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Double Edged Shaving

Discussion in 'General Chat and Gossip' started by bagman, Oct 13, 2014.

  1. bagman

    bagman Moderator Staff Member

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    This is sort of an edged tool review :nod:



    I seem to be approaching middle age ;) and have always shaved (apart from the very early years where I dallied with an electric) with a cartridge razor.


    I never shaved every day until I joined the TA in my mid twenties where I had to.


    I’d always hated shaving, it often hurt, left me with an irritated neck and ingrown hairs.


    I’d been using decent enough lather producing equipment for years, badger hair brush and Body Shop shaving cream rather than muck out of a can but it didn’t seem to make much difference.


    Back in February I picked up a Merkur 34C Heavy Duty traditional razor and eventually managed to find a pack of Wilkinson Sword DE blades in a local chemist (third shop I tried).


    Took ages the first time but didn’t cut myself which I took to be a good sign :D


    Posted up a thread on British Blades and got a great reaction, advice, encouragement and loads of different blades to try from stevec (thank you sir) I settled on Derby Extra which is great as they cheap as chips (I recently bought 300 for £10.65 shipped!!!!!!!!!!!!) and I can get between four and eight shaves out of a blade.


    A few months ago I bought a new brush. It is a truly superb hand made and custom designed for my good self from Notsharp of this very parish.

    It’s a 24mm Silvertip knot set into a Red stag handle with a stabilized walnut base and a nickel silver pin.


    [​IMG]


    I can’t really praise this brush too much, produces a fantastic lather with very little effort and is very kind to my (I kid you not madam) delicate skin.



    I shave three times, once with, once across and lastly against the grain so need plenty of lather to reapply each time. After another recommendation I popped up to Taylor of Old Bond Street for a look around the shop (really really good, only small with a traditional barbers in the back, but with a fantastic stock of shaving and other gentlemen’s grooming accessories) and chose a tub of their Grapefruit shave cream. Very high quality product that I can highly recommend.


    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]


    I also gained a lot of information at Shaving 101 which is an American site but sings the praises of a lot of British shaving products. Excellent source of information.


    I now shave almost every day even when I don’t have to for work and actually find it a pleasurable experience now. I virtually never get any ingrown hairs on my neck and very little irritation afterwards.


    I was down in a small town in Provence in the summer and poking around a little grocer/local produce shop. There was a bloke putting out and re-arranging earthenware on some shelves at the back. I looked at a small very beautiful bowl (designed by the looks of the shop display to be a decorative piece on top of a similar plate?) which has a partial bronze like metallic glaze on the outside and a creamy muti-coloured inside with some raised dots in the centre. I looked at it and thought, perfect shaving bowl, the raised dots will help form a good lather. I speak no French (apart from some vocab that does not make grammatical sense to a French person :D ) and he no English but we managed to communicate in a fashion. He was the potter and I mimed what I was going to use it for, tres bon he says. It was €5!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I’ve been using it ever since and it works very well.


    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    Apologies for the pics :D
     
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    Cragmaster likes this.
  2. Renton

    Renton Subscribed Member

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    I keep meaning to try proper shaving like this - maybe I should treat myself next month for my birthday.

    Do you recommend the Merkur?
     
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  3. bagman

    bagman Moderator Staff Member

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    its great for me, closed comb so not as aggressive as i'm very delicate (all 6'2" and 17 stone :lol: )

    Not expensive either.

    I honestly haven't looked back
     
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  4. Cragmaster

    Cragmaster Member

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    Great post Bagman. I received a Taylor of Bond Street kit last Christmas and have used it for every shave since. Still on Gillette Mach 3 but the brush and lather work very nicely. Good close shave with skin feeling nourished afterwards.

    The brush is badger fur but loses a number of hairs each time I use it and is needing replaced soon. I remembered someone posting their custom and lovely looking stag brush on BB but couldn't quite remember who. Well there you go...

    Cheers!
     
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  5. Dr Gonzo

    Dr Gonzo Subscribed Member

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    Lovely brush, do you have a stand for it to hang bristles down?
    I find when you leave them stood up like that any moisture left after use runs down into the base and can affect the glue!
    I've used a brush for ages now and either Body Shop shaving cream which is excellent or Erasmic soap which is a great cheap backup/alternative.
    I don't buy into the latest greatest razor scam and have stuck with Gillette Sensor Excell since they were released over 20 years ago...I find that if I clean them properly I can get at least 10 shaves from each one which works out about 10p a save :)
    Would love to try a straight razor shave some time...
     
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  6. bagman

    bagman Moderator Staff Member

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    Its lovely stuff

    My brush needs quite a lot of TLC in soaking beforehand (only for a minute or two) in cold water then rinsing in cold afterwards before I strop a lot of the moisture out on my backrobe hanging on the bathroom door (only time it gets used :D )
     
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  7. bagman

    bagman Moderator Staff Member

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    I've not had an issue, i just pop it on the widow sill to get a breeze! I might have a look for a cheep on though. The problem will be all of the ones i've seen are designed for the narrow waist on commercial brushes

    I used the body shop stuff for over 10 years but the TOOBS :P is in a league above (costs more though)
     
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  8. fast but dim

    fast but dim Subscribed Member

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    I was converted to DE shaving on another forum, I also use a Mercur, but an open comb one ( CBA seeing which one)

    I have to be clean shaven for work, but don't shave on the days I am off ( I work 4 on 4 off), and the best thing about a DE razor is it can easily cope with 4 days growth ( even a week plus is no hassle), plus the extra closeness of the shave means I can get away with leaving it two days occasionally.

