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  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Jan 2007
    Hacienda Heights, California
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    Red face My First Shave; The after action review

    Hello Fellas. While I did it. After all the talk, I finally shaved. Here is the scenario:

    -New Dovo 6/8 Bismarck. Razor was honed upon purchase here in Los Angeles at Ross Cutlery. Incidentally, Alan Ross is a personal friend of Lynn Abrams and actually hones razors for him.

    -Dovo boars hair brush.

    -Glycerin soap in a scuttle

    -alum block(don't really know how to use as no instructions were provided.

    -syptic pencil

    -Dovo strop, Russian leather, extra wide

    I watched the Lynn Abrams free video first. The 13 minute one on Google. Then I went for it.

    Suprizingly enough, it wasn't bad and I did not have to medevac to the hospital due to loss of blood. However, I need help on the chin and neck as they are not as smooth as the cheeks. Any advice? Also, I was wary when I had to change hands. Maybe I was just nervous.

    After the shave skin was hot. How do I use the alum block. Do I even need one. Do I still need to use aftershave balm or is it over kill? Can anyone recommend a balm?

    Do I strop before and after every shave. I noticed strops that have a linen side. Mine does not. Do I need to purchase one?

    What do I do to the brush before and after use?


    Al in Cal:

    Last edited by Al in Cal; 02-04-2007 at 12:48 PM. Reason: More info

  2. #2
    Cheapskate Honer Wildtim's Avatar
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    Nov 2006
    A2 Michigan
    Thanked: 241


    Since you already have the Alum, use it. It works as an aftershave antiseptic and skin toner, other options for the same action are witch hazel or an alcohol based aftershave. Though the alcohol will sting as will the alum but less and witch hazel doesn't sting. Especially when your skin feels "hot" like you mentioned. Personally I use the Alum after every shave, and follow it with any aftershave as it has no scent.It is used be wetting it with cold water and rubbing it on your skin.

    Yes you should strop 30+ times before each shave if you don't have the linen you won't be using it. It is nice to have but isn't worth running out and getting another strop just to have. Proper stropping makes the shave much more comfortable.

    The brush should of course be wet before use. If you soak it for a couple of minutes before use it will feel softer. After use rinse the soap out, gently shake out the drips and hang it in a stand or stand it on its handle to dry it.

    Welcome to the world of straight razor shaving

  3. #3
    Member AFDavis11's Avatar
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    May 2005
    Thanked: 1485


    I would recommend continuing to perfect your technique. The face should not feel "hot" aferward. There should be no need for Alum, aftershaves, or even lather for the final pass, for that matter.

    I only use the Alum if I have nicked myself. For me it is the lesser effective method, but without the whitish residue of styptic pencils.

    Some guys use it daily as a sort of aftershave. No problem with that if you choose too.

    I would try a lower angle overall, and especially so around the chin.

    Stropping after a shave is a personal preference, I like to do 3 passes as an edge drying technique. Some prefer not to in order to preserve the edge a little longer or prevent strop issues.

    I rinse my brush out after use and hang bristles downward. Before I shave I often toss it into the sink filled with hot water, but I'm sure thats very cavalier and irresponsible of me, but you asked.

  4. #4
    Member Jorge's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Fort Collins, CO
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    I'm a newbie myself, but my take:

    For the Chin area:

    I've been using the tip of the blade at the top of my chin, middle of the blade in the middle, and back of the blade on the underside. I saw it in a video I think, works pretty well.

    As far as aftershave, I don't like to use anything that stings. The Geo F. Trumper Skin Food is what I use, and I love it. Comes in Coral and Lime. A little goes a long way. I love the Lime, so does my lady, but it's not a scent for everyone.


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