 'remember gentleman, let the razor do all the work'. I just forgot. But I liked the first results enough to keep trying (despite losing a strip of tan).

So with this forum as a Wikipedia of sorts, I've been reading up on technique, razor aggressiveness, blade sharpness and combinations, but most of the information pertains to beards, which is a bit of a confusing point of reference if you don't have one. It seems as though different body parts have wildly different shaving needs anyway. I've found out that I have sensitive shins, tricky ankles, bumpy knees, an impractically deep left armpit and a bikini area that, counter-intuitively, seems to require a more aggressive approach than the rest of me. Now I read on this forum that an adjustable safety razor would 'ruin your technique', but is there any way around it when one is attempting to body shave with a single safety razor? (Surely there are men who shave more than their beards with a safety razor?) I started using razor #1 (the blue one, a standard model in online shops like Amazon) but the gap between the razor and the blade is quite big and it was a little too aggressive for my legs. Razor #2 (Gillette) is actually pretty good, but barely weighs anything because of the plastic handle and I didn't want to learn to press a DE blade into the skin, however slightly. Razor #3 is a really nice adjustable Gillette Fatboy clone, except it's very gentle even on the most aggressive setting and the blade sticks out on both sides of the cap which hurt my armpits. The sides of the blade left scratches much like an angry kitten would, which is all sorts of fun when applying deodorant. Razor #4 is a Merkur Futur clone with a cap that does cover the sides and it's so good. It doesn't provide the best grip in the shower when you need to turn the handle, but I love it anyway. Setting 0.5-1.0 is perfect for ankles and knees, I use 1.5 for shins, 2 for calves and 3-3.5 for armpits etc.

I've mostly been using Gillette Platinum and Wilkinson Sword DE blades. The results are quite similar. The blades are good and durable, but I kept thinking I'd like the shave to be just a little closer, especially the armpits (especially in direct sunlight on the beach, thank you very much). The Yintal blades and the Gillette Bleu ones that came with the razors weren't my favs either, but the Ming Shi blades were surprisingly good. My legs were so smooth, they seemed to reflect light. (Someone here on the forum compared the Ming Shi blades to Gillette 7'O Clock, but I wouldn't know about that). I was curious about other blades and ordered a sample pack of 15 different blades (2 each). I decided to work my way up the sharpness ladder because that's recommended everywhere, which meant starting with the green Derby Extra. I placed the blade in the Merkur Futur clone as per usual (upside-down assembly), applied a thick lather of shaving foam on my legs and... it was by far the worst bloodbath to date. Apparently, I had a couple of mosquito bites on my legs, and the bumps were chopped clean off. I cut both ankles badly, savaged a knee and somehow drew a massive cut across one calf. The blood spread over my wet skin so fast, I couldn't see where or how I'd cut myself and couldn't believe I kept on doing it even though I thought I was being careful. I tasted copper and the water turned pink around me. After a full 3 months of shaving with 4 different safety razors and 6 different DE blades, I didn't expect to make so many mistakes. But the armpits? Perfect. A truly smooth shave. Better than a Venus ever delivered. How is that possible for a blade that is supposedly not very sharp at all?

I dug up an old electrical epilator for temporary use while the assortment of cuts on my legs healed, afraid a DE razor would tear everything up again. (I don't mind a bit of pain, but I'm borderline anemic and I'd rather not have to explain this experiment to my doctor, like: "Have you seen Peaky Blinders?") A week later the skin looked fine and I switched back to a Wilkinson blade in the Futur clone, which gave me the results I'd come to expect: no real nicks, but also not that baby bottom smooth finish. It's not like there's still a 5 o'clock shadow, but it could definitely be considered a 1 o'clock shadow here and there. I thought that meant I needed a sharper blade. Am I wrong? I'm sort of hesitantly looking at the blades from the sampler pack thinking: now what? Do I skip the so-called smooth blades? I have no idea what I'm doing.

Does body shaving in general require different techniques or even different blades/razors for different areas? It shouldn't be that different for women, right? I read that there are some women on the forum and also many wives/girlfriends trying DE blades. Any wisdom is appreciated.

Thank you very much for reading this far. :)

I'm a guy, so I don't know if this will help, but you mentioned you use Shaving cream. Correct? Is it the canned foam?

Have you tried a Shaving Soap? The brand I like is Stirling Soap Company. They sell Shaving soaps, pre-shave oils, post shave balms among other items. The Stirling soaps have either a beef tallow or mutton tallow base. They are slick and provide a lot of protection when shaving. It does take some practice when it comes to working up a lather. The main thing to remember is that Stirling Soaps are "thirsty" soaps and need a lot of water when working up a lather.

I've pretty much been using the beef tallow soaps, but recently tried the mutton tallow. The mutton tallow soaps require a little more effort to work up a good lather.

As far as scents of the Stirling soaps, they have quite a few. Considering that you are shaving some intimate areas, you would want to be careful of which Stirling Shaving soaps you try. They have some mentholated soaps, but you would want to exercise caution with those.

Stirling does have 2 scents that some women would like, including their Bergamot Lavender and Witchy Woman. There are others you could look into as well.

