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progress after 2.5 months of DE shaving

Hi all,

I am reviewing my progress with DE shaving. For the last few weeks I stick to:
- shaving every 2 days
- usually no preshave but always I am shaving after a hot shower
- soap: arko; blade: astra green
- razor: rockwell 6c (usually plate 4, but today I tried 5 for the first time)
- alum block
- aftershave: brut AFS or Piaud's clubman bay rum
- I do 2 or 3 passes, 1 with the grain and 2 across.

Interestingly enough in the past shaves I get no irritation at all in the neck area that used to be a big issue. Today I tried to shave the neck area against the grain using plate 2 of rockwell and again no irritation at all.

The problematic area is the mustache area and jaw. Today I had some razor burn in the mustache area. Both appear like a part of a skin is "on fire".
Now interestingly enough the feedback that I get from the alum block in these regions is there but relatively small. The burn starts being felt more an hour after the shaving. It is not that bad, nothing in comparison to my early days, but it is still there.

In comparison to the old days, I used to get feedback from alum block almost everywhere. So definitely big progress there.

I was wondering whether others when they get irritation it is start being felt some time well after the shave.

Thank you!
 
I was wondering whether others when they get irritation it is start being felt some time well after the shave.
Yep, just like getting cut with something very sharp. No feeling, just blood everywhere and then the throbbing begins. Sorry, your problem sounds like textbook abraded skin. You might want to work out a routine where you save your mustache area and neck for last and switch plates. I get the same feeling sometimes when I go against the grain too many days in a row. The tell tale is the flaking skin the next day.
 
Thank you @APBinNCA, it this is a textbook case then it is good, it means that there is also a documented solution!

@rbscebu do you have in mind a razor that could do that?

I am also wondering whether there are ways to change the post shave routine that can improve this. thank you!
 
Ha, Ha, he is trying to pull you into straight razors. As for post shave, it may just take time for your skin. I personally would use an oil pre-shave if my skin is already torn up. Others will suggest their favorite moisturizer.
 
Thank you @APBinNCA . I like straight razors, but I think that I am not ready for those. I will try to master first DE razors and then I see where I go from there.

When I was using cartridges the irritation was appearing almost immediately. That's why I was thinking that it may have something to do with the more careful post shave procedures.
 
You know, some of these Astra greens have been having bad batches. I have heard people say that if you get a bad one, you need to throw out all 5. Maybe more. I wonder if that isn't the problem. We are talking about two different types of irritation here that produce different symptoms. Generally the type you are having with the mustache area isn't because of bad technique like your cartridge example. It has to be equipment and or especially sensitive skin.
 
You know, some of these Astra greens have been having bad batches. I have heard people say that if you get a bad one, you need to throw out all 5. Maybe more. I wonder if that isn't the problem. We are talking about two different types of irritation here that produce different symptoms. Generally the type you are having with the mustache area isn't because of bad technique like your cartridge example. It has to be equipment and or especially sensitive skin.
That's a good point. I will try next time a perma sharp blade to see whether it works better. The Astra was not the first in the pack. From a blade from that pack I have shaved before and I didn't get mustache area irritation (but I got for sure somewhere else, because in general I always get some irritation of this type but usually somewhere other than this area).
 
It sounds like you have made a lot of progress and are getting generally good results. :thumbup: The neck can be very difficult to manage--at least it has been for me over many years.

My neck is sensitive but my moustache area is not. If that is the case for you, then you might be able to see improvement by focusing on technique. That is, razor angle (find whether shallow or steep works for you), no pressure, and decent lather.

The only post-shave product that works for me to relieve irritation (besides witch hazel which I apply regularly) is Tend Skin/Bump Patrol which have a similar active ingredient. There are recipes to make your own if you are interested.
 
It sounds like you have made a lot of progress and are getting generally good results. :thumbup: The neck can be very difficult to manage--at least it has been for me over many years.

My neck is sensitive but my moustache area is not. If that is the case for you, then you might be able to see improvement by focusing on technique. That is, razor angle (find whether shallow or steep works for you), no pressure, and decent lather.

The only post-shave product that works for me to relieve irritation (besides witch hazel which I apply regularly) is Tend Skin/Bump Patrol which have a similar active ingredient. There are recipes to make your own if you are interested.
I was not aware that witch Hazel is good for that. I see it is available and not very expensive.
thank you for this suggestion.
 
Thank you @APBinNCA . I like straight razors, but I think that I am not ready for those. I will try to master first DE razors and then I see where I go from there.

When I was using cartridges the irritation was appearing almost immediately. That's why I was thinking that it may have something to do with the more careful post shave procedures.
I went directly from carts to straight razors, although I did DE shave for a few years in my teens.

I'm glad that I went directly to SR's. Within a month of daily SR shaving, I had built up my skills to get DFS results with no skin damage or irritation. Since then, I have never looked back.

As many SR shavers will tell you, every day that you put off starting your SR journey will be a day that you will forever regret for the rest of your life.
 
Today actually I have managed to do the best shave so far.

Somehow I managed to do very well the chin area, although I have no idea how this happened.

The neck area is not close shaved (only 2 with the grain passes). But no irritation at all.

My setup was no preshave, Arko, Rockwell at plate 3 and aftershave Pinaud's Clubman Virgin Island Bay rum.

I am very satisfied with my improvement :)
I will definitely try at some point a straight razor, as rbscebu suggests, but it hasn't come this time yet. Thank you everyone for the very useful suggestions!
 
First go to lower plate, i'll said #3 and stop using alum block it's very hard on skin, just use it on blood spots. The best is to rinse your face with lot of cold water and then apply a good after shave balm. During your journey dont try to go too fast with good technic plate #3 shave as welll than plate #5. Also used blade ( after 3 or 4 shaves) are more efficient than new one and lot smoother.
 
I was not aware that witch Hazel is good for that. I see it is available and not very expensive.
thank you for this suggestion.
I use witch hazel after every shave. I just get the cheap generic version at the grocery or drug store. Helps heal any micro cuts or other skin irritation from shaving. I learned this on B&B from my early DE safety razor days. And just recently I discovered an aftershave that I call magic, magic Speick. I don’t know anything about the speick plant, but something about it makes my face feel so much better. If I have a rough shave, I will use Speick aftershave.
 
You should consider getting an adjustable that is easy to switch back and forth during the shave for the more sensitive areas. A vintage Gillette Fatboy, or slim adjustable works great for me, as my face can take a sharp close blade, but my neck is more sensitive. I dial it at a 6 for my face, and a 3 or 4 for the neck. Easier against the grain too.
 
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