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My (YMMV) comparison of different blades

Swedish super steel shave one (second blade)

With a normal single days growth I take back what I said previously, these feel quite sharp. Smooth enough and feels to be about the same all up as a shark. Yet I think I could tell them apart in a double blind test.

quieter during the first pass. The first pass felt effortless but the second pass was slightly more difficult. I really need to concentrate on my angle during the second pass (both razor angle and blade grain). I think it is where, more than anywhere else, my technique most falls down.

Third pass about the same.

I will continue the rest of this tuck (5) to get a really good view of these. I am not one of those people who can use one blade for one shave and say it is great or horrible. However I think I am happy with these and the 40 I have will not go to waste.
 
Swedish super steel shave two.

I think after one shave this blade is done. Not a great shave - a lot of irritation especially on the third pass. End result was a nice dfs shave and there isn't any lasting irritation though.

One thought is that this blade feels very smooth on the skin, when going over an area that is already pretty smooth you don't feel that the blade is there as much as with my normal blades and I may not notice as much that I am causing damage??

Another, I had prepped for longer than normal before this shave, and I washed my hair. It could be that more prep softens my skin more than it does my hair??

I may try a cold water shave again at some point - I have done it once without good results but It may be worth revisiting.
 
I have been getting a tiny bit frustrated with this whole process as, since I began, I have not gotten shaves like I was getting for the weeks before I started this thread.

Swedish super steel shave 1

starting a new blade as I was I changed it up and put it in my English flat bottom tech. I wanted to see if my technique was such that the razor really made a difference. The result, not really, same number of passes, same good DFS shave' same decent amount of irritation.

as I was putting on the witch hazel it occurred to me, and I don't know why it hadn't sooner, that all the really good shaves had happened while I couldn't use my right arm.

therefore. Tomorrow I am loading a shark in the slim on 5 and doing a left handed, non skin stretched shave.
 
Dollar to a doughnut you are using less pressure with your left hand.....

I don't think it takes much difference in technique, whatever that difference is, to change a nice comfortable shave into one with lots of irritation.

Back in the old days when cartridges first came out, this was a great attraction -- the swivel ones do all the hard work for you, you can be quite sloppy and still get a good shave with not too much irritation and mostly close, but no weepers or cuts. Shaving on autopilot, so to speak. The quality is way down on them though these days. Or my beard is tougher.

You have to do the driving with a DE, for better or for worse!

Peter
 
Dollar to a doughnut you are using less pressure with your left hand.....

I don't think it takes much difference in technique, whatever that difference is, to change a nice comfortable shave into one with lots of irritation.

Back in the old days when cartridges first came out, this was a great attraction -- the swivel ones do all the hard work for you, you can be quite sloppy and still get a good shave with not too much irritation and mostly close, but no weepers or cuts. Shaving on autopilot, so to speak. The quality is way down on them though these days. Or my beard is tougher.

You have to do the driving with a DE, for better or for worse!

Peter
Difference in technique or angle possibly, less pressure I doubt. If anything I would have thought that I had less control in my left hand and end up with more pressure to compensate. But we will see.

i should mention why I was shaving left handed. I broke my elbow late September. Maybe my right hand shaves haven't been good because I actually don't have as much control back as I thought. Again we will see. Maybe this is all a fallacy and my left hand shaves will be just as bad and it will all be to do with a change in the weather.
 
Just my two cents. When I started DE shaving I was doing three pass shaves. That was 7 months ago. I shave M-F for work. Don't shave Saturday and then do a me-time shave on Sunday(hot towel prep, new blade). My usual shaver is a EJ DE89lbl loaded with a Shark. I'm down to a two pass shave now, WTG, XTG on cheeks and jaw line, ATG neck. Then a touch up on any felt rough spots. I've been trying out blades in a Gillette NEW SC I picked up 3 weeks ago at a local fleamarket. The point I'm trying to make I guess is, that technique also gets a vote with your shave.
Of course.

The frustration in this is that I had it right. The thread was meant to be straight blade comparison, not technique problems.

shave within the next half hour or so.
 
Not to criticize but just to get your point of view on a subject that comes up often and that I have a hard time identifying with. I don't consider that DE shaving requires much of a learning curve other than to get the angle right and to reduce pressure and that happened for me after a couple of shaves.

Now, if I were to keep going the wrong way on my neck (the way that causes irritation) then I would have a problem as well but I don't do that. Once I get irritation doing anything on my face with a razor I quit doing that.

