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TFA Tracker

I was going to start a paper shave log, but this seems like a good place to type and keep track of things that I am using and thinking about. Right now I have things written down all over the place in two journals and on spread sheets. This seems like a nice place to keep my thoughts and a place where it will do a heck of a lot more good than me just keeping my findings to myself. So, here goes:

Right now I am in the middle of hypermiling a blade and I am right at the end of using an Omega 10049 Pro Boar Brush for 30 days.

Bic Chrome Platinum has 11 shaves on it. It is going well, but I am not sold on if the blade is cutting as well as I would like. Today I tried to get a little more efficiency out of my shaves by cutting my WTG pass, and starting with an XTG pass. This was followed with an ATG, another ATG, and some clean up. Overall, I was happy with the shave and it produced results without irritation. Win!

The Omega 10049 Boar Brush was on it's 29th use today and it is breaking in great. Nice and soft, with tips that are splitting and an nice overall shape. I have one more shave tomorrow to get 30 uses out of it, then I am going to go to every other day with the Boar. First brush to be introduced into the rotation again will be the SinatraLennon DSCosmetic Synthetic Brush I ordered over a month ago.

Favorite razor as of this week is the Gillette Fat Handle Tech. It is a great mid aggression shaver and is helping me hypermile that Bic for now. I am going to use it until I start to see a real fall off in cutting performance.
 
Well, the Bic Chrome Platinum did a heck of a job today, but I had to do a bit of ATG blade buffing to get the desired shave I was looking for. I was using the Gillette Fat Handle Tech and it was comfortable, smooth, just not efficient today. Got the job done though. 12 shaves on the Bic as of today. Passes were XTG, ATG, ATG blade buff, Clean up pass Nick Shaves Style.

The Omega 10049 Pro Boar did it's best in a bad situation. I tried to bowl lather some Creamo Reserve Blend Cream. It is clearly for brush-less use. Oh well, the Omega did get a foamy lather and the Creamo was slick, so it did the job. I love the scent of the Reserve Blend with it's Bourbon, Vetiver, and Oak, but I like lather. Maybe this will be used with my cart razor on trips.

Tomorrow marks a new brush into the rotation: The Sinatra Lennon from DSCosmetic with a Synthetic knot has been cleaned and sitting and starring at me for over a month. Tomorrow it will get it's trial, first up will be the Williams Mug Shaving Soap. A true challenge for an untested brush... well not that bad these days.
 
HAHAHA, it may be blasphemy, but I don't feel bad if something happens to my Fusion. Say TSA decides to take it. Plus on my trips with my Girlfriend we like to get out on the road fairly early, so taking 30-45 to shave and clean up doesn't fly well at times. But I do have a bunch of cheap Tech Clones now, and a bunch of brushes, and blades, and soaps and creams...Dopp Bag time?

Shoot maybe I don't have to go to the Fusion...Well, there is a winter trip coming up, maybe I need to think about what my options really are.
 
HAHAHA, it may be blasphemy, but I don't feel bad if something happens to my Fusion. Say TSA decides to take it. Plus on my trips with my Girlfriend we like to get out on the road fairly early, so taking 30-45 to shave and clean up doesn't fly well at times. But I do have a bunch of cheap Tech Clones now, and a bunch of brushes, and blades, and soaps and creams...Dopp Bag time?
All joking aside it would be quite bad to lose even a Tech clone IMO. Having said that, you could time a Fusion shave, then a Tech clone shave with a brush and soap etc., note the difference and work on closing the gap. Not by rushing or hurrying, just focusing. It sounds like a recipe for disaster but I've had some of my best shaves when I've tried to be faster than normal in a similar way.

...Well, there is a winter trip coming up, maybe I need to think about what my options really are.
hunting-knives-hunting-axes-header_1024x1024.jpg
 
All joking aside it would be quite bad to lose even a Tech clone IMO. Having said that, you could time a Fusion shave, then a Tech clone shave with a brush and soap etc., note the difference and work on closing the gap. Not by rushing or hurrying, just focusing. It sounds like a recipe for disaster but I've had some of my best shaves when I've tried to be faster than normal in a similar way.



View attachment 1041049
Nice photo. The funny part is I was gifted a very nice hunting knife when I was a kid (need to find where I put that thing) and it's company always claimed you could shave with their knives if properly honed...
 
Well, today I was still in hypermiling mode. I used a Bic Chrome Platinum on it's 13th shave.

Decided to work on blade buffing. I went WTG, and XTG with blade buffing. I then did an ATG with some blade buffing, and a clean up pass. Too many strokes across the face today. I have some irritation today, but will try again tomorrow with no blade buffing and just let my skin heal a bit.

I know the blade isn't at fault yet, I just got over zealous today with the blade buffing. Still got a DFS, just a little irritation which I hate.

