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The Quaznoid Challenge

Quaznoid challenge! Ignored the shaving cream today and used a small chunk of leftover Irish spring. Lathered up no problem using my little Kent silvertex brush. Still trying to figure out which Tech is “The One” so did a side by side with a pre war and the travel tech. Surprisingly, I’m enjoying shaving with the little guy more than anything else I’ve tried thus far. Moving forward, this will be my setup. All other razors are up for sale. I’ll finish the Viking Revolution shaving cream that I have and then see if extended bar soap use works for me or not and go from there.
 

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Two days of growth plus shaved the chin to go from goatee to a nice mellow stache on New Year’s Day. Mini Tech had no issues. Went with the bar soap again. Loving this razor and will use it all of 2024 albeit with a couple different handles.
 

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Iridian

Cool and slimy
Some people joined GRUYERE, well I didn't, but let's see how far I can go without ordering new blades, razors etc... I think I might get another razor stand first, cough cough...

Prices for everything going up here, makes staying frugal not difficult, more a necessity.
 
I couldn’t imagine shaving with Irish Spring. I remember how much that stuff would dry my skin out after a shower…
I have shaved with Irish spring and while I got a good shave the lather dissipate very fast so you have to shave each quadrant at a time and re lather. That was the most annoying thing. It is a slick soap and yep it can be drying as well.

This will be the story for most bath soaps out there. The lather is not stable and you just have to accept that.
 
I just got 14 of these delivered to my house for $12. I have successfully used this in the past to shave with. My wife really likes how it smells ( specifically the Mandarin Citrus/Patchouli/Rosemary version )

I am going to grate one up in an empty shave soap bin and keep it in my rotation. I keep a bar ( regular scent ) in my travel kit since it is a multitasker.

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Dove Men+Care produces piles of lather, almost too much. I now use it as a superlathering ingredient that makes up about 15% of my custom shave soap blends with excellent results.

If you want more slickness you can grate this and blend in some Ivory soap. See my posts on experimentation with a 50/50 blend of the two that produced a very usable shaving soap. Based on that experiment I'd recommend trying a mix of 1/3 Ivory and 2/3 Dove and seeing how that works for you. Enjoy!
 
Dove Men+Care produces piles of lather, almost too much. I now use it as a superlathering ingredient that makes up about 15% of my custom shave soap blends with excellent results.

If you want more slickness you can grate this and blend in some Ivory soap. See my posts on experimentation with a 50/50 blend of the two that produced a very usable shaving soap. Based on that experiment I'd recommend trying a mix of 1/3 Ivory and 2/3 Dove and seeing how that works for you. Enjoy!
I've shaved with it since my post just by itself and it was still a nice one off shave. I will add some Ivory to it when I get a chance.
 
@gurdygurds , this is a great thread that helps illustrate one end of what is really a wide spectrum of approaches to wet DE/SE shaving that goes from the very basic one razor and brush with bath soap to the super premium tools and product users with $1,000's invested in this hobby.

Each of us has to decide what part of this spectrum works best for them. Often, over time, many of us migrate to different places on the spectrum as we become better educated and our preferences evolve.

I started out with a basic set up using a single Weishi Long Handle razor, Van Der Hagen boar brush and Williams Shaving soap available for 99 cents in our local supermarket. As I became better educated I replaced the poor quality boar (it fell apart) with three quality brushes (2 synthetic and 1 boar) that are excellent yet still cost under $10 each (on sale). The Weishi, an excellent Superspeed clone has long been my go-to razor though it has been supplemented by a King C. Gillette (mild razor) and most recently a Razorock Adjust that together provide my preferred range of razor aggressiveness. All of these razors were under $15 so still a basic approach. Early on I settled on a rotation of Derby Extra, Dorco and Astra SP blades. Bottom line is that quality shaving tools don't need to cost a lot.

Until a couple of years ago I only used budget or custom blended shaving soaps that cost under $2 per puck. Then we were hit with a wave of discontinuations (Williams in early 2022 for example) that led me to experiment with other soaps like Arko and Razorock What-the-Puck for a whopping :) $3 per puck.

