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Newbie Here- Feeling defeated and frustrated

You may try some sort of pre-shave routine like a pre-shave soap or oil.
Like others have said, light pressure. I've found Wilkinson Sword (Germany), Polsilver, Personna Reds, Personna Med Prep to be good sharp yet smooth blades. It may sound counterintuitive, but the Feather being nice & sharp cuts very well allowing you to use light pressure.
I'd try1 with the grain and two at most across the grain passes. You may have to avoid against the grain all together.

If you post some close up pics of your razor, we can see if we detect anything askew.
 
blade 30 degrees to face (acute angle)

don't press to hard

maybe try cold water

use less passes, 1.5 or 2 if you can.

YMMV

good luck!
 
Welcome! Try using short strokes at different angles to find what works best for you. Also, do forget to try different blades. Some blades will work much better for you than others. What works well for me may not work well for you so, don't be afraid to try something others don't recommend. For me Derby Extra blades work pretty well but, a lot of people on this site don't like them as one example where different people have different experiences. YMMV as there is no single right or wrong answer to modern shaving.
 
I've tried this razor with Derby, Red Personna, Astra SP, and Feathers. Featehrs.
Welcome! Try using short strokes at different angles to find what works best for you. Also, do forget to try different blades. Some blades will work much better for you than others. What works well for me may not work well for you so, don't be afraid to try something others don't recommend. For me Derby Extra blades work pretty well but, a lot of people on this site don't like them as one example where different people have different experiences. YMMV as there is no single right or wrong answer to modern shaving.
 
Just to be sure the adjuster is functioning proper open the doors, remove the blade and adjust it from 1-9. The four pins should move up and down. As you see on the responses to your post there are many variable that can lead to a good or bad shave. Keep plugging away you'll get it!:thumbup1:
 
That they do.

Just to be sure the adjuster is functioning proper open the doors, remove the blade and adjust it from 1-9. The four pins should move up and down. As you see on the responses to your post there are many variable that can lead to a good or bad shave. Keep plugging away you'll get it!:thumbup1:
 
The key to minimal irritation is minimal pressure. If you've been shaving with cartridges, it's quite likely what you think is minimal pressure is actually too much, cartridges require significant pressure to cut at all in most cases, and encourage it by floating the blades on a plastic sled. Hard to use too much with them, easy with a DE.

Proper blade angle is more like 20 degrees in my experience (at the blade, not the handle -- all razors bend the blade some, you will have to figure out where the handle needs to be to get 20 at the blade). 30 was always recommended by Gillette, but that was done to get people to buy more blades as much as to get good shaves. Schick always recommended 20, and a Krona TTO will more or less force you to use that angle or it won't shave at all.

Don't worry about a super clean shave when you start out, work on a decent shave with as few passes as possible with no irritation. Stubble is far better than razor burn, and as you get some practice you will get better beard reduction. It may always take two or three passes to get all the stubble off for you, as that depends on your beard.

My take on nicks, weepers, and irritation is that the vast majority of the problem is due to excessive pressure and poor angle or angle control, and the rest is due to not having wet slick lather.

Peter
 
The key to minimal irritation is minimal pressure. If you've been shaving with cartridges, it's quite likely what you think is minimal pressure is actually too much, cartridges require significant pressure to cut at all in most cases, and encourage it by floating the blades on a plastic sled. Hard to use too much with them, easy with a DE.

Proper blade angle is more like 20 degrees in my experience (at the blade, not the handle --
Peter
Can you elaborate on what you mean by that at the blade not hte handle is 20 degrees ?
 
The edge on the blade is ground to around 16 to 18 degrees. If you hold the razor so the blade is about 20 degrees above flat on your skin, the razor should have the edge positioned to have just enough clearance to cut the hair cleanly at skin level without dragging on the hair. This will leave about 12 degrees of clearance.

The blade is curved in the razor -- there are only a very few razors that hold the blade flat, doesn't work well that way. You will have to look at the curve of the blade to see what the angle of the blade is to the handle, it varies between razors.

The easy way is to put the cap on your face with the handle sticking straight out, then slow move the razor down while rotating the handle downward. You will feel and hear the blade start cutting hair, and as you keep rotating the handle you will find the angle at which the hair cuts with the least effort. This is the angle you want to maintain as you shave -- rather tricky in places like your chin and under the chin unless you have a fat neck like me.

I see plenty of people on youtube shaving with the handle nearly parallel to their face all the time, and while you CAN shave that way, it's probably the least comfortable angle and most likely to give you serious razor burn while simultaneously causing excessive wear to the edge. The difference between slicing with a knife and scraping with it.