The Fat Handle Tech worked flawlessly again and it has quickly become one of my go to razors. I will probably keep using it for a little while longer at this point.

The brush today was the DSCosmetic Sinatra Lennon Brush. It did a great job a created a great lather with the RazoRock What the Puck?! Green Label Soap. Overall a great brush and I am glad to have bought it. Tomorrow I think I will use the exact same set up with the brush, and one of the What the Puck?! Soaps.
 
Yesterday was a great shave. Did a little skin stretching on a 14th shave with a Bic Chrome Platinum Blade and the shave went really well. Almost BBS on command. That is really promising and I decided today with the 15th shave on the Bic Chrome Platinum to push the skin stretching a little more. It did ok, but not as good as the 14th shave. I think I over did some of the areas and now I have just a touch of irritation today. Overall a great shave still. The skin stretching is really helping the closeness of the shave, I just need to figure out a way to make sure it is possible on all parts of my face. I find that my fingers and skin have a ton of lather on them and then it isn't possible to skin stretch as much. I have heard of using alum to help after a place is rinsed off, but I think I just need to come up with a pattern that helps allow for better skin stretching.

The brush today was the DSCosmetic Sinatra Lennon Synthetic and it did great. Made a great bowl lather with my Proraso Green Shave Cream.

The After shave was the Floid Amber and it was a nice scent, but I think so far my favorite scent from Floid is going to be Black. It is what I reach for and want to use the most.

Overall the 15th shave of the Bic went well and now I am looking forward to playing around a little more on the 16th shave with skin stretching and fewer strokes. I think blade buffing might be out for my skin, that or very little of it. I will have to try it again though with some skin stretching to see if that helps at all.
 
Shave 16 on the Bic Chrome Platinum went well. Got a near BBS with no irritation and overall had a great shave today.

The Fat Handle tech worked really well and it is becoming one if not the favorite razor I own.

Used my Omega 10049 pro boar today and it was nice and soft. I am loving how this brush feels and works. It really might be time to get the zenith and semogue I want.

The proraso green cream is always one of my favorites, but I am trying to use it up because I have so many more soaps and creams to use.

The aftershave today was the Gillette cool wave and it was nice. The scent is stronger than my proraso blue balm which is nice and it dissipates fairly nicely and lasts longer than my other aftershaves recently.

The skin stretching has been the biggest advancement in my shaves. I love the technique and it really helps get a great shave with my Fat Handle Tech. Technique seems to be the solution as always to get the most out of my shave gear.
 
Shave 17 happened today with the Bic Chrome Platinum. It was a great shave almost BBS tonight and I found the blade worked really well still.

I did switch to my Gillette New SC and it seemed to help a bit get a slightly more efficient shave.

I also used my Art of Shaving Pure Badger Brush and bowl lathered. After using my Omega Pro Boar and the New DSCosmetic synthetics recently I forgot how floppy the badger brush is. But I also forgot how much water it holds compared to all the previously mentioned brushes. I am now excited to give my Maggard Razors 2 band badger a try.

Used my Proraso Green shave cream and bowl lathered. Made a great watery lather. Not a mess but nice and slick and full of hydration. It also helped a lot it seemed.

Did just a little bit is skin stretching mostly on the ATG and clean up passes. I was super tired and was lazy so didn’t skin stretch on the WTG and XTG passes. Overall the skin stretching has been a monumental improvement in the shave quality and feel. Onto shave 18!
 
Shave 18 on the Bic Chrome Platinum went well. The blade is still cutting well and I did a WTG, XTG, ATG, and a clean up and ended up with a DFS. It was nice to get more out of the blade.

Used the Gillette New SC again and it did well. I feel like it gives me a nice close shave with this blade at this stage of usage.

The brush was the Art of Shaving Pure Badger again and I bowl lathered my Proraso Green Cream. I ended up with a great hydrated lather and it gave great slickness.

The aftershave was the Gillette Cool Wave. Not sure I love this one, but it is a nice clean scent that lingers more than the Proraso Green I am used to.

The Proraso Blue Balm has been working great with my skin and I find that it is really quite soothing after a shave.

The beard has been more of a chore to use products in. I had been using the beard balm mostly, but at nights now before I go to bed I have been using either bull dog beard oil or Proraso Cypress and Vetyver Beard Oil. I also add a drop or two of the beard oil to the balm now for a little more of a protective feeling.

Overall it was a good shave and I haven’t had any problems with hypermiling as I keep focused on technique. Just wondering if there are other things to do to get an even more controlled shave?
 
Just wondering if there are other things to do to get an even more controlled shave?
There is a lot of technique related advice in the excalibur brotherhood thread but I know you are already aware of this. I'm currenty reading a few long threads that are very helpful.