Later in 2022 I finally went down the shaving soap/cream rabbit hole a bit when the drop in U.K./U.S. exchange rates and free air shipping suddenly made a wide range of shaving soaps and creams available from Connaught Shaving for 1/3 to 1/2 the typical U.S. pricing. For example in November of '22 we could land tallow MWF for under $6 per puck, Tabac for under $6, LEA Professional (250g) cream for under $4 and D.R. Harris for under $10. Via a couple of orders I now have a wide range of soaps and creams including these and others that have added a lot of enjoyment to my shaves.

Did I "need" and of these soaps and creams? Absolutely not, the core shaving performance of my custom blends is as good as any of these products. I am glad I have them though for the scents, post shave feel, sometimes creamier/more luxurious lather and convenience that for me make them well worth the modest investment. Also going down this rabbit hole helps me to better appreciate fellow B&B members who have invested heavily in other areas of shaving such as razors and brushes.
 
No more rabbit holes for me…..at least with wet shaving. Put the last of the razors up for sale. Travel Tech and tiny Kent brush is what I’ve landed on. Haven’t been using the bar soap, but nice to know it’s totally usable if I need to and I just light for a while while my cheap jar of cream runs out. Personna Lab Blues won out over the Astras.
 

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Dove Men+Care produces piles of lather, almost too much. I now use it as a superlathering ingredient that makes up about 15% of my custom shave soap blends with excellent results.

If you want more slickness you can grate this and blend in some Ivory soap. See my posts on experimentation with a 50/50 blend of the two that produced a very usable shaving soap. Based on that experiment I'd recommend trying a mix of 1/3 Ivory and 2/3 Dove and seeing how that works for you. Enjoy!
My method is to throw the soap scraps into the bowl and leave them there. They form a puck in the bottom. Whisk up your lather on the puck, dump out the water and leave it there. It will remain there until gone, supplemented by new scraps. I do not grate soaps or intentionally blend any specific soaps.
 
My method is to throw the soap scraps into the bowl and leave them there. They form a puck in the bottom. Whisk up your lather on the puck, dump out the water and leave it there. It will remain there until gone, supplemented by new scraps. I do not grate soaps or intentionally blend any specific soaps.
Likely makes sense with a 100% regular bath soap blend where the properties of each soap used are relatively consistent.

The ingredients I use, various budget shaving soaps, Dove and Ivory, have very different lathering properties. As a result it's more important to use a measured amount of each ingredient to deliver the desired result. Also measuring enables me to vary the ratios to deliver a better final shaving soap according to my preferences.

P.S. Do you ever 3017 what is in your bowl and start fresh? Otherwise you may accumulate debris like loose hairs over time.
 
@Quaznoid , I recall your earlier posts regarding how you liked Williams Shaving Soap and changed to bath soap when that was no longer locally available. Also recall that you tried Arko and did not like the residue that was left after using it. By residue were you referring to residual slickness?

Also, have you ever tried other budget options like Razorock What-the-Puck. At $3 per 100g puck, when on sale, it's similarly priced to Williams that used to sell for $1-$2 for a 50g puck. I've found that it works really well and consider it or Arko (for those that like it) as the best budget Williams substitutes out there. I did an ingredients analysis a while back and found them to be identical or very similar to shaving soaps selling for 2-5X the price.
 
Arko left a greasiness behind. It lathered well though, and was a good soap. If you like it, great. It’s a good value but it can’t beat free
You are right that Arko leaves behind more residual slickness. YMMV here as I've found that this is typically a trait of my best and slickest shaving soaps that just requires an extra rinse to remove after the shave. It is good value.
 
Must be YMMV, I haven't experienced that type of issue with any of my shaving soaps including Arko. Wonder if you had a bad batch?

I think @Quaznoid is right. Arko uses Parafinium Liquidum (aka mineral oil) as many other cosmetic products do. It does have a greasy feel for some people.

I've noticed that many Turkish shaving products like skin creams, etc. tend to use this ingredient, too (the famous Arko "oily cream" for instance).
 
One man's trash is another man's treasure, as they say. Many people specifically hunt out shaving soaps that leave residual slickness and/or moisturization behind, while others prefer a clean feel without any residue.

To each his own.
 
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