Men, let's talk shaving again

Williams mug soap. Cheap bristle brush - I have needed to glue the bristle plug back into the base (for the record, it seems any marine-grade adhesive woks better than the original glue). Bic twin-blade disposable razor, the green-handled, small-headed model. Aftershave I stocked up on twenty years ago because I liked its scent. No special preparation.

I use a vintage (1965) Gillette adjustable and an inexpensive (boar bristle) shaving brush. When it wears out I plan to upgrade to badger hair. Anyway, a ten-pack of Wilkinson blades are $1.76 and a puck of shaving soap is $1.59. I get a great shave and I actually enjoy shaving these days.

You guys should spring for Omega boar brushes; they’re cheap and excellent.

Never had any more of an issue with cuts w/ a safety razor than I did with the modern multi-blades.

Honestly, they’re so cheap that you won’t care. Example: Feather is one of the more expensive brands. (They’re also ninja-assassin sharp–approach with caution. I’m just using them as an example because they’re what I use(d), plus they’re “expensive”.) Checking ebay, you can get 100 for $19.99. That’s $0.20/blade. If you used a fresh blade every day, you’d be paying $6.00/month for blades. I’m finding Gillette Mach 3 blades at… 8 for $36.20, or $4.53/blade. To beat the cost of using a fresh DE every single day (which is totally extravagant, and used here for illustration purposes), you’d have to use one Mach 3 blade for a month. You do the… oh, wait, never mind. I already have. :stuck_out_tongue:

Same here. Even with an against-the-grain pass, I still tend to have a bit of a shadow left. Without it, it looks like I didn’t shave at all.

Against the grain is the only way I get a good shave.

Am I the only one who doesn’t use soap/cream/etc at all? Water and a 2-blade razor (against the grain!) works perfectly for me. I shave every other day; the slightly longer hairs seem to make shaving smoother, I suffer more if I shave after 1 day. But the routine works great, I get very little razor burn or other issues.

I can do it in a pinch*, if I’m strapped for time or something, but the added time to lather up isn’t really that much of a gain/loss.

  • Or at least I could w/ a Mach 3, and actually did so regularly for a while. The Dollar Shave Club 4-blade seems to be quite a bit more aggressive, so I would hesitate to try it now.


I certainly like the concept and their style. I wish they had a wider selection than just cartridge razors.

Such as? For the classic double-edge, once you’re past the initial investment of the handle, the blades are already about as cheap as they can possibly get. (King Camp Gillette must be turning in his grave… ;))

No they are not. In fact, you can buy the Dollar Shave razors direct from their wholesaler for about 1/3 of their cost. You just cut out the middleman.

This is a key point, I believe. The safety razor is just one step removed from the straight razor. Blade angle is key to a decent safety razor shave. Remember, we’re shaving, not scraping.

I didn’t mean to be rude because I know some men take this topic seriously but I truly do not understand why. I have never understood the fascination with exotic razors or shaving techniques even though I read Esquire and GQ magazines. It