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Thread: Method Shaving Experiment

  1. #1
    Senior Member kevinred's Avatar
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    Default Method Shaving Experiment

    Earlier this week I started Method Shaving. It appealed to me really because the products seemed to give you more irritation free passes to remove every last bit of stubble, which suits my OCD regarding this.

    I watched the videos and Charles Roberts explaining the system and also Mantic59's videos on you tube making the whole process much simpler. I read a lot of forum reviews and decided I would try myself. My initial thoughts were this is going to be a love or hate relationship as thats pretty much what most reviews said. There were many reviewers who said they didn't like CAR's manner or complicated shaving jargon and that was reason enough not to try this, I thought that he wouldn't be in my shave den with me so I was not fussed about his ways or strange shaving language, I though I would let his products talk for themselves as this was really the only way to evaluate his system.

    I planned initially to use his products and system for six weeks, but alas I have today given upů. let me explain why...

    I have had no problems mixing the lather (wet mix) in the shave cloth, its fairly simple to do, once you have soaked the cloth and rubbed the palm oil soap around for a few minutes you add cutting balm (basically oil and essential oils) to the wet mix in the cloth then add it to your face. I didn't use a brush but you can use a synthetic brush if you like.

    The first and most noticeable effect is the slickness of the wet mix, it is super slick, like nothing you have ever used. In fact it is impossible to open the lightly screw topped lids of the other products after making the mix. (all products need to be opened first before starting). I originally thought once I had learned how to use the products with a DE I would use a straight but immediately it became obvious this would be dangerous. One of the main problems I found with the wet mix was once on your hands or razor it took a lot of rinsing to remove it, even holding a DE is difficult. I believe another reason why CAR favours the Merkur 34C HD, is because it is well knurled and also has an end knob which stops your fingers sliding of the end. I could not even safely hold my Merkur Futur, that was impossible. Super Slick media indeed.

    Now the wet mix is applied to your face with your fingers. To be honest its no messier than applying standard lather with your fingers, but it is much messier than when using a brush with standard products. The mix can be adjusted with water, but I preferred a slightly thicker mix as if too wet it just slid off your face. That was messy.

    Now my main problem was using the razor to shave with the wet mix on. Firstly it is true that you can make many
    passes, but razor control is not easy and because the razor is travelling over this super slick media it seems to miss a lot compared to standard soap or cream lather so more passes are in fact necessary to remove the same stubble. Another problem is because of this you want to apply more pressure. Now CAR does in fact advocate more pressure after the initial buttress removal is complete (3 passes, most stubble removed in english). With some slag (just soap lather) mixed with his glossing cream (oil based cream / moisturiser) but to be honest this leaves your skin irritated although his product does a very good job at concealing the irritation. I used some alum (not recommended) after the shave to check the shave and my face stung like hell, now if I hadn't I would have just felt tight skin, but this tightness was due to irritation. I'm not sure what is in the cream but it defiantly had a calming effect. Im actually going to keep this cream for the future if ever I do similar again (which I'm sure I will as I like experimentation). Now I will also say that it is next to impossible to cut yourself, this stuff does protect from that, and the Merkur 34C HD is very mild, but I would not recommend this system to a beginner as you will develop bad habits that will leave you irritated with usual products. Pressure is not good even with his Hydrolast products, although they let you do this for a short time unlike standard products. Not a good feature IMHO.

    So this is why I have decided to stop, I hate the super slick media as its difficult to hold your razor or anything else, and also because I find even after a week I am becoming heavy handed and frustrated it takes so long to shave through this slick. CAR makes multiple passes at break neck speed in my opinion to A. Show how protective his media is B. Because he has to to remove the stubble through the slick C. to give control to the razor, fast forward motion makes it easier to control.

    After one week I am left with the feeling that this system simply does not improve my shave, and that is the bottom line.

    His products do do as he says, they are good products, but when combined in different ratios I just could not reduce the slick, and this just made it hard to shave. I know I'm an experienced shaver and I am always willing to learn new techniques and try different products, but I know what a great BSS shave is and how to get one with standard products. In my humble opinion this system complicates the art of shaving for me.

