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New member; my journey so far...

Hi all, I've been meaning to join for a long time. This forum has been a lot of help to me and I hope to add something to it as well. I hope sharing my path (especially the mistakes!) will help others in turn. Here's some of the main stages I've gone through in wet shaving already. Please don't read this if staying awake for the next ten minutes is a priority for you:

1) Using cartridges and canned goo for 25 years. Usually a WTG pass and then buffing ATG (dry!). Even with this equipment, I liked shaving. I liked getting a close shave but never liked how much the carts cost, and that I could only get 6 or 7 shaves out of each. No matter how close my shave was, I always still had a five o'clock shadow. A colleague pointed this out once and just to show him, I decided to grow a full beard, which I kept for five years. It's not like I'm sensitive to teasing or anything.

2) Two years ago, I learned about traditional wet shaving stuff and tried an Edwin Jagger DE89, a Plissoft brush, and some Proraso products. I loved the software but the shaves were not close at all and I gave up after a few weeks of frustration. Looking back, I can see lots of problems: I was changing too many variables each day, not paying attention to my beard map, not spending enough time/effort on prep, not keeping any notes, and not permitting myself to use a cartridge to clean up the spots I couldn't get with the DE razor yet. Bravely abandoning all hope, I gave away all the hardware and went back to carts, but never again touched the canned goo.

3) A couple months ago, tired once again of the cost and general ineffectiveness of cartridges, I decided to try this again. I got a Muhle R41 and promised myself I'd tame it. I corrected all the mistakes in (2) above, and on shave #14 with the R41, I completed a full three pass shave with touchups and no need for the old cartridge. I walked on air the rest of the day.

4) Early-onset razor acquisition disorder. You knew this was coming. After 39 shaves with the R41 it was time for a slant. A RazoRock German 37 arrived, with a much more comfortable and secure feeling to it. 19 shaves later, I became the owner-operator of a Fatip Open Comb Slant, in the search for even greater rigidity. Suddenly ATG on the upper lip became a cinch. My technique and enjoyment of DE shaving has come a long way. But I still notice that five o'clock shadow all the time, no matter how well I've done. Maybe I just need to accept that's my skin and beard type, but I'm still curious if I can knock that back a bit more.

5) After my 60th DE shave, in the interest of science, I went back to my stash of cartridges (Fusion with 5 blades) to see what's what. My newfound technique yielded some awesome cart shaves, but I can still only get 6 shaves out of a cart, and at least two of those (the first and last) are not the most comfortable. The biggest shock of all is that the shaves took exactly the same amount of time as with my DE razors. Good prep and multiple passes determine the time variable for me now, not having five blades vs. one. YMMV.

6) Shavette insanity. I can't believe I am doing this. A Parker SRB with a half-DE Feather blade in it is now my WTG pass, followed up with one of my slants to finish the shave. After reading all the warnings about how unforgiving these DE shavettes are, I'm properly cautious with it but really enjoying being able to see what's happening right at the edge. And I'm beginning to get closer shaves on the plane of the cheeks than ever, with a slight reduction of that shadow. I can see the ergonomic and safety limitations of the SRB and want to dive deeper into straight edge shaving without honing and stropping yet, so...

7) I ordered a Feather SS Artist Club non-folding Shavette and some ProGuard blades last night.

Thank you, Gentle Reader, for joining me on this trip. It's great to have the company.
 
Hi all, I've been meaning to join for a long time. This forum has been a lot of help to me and I hope to add something to it as well. I hope sharing my path (especially the mistakes!) will help others in turn. Here's some of the main stages I've gone through in wet shaving already. Please don't read this if staying awake for the next ten minutes is a priority for you:

1) Using cartridges and canned goo for 25 years. Usually a WTG pass and then buffing ATG (dry!). Even with this equipment, I liked shaving. I liked getting a close shave but never liked how much the carts cost, and that I could only get 6 or 7 shaves out of each. No matter how close my shave was, I always still had a five o'clock shadow. A colleague pointed this out once and just to show him, I decided to grow a full beard, which I kept for five years. It's not like I'm sensitive to teasing or anything.

2) Two years ago, I learned about traditional wet shaving stuff and tried an Edwin Jagger DE89, a Plissoft brush, and some Proraso products. I loved the software but the shaves were not close at all and I gave up after a few weeks of frustration. Looking back, I can see lots of problems: I was changing too many variables each day, not paying attention to my beard map, not spending enough time/effort on prep, not keeping any notes, and not permitting myself to use a cartridge to clean up the spots I couldn't get with the DE razor yet. Bravely abandoning all hope, I gave away all the hardware and went back to carts, but never again touched the canned goo.

3) A couple months ago, tired once again of the cost and general ineffectiveness of cartridges, I decided to try this again. I got a Muhle R41 and promised myself I'd tame it. I corrected all the mistakes in (2) above, and on shave #14 with the R41, I completed a full three pass shave with touchups and no need for the old cartridge. I walked on air the rest of the day.

4) Early-onset razor acquisition disorder. You knew this was coming. After 39 shaves with the R41 it was time for a slant. A RazoRock German 37 arrived, with a much more comfortable and secure feeling to it. 19 shaves later, I became the owner-operator of a Fatip Open Comb Slant, in the search for even greater rigidity. Suddenly ATG on the upper lip became a cinch. My technique and enjoyment of DE shaving has come a long way. But I still notice that five o'clock shadow all the time, no matter how well I've done. Maybe I just need to accept that's my skin and beard type, but I'm still curious if I can knock that back a bit more.

5) After my 60th DE shave, in the interest of science, I went back to my stash of cartridges (Fusion with 5 blades) to see what's what. My newfound technique yielded some awesome cart shaves, but I can still only get 6 shaves out of a cart, and at least two of those (the first and last) are not the most comfortable. The biggest shock of all is that the shaves took exactly the same amount of time as with my DE razors. Good prep and multiple passes determine the time variable for me now, not having five blades vs. one. YMMV.

6) Shavette insanity. I can't believe I am doing this. A Parker SRB with a half-DE Feather blade in it is now my WTG pass, followed up with one of my slants to finish the shave. After reading all the warnings about how unforgiving these DE shavettes are, I'm properly cautious with it but really enjoying being able to see what's happening right at the edge. And I'm beginning to get closer shaves on the plane of the cheeks than ever, with a slight reduction of that shadow. I can see the ergonomic and safety limitations of the SRB and want to dive deeper into straight edge shaving without honing and stropping yet, so...

7) I ordered a Feather SS Artist Club non-folding Shavette and some ProGuard blades last night.

Thank you, Gentle Reader, for joining me on this trip. It's great to have the company.
You’re well on your way. I’m sure curiosity will cause you to try a true straight razor eventually!😀
 
Welcome. You will fit right in!

I tried my old cartridges after some time wet shaving. It was much better than the old days, with my new understanding of prep and technique. So, I could use them if I ever need to. But the are boring.

If the feather works out, you might try proper straight razors.
 
Welcome to B&B, Nicked78! I'm new myself, but have already learned a lot on the board. I appreciated reading your story. Like you, I only recently switched to shaving with a blade, though I started with brush and soap a long time ago. It does sound as though you have a much more challenging beard than I, as I've been able to achieve a nice, close shave almost every time with a DE razor and a couple of passes plus touch up. I'm looking forward to hearing about your journey into straight-razor shaving.

Charlie
 
Welcome to B&B.
The 5 O'Clock shadow is inevitable for some so you just have to accept it. What is important is you are getting the very close and comfortable shave you seek.
Yeah! I'm coming around to appreciate that more and more. And even when I don't get the result I want, just being invested in the process and learning something new each time is very satisfying. I just find learning new techniques and skills makes life so much better no matter what else is going on. Thanks for the reassurance.
 
Welcome to B&B, Nicked78! I'm new myself, but have already learned a lot on the board. I appreciated reading your story. Like you, I only recently switched to shaving with a blade, though I started with brush and soap a long time ago. It does sound as though you have a much more challenging beard than I, as I've been able to achieve a nice, close shave almost every time with a DE razor and a couple of passes plus touch up. I'm looking forward to hearing about your journey into straight-razor shaving.

Charlie
Thanks for the welcome from another new member. It seems so obvious to me now but I hadn't really given much thought to how different skin and beard types could be. I'm wondering if my beard growth lies relatively flat to my skin, making it harder for the blade to pick it up? You would think using a brush and some stretching techniques would overcome that, but so far I still feel like I leave a lot of visible growth behind even after multiple passes and touchups. The Shavette is definitely more capable, given its totally unguarded blade. I'm glad you took the time to read my long intro and enjoyed it.
 
Nicked78, I think you nailed it with the observation about beard lay. I took a close-up photo of my face, to get a close look at a nick, and some of the whiskers are flat against the skin. I think that's where the touch-up, using skin stretching and ATG strokes, comes into play.
 
Welcome! Have fun with the Feather kamisori , I have the folding version with Proguard blades. It’s a fine setup. Perhaps your curiosity will lead you to SR shaving eventually, highly recommended IMHO. Hang on for the ride!
 
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