Therefore, I had to learn to be careful on my neck, under my nose and around my chin. This was initially harder to do if I used Feather blades but otherwise it didn't really matter that much what blades I used. I liked some a little better than others but none really were the cause of any irritation. That was generally just due to technique and I adjusted technique by day 2 or 3.

So my question is what is so difficult or different about shaving with DE blades for some (many)? I totally get why it takes a long period of time to get really good when shaving with a straight razor but shaving with a DE?

Again, this isn't meant to criticize and I'm just directing it at you since I happen to be reading your thread. Anyone who has continued to be irritated for more than a few days while shaving with a DE can address this question.
 
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Shark shave 1, left handed and back to the slim.

better I think. Less irritation than yesterday and what was there was most intense at the same areas as yesterday implying that I haven't properly healed. Not quite DFS as I didn't want to push it and I don't have work or anything tomorrow.

i'll go with this method until it is either proven or not. I don't know what percentage might be to do with skin stretching or not.
 
Not to criticize but just to get your point of view on a subject that comes up often and that I have a hard time identifying with. I don't consider that DE shaving requires much of a learning curve other than to get the angle right and to reduce pressure and that happened for me after a couple of shaves.

Now, if I were to keep going the wrong way on my neck (the way that causes irritation) then I would have a problem as well but I don't do that. Once I get irritation doing anything on my face with a razor I quit doing that.

Therefore, I had to learn to be careful on my neck, under my nose and around my chin. This was initially harder to do if I used Feather blades but otherwise it didn't really matter that much what blades I used. I liked some a little better than others but none really were the cause of any irritation. That was generally just due to technique and I adjusted technique by day 2 or 3.

So my question is what is so difficult or different about shaving with DE blades for some (many)? I totally get why it takes a long period of time to get really good when shaving with a straight razor but shaving with a DE?

Again, this isn't meant to criticize and I'm just directing it at you since I happen to be reading your thread. Anyone who has continued to be irritated for more than a few days while shaving with a DE can address this question.
Every face is different. Some people get bbs with two with the grain passes. If I did two with the grain passes I wouldn't get irritation, but most people would say I haven't shaved.

like you if I shave my neck the wrong way it gets irritated a lot. So I shave it just the other way and deal with a less close shave.

My technique has improved, but my face is such that I think the technique has to be perfect to get it right. The problem is you can only practice once a day.
 
Every face is different. Some people get bbs with two with the grain passes. If I did two with the grain passes I wouldn't get irritation, but most people would say I haven't shaved.

like you if I shave my neck the wrong way it gets irritated a lot. So I shave it just the other way and deal with a less close shave.

My technique has improved, but my face is such that I think the technique has to be perfect to get it right. The problem is you can only practice once a day.
Haha...so true. I have a bunch of straight razors that I've honed that I want to try out but my hair only grows so fast. :)

I can't remember if you've mentioned it in this thread but when you used to shave with cartridges did you get a BBS with no irritation?
 
. The problem is you can only practice once a day.
+1000

I just honed up several of my straights that had fallen out of service over the past year or 2 and I need to shave test them to see where I am with my hone job....of which I'm still learning and trying new techniques with the stones I have trying to get predictable, reproducible, and consistent results.

Shaving only once a day is taking waaaaaay too long to get reacquainted with all of these blades. Especially when I usually only do a full 2 pass shave using wtg 1st pass and then xtg/atg combo 2nd pass every other day with the "off" days just being 1 pass wtg shaves because multiple days in a row of that leave my face unable to recover by the end of the week.

Maybe it's a blade/honing issue, technique issue, or just a face issue but getting too close of a shave every day catches up with me eventually.

Even though I am exclusively a straight shaver for going on 3 years now, I still use DE for my head shaves and have been looking at your impression of these blades with much inerest.

I use derby exclusively and have tried a few others only to go right back to derby. Nothing seems as sharp and smooth as those derbys to me, now feathers are sure sharper but I don't like having to take twice as long to shave making sure I don't slice myself up. I'd like to try some others but there are so many out there it's hard to know where to start.
All of this to say thank you for sharing your experiences with so many different blades.
 
Haha...so true. I have a bunch of straight razors that I've honed that I want to try out but my hair only grows so fast. :)

I can't remember if you've mentioned it in this thread but when you used to shave with cartridges did you get a BBS with no irritation?
No

I hated shaving, pretty consistent razor burn. I gave up on cartridge and went to electric. Had a pretty miserable run with electric experimenting with lather shaving with electric and goo - still not particularly good.

having the third electric die made me look for something else.
 
