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That feeling when...

You realize you have absolutely no idea what you are doing. Thats how my first SR shave went. I must have watched 50 videos over the last week to prepare me for this. Easy, easy I thought. My friends, how incredibly naive I was. I got in front of the mirror and my ape like hand coordination had me genuinely afraid for my safety. It felt like the blade kept getting hung up, as if there was something sticky on my face. I followed the same old routine I have used for shaving that I learned reading threads here. I used the same soap I always use, same brush, same routine. I have been DE shaving for a little over a year now so I feel comfortable with the lather I get and I don't think that was the issue. I purchased it from a reputable vendor who I read about here and the blade seems very sharp. It was disappointing, but I did have fun, so I will just study and work on my technique.
 
I'm a total beginner. Was generously PIF'ed a straight and an enhanced strop like object. I've been having a debate with myself on whether or not to watch SR videos. I'm coming down on not.
Several reasons.
1. Avoid unrealistic expectation of being able to imitate an experienced SR shaver.
2. Their face and fur aren't mine.

They may have some utility once I have a few SR shaves under my belt.

I do better trying to pound facts out of words and experience. Both need to be interrogated. Related experience is variable.

And your first shave with a straight is always with an assumption that it's sharp enough without any objective way of measuring it.
 

David

Ask me which is more painful!
Moderator Emeritus
OP congrats on your first straight shave. It's one of those things you just have to stick with to see improvement, but sooner than later things will start to come together. Hang in there!
 
I'm thinking about sending it off to have it honed. I may have ruined the edge with bad stropping. Who can someone recommend?
 

David

Ask me which is more painful!
Moderator Emeritus
Life2short1971, Doc226, Bayamontate all have excellent reputations here.
 
Good on ya for going ....er....straight!

One of my first a-ha moments when I started SR shaving was that the lather for SR shaving (for me) is a lot wetter than that for DE shaving. I added a ton of water, tried again, and was rewarded with a shave that was drag free.
 
Good on ya for going ....er....straight!

One of my first a-ha moments when I started SR shaving was that the lather for SR shaving (for me) is a lot wetter than that for DE shaving. I added a ton of water, tried again, and was rewarded with a shave that was drag free.
I did try that, and one thought I had during the second shave is that a really slick soap would probably be more comfortable. I use Proraso frequently as it really treats my face well on a DE shave. Perhaps there is something with a little more glide that someone would recommend? I decided to send it off to get it honed to be sure that edge is not an issue.
 
I am nine shaves in to my straight razor journey, so I am only a tiny bit ahead of you. With regards to your edge, I would strongly suggest not giving up on it yet. I had my blade honed by a very gracious member here. I shaved a few times and stropped a few times, and I tried a few of the "sharpness tests" with my razor only to learn that my blade was not near as sharp as it should be. I was sure I had rolled the edge and or taken the edge to a point where it would need to be honed again. Then I watched a few more stropping videos, wondered "what if?" and focused on my stropping technique. Low and behold, my edge has come back and I can run the razor about a cm above my arm hair and watch them pop. I think your edge might be more resilient than you give it credit. Keep at it, watch some videos and I think you will be fine.
 
Welcome to the board.Enjoy your travels to the world of straights .If you need any help just post or send a PM.We have a group here that will help you on your journey .
 
Ok It's official, I damaged the bevel. I scuffed up the strop in a couple of places I noticed a few days ago but I didn't think to inspect the edge. There is a small chip in exactly the same place on the strop where the bevel is damaged.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
If a slick soap is what you are after you can not go past Williams, it has been going since straight shaving was the only option available and for a very good reason ...it is awesome, some complain about the basic soapy smell but it suits me, I'm in the U.K. and pay lots in postage only because it is an excellent product.
With regard to your comments, yes a straight shave lather should be wet,wet,wet. With the Williams when you think it can't take any more water add some more and work away with your brush, I prefer a long loft boar brush and bowl lather with it.
Somewhere on this site someones signature says "a good lather is half the shave" and I couldn't agree more!
 
If a slick soap is what you are after you can not go past Williams, it has been going since straight shaving was the only option available and for a very good reason ...it is awesome, some complain about the basic soapy smell but it suits me, I'm in the U.K. and pay lots in postage only because it is an excellent product.
With regard to your comments, yes a straight shave lather should be wet,wet,wet. With the Williams when you think it can't take any more water add some more and work away with your brush, I prefer a long loft boar brush and bowl lather with it.
Somewhere on this site someones signature says "a good lather is half the shave" and I couldn't agree more!
Yea I like Williams. I had a puck and discarded it to make room for something else I bought from a local soap maker. I've read that Tabac is very slick and I have yet to try it.
 
I have tabac too, also a very good soap with what I would describe as a floral scent. I used it today as a coincidence.
 
If a slick soap is what you are after you can not go past Williams, it has been going since straight shaving was the only option available and for a very good reason ...it is awesome, some complain about the basic soapy smell but it suits me, I'm in the U.K. and pay lots in postage only because it is an excellent product.
With regard to your comments, yes a straight shave lather should be wet,wet,wet. With the Williams when you think it can't take any more water add some more and work away with your brush, I prefer a long loft boar brush and bowl lather with it.
Somewhere on this site someones signature says "a good lather is half the shave" and I couldn't agree more!
+1. I love Williams.
 
I'm thinking about sending it off to have it honed. I may have ruined the edge with bad stropping. Who can someone recommend?
Ok It's official, I damaged the bevel. I scuffed up the strop in a couple of places I noticed a few days ago but I didn't think to inspect the edge. There is a small chip in exactly the same place on the strop where the bevel is damaged.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Just wondering?
How did you determine the bevel in the edge was damaged in the same spot as on your strop? Was there a nick in the blade you could actually see?

I hate to say how long it took me to come to the conclusion that honing was not what I always needed to do. I now use .25 micron paste on the felt side of my strop. Still experimenting but I can hear my blade sing when I strop it and it easily cuts hair off in mid air.
 
I'm a total beginner. Was generously PIF'ed a straight and an enhanced strop like object. I've been having a debate with myself on whether or not to watch SR videos. I'm coming down on not.
Several reasons.
1. Avoid unrealistic expectation of being able to imitate an experienced SR shaver.
2. Their face and fur aren't mine.

They may have some utility once I have a few SR shaves under my belt.

I do better trying to pound facts out of words and experience. Both need to be interrogated. Related experience is variable.

And your first shave with a straight is always with an assumption that it's sharp enough without any objective way of measuring it.
 
In my opinion the best way to determine if the razor is sharp is to try and cut off a hair or two half way up the hair. This is not a perfect test for a couple reasons but is still the best one I know of and works very well for me. I am sure I'm going to get in trouble with this next statement I'm not sure you want a perfectly sharp razor on your first try. I'm kinda split on this since with a sharp razor it is easier to shave but it is also so much easier to cut yourself badly.
 
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