Shaving back to being a chore?

Discussion in 'General Shaving Discussion' started by sextus, May 14, 2019.

    When I first started proper DE shaving (about 3 months ago), I was excited to start the ritual everyday. Of course the process of learning to lather and handle the blade added to the excitement. I guess I've been lucky since I started with a razor+blade combo that worked for me, so I pretty quickly figured out how to give myself a painless BBS.

    So now I find the excitement largely gone. I know I can give myself a very smooth shave when I take the 5-10 minutes to do it properly. But shaving is quickly reverting back to chore status. Last couple of days, I even found myself (gasp!) dreading it, specifically the tediousness and involved nature of traditional shaving: prep brush 5 minutes before, 2-3 passes with rinses in between, wash razor and brush carefully, dry brush, treat face post-shaving.

    Any of you fall back into the rut of shaving being a chore? Did you get out? Any advice for my situation? Care to start a support group LOL!
  1. I think it becomes a chore only when it becomes repetitious. For me, BBS is elusive with all forms of shaving so it’s a constant quest. You seem to have conquered that so i’d recommend injecting some variety. Personally, i’d never used aftershaves prior to DE and once i started, it’s become as fun a part of it as anything else. I’d try using some new soaps as well. I’m not advocating blowing money on a bunch of stuff you won’t use, but try getting some aftershave and soap samplers to switch it up. It really comes down to mindset though. If you look forward to some part of your shave, be it end result, the soap, the aftershave, or just some time to yourself, it ceases to be boring. If it starts and ends with simply needing to scrape hair off your face, it’ll always be boring.
  2. Nope I’m not finding it a chore yet. I like the various soap/AS scent combos. I don’t have a lot by some people’s assessment. But I like the variety of a small rotation. Keeps it interesting.

    You could also try a straight razor. Learn to shave all over again. Along with learning to strop and hone. Just a thought.
  3. I agree with Sir Mcduff. Everyone’s different though. Shaving used to always be a chore, so much that I would let my beard grow for a week or so and then shave when it got itchy.
    Now I shave every other day. There’s still blades and different razors/soaps /brushes to use each shave.
    Aftershaves just add to the variety.
    Plus, there’s still so much I haven’t tried.
    I find it satisfying, with all the different variables to get a good shave from a soap/brush that I haven’t used for a bit.
  4. As said before I believe the variety of a few different setups is key. Or having “goals” or grail items to strive to attain. When I first started out my main goal was getting comfortable, irritation free shaves. When that was down pat my next goal was to build my ideal setup/rotation of soaps, brushes, razors, and blades. I settled on three razors, three brushes, four blades, and five different soaps/creams. Each time I shave is a different setup with a uniqueness to it.
  5. Nope.
    But ... "5-10 minutes"? :blink:
    I've reduced my time from 45-50 minutes to 35 or so. That includes a prep shower.
    Even 30 minutes seems like rushing.
  6. I don’t know what your “triggers” are, but if I’m getting bored, it usually means I need to find better soaps that keep my attention. A good soap is just...

    But seriously, 3 months and you can make a killer lather! I’m impressed! I say you take a dip in the river Straights for a while. If you master that in 3 months, grow a beard.

    Anywho, there was this one time I started to lose interest and started to get lazy again, my wife noticed and gave me a strong talking to. She likes the groomed look, and loves the smells. Sometimes you just selflessly do it for the ones you love :)
  7. I shaved with a DE for around 5 years. Same razor. Same blades. Same brush. But a variety of soaps. The OCD in me liked the routine and the "me time" was a welcome respite. But ... there wasn't much challenge and things got "stale". It was still enjoyable, and I never considered giving up traditional shaving, but I wanted something "more"...

    And then I found straight razors. Endless variety (blade width, grind, steel types, toe/point styles, tang shapes, vintage, modern, custom - I really mean endless). The ability to
    maintain my edge (as opposed to just washing the gunk off). Even the ability to make it work and feel different using different sharpening (honing) techniques and equipment. And then there's that little thrill of 3 inches of razor sharp (where did you think the term came from?) against your neck every single time you shave.

    Yes, you have to invest time (and a little blood) to become competent. Yes, shaves are generally a bit more time consuming. But aside from the initial learning curve, you can get in as deep as you want to.

