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  1. #1
    < Banned User > Blade Wielder's Avatar
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    Default My Latest Shaving Efforts

    Hi everybody!

    I haven't been around for the past while, since I have no computer; but one's in the mail and for the time being, the one at work will suffice.

    As of now I have five straight razors, a hone (which is quite smooth, small and difficult to use) and my leather belt, which I use as a strop.

    Lynn sent me a nice little 5/8 razor, and I estimate I've done about five thorough shaves with it. I've nicked myself a couple of times, but I think I can safely say I'm pretty comfortable with the blade now. The only difficult areas I encounter are on the bottom of my chin and upper throat, where I have to shave upwards to get it good and smooth. It's not that I can't do it, but it takes a little more time and patience.

    Now, for four of those shaves I used your standard shaving cream from the can. Yesterday, however, I picked up some of that shaving soap you have to froth up with the brush. I suppose I'll lose authenticity points by telling you I picked them both up at Wal-Mart for under ten bucks, but hey, I was eager to experience the real thing.

    Now, shaving with the soap was quite different. It wasn't nearly as foamy and it dried quickly; so when I'd wipe the hair and soap from the razor, hard clumps would fall to the sink. Is this normal?

    Also, what's the best way to froth that stuff up nice and good? The mug I used was kind of deep, so I couldn't get the best contact. Maybe next time I'll try a shallower cup/mug or bowl?

    Anyhow, veteran shavers, bring on the tips! Tell me what I need to know and what to expect and all that jazz.

  2. #2
    Senior Member sensei_kyle's Avatar
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    Default

    If you bought Williams soap (pretty likely since it was Wal-Mart), run the tap until the water gets as hot as it gets, place brush in mug, fill mug. Then shower as normal. Dump the water from the mug, hold the brush over the sink until water stops streaming from it, then procees to make lather. If it dries out on your face, just apply more. I pulled out my new cake of Williams last night, and I had to relather once during each pass. It's OK to throw more lather on!

  3. #3
    Senior Member blabbermouth rtaylor61's Avatar
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    Blade,

    Try a latte mug for your soap. With the wide mouth, it makes working up your lather easy. Also, since Williams is so inexpensive, practice working up lather. You'll discover the right water/soap combination.

    Randy

  4. #4
    < Banned User > Blade Wielder's Avatar
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    Default

    Okay, great. Thanks, guys.

    So, just to clarify, Sensei Kyle: when I fill up the mug with the hot water, is the soap still in there with it? I'm guessing that would serve to soften the soap up, but I'm wondering if it would ruin the bar?

  5. #5
    Senior Member sensei_kyle's Avatar
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    If it's a hard soap (like Williams or eShave), then yes I leave it in the mug & fill it. It doesn't seem to shorten the life of the soap any that I can tell. If you're using a soft soap (like ClassicShaving's house brand) then this process will shorten the life of the soap.

    The upside is the lather is a little warmer & feels great.

  6. #6
    < Banned User > Blade Wielder's Avatar
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    Sweet.

    Thanks, Sensei! I'll give that a try! *Bows*

  7. #7
    Senior Member Dr_Phong's Avatar
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    Hey man, don't worry about the price of the soap. It doesn't matter that much. I have been testing every kind of soap and cream under the sun, and you know what? My favorite is still Musgo Real at about $9 a tube. It really makes for a smooth shave. One of my favorite aftershaves is Pinaud Clubman at a whopping $6 a big 'ol bottle.

    If it works for you or you don't want to spend a fortune on goop, more power to you.

  8. #8
    Member AFDavis11's Avatar
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    Default

    Also, you can build up the lather on the brush for several turns with a specific amount of water in the brush (I usually use less than what the brush can hold, flicking it a few times in the sink before swishing it over the warmed and saturated soap. Then, once loaded with both soap/cream and some water, I build the lather on my face instead of in the cup. Usually just below the jaw line on the dominant hand side. Then continue building the lather on your face to soak it into the beard for a good full minute. You may want to strop again for a few passes (allowing the soap/cream to soak), then relather from the cup and apply, THEN shave. Practice is helpful. Some guys like a real watery soap and some guys like a firm stiff soap. You can produce either, and that is really one of the key points to using hand produced cream.

  9. #9
    Hones & Honing randydance062449's Avatar
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    Just my two cents here.

    Use two cups. The wide cup for the cake of soap. The other cup for the hot water.
    On the cake of soap put one drop each of glycerin and mineral oil.
    The glycerin will work up more lather
    The mineral oil will act as a lubricant on the skin making the razor glide easier.
    The inexpensive soaps are lacking in oils and lather developing ingredients.
    Fill the other cup with water and put it in the microwave til hot.
    Pour some of the hot water, just a bit, over the cake of soap.
    Place you brush in the hot water.
    Take a shower, etc..
    Remove the brush from the hot water and shake it once in the sink, lightly.
    Swirl the wet brush around on the soap until a lather starts to form.
    Brush the lather onto the face and into the beard.
    Place the brush back into the hot water.
    Strop your razor
    Rinse off the lather and re-apply it again as you did before.

    Depending upon your soap, water and other factors you may need to add more oil or glycerin.
    Its common to relather in the middle of a shave. Just keep it all moist.

    Hope this helps,
    Randolph Tuttle, a SRP Mentor for residents of Minnesota & western Wisconsin

  10. #10
    < Banned User > Blade Wielder's Avatar
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    Wow, it's pretty cool how everyone has their own individual ways of doing this. That's what I like about this method of shaving: it's so personal. I mean, every clown has a Mach III and a can of shave gel or whatever; but how many people have, I dunno, an ivory-handled, drop forged razor with badger hair brush and imported shaving soap? Okay, many of you, I'm sure, but that's different.

    I'm going to give these suggestions a try - thanks!

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