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Pre-Shave or no?

So I just want some opinions on this one, Pre-Shave or no Pre-Shave? I know many people have varying views on this topic, so feel free to contribute. I currently use Edwin Jagger Pre-Shave cream, but to be fair, I have never tried just straight soap (not a fan of creams, tried Edwin Jaggers as well, not impressed). Everyone, please chip in.
I did use Pre-shave oil and Proraso Pre-shave cream but I kinda strayed away from it. I just really concentrate on a good soap and water ratio making awesome lather.. That's what works for me.
I have used both pre-shave oil and proraso pre-shave cream and find that both of them can help with a shave. I can also strongly recommend Pacific Pre-Shave oil.
I've been debating this myself. I just finished Origins Shave Oil, Body Shop Shave Oil, and am almost done with Proraso Pre/Post. While I do think they add some benefit, I'm not sure it's worth the cost. This last week I've shaved with Tabac and Provence Sante without pre-shave oil and got great results.

A great soap and good technique goes a long way.
I didn't use any pre-shave for the longest time. Then I tried Castle Forbes's water-soluble pre-shave. For me, the stuff makes a difference. Every time I forget to use it the shave is noticeably rougher.
Proraso Aloe and Green Tea Pre-Shave Cream (white label)

I experimented with various pre-shave oils and found that they did not give me the slickness and protection I expected and sometimes inhibited the development of good lather.

I am a Proraso fan and have the both the green label and white label pre-shave and had only used them with Proraso shaving cream.

As of late I've been using the Proraso Aloe and Green Tea Pre-Shave Cream (white label) prior to using Cella Crema da Barba or Provence Sante Shaving Soap. Wow! For me these two combination's have really increased my enjoyment of wet shaving. I found the scents really do compliment each other and make for a very comfortable and cushioned shave. YMMV
I use a Cocoa Butter hand cream from Dollar Tree that has alot of the good ingredients listed in this wiki for $1 for a 20 oz. bottle; I'm always looking to keep costs down, and the fact that some gents here feel that some pre-shaves are overpriced led me to this "solution." I apply to my face liberally, rubbing deep and against the grain. I leave on for about a minute and a half as the sink fills with hot water. Then, I rinse and proceed to shave. If I don't do this, my beard is really wiry and tough to shave. Therefore, I don't shave without first prepping, and have a smooth face afterward.
My current routine:
  • Wash face with Musgo Real lime oil glycerin soap
  • Apply Cremo Cream as a pre-shave
  • Face-lather with soap of choice
Works well. When the Cremo is used up, I plan to try Proraso pre/post-shave.
I've tried using pre-shave oils in the past, and it always seemed to make it dang near impossible to build up a lather on my face. Since then I've found that with proper prep, I really don't need it. Just my 2 cents!
I don't use any special pre-shave products as I shave after my shower and don't believe that they would help at all.
I like PSO. really seems to help me keep down the small nicks. The trick for me is to only use about 5 to 8 drops massaged into my wet face. The point of PSO is to make the skin more supple, not provide slickness.
Today I used Shave Secret. but I also have King of Shaves, AOS and some home made PSO.
I use a dab on the second pass in the problem areas but I can also go without it. It seems to help a little.
I've found that the less I put on my face the better. No pre-shave oils or aftershave balms for me. I just wash my face with a glycerin based soap, use a good shave cream or soap and finish with a splash of witch hazel. This works best for me, YMMV.
I shaved a year or so without and was bothered by nicks and weepers. So I bought some Proraso pre/post shave cream and have been using that for a couple of months. I think it's helping - smoother, fewer cuts. However, after the first pass, the cream is pretty much gone. When I relather for a 2nd or 3rd pass, I don't think the preshave makes a difference.

When the current jar runs out, I plan to get a different scent or brand, as the regular Proraso is too much like Vick's VapoRub.
The only preshave I use is to wash my face with either a gentle shampoo, or a non-soap cleanser. Plenty of warm water.
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