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J's Straight Razor Shave Journal


Moderator Emeritus
Don't give up! It happens. You should probably restrain yourself to 1 or 2 passes next time. No being used to have an audience can be distracting...
ah schadenfreude! What else are wives for? chalk that up to getting psyched out. All the interruptions when you are still just barely at the beginning and using a guillotine stroke, it's bound to happen. The worst part is eating all the crow birthday cake. I feel for you. I can just imagine all the sideways glances and the "why did she marry him again?" looks.

I feel for ya. Just point the rest of your face and say "look how soft it is!"
So...by "getting all CSI" on it are you going to spray your face with luminol???


Hang in there...had my fair share of cuts in my first few months of str8 shaving...sure I'll have more!
Hah! Thanks for the fun comments, guys. No way I'm giving up, I'm having too much fun. Indeed, the crow cake was delicious! I just picked up a new straight on the BST, BTW. Very excited about that! Not too excited to explain to the wife how another razor found its way to our doorstep, though! :blink:

Aww well, just about time to go shave. Surely this one's gotta go better, no? Now where did I put that luminol?! :lol:
Shave 12 -- 7/13

I missed out on my shave yesterday- sometimes life just gets in the way. I've really been looking forward to todays shave to see what I can do about redeeming myself from Sunday's bloodbath.

Today's prep was a hot shower, and I stuck with the Arko shave stick. I didn't want to leave my last (bloody) experience kicking it around the cosmos. I figured I'd feel better about using it in the future if we ended on a good note together! :biggrin1:

Today's shave went great! Just one small weeper today, I really took some time to be very aware of what the blade was doing, and how it was feeling. This shave wasn't quite in the neighborhood of a BBS, but certainly in the same small town! I think the wife is really going to enjoy this one. It was 3 passes, WTG, XTG, XTG (the other way). I'm beginning to feel more confident in my strokes, and a bit more confident in trying new things, with a reasonable idea of what the outcome might be for said new thing. Also, I had a very good result on my neck today. In one pass I was as smooth as I usually get with two passes with my DE!

Due to some recent discussion on the spike tip with newbies, toward the end of my shave, I made a game of finding individual hairs, and popping them with the tip. That was fun. Also, I used the tip to clean up the hair around Sunday's rough patch.

Thank you all for your discussion, and ideas. It is all quite helpful. I'm a bit interested to see what happens after my 30 days is over. Initially I had thought I would be diving for my #16, or my New and Improved. I find I am really, REALLY enjoying straight razor shaving. Particularly now that I am getting much closer to replicating the results from my DE's. I have to say I am quite enamored by the amount of control I get with a straight razor. :thumbup:
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Glad to hear you're starting to really enjoy the shaves...thats when str8 shaving gets fun and really makes all the work worthwhile!
Here, here! I have also fallen head over heels for the delights of straight razor shaving. This hobby is going to keep me busy for a long time: shaving, stropping, honing, restoring(?); there is just so much you can do.

I am at the point where I wonder if it is even meaningful anymore to try out a slant DE, an Open comb DE an adjustable DE, an injector or a gem because that will steel time from straight razor shaving.


Moderator Emeritus
I'm probably a slow learner as it took me ages to get a DFS with a straight!
Sounds good mate, your progressing. As i always say 2 passes with a straight = 4 with a DE for me.
When you say 'guillotine stroke' do you mean a longer sweeping stroke?
Id suggest if you dont want to bleed stick with the short regular strokes you started with, you know they work on DE and Straight so resist the temptation to to those lovely sweeping strokes.
On the DE note, good back up to have the #16. That is my wifes favourite and the top DE iv ever tried. She also like #21 but #16 has taken the lead.
Just made her a brush, will have to show you folks. She posted it on SRP in the ladies corner, but ill have to take some decent pics in a light box.

Any way off me and back to you bud. Good onya!

ps the cuts will heal just fine, wont notice them. They are very fine so they heal well but slow because of the the two smooth edges trying to conect, as i have had it explained to me. So dont think she'll end up with some sexy scars... :)

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Olympian? I for one would never presume to compare myself to an... Aww, why thank you. What? Stand on this podium? Anything for my adoring fans of course. Roses? I really shouldn't. How embarrassing!

"Oh beautiful, for spacious skies!" :lol:


Moderator Emeritus
Or perhaps I just do not know what I am talking about, maybe I will have to review the definitions of DFS, CCS, SAS and so on.
No, I'm sure you know by now. I seriously barely did not shave anything at first for at least 10 shaves. It looked like I didn't shave at all!
No, I'm sure you know by now. I seriously barely did not shave anything at first for at least 10 shaves. It looked like I didn't shave at all!
Well that explains a lot. :scared: It really does you credit that you stuck with it.

I also think that the advice I get from all of you, the shave journals, the available youtube material, etc in combination with the time spent DE shaving and especially finding some solid performer soaps and creams, have allowed me to leap frog from the initial crappy shaves to the current ones where I can run my hand down my face WTG and hardly feel any stubble.
Shave 13 & 14 -- 7/14 & 7/15

Sticking with the Arko soap for now, not sure what it is about that stuff, but I really enjoy it. Great lather, and I'm in the 20% of people that really like the smell. Both shaves were about on par with my progress, continued good hair reduction. I am finding that I am not pining for the clean shave feel of my DE's, as I continue to improve in the hair reduction department. Rather than continue boring you with the gory details of the shaves, I will give a few musings on my straight shaving journey so far.

  • One thing that really impresses me with the straights is the amount of control that you can get as far as blade angle. It's cliche by now, but it really does seem to be comparable to a manual vs. automatic transmission on a car.
  • Well, I'm hooked. I'm not exactly sure how this will end up, but I am considering paring down on my DE's a bit, keeping only my very favorites. Shooting from the hip, that would be my Cased Aristocrat #16 (from Erwin) that is simply jaw- dropping. Also, my cased, amazing Bostonian that doesn't even have a crack in the barrel. Lastly the Gillette Psycho, not to use, but the thing is a psycho, man! I guess the few others I have will be PIF'd to friends I may interest along the way, and a couple sold on the B/S/T.
  • I finally got a proper strop- Well, two of them actually. Until now, I was using a scrap strip of leather from Larry at whippeddog.com. I got a hanging cotton/ leather strop from starshaving on ebay. Wow! What a difference a proper strop makes. I used it for the first time today, and I don't know if it was the linen side that did it, or what, but the shave was much smoother than it has been.
  • I bought a new razor, it is making it's way to me now. It's a lovely 6/8 Wade and butcher with rosewood scales, and coffin for it. I think I posted about earlier somewhere, but there you have it.
  • This has been consistent while shaving with DE's or straights, but this community is bar none the most remarkable that I have ever come across on the 'net. That would be about 20 years. The free flow of information, and the camaraderie here is really what keep s me coming back for more. My MO for online forums is to watch the interactions as a lurker, and you all broke me out of my shell within a week of finding this place.
  • Lastly, I put a deposit down for a Robert Williams custom straight. Lead time is 9ish months, but I figure I will know what my preferences are by the time he begins the project...

Thanks to all, and happy shaves!
Haha. I put that in last thinking that y'all might not catch it. I been watching the different custom razor makers galleries for a few months before I even took a dive into the straights, cause they are so purdy. Williams seems the best fit for me! The 9 month lead time also gives me time to save up some loot...
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