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Thread: The Two Biggest Challenges I Faced Learning to Shave with a Straight

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    Member AFDavis11's Avatar
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    Default The Two Biggest Challenges I Faced Learning to Shave with a Straight

    The two things that challenged me the most when learning to straight shave were 1) Knowing what to expect and 2) Making corrections that worked

    So, what should you expect from your first few shaves? Unfortunately, not too much. They can be less than satisfactory. But, I was confused with what to expect. Should the razor be smoother than a traditional blade? Should it glide more easily? I would say that, in the very beginning, you should expect difficulty and a sense that the blade pulling quite a bit. But, soon after that, some improvement. At no point should you have any irritation. So, if you do, take a step back and see what is going wrong. Be careful in the beginning; your efforts to learn can mess up an edge if you use too much angle and pressure together. Those two effects together are always bad in straight shaving.

    But, when learning, it's tough. What should you expect? What should be happening? Where should the shave feel good and where should you feel some stubble. It's all too new. I'm afraid only careful practice will get you past this point. There are no words that can help you get past knowing what to expect. Give it time, expect improvement. Ultimately, it should be an exceptional shave.

    Next problem was in improving, techniques specifically. And here is a weird thing about using a straight razor. No improvement ever worked. Not the first time, not the second time. Sometimes not even the third time. And then, BLAM, it works. Might be the forth time was a charm. Might have been the second, or third time. But, it was never the first time I tried something. It was so consistent; failure the first time I tried anything. I came to realize an important rule. Conversly, something that works the first time should be looked on carefully. Why did it work the very first time? Was I really that lucky or was it something else I did differently?

    The rule is: You must practice a change effectively enough so that it really works, before you can decide whether it does or not.
    Last edited by AFDavis11; 08-16-2011 at 02:55 AM.
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    pcg is offline
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    Nicely said. And the observations apply to many pursuits. It's just that in shaving, we pay for the learning with cuts & nicks! (Thanks!)
    sigit666 likes this.

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