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Recommendations for younger men

Hello All,

For a little background info:
I've been reading these forums to learn many new techniques of wet shaving. I'm in no rush, as I currently have a beard (and will keep it until I graduate in May when I will need a more professional appearance). As such, I only have to shave my neck and I'm using Mach3 razors with Caswell-Massey almond soap and a small badger shaving brush that came with a shaving kit. I can only get decent shaves with a Mach3 cartridge for about 3 days or so, and if I attempt to use the same cartridge longer, my neck will get quite red with razor bumps. I ended up ordering a Merkur Classic HD, and I will probably start out with some Merkur blades.

I have a hard time working up a dense lather, which I'm assuming is a result of inexperience and a small brush; but after reading up on some of the creams, I figured I would like to try out cream to see if I prefer that over soap.

At this point, I'm looking at Taylor's Rose and Eton College creams. I know that the Rose cream is supposed to be gentle on the skin, but what about the Eton College? Is it naive to assume that the Eton College cream was designed for men my age and younger, and thus should be less prone to aggravate acne, etc?

I'm currently 21, and thankfully I haven't had any major acne problems for some time now, but I would prefer to be on the safe side. I've haven't been clean-shaved since I was 19. Yet when I was 19, I would get a decent amount of acne near my lips and chin after shaving - yet after reading these forums, I think that was most likely wasn't acne, but rather small nicks that became infected.

I realize that the majority of the members of this forum do not have such concerns, but I was wondering if anybody had any advice on the matter?

Thanks in advance,
taylor's avocado is known to be good for people with sensitive skin. i would suggest nancy boy shave cream just because it is quality for a good price....i don't think that it should aggravate anything. both of those will give you a good lather.
Greetings Zach,
I appreciate your sensitivity for all of the old fogies on the B&B! That being said, while it is good fun to use creams, you need to determine just what is wrong with your lathering technique with soap and brush. Why after all, a man who can not lather with soap and brush, is like a man who can not lather with soap and brush!:yikes:
Perhaps if you related your steps to building a lather we could provide some assistance and help you enter the gates of lathering heaven? BTW, WELCOME!


Stjynnkii membörd dummpsjterd
Re: Recommendations for younger men.

My recommendation for younger men is younger women. It is also my recommendation for older men.

Works for me.:thumbup1:

This is the shaving set that I'm using


This is the amount of foam I am able to make when I followed the "QED Shaving soap Lathering pictorial"

Which, by the looks of it, it seems like enough lather (especially since I'm currently only shaving my neck)

But here is the problem...
By the time I get that much lather, the brush is no longer hot. If I add more water, it becomes too watery. I tried shaving with the the colder, but with more foam way this morning, and it was an absolutely horrible shave...razor bumps all over my face. That was to be expected, but I wanted to give it a try, just to be sure.

This was the procedure I went through.

I showered and then soaked my brush in hot water from the tap (but hot enough that couldn't tolerate touching it for more than a second or so)

I poured some of the hot water on the soap to soften it up (I've tried it also with leavign this step out)

I pull the brush out of the water and wait until the water stops dripping out. I then dump the water from my soap dish.

I swirl the brush in the soap about 5-10 times (I've tried the whole range from a couple of swirls to about 20. The 5-10 seems to be the appropriate amount...)

I don't have a proper shaving bowl. I just have a plastic cup with ~4 inch diameter. It's not completely cold, as I used it to soak my brush in. Then I whip the brush around the dish for a minute or so until I get the amount of lather seen in the picture. I tried not to whip it too quickly.

But, the brush is fairly cold by the time I get this far. If I entirely skip the shaving bowl step, and apply the brush to my face, it is much more watery and far hotter, yet I get a far better shave. I usually had always skipped the shaving bowl step and just "made" the lather on my face. I never though about using a shaving bowl until seeing this site.

I'm assuming that a ceramic bowl would be far better since it would retain heat better.

When I first started shaving with the soap, I assumed that the foam wouldn't be as thick as the foam from cans, so I shaved with basically a hot, watery, soapy lather, assuming that to be the proper way. Yet, even with just the hot, watery and soapy lather, I would get far better shaves than with any other method that I had previously attempted. This hot, watery lather works far better than the latest method that I tried above.