No

I hated shaving, pretty consistent razor burn. I gave up on cartridge and went to electric. Had a pretty miserable run with electric experimenting with lather shaving with electric and goo - still not particularly good.

having the third electric die made me look for something else.
Yeah, electrics never did much for me either even though I used them for years. My approach was to use the electric to get the bulk of the hair off and then to use a cartridge/goo for one easy pass for the close shave.

For me, it worked but it was not enjoyable in the least. DE is enjoyable. I have an odd suggestion for you. Try shaving with a Feather blade. If you are using too much pressure you will know it immediately. If you can reduce pressure enough to shave with a Feather and then switch to any other blade you should be good to go.
 
Everyone's beard is different, I think, and most people appear to fall into two camps about blades -- either you can't stand Derbys and similar blades, or you love them. Those that intensely dislike "dull" blades similar to Derby's tend to really like very sharp blades, and vise versa.

I believe this boils down to a combination of technique and how easily the blades cut any particular person's beard (or other) hair. I find that Derby's give me excruciatingly rough feel, but very close shaves. I'd use them all the time if I could manage the sensation of having the hair ripped out by the roots. The result was great, but after six shaves I could no longer stand the tugging. I don't have a heavy beard, but the individual hairs are thick and appear to be pretty tough. My skin is not particularly sensitive, with a good blade (and NOT a Derby!) I can do the first pass ATG witth no problems, and have done so for 40 years. Derby's take three passes with the first being WTG, and even then the final ATG is not fun. They pull on my chin in all directions until I have the hairs cut down to skin level.

If you have a beard with softer hair (or smaller diameter hair) a Derby would be a very nice blade -- absent the pulling, they cut very closely without any irritation and give very close shaves.

Same goes for electrics, the ones I tried in the distant past pulled so much I couldn't finish a shave. Horrible.

Now, if I'm not careful, I can give myself a grade A case of razor burn, but I got the angle thing under control for the most part, a nice sharp blade gives my a nice, clean, irritation free shave. Keep the angle low and pressure light and the direction of the blade matched to my beard growth pattern and I'm good for a two pass with cleanup BBS shave with an Astra with 20 plus shaves on it.

Everyone has to find the type of blade that suits them best. After you get used to DE shaving and develop good technique, and you might find that blades you didn't like are much "better" later.

Peter
 
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Left handed shark shave two

again far better than the previous shaves, either the lack of skin stretching, the pressure of the blade, the angle of the blade or the angle of the passes has subtly changed enough to make a difference.

again still some irritation where my skin has not fully healed. Really nice approaching BBS shave (as close as I have ever gotten on my right cheek). Less irritation than yesterday and less than since is started this thread I think.
 
Left handed shark shave 3.

i changed things very slightly tonight but I do not think it effected anything positive or negative.

http://badgerandblade.com/vb/showth...-shave-soap-(Australia)?p=8667463#post8667463

Anyway, did a first pass with a completely new unknown soap and two more passes with my regular soap. Had no obvious effect on anything.

The blade on it's third shave is starting to feel mildly duller, yet it did not seem to really effect the quality of the shave. The closeness is 'slightly' less than yesterday, Irritation is again considerably down compared to yesterday.

The left handed thing really really appears to work. The question is is this to do with skin stretching?

i am going to do three more shaves win a fresh blade and then attempt to do a right hand shave with no skin stretching to figure out if I still get the irritation or not. It is all about eliminating variables. (And I used a new soap, I know I am a hypocrite).
 
Shark shave one.

Well I stuffed that up. Lost concentration.

Three quarters through the shave I realised that I was shaving right handed. I must have picked up the razor in the other hand between passes.

However, it proved some things. There was more irritation than the last shave. I didn't do any skin stretching. Supposition is that it is the hand that makes a difference. Not stretching.

Not a bad shave all up and no lasting issues, just not as good as yesterday's.
 
Having an elbow issue is likely to alter the way you move the razor, so I suspect you will have to re-train your right hand. I know mine worked differently after I split the ulna as a kid by landing on the point of my elbow, took quite a long time to get it to fully rotate and flex.

I need to learn to use my left on the left side of my face, I'm having trouble getting all the stubble over there with my right hand. Shouldn't be too hard as I'm not strongly right hand dominant, but I'll probably get some rough shaves until I figure it out.

Peter
 
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