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Shave Journal

LOL, yes, I do a 3 pass shave on my whole head. It's time consuming but well worth it. The back is done entirely by feel- but I've been shaving my head for over 12 years, so I've got a lot of practice in. The DE shaves are better by far than cartridge shaves on the head, which is why even after my recent mishap and extra hair growth, I still couldn't countenance going back to the Schick Quattro, even once.

Tell me about corking- what is the procedure?
Corking involves running the edge of a new blade into a cork 2 or 3 times on each side. It apparently helps to smooth out imperfections or remove microscopic metal bits that can irritate the skin during the first shave with a new blade.

Full details and pictures here: http://badgerandblade.com/vb/showthread.php?t=61894

I've been busy lately, no time to catalog the daily stuff- but I do have this to report; I've just had the worst shave of my whole DE experience so far.

I have a small bump on the top of my head near the crown. I was using a new Derby blade today, and nicked it badly enough I had to use toilet paper to stop the bleeding, styptic wouldn't even slow it down. That kind of rattled me, and so I finished up as best I could, and moved on to shaving the face, which resulted in lots of irritation. On the whole, it was a completely uncomfortable shave.

For some reason, my skin is very sensitive to weather/season changes as are going on here now, and I'm likely to have irritation and red rashes on my face and scalp, whether I shave or not- so I think this was a contributing factor to this evening's experience.

I have come to a couple conclusions:

1. DO NOT SHAVE AT NIGHT. Way too many distractions in the house, and it's completely impossible to focus and do a good job.

2. Do not shave the head and the face on the same day or at the same time. Whatever skin prep I've been able to do simply seems to wear off in this situation. The total time of shaving the head and face together with a shower thus far has been about 45 minutes.

3. Do shave after showering. In addition to being skin prep, it is also a time of mental preparation.

4. DO NOT RUSH, EVER. If you don't have time, don't shave. I need to dedicate a lot more time to technique before I can safely shave at any quicker pace.

5. DO NOT USE ANY PRESSURE, EVER. And no it will not help you follow the contours of your head. You're more likely to do unintentional surgery.

These of course apply to me alone, but they may be useful for others too.

On the lighter side, when I'm not making any of those 5 mistakes, things are good! My setup is working very well- VDH soap, mug lathering, pre shower, B&B "dry brush" lathering technique, Old Spice aftershave, and Ponds moisturizer, substituting King of Shaves Alpha gel for the VDH soap for head shaving.

I've just made myself a custom sampler pack from West Coast Shaving- I found it was cheaper for me to put one together than to just buy one of theirs. This is because I'm hoping to avoid really expensive blades generally, so I decided not to try anything that cost over $2 per pack. Hopefully I can find a better fit, technique aside, I'm still feeling that Derbys are not for me.

Anyway, there it is. I'm going to go lay down and heal for awhile.
I feel your pain. Although not as bloody as yours, I had a bad shave today.

I know why. I went ATG for the first time on my face Saturday morning. It was perfect and went really well. But then yesterday night, I noticed some small, inflated pimples on part of the upper lip and cheeks which seemed to be ingrowns. The culprit was obviously this ATG pass 8 hours ago. I might have been a bit too enthusiastic and not enough light on the pressure (no pressure, no pressure, always no pressure). These pimples were really red after this morning's shave. The pimples aren't red anymore tonight but they still look bumpy.

What did not probably help also was that C&E Sandalwood soap I used this morning. That's the second time I use it and coincidentally, I had redness and irritation both times. I might try it a third time at another moment, but I'm starting to think this soap isn't for me.
I find that the ATG is Entirely dependent on the quality of the WTG and XTG passes: unless you have carefully removed at least 60-70% of your beard with those passes, you're in for a beating when it comes to ATG. I'm certain of this because of resurrecting cartridge habits on the head shave yesterday and starting ATG. Epic mistake. One simply cannot so this with a single blade: it will catch, hang up, or worse, skip and dig in somewhere further up the stroke. Lesson learned.

B&B needs to award valorous Purple Hearts to brave experimenters such as we are! ;)
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