The angle I use leaves the cap against my face and the safety bar only barely touching -- the safety bar is there to prevent cuts, not as a shaving guide. Ideally it would never touch your skin.

Peter
 
Ok, I know exactly what you're referring to. I keep reading about how people with this razor like a 45 degree angle so I think that's why I have been going back to a weird angle more often than not.

The edge on the blade is ground to around 16 to 18 degrees. If you hold the razor so the blade is about 20 degrees above flat on your skin, the razor should have the edge positioned to have just enough clearance to cut the hair cleanly at skin level without dragging on the hair. This will leave about 12 degrees of clearance.

The blade is curved in the razor -- there are only a very few razors that hold the blade flat, doesn't work well that way. You will have to look at the curve of the blade to see what the angle of the blade is to the handle, it varies between razors.

The easy way is to put the cap on your face with the handle sticking straight out, then slow move the razor down while rotating the handle downward. You will feel and hear the blade start cutting hair, and as you keep rotating the handle you will find the angle at which the hair cuts with the least effort. This is the angle you want to maintain as you shave -- rather tricky in places like your chin and under the chin unless you have a fat neck like me.

I see plenty of people on youtube shaving with the handle nearly parallel to their face all the time, and while you CAN shave that way, it's probably the least comfortable angle and most likely to give you serious razor burn while simultaneously causing excessive wear to the edge. The difference between slicing with a knife and scraping with it.

The angle I use leaves the cap against my face and the safety bar only barely touching -- the safety bar is there to prevent cuts, not as a shaving guide. Ideally it would never touch your skin.

Peter
 
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BigJ

Ambassador
Welcome! This is a skill that takes awhile to learn! So, my first suggestion is that you give yourself awhile. Second, I suggest you read through the wiki and watch a few videos. With a bit of effort you will get there!
 
The key to minimal irritation is minimal pressure. If you've been shaving with cartridges, it's quite likely what you think is minimal pressure is actually too much, cartridges require significant pressure to cut at all in most cases, and encourage it by floating the blades on a plastic sled. Hard to use too much with them, easy with a DE.

Proper blade angle is more like 20 degrees in my experience (at the blade, not the handle -- all razors bend the blade some, you will have to figure out where the handle needs to be to get 20 at the blade). 30 was always recommended by Gillette, but that was done to get people to buy more blades as much as to get good shaves. Schick always recommended 20, and a Krona TTO will more or less force you to use that angle or it won't shave at all.

Don't worry about a super clean shave when you start out, work on a decent shave with as few passes as possible with no irritation. Stubble is far better than razor burn, and as you get some practice you will get better beard reduction. It may always take two or three passes to get all the stubble off for you, as that depends on your beard.

My take on nicks, weepers, and irritation is that the vast majority of the problem is due to excessive pressure and poor angle or angle control, and the rest is due to not having wet slick lather.

Peter
All excellent points above. I also felt discouraged and defeated at times when I was figuring all this stuff out. It takes patience, and some practice, but you WILL get it, so take heart and hang in there! :thumbup1:
 
Lol, I lit my face up a time to two when I first started, and got a lot of irritation trying to remove "phantom" stubble on my neck. Mor nicks and weeper than I've had for a long time, too.

Then one morning I ran through my usual routine and got a blood free, nearly BBS shave with zero irritation. The next two were just as good, and I've had very little trouble since.

Just takes practice.

Peter
 
I actually thought you were messing with me about the cold water. I hope this isn't part of the magic formula that I need and it's simply blade angle because I have a scuttle I got arriving tomorrow.

blade 30 degrees to face (acute angle)

don't press to hard

maybe try cold water

use less passes, 1.5 or 2 if you can.

YMMV

good luck!
 
I think that part is also not helping. I am going to try it with a 2 past shave going forward .
Lol, I lit my face up a time to two when I first started, and got a lot of irritation trying to remove "phantom" stubble on my neck. Mor nicks and weeper than I've had for a long time, too.

Then one morning I ran through my usual routine and got a blood free, nearly BBS shave with zero irritation. The next two were just as good, and I've had very little trouble since.

Just takes practice.

Peter
 
Cold water shaves may give you less irritation. However, a good hot soak with a wet towel before you lather up will probably give you less too, because it softens up the beard hair and makes it easier to cut. Easier to cut means less work for the razor, less temptation to add pressure, and fewer passes, all of which mean less irritation.

You'll get there, I can get a decent shave without burn even with a worn out blade, just takes longer and is less comfortable.

Peter
 
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