Also, you would need a shave bowl if you prefer bowl lathering. For me, I find bowl lathering easier because it is easier to work up the lather to the right consistency. Also, a shave brush as well. Everyone is different, but I prefer synthetic brushes. You can find a good quality synthetic brush for under $20.00. Stirlingsoap.com sells some good quality shave brushes, but you can find them elsewhere as well.
 
Some members talk about get a DSCosmetic line on AliExpress. Seems to be good clones, but I never tried one. I think Razorock prices in US are the best cost benefit in razors, CNC razor, good quality control, price around U$55.00. Probably in EU is not so cheap.

I agree, good QC is worth something. Razorock isn't too expensive here either, but the DSCosmetic line on AliExpress has gotten quite pricy, with razors selling for 25-60 dollars. Yaqi is the same, prices are inflated 200-300% compared to 2019. I'd never complain about razors in the 5-10 dollar range, but if you're going to spend some actual money, it makes sense to pay a little extra for the real brand, the QC and the customer service.

I never get a vintage because in my country is very expensive and hard to find. I never find good things in thrifts stores here, only junk 😅

Oh, that sucks. Not that vintage razors shave very well, but still. Maybe the shaving habits were different 70-odd years ago where you live?

My mother told me she sees old safety razors quite often. Basically at every flea market and also regularly in thrift shops. But the Dutch tend to donate everything deceased people owned to charity (including their grooming ware, apparently). The post-boomer generation dealing with parental death often has no lack of possessions or money so they just call a thrift store, and the charity comes over to pick up boxes full of unsorted stuff. That's probably why thrift stores here are often worth your while.

I saw you helping another member in another thread. Very kind of you, from newbie to teacher in a very little time 🙂 A lot of newbies buy a defective first safety razor. It’s impossible to get a good shave using a misaligned razor😆.

Thank you, but that was nothing. It just seemed to make sense that if someone tried different soaps, brushes, techniques and blades but not a different razor that the problem is... Occam's razor. I've been there.😅 Turns out he concluded the exact same thing two weeks ago after a 5-page thread in which people advised him on every possibility. So he already knew, or at least suspected. (B&B has a handy search function and I got the feeling I was missing something.) Ultimately it's up to him to decide whether he wants to try another safety razor or not, I get that he's hesitant. I hope he does though because giving up due to a faulty razor is really sad. I'm glad I didn't.

Now that I have a couple of razors that aren't half-bad, I'm going to proceed to try all the advised blades. So for my birthday yesterday and I gifted myself... a spreadsheet. I couldn't be happier.🤩😄

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you mentioned you use Shaving cream. Correct? Is it the canned foam?

Thank you so much for your in-depth advice on the products! I have both actually. Or I should say that in the meantime, I've found TOBS and Palmolive Classic. It's pretty great, TOBS especially. Though I have to say that some canned shaving gel isn't bad either, specifically the stuff from Olay for dry skin.

Have you tried a Shaving Soap?

Yes, I used a handmade French shaving soap from Balade en Provence for a while, but the lather didn't provide as much cushioning as I'd hoped, so to speak. (I just googled the ingredients of that soap, and the label says it's coconut-based. I also found the classic ARKO shaving soap in a Turkish grocery store here in Amsterdam and that's supposedly tallow-based, but I haven't tried it yet.)

The brand I like is Stirling Soap Company. They sell Shaving soaps, pre-shave oils, post shave balms among other items. The Stirling soaps have either a beef tallow or mutton tallow base. They are slick and provide a lot of protection when shaving. It does take some practice when it comes to working up a lather. The main thing to remember is that Stirling Soaps are "thirsty" soaps and need a lot of water when working up a lather.

I've heard good things about this brand! Thanks for explaining the difference between the soaps and how to use them, I didn't know that.

As far as scents of the Stirling soaps, they have quite a few. Considering that you are shaving some intimate areas, you would want to be careful of which Stirling Shaving soaps you try. They have some mentholated soaps, but you would want to exercise caution with those. Stirling does have 2 scents that some women would like, including their Bergamot Lavender and Witchy Woman. There are others you could look into as well.

I went to check Stirling out, but forget about the fruity Witchy stuff and the lavender- their 'Duchess' sounds like my actual perfume! I'd love to try it. I don't think I can get that here in The Netherlands though, but it's definitely going on my wish list.
 
Hi
I know I am a bit late as I have only just joined B&B. I use a Yaqi melon head razor with Tiger or Persona blades. The melon head‘s comb holds on to some of the soap in the comb and helps to give a nice close shave with no bleeders. I started with Derby not nice.
 
Hi
I know I am a bit late as I have only just joined B&B. I use a Yaqi melon head razor with Tiger or Persona blades. The melon head‘s comb holds on to some of the soap in the comb and helps to give a nice close shave with no bleeders. I started with Derby not nice.
Welcome to B & B, sir!
 
Thanks’s I have followed B&B for a while know and really enjoy the crack
Welcome to B&B. Please make an intro post in the newby check in if you would. Tell us a bit about your interest and equipment, nothing is too humble around here. We also have several sub-forums for non shaving related hobbies to check out.
 
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