    I would still recommend giving the method a try. I thought before trying Method Shaving that slick media would give you a closer shave and less irritation, but I was surprised to find it's actually more difficult to get a close shave, slick is not a shavers best friend after all.

    I also now realise that the shaving products I love today like the TOBS creams, Arko shave stick, Proraso and many more besides have been formulated to give me the best results a man can get, and now I'm even more impressed with them.

    Enjoy
    It is not how much we have, but how much we enjoy, that makes happiness

  2. The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to kevinred For This Useful Post:

    deepweeds (04-05-2014), dexter90723 (05-08-2014), Hart (04-05-2014), Phrank (04-05-2014)

  3. #2
    Shave This Hart's Avatar
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    Default

    Thanks for the honest, straight forward look at it. Regardless of your appraisal of it being good, bad, or indifferent I was not going to have a go at "method", being happy with things as I have them, but your experience and insights are instructive.
    kevinred and HaiKarate like this.
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    Senior Member Maladroit's Avatar
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    Hi Kevin, that's an interesting insight as to why no-one seems to have tried the method with a straight. Maybe if the mix was applied with a brush and one kept the dominant hand really dry there might be a chance. However, as you pointed out, removing a layer of skin each time you shave probably wouldn't make for the most comfortable experience
    kevinred likes this.

  5. #4
    Senior Member kevinred's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maladroit View Post
    Hi Kevin, that's an interesting insight as to why no-one seems to have tried the method with a straight. Maybe if the mix was applied with a brush and one kept the dominant hand really dry there might be a chance. However, as you pointed out, removing a layer of skin each time you shave probably wouldn't make for the most comfortable experience
    One of the problems I found was it took ages to rinse the slick from your hands, I tried just drying my hands with a towel with no rinsing (I change hands with my DE also to shave each side of my face) but if you got just a splash of water on them the super slick re-appeared.

    If you could shave both sides of your face one handed it would probably be ok. Im that worried about it I don't even want to experiment with my straights.

    Mind you tonight I had a nice shave with my straight some TOBS Sandalwood cream and a few dabs of the matching cologne following and it was luxury. A close shave with no irritation but most of all the blade felt great even though my face is still a bit sensitive following Method Shaving.
    It is not how much we have, but how much we enjoy, that makes happiness

  6. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevinred View Post
    One of the problems I found was it took ages to rinse the slick from your hands, I tried just drying my hands with a towel with no rinsing (I change hands with my DE also to shave each side of my face) but if you got just a splash of water on them the super slick re-appeared.

    If you could shave both sides of your face one handed it would probably be ok. Im that worried about it I don't even want to experiment with my straights.

    Mind you tonight I had a nice shave with my straight some TOBS Sandalwood cream and a few dabs of the matching cologne following and it was luxury. A close shave with no irritation but most of all the blade felt great even though my face is still a bit sensitive following Method Shaving.
    The "up side" to your experiment is a new appreciation for what you where doing previously. If I recall correctly (and forgive me if I've got it wrong), you where somewhat dissatisfied with your shaving experience but now seem to be happier with it. Well worth it, if that is so.

    The problem with the slickness reminds me of getting silicone grease on my hands.
    deepweeds and kevinred like this.
    Than ≠ Then
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  7. #6
    Senior Member kevinred's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hart View Post
    The "up side" to your experiment is a new appreciation for what you where doing previously. If I recall correctly (and forgive me if I've got it wrong), you where somewhat dissatisfied with your shaving experience but now seem to be happier with it. Well worth it, if that is so.

    The problem with the slickness reminds me of getting silicone grease on my hands.
    I wasn't really unhappy, I just wondered if it was possible to get a BSS easily without irritation via another or a simpler method. Many claimed Method shaving was such a method….I now disagree at least for me.

    Seems there are no short cuts, shaving is what it is….I'm more than happy with that

    Slick = Very similar to silicon grease but a little easier to remove…lol
    Hart likes this.
    It is not how much we have, but how much we enjoy, that makes happiness

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