    If I'm in a rush, and only have a day's growth I'll use my Gilette 5 blade thingy, but nothing beats a DE shave.

    As for soap, I've tried a few, but have settled on Bodyshop Cream too ( and the cheap and nasty Erasmic for my locker at work)

    Even if you don't go for a DE razor, I'd advise everyone to ditch the foam and get a brush and soap.

    I got one of these for my 40th...... It's cool, very 007!
    http://www.executive-shaving.co.uk/merkur-travel-safety-razor.php
     
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  9. bagman

    bagman Moderator Staff Member

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    #9
  10. beachlover

    beachlover Moderator Staff Member

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    Another DE shaver here and another fan of Merkur and currently Astra blades. I've got a Taylor's brush, but chop and change the soap. Might try one of the Taylor's ones next.
    Does anyone else have missus who runs out of disposables and uses their razor? Damned near took half my face yesterday morning and even after pointing out my razor is left open after I use it and it had her frigging hair in it, she remains in stubborn denial!
     
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  11. Chris the Cat

    Chris the Cat Member

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    Merkur here to, altho I am currently using a vintage Gillette DE travel razor, very light ( my Merkur is a real heavyweight)
    which I find I am liking.
    Feather blades by choice, and use many different soaps, Mitchel's Wool fat being a favorite but also getting good results with a bar of Grandpas Pine Tar soap.
     
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  12. NOTSHARP

    NOTSHARP Subscribed Member

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    DE's :roll:

    Wimps!:lol:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Bagman, that brush has bloomed well.:)

    Some knots will shed hairs, at times to the point of having to re-knot the handle.

    It can be poor initial manufacture of the knot, or not drying the knot properly. If the knot is left too wet/damp, the hairs will rot and break off.

    Non of my brushes are hung upside down, and all are still fine after several years.




    Steve.
     
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  13. beachlover

    beachlover Moderator Staff Member

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    At least the missus wouldn't do her legs with one of those!
    Mind you, Christ alone knows how many transfusions and how much plastic surgery I'd need!!
     
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  14. Cave_Dweller

    Cave_Dweller Member

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    Cool thread. :cool:

    I confess that I've gone back to using a Gillette Sensor Excel, but with a proper brush and soap or (more often) cream.

    I bought two double edge razors, and about 100 various blades. My Merkur Futur is just too aggressive, even on the mildest setting, and the Feather I bought won't give me a clean shave, so after six months of farting around trying to get the right combination of technique, blade and razor I just chucked it in and went back to the Gillette.

    I use a Trumper's brush, which is gorgeous. Usually Trumper's Cream or Trufitt and Hill West Indian Limes. I probably smell like a tart's handbag, but it makes for a very comfortable shave.
     
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    Last edited: Oct 13, 2014
  15. bagman

    bagman Moderator Staff Member

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    Bring your neck down here and say that

    oh yes

    thats good to hear Steve
     
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  16. Saint-Just

    Saint-Just Moderator Staff Member

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    Steve, you might want to consider making suitable brush stands though.
    I also use a DE razor (an old Gillette Slim Adjustable, excellent kit) and Derby blades, but want to try Feathers.

    [​IMG]
     
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  17. Gower Ranger

    Gower Ranger Moderator Staff Member

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    I've tried "proper" shaving, including with a cutthroat, which I still use occasionally. Apart from enjoying the use of the tool itself, I've never really "got it."

    This is a shame as there is clearly some quality kit to be tried.

    In the end I just use water, soap (no shaving foam and no lather) and a three-blade something or other Gilette, I think. Each blade seems to last a month or more (drags a bit) of daily shaving. Never use moisturiser or other lady-style men's stuff. Skin hasn't fallen off yet.

    Never used electric but might try it one day (heresy!)
     
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  18. Chris the Cat

    Chris the Cat Member

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    Feathers are the best I have found in 5 years of DE shaving ( it a personal thing, I get that, but just sayin'... )
     
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  19. John56

    John56 Member

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    I've been shaving for 40+ years and forgetting all the electric shavers that have come and gone, I've tried various DE's, disposables and quite a few of the 3/4/5 blade jobbies. I also tried many different foams and soaps but no matter what razor/soap combination I used, my skin was quite often very sore afterwards and I invariably had to resort to some sort of cream/balm to soothe it.

    Then about 15 years ago I tried shaving oil and the difference is amazing. I used to buy David Somerset's but that proved to be quite expensive so I now buy the £1 a can Nuage with menthol and it is brilliant because you use so little. You need to keep your skin and razor very wet but if it gets dry you just wet your face again, there's no need to put more oil on. There's nothing to rinse off a your skin feels great.

    Reading this thread has made me think about DE's again, what is the best value one I can buy to try with the oil please?
     
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  20. Andylaser

    Andylaser Administrator Staff Member

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    Been using a DE for a few years now and really impressed by it.
     
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