I still feel like I am quite maladroit with the entire wet shaving procedure, but I still have a couple of months to improve my technique before I'm going to have to shave my entire face every day.
one way to heat your lather up a bit while it is in the plastic container would be to just run the really hot tap water over the outside of the container, if you can do that even while mixing up the lather it should also keep the brush hot but then again hot lather pretty much equals a warm bursh anyway.

all that being said hot lather from my brush vs room temp lather has never effected my shave beyond the added nice feeling of the warmth.

wanted to add that when you said "I assumed that the foam wouldn't be as thick as the foam from cans" that my experience has been this is right and wrong. right being that the lather i get isnt at quite the volume as out of a can of barbosal but wrong in being that the lather i get is definetly much thicker then the light and airy fluff coming out of a can. It's thicker but not as "pillowey".
ouch said:
Re: Recommendations for younger men.

My recommendation for younger men is younger women. It is also my recommendation for older men.

Works for me.:thumbup1:

What happens to all the older women left over? :confused: :biggrin:

I'm not an expert at all in this matter, but I will throw in my two cents.
First, I find the neck the hardest area on my face to get a close shave. You might find yourself getting that smooth shave on the rest of your face when you finally shed the beard.

Second, I probably get the same amount of lather as you are with soap. But I do get consistently warm lather.

Here's what I do:

I fill my mug with hot water and soak my brush. I've found that if I press the brush against the side of the mug it releases air bubbles. So, I do that until there aren't any more. I then place the mug in hot water in the sink along with my bowl.

After my shower, I refill the mug and soak the brush one more time while I get the soap ready and apply a hot wash cloth to my face. I wring out most of the water from the hot wash cloth, fold it and use it as a coaster for the soap dish (cheap warmer).

I'm still experimenting with how much water to leave in the brush, but for now I give it a few flicks and swirl it in the soap. I then build the lather in the dish.

With every pass, I rinse my face with the wash cloth, heat it up a bit with hot water, and return it to it's coaster position.

I've done up to 5 passes this way and still have warm lather.

This is working for me and is my current ritual.

Keep up the good work!

Austin said:
Zach, that's a cool avatar. It looks like you need a shave. :biggrin:

It's a detail from Edmund Blair Leighton's "A Call to Arms."
Although I do have that style of beard.
smoothfacejeff said:
:eek: Ron, whattttttttt????? You look great in the picture! (your avatar!)

I am GREAT! My avatar is from my eldest daughter's favorite picture of the two of us when she was about 18 months old. That's almost 25 years ago...:001_smile
Thanks for all the tips. I have zero counter space in my appartment here in NYC...just a sink mounted to the wall and a medicine cabinet. When I graduate and go back to Nevada, I will have lots of space and I'm sure that will help a lot.
First let us tackle some of these problems, step by step. The length of time your brush will maintain warmth is related to the density and quality of the badger hair and the brush's temperature when you begin lather building. That said, I am a firm believer in better living thru lather. So let us focus on your brushwork in the lather building exercise.
I find that soaking my brush in a large, deep, cup or bowl full of hot (a bit less than 190° F) for a minimum of 3 minutes does a great deal for the brush's initial temperature. This hot soak also tends to elevate the cup's temperature. This is a good thing as that is the very same cup in which I build my lather.
Here's a picture of my latest lather mug:


It is LARGE and has mass to help maintain warmth. If I may suggest that you use a ceramic or glass cereal bowl? BTW, the cup is 4" deep and 6" across.
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Will do. Are there any advantages/disadvantages between ceramic and glass? Or is it just personal preference?
zacharydz said:
Will do. Are there any advantages/disadvantages between ceramic and glass? Or is it just personal preference?
If it's pyrex glass, probably not.. I have extablished my routine where I fill my cup and pop it into a 1250w* microwave oven for 3 minutes 30 seconds. I then plunk my razor into it to sanitize for a couple of minutes. The razor soak cools the water enough where I can gingerly retrieve the razor and plop in the badger! When I remove the brush, I pour the remaining (still relatively) hot water onto my wash cloth for one last steaming of my face..

*Given as a point of reference. The water is at a full boil when I remove the cup.. I do NOT put the razor in the cup while it is in the microwave!
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