My Grande Journey - https://www.badgerandblade.com/forum/threads/my-grande-journey.527934/

and

Damn Comfortable Shave - https://www.badgerandblade.com/forum/threads/damn-comfortable-shave.526419/

The second of these is very long, 399 pages and counting but I find both threads very enjoyable to read and crammed full of advice and information. They're worth investing in if you can find the time. I've enjoyed the excalibur thread just as much (I'm 66 pages in). Most members of the brotherhood stress the importance of prep and shallow angle shaving. As for prep, I do none, but I'm also a cold water shaver and the theory, which is that an unsoftened hair is thinner and stiffer and therefore easier to cut, doesn't sit well with elaborate prep for me. But even if I used hot water I still wouldn't bother, I'm just too lazy to do it lol, but I believe that with a well developed technique, a perfect shave is possible without prep. My Grandads generation could do it.

The shallow angle is logical; its just physics really, the blade at the correct cutting angle will have less stress placed on the cutting edge. Some here can get great blade longevity using a steep angle, so experimentation is the only way to figure out what works for an individual. We all have different skin, hair and facial geometry. Having said that, I still think that in general physics is physics; it might on occasion appear to be disproved but an explanation can always be found. Whether anyone can find it or not is another question.
 
Shaves 19 and 20 went well on the Bic Chrome Platinum. I know I am getting a nice consistent shave out of the blade now. I am going to start rotating it with another newer blade and that is going to be the plan moving forward. It is kind of the same thing that I went through with the Boar Brush, I am just craving a little more new in my shave and I am worried I am getting bored with the Bic. I found myself shaving a little quick today and not paying great attention to my shave. I am going to mix in some other blades to keep myself interested. Plus it will hopefully give me some good comparison to a new blade.

I tried out a new Maggard Razors 22mm Synthetic Aluminum handle brush today. It made a great lather with the Art of Shaving Peppermint Cream that I chose today. The brush handle is quite slippery though when it is wet. I dropped the sucker once while cleaning it, and once after the shave while rinsing it. Love the weight of the brush, and the knot is quite soft on the face. Overall a nice little brush and I am going to love using it I think.

Stuck with my Gillette New SC for the past two shaves and it has been working great. But, today I found myself buffing more and going over spots more, so it might be time to consider either a more aggressive razor, or an adjustable razor. Luckily I have some options here, so I will see what my fancy is tomorrow.

The After shaves were things I have used before, with Gillette Cool Wave, and Floid Vigoroso. Both have nice scents that I like and I am not sure if the Gillette Cool wave goes well with the Peppermint shave cream.

I also have started using a new beard oil Cremo Mint Blend. I love the smell of the oil, but don't love the consistency. So far my favorite scent is this Mint Blend, but the Proraso beard oil is my favorite consistency.

Been using the Proraso Blue Balm after the shave as well, and my skin seems to be happy, no more irritation or pimples, so a win for the vitamin E and Aloe!

Technique wise I might try using my left hand more to shave. I have been finding skin stretching to be hard with shaving only with my right hand.
 
There is a lot of technique related advice in the excalibur brotherhood thread but I know you are already aware of this. I'm currenty reading a few long threads that are very helpful.

My Grande Journey - https://www.badgerandblade.com/forum/threads/my-grande-journey.527934/

and

Damn Comfortable Shave - https://www.badgerandblade.com/forum/threads/damn-comfortable-shave.526419/

The second of these is very long, 399 pages and counting but I find both threads very enjoyable to read and crammed full of advice and information. They're worth investing in if you can find the time. I've enjoyed the excalibur thread just as much (I'm 66 pages in). Most members of the brotherhood stress the importance of prep and shallow angle shaving. As for prep, I do none, but I'm also a cold water shaver and the theory, which is that an unsoftened hair is thinner and stiffer and therefore easier to cut, doesn't sit well with elaborate prep for me. But even if I used hot water I still wouldn't bother, I'm just too lazy to do it lol, but I believe that with a well developed technique, a perfect shave is possible without prep. My Grandads generation could do it.

The shallow angle is logical; its just physics really, the blade at the correct cutting angle will have less stress placed on the cutting edge. Some here can get great blade longevity using a steep angle, so experimentation is the only way to figure out what works for an individual. We all have different skin, hair and facial geometry. Having said that, I still think that in general physics is physics; it might on occasion appear to be disproved but an explanation can always be found. Whether anyone can find it or not is another question.
Those are some long reads, but I will take a look for sure.
 
Skipped a shave yesterday because of a bunch of things happening with the family. Nothing bad, just needed to get work done and didn't have time to shave.