    If you have an inclination, go for it and see what you think...
  8. nemo

    nemo Moderator Emeritus

    When I first got my Ferrari F12 Berlinetta I was super pumped, the speed and handling was so cool. Driving on club events and to the track was exhilarating! Then after about three months of driving this high-speed supercar I began dreading getting into my leather bucket seat behind that gorgeous Italian wheel. I might as well be driving around in that beat-up Prius my neighbor's wife commutes. The thrill was gone.

    Nope, won't happen, still loving it!
  9. Thanks for all the suggestions. Straight razors, even SE, have been kicking around in the back. Right now a little busy with everything else to learn different sets of skills.

    I would describe the "BBS" I achieve as 98-99% of the way there (maybe on B&B it's technically a DFS? I don't know). If I put extra care, I get rid of more "trouble spots". But like I said, most of the time 98% BBS.

    A little more about myself. I would say I have light facial growth, so a blade can easily last tens of shaves. Throwing away a blade before I got all the use out kinda goes against my DNA, so my rate of blade experimentation is considerably slowed down.

    Not much into scents unfortunately. Since soaps need to be regularly repurchased, I personally would rather spend less than more. Arko and Proraso fill my needs at the moment.

    I was into brushes at first. Now I have a silvertip and two boars. I think I get most of their peculiarities, and how to use each to its strength. Unfortunately the curiosity has largely washed away.

    I do occasionally get interested in various razors I'd like to try, but it's the classic question: Why fix something that's working at 98% capacity? A new razor might get me to 99.5% BBS, or lessen the irritation further, but it could easily go the other way too.
  10. I don't shower when I shave. To my mind, you're putting soap on your face twice; too dehydrating for the skin IMO.
  11. You think way too highly of my abilities :a0:

    I would say my lathering is 80% ideal. Somedays I get great lather, some are terrible, but mostly acceptable enough. Lately I found that ample lather ups the comfort, so I've been more liberal in loading soap.
  12. I completely agree. I am on the SR path as well.
  13. That’s almost a crime. But then again, the prettiest girl I ever dated was also the ugliest person I've ever known. It didn’t take long for me to not be able to appreciate the looks in spite of what my eyes were showing me.
  14. Pretty much remained at chore status throughout the journey, wet shaving since the early/mid 1970's.
  15. I don't spend much more time than I would with cartridge shaving so I'm not prepping a brush and then drying it. When I first started DE shaving I just went with the cheapest/lightly scented VDH soap. That got boring after while so I went with a bunch of different scents (Stirling) and that's what I think about as I go to shave each day (what scent will I use today).

    I take a shower anyway so that has nothing to do with shaving for me (I shave first anyway). It's not "exciting" but it's much more enjoyable than it was before.
  16. I don't shave as a hobby but as a necessity.
    But my daily 4 pass BBS shave I have been doing since 1980 (I use a DE and canned foam) only lasts 5 minutes so it's never a chore, just something I do right after my daily shower.
    Now if it took the one hour :) some people here need in order to remove a few whiskers from their face every day it would surely become one after some time.
  17. DCP


    6 years into it and it's still not a chore.

    As others have said, variety keeps things fun. Try new razors, new soap, new blades, aftershave, balms, pre-shaves, etc.

    Or don't.

    Sent from my Nokia 7.1 using Tapatalk
  18. For those of us who remember the agony of ingrown hairs & irritation from disposable razors no amount of time spent is time wasted.
  19. I was unhappy with carts and couldn't shave daily without irritation. During my army time, it was seriously the worse part of the day. Every time I get bored, I remind myself of that.

    I like rituals. When I used to smoke, I preferred pipe smoking. I find rituals relaxing and comforting. As @RumpleBearskin wrote above, it is "me time" . Not everyone is like that. Perhaps you are not the type of person for this. In that case, if you are happy continuing DE shaving, buy a synthetic brush. Since it doesn't need to be soaked, your prep time will decrease even further and you can call it a day. It is less expensive that way ;)

    Else I agree with what was mentioned. You need to pick what interests you and add something in the mix. Razors I guess.

    SE and straights are out, so buy one or two DE razors and have fun mastering them. I would suggest something more efficient than what you have, so that you can challenge yourself and/or an adjustable. The latter offers many options that can hopefully keep you busy and happy for some time.

    Didn't you used to have a GC .84? Why not try that for a few days?

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