Of Brushes, Razors and Watches: How Do Forum Members Shave?

Thread: Of Brushes, Razors and Watches: How Do Forum Members Shave?

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  1. #1
    Member Kronos's Avatar
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    Off topic Of Brushes, Razors and Watches: How Do Forum Members Shave?

    As I was taking my morning walk, photographing yet another watch, I got to thinking about other "eccentricities" of mine. (At least they are eccentricities as viewed through the lens of non-WIS "civilians", like my family and friends.)

    One of those eccentricities, apparently, is the way I shave. After some experimenting a few years back, I use an old fashioned badger hair shaving brush with a mug of well made shaving soap. (I think one gets a closer, more comfortable shave using a good shaving brush. It also appeals to the same part of me that likes mechanical watches and a good vintage fountain pen.)



    A shaving "purist" would pair the brush and soap with a well made straight razor. I, however, do not. Embracing modern technology in this instance, albeit somewhat reluctantly, I pair that old fashioned brush and soap with the most up to date razor generally available -- a Gillette Fusion.







    I came to this "system" through trial and error. A few years ago, I decided to see what was out there beyond the world of Johnson & Johnson and Gillette and the standard cans of shaving creams one finds in the local drugstore. I also wondered about the environmental impact -- not to mention the expense -- of the various cartridges the blade companies were selling. It seems like every few years there is an "improvement": I went from twin blades, to pivoting twin blades, to "Mach 3" designs with three blades, to a "Fusion" razor with four blades! Those cartridges have gotten pretty expensive and I wondered if they really added anything.

    After some investigation, I decided to try shaving with a good badger brush and tried using it with various shaving soaps along with some creams designed for use with brushes. After a period of trial and error, I determined that, for me, the soaps were easier to use and provided the same comfort and protection as some of the fancier creams. I also found that using a shaving brush was really superior to just slathering on some "Edge" or "Foamy" and hacking away -- as I had done for years.

    I also looked into razors. I toyed with the idea of getting a good straight razor and shaving, presumably, the way that grandpa or great-grandpa did. I decided that I'd probably not maintain it properly. I also was not really up for the learning curve of properly handling a straight razor. (I could see the Daily News headlines: "Clumsy Lawyer Cuts Off Own Head in Bizarre Shaving Accident").

    Next, I tried using an old fashioned standard "safety razor" with a good double edge blade. Even very good double edge blades are far cheaper than the cartridges being marketed to us now. Various shaving websites and the purists who populate those places tout safety razors as the best alternative to a straight razor. And one can invest a fair amount of dough into fancy, "well balanced" safety razors made by Merkur and other companies. Always nice to have first class equipment, right? It turns out, thouugh, that there is still *some* learning curve with a safety razor -- if you've been using twin blades or triple blades, etc.



    You have to concentrate more on the angle of the razor and you must use less pressure. It is far, far easier to chafe and/or nick yourself with a safety razor. I did not master that art easily and ultimately, tired of nicks and styptic pens, I went back to the Gillette Fusion.

    For both economic and aesthetic reasons, I have to admit I was disappointed that I did not learn to love the old fashioned safety razor. I may try again one of these days.

    Anyway, that's my story. What do you gentlemen use and why?

    (Apologies for the blurry photos -- I thought they were coming out better and I did not have time to re-take them.)
    Last edited by Kronos; August 20th, 2009 at 16:14.

  2. #2
    Member Valaker's Avatar
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    Re: Of Brushes, Razors and Watches: How Do Forum Members Shave?

    Haha, i was just shaving a minute ago in front of the computer screenwith my Norelco-nothing fancy had it for about 5 years-rechargeable and rinseable under the faucet. I don't have much facial hair and I do have many small moles etc, so electric is the way I go for day-to-day


  3. #3
    Member Kronos's Avatar
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    Re: Of Brushes, Razors and Watches: How Do Forum Members Shave?

    Quote Originally Posted by Valaker View Post
    ....electric is the way I go for day-to-day
    My father used an electric -- so I tried that when I first started to shave. I have a pretty light beard and sensetive skin. The electric left me consistently irritated. So I switched to "manual" razors while still in my teens and never looked back.

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  5. #4
    Member tribe125's Avatar
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    Re: Of Brushes, Razors and Watches: How Do Forum Members Shave?

    Shaving websites? Shaving websites??

    In my late teens I used a safety razor. Then I decided that an extra ten minutes in bed was better than shaving and have had a beard ever since. When I started to go bald I cut out hairdressers too. Once a week the beard trimmer is applied to my entire head.
    I used to list my watches here until I realised it ruined people's Google searches...

  6. #5
    Member Kronos's Avatar
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    Re: Of Brushes, Razors and Watches: How Do Forum Members Shave?

    Quote Originally Posted by tribe125 View Post
    Shaving websites? Shaving websites??
    God, yes. There are blogs about shaving: http://blogsearch.google.com/blogsea...itle&resnum=15

    There are informational sites:

    http://www.ftmguide.org/shaving.html

    There are informational pieces in the mainstream media. See, e.g.,

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6886845/

    There are merchants from the insanely over the top:

    http://www.theartofshaving.com/taos6/home.php

    To the more practical:

    http://www.classicshaving.com/Home.html

    To the innovative or wacky:

    http://www.quikshave.com/

    Quote Originally Posted by tribe125 View Post
    Once a week the beard trimmer is applied to my entire head.
    I find that solution elegant in its simplicity.

  7. #6
    Member chrmbly's Avatar
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    Re: Of Brushes, Razors and Watches: How Do Forum Members Shave?

    Interesting topic... I started using an electric when I was a young lad, as it was what my father always used... However, I grew tired of it because I felt like you really couldn't get a close shave with it (may have had something to do with the fact that it was a cheap electric).

    Then throughout college / grad school I had been using the old mach 3 / fusion razors with the fusion gel and was liking it... However I found that I was too lazy to shave, it made a mess, and it also had a higher incidence of me screwing up the facial hair (got the mustache / goatee combo)...

    So, since last Christmas I've been doing the electric again. However, I'm considering going back. While it's closer than I remembered, I have a higher incidence of ingrown hairs... and it still takes a while to get a close shave with it (going over and over the same spots again and again).
    Chris
    ---



  8. #7
    Member Bogeyman's Avatar
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    Re: Of Brushes, Razors and Watches: How Do Forum Members Shave?

    A ballistic knife and some grease do the job for me quite well.

    I generally shave with a Gilette twin razor and some Gilette foam. Occasionally I would bring out the electric razor if I'm in the office.
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  9. #8
    Member AAWATCHES's Avatar
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    Re: Of Brushes, Razors and Watches: How Do Forum Members Shave?

    Interesting topic, I use a barbers type straight razor

  10. #9
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    Re: Of Brushes, Razors and Watches: How Do Forum Members Shave?

    I have a tough beard and sensitive skin and I have tried many combinations over the years. I have been satisfied with the quattro titanium by Schick and a gel by King of Shaves Alphagel. No matter which blade I use I get the best results using King of Shaves.

  11. #10
    Member cavallino33's Avatar
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    Re: Of Brushes, Razors and Watches: How Do Forum Members Shave?

    I use a Merkur dual edge razor, I have the long handle "heavy duty" model. Only thing I've tried that actually shaves but doesn't irritate my skin. Plus blades are way cheaper than a modern saftey cartridge razor. Nothing fancy with the shaving cream I just use some regular Nivea shaving gel that I can get at a grocery store.
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