However today I was able to get my shave in. Decided to use a Gillette Wilkinson Sword Blade (China) that has been sitting for about 20 shaves since using it twice. It was nice to use a sharper blade that hasn't worn all the coating off for a change. Nice to see how a newer blade was actually not much different from a blade with 20 shaves on it. The interesting part was that I found the Wilkinson very rough today. That Bic is in a nice smooth stage of shaves for sure. The Wilkinson is also a little more efficient though, so there were positives today. One being only doing three passes and not needed to go over spots too many times.

I used the same Gillette New SC today as the last few shaves and I am loving this razor as I use it. It feels great.

Brush today was new. I used a Maggard Razors 22mm 2 band badger with aluminum handle that I got on Black Friday. It was a smelly little thing when it got wet. I thought it might be, so I washed it with Anti-Bacterial Dish Soap twice, lathered it with some Ivory hand soap once, lathered it with some head and shoulders once, and then did a bowl lather of some RazoRock What the Puck?! Black Label Soap. After all that I didn't smell the wet animal smell anymore.

For the shave this morning I used Proraso Green Pre-shave Cream with Proraso Green Shaving Cream and I did a bowl lather. Made the lather a little thicker than the last few days since I wasn't planning on hypermiling this Wilkinson Sword Blade. Might do it, not sure yet.

The problem I face right now is boredom. I really want to get back to my Tech Clone Wars set ups, but I find that I am not at the end of the hypermiling of the Bic Chrome Platinum. I also have that Wilkinson Sword that isn't used up yet, so I feel a strange need to keep hypermiling the blades to see how long they will go for. I guess I need to come up with a way to store my blades so that I can do a few things with my shaves to stave off the boredom.

After-shave was Gillette Cool Wave. I like the feel of the stuff and the scent is ok. I am going to use it up, but I do not think I will be buying another bottle anytime soon. Works well, but the scent reminds me more of middle school gym recently. Not sure where that thought came from, but I prefer the Floid Black for sure to the Cool Wave.
 
I guess I need to come up with a way to store my blades so that I can do a few things with my shaves to stave off the boredom.
I just keep the paper wrapper the blade comes in and re-use to store each blade. I keep them in the bathroom cabinet directly above the sink. I've noticed no adverse effects yet but I have yet to keep a blade more than couple of months. I track them using my journal. I don't bother to keep any other kind of shave log anymore.

memory.jpg
 
The Bic Chrome Platinum held up today on it's 21st shave. I felt smooth and provided a good shave with no irritation and a DFS.

The razor was the very nerve racking Muhle R41, but I found the razor to be quite nice. At least with the Bic today. It didn't cut me or give me weepers and there was no irritation. Not sure if the shave was any more efficient though as I still did a four pass shave. I was however able to feel that blade more and that made shaving more thrilling it seemed.

Used the Omega 10049 Pro boar brush and it worked quite well bowl lathering today some Proraso Green Shave cream. Overall the brush is good, but when I compare it to my badger brushes, and my synthetics it just isn't quite as soft yet at the tips. I think I might still be breaking in the brush a little more. I don't notice the brush behaving in a way that I don't like, it just isn't as soft as the rest of my brushes.

The After-shave was Floid Vigorosso and it worked great. I really love all of the scents from Floid and the feeling I get when I use them. The Proraso Blue Balm did it't job as well and made my skin feel nice after a nice shave. Overall, I feel like I have an after shave routine that works for me right now with the Alcohol based splash followed by the Proraso Blue Balm.

I have been breaking out under the beard recently, so I gave the Cremo Mint Beard Oil a break and have been only using the Proraso Beard Balm the last two days or so. The break out is subsiding and it seems that the Cremo Beard Oil may be the culprit. The Cremo Oil is much thinner than the other two oils I have been using so I think it might be clogging the pores near the hairs a little too much, so I will switch to the balm until I get back from my winter trip.

Today I also took the time to prepare a few brushes for use in upcoming videos on my YouTube Channel. I got my DSCosmetic Kevy Shaves brush washed, my RazoRock Plissoft brush washed, and unpacked my KenSurfs Winter Edition2019 brush. My general routine for washing is to lather with some anti-bacterial soap, then lather with some ivory, and then lather with some head and shoulders. It seems to remove the smells form animal brushes as well as the smells of manufacturing for the synthetics. I am excited to get to use these new brushes in the near future. I am sticking right now to my one day with the Boar and one day with another routine until I get the Omega to a point that is it super soft. Not sure how long that will take yet.

I am also going to try to use up my Proraso Green Cream and my Palmolive Cream as they are near the ends of the tubes. I really like both creams, but I have so many more soaps and creams to get to I need to start using up some things. Can't just really keep buying new stuff and using it almost up then moving on. In the cue are a few razorock soaps, arko stick, godrej soap, and a vintage puck of Colgate soap. I also want to spend some more time using up some of my triple milled soaps.
 
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