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Why WTG ?

I keep religiously using a 3-pass method (WTG, XTG, ATG) but I don't really see WTG cutting any stubble at all.

In my cartridge days, I'd just do everything ATG (I never had any irritation problems with good cartridges).

I can see going XTG+ATG, but perhaps there's an advantage to that initial WTG pass that I don't realize ?
When I go directly ATG things gets tuggy. WTG first then XYG, and I'll get rid of enough of the fuzz that the final ATG pass is nice n smooth.
I stopped doing true WTG. Its now a combo of WTG and XTG. For example instead of north to south, it's north west to south east. Works on my facial hair. Going first pass ATG isn't possible for me.
Some may not need WTG.

I sure do. And quite a bit of hair is cut in that pass.

Just another thing that can be different between shavers.

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In my experience, the WTG pass removes most of my hair. I have tried skipping this pass, and it was too rough for me.
On my face I pretty much always go ear to nose, then nose to ear, then south to north. On my neck it’s more like northwest to southeast, northeast to southwest, then south to north. None of that is wtg.

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Same as jdp93 for me, WTG takes most of my beard hair, tried directly XTG before and got some irritation all around.
I’d say 25% of my stubble is taken off WTG. I remind myself stubble reduction is the game with DE. That 25% coming off with the first pass comes in handy by the time I get to my third ATG pass. Otherwise it’s a bit rough.
WTG is a non-starter on my head-shaves. ATG on the first pass, followed by XTG to clear up the dross, followed by touch ups to leave things nice and shiny.

Face is all XTG on the first pass, with one exception, and ATG to clear things up. Above the lips is WTG followed by XTG.
I only shave my head and upper cheeks. For me WTG works best I don't map it out and change angles just go front to back which is more or less WTG for me. 2-3 pass es front to back usually gets me to DFS. Also I don't shave every day, usually between 2-5 times a week, just depends how much time I have. I assume most who start ATG or XTG shave every day. I couldn't imagine trying to go ATG against 3 or or more days growth. Also I find if I chase BBS with too much ATG I get ingrowns. But as Always do what works for you.
What? Eliminate a whole pass from my shaving routine? Truncate my experience?

Never! You can have my Merkur Progress when you pry it from my cold, dead hand!

In all seriousness, I notice the most stubble coming off my razor and into the drain during the rinses of my WTG strokes.

And if I were 20 years old, perpetually in a hurry and ignorant of the finer things, I might just do a one-pass ATG shave.

But I'm not 20. I'm 46. And the wiry, thistle-like stubble tinged with battleship gray I now cultivate is nothing like what I was growing at 20.


A little poofier than I prefer
I’d say 25% of my stubble is taken off WTG. I remind myself stubble reduction is the game with DE. That 25% coming off with the first pass comes in handy by the time I get to my third ATG pass. Otherwise it’s a bit rough.
This. Everybody's face is different. You gotta figure out what works for you. There's no shaving rulebook that says everyone has to start with an WTG pass. It just happens to be an effective technique for most men.

I probably get closer to half WTG and usually only do two passes. I'll sometimes only do one WTG pass on the weekend.


WTG reduces my stubble fairly well and can get me to SAS or better in one pass.

If pushed for time, I eliminate the ATG pass which is most likely to cause irritation.

Another example of YMMV!
I have so much stubble, I have to go WTG. And, with an aggressive razor/blade/combo, I probably eliminate 70%of my stubble in that first pass.

Something doesn't add up in the OP. Wrong angle? Strangely inefficient razor??
I started going ATG right off the bat last year, followed with a XTG for cleanup, then WTG on any touch-up or missed areas. Gives a closer BBS shave more quickly, making fewer passes and a more pleasant feeling face for a daily shaver. - The notable exception is the 'mustache' area above the upper lip, can't just do ATG on that area, or I'll have all sorts of weepers, but can go angled and then come back and full ATG afterwards.

Now the caveat, with my stiff gray growth, this only works with one of the sharper blades, and then only in more efficient razors. Put an Astra SP in a Tech and it won't work, but load up a Nacet in my Timeless 95 OC, and you're better than DFS (probably close to BBS) after that first pass, and easily BBS after the 2nd. Many time there's no touch up even needed, but if there is a quick swipe WTG takes care of it.

Besides the Timeless 95 OC, if shaving daily this generally works with a Gillette New, Super-Adjustable on 8/9, Slim on 9 with a KAI blade, and my Rockwell on R6. With the Rockwell, I can actually go ATG on that mustache area right off the bat, but it generally needs more touch-up to get the full on BBS finish.

Surprisingly, it doesn't work with my Schone, just can't do it. The Fat-Boy generally needs all three passes, it's smoother, but less efficient than the Slim or Super for me, or I haven't found 'the blade' for that razor that makes that process work, as it isn't a KAI.
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