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Newbie Check-In/Rocky Transition

Hello everyone! Just checking in here, and hoping to maybe get some advice in the process. While I'm new to the B&B, I've been DE shaving for some time now. However, I recently picked up (or rather, have been trying to pick up) straight razor shaving.

I have no problem with stropping, face prep, lather, or anything like that, but whenever I put the straight to my face is when things start to get complicated. I feel like I have the blade angle down pretty well as I have no problem tackling the cheek/sideburn areas on either side of my face, but I don't even know where to begin around the mouth or neck. Every time I try these areas, things get a little awkward. After suffering through one too many clumsy strokes, I get frustrated and finish the shave with the DE.

It's not that I'm too stubborn or unwilling to learn, it's more a matter of having no clue what I'm doing and not wanting to tear my face to shreds. After all, everything i know about straight shaving (an even DE shaving for that matter) I know from youtube and lurking the forums.

And so, I now turn to the kind people of B&B for any and all advice. I understand that there is a lengthy learning curve with any new form of shaving, but I figured it might be better to just ask than to try and go it alone. Thanks guys!
 
First of all, welcome to B&B!

Second, and this is going to sound counter intuitive, but don't be too timid with that blade. As long as you are not pulling it longitudinally across your face (slicing motion like cutting bread or something) you won't totally wreck yourself. Check out the Straight Razor forums here on B&B. There is a good tutorial sticky posted here. Read through that if you haven't already.

Straight razors are quite a bit more cumbersome than DE's, so you have to manipulate your face a lot more. Pull, stretch, make funny faces until you get as flat a surface as you can on which to scrape that blade. Remember to use ZERO pressure, and don't rush things. Don't be afraid to try using just the tip of the blade or just the heel in those places like the upper lip. Also, practice using your non-dominant hand. Sometimes I just can't get a good grip on the thing with my right hand to shave something on the left side of my face. Plus, if my arm is reaching across my face I am blocking my view of the mirror. Another thing to think about is the length of your strokes. With a straight, especially in those awkward places, make short, quick strokes instead of long, slow ones.

There are a few things to think about. You may have already been exposed to all of that, but it is worth mentioning again. Always feel free to ask questions here. There are a lot of people here who are willing to help.
 
Welcome!

Don't be ashamed to finish up your straight shave with a DE if you need to. Do whatever areas you can comfortably do, WTG only. Then when it starts to get hard put it down. Finish with DE. Your technique will improve as you get more comfortable holding the blade. Pretty soon you wont need the DE to finish. Good Luck.

Enjoy your stay here at B&B!
 
Welcome to B&B!:thumbup1:

I have been straight razor shaving for some 5 or 6 months now, and in my first week, I definitely had to resort to a DE to tidy up. The cheeks are a fairly flat surface but get around the mouth and jawline, and all sorts of curves appear.The way around these areas is to "pull faces" to stretch the skin to make those areas as flat as possible too. There are many videos around, my favourite one at the moment from here:- http://www.rasurpur.de/media/rasurpurvideosection/rasurpurshave/rasurpurshave.html
 
Thanks for warm welcome guys. And especially thanks for the pointers. I think a lot of my trouble was in fact coming from trying to shave my "relaxed" face. Gave it another try earlier, made some pretty grotesque faces at myself in the mirror, and wouldn't you know it? I actually completed a full pass with the straight! Granted it wasn't the best shave I've ever had, but I know better than to expect anything resembling BBS any time soon. So thanks again guys, I'm now one step closer.
 
Thanks for warm welcome guys. And especially thanks for the pointers. I think a lot of my trouble was in fact coming from trying to shave my "relaxed" face. Gave it another try earlier, made some pretty grotesque faces at myself in the mirror, and wouldn't you know it? I actually completed a full pass with the straight! Granted it wasn't the best shave I've ever had, but I know better than to expect anything resembling BBS any time soon. So thanks again guys, I'm now one step closer.
Good stuff, man! Glad its working for you. A little more practice/experience and it will be 'old hat' for you.
 

Price

Moderator Emeritus
Thanks for warm welcome guys. And especially thanks for the pointers. I think a lot of my trouble was in fact coming from trying to shave my "relaxed" face. Gave it another try earlier, made some pretty grotesque faces at myself in the mirror, and wouldn't you know it? I actually completed a full pass with the straight! Granted it wasn't the best shave I've ever had, but I know better than to expect anything resembling BBS any time soon. So thanks again guys, I'm now one step closer.
That's great progress. Congratulations!

Yes, you do have to do some strange contortions to get a good straight shave, but pretty soon it'll become second nature. Keep at it and you'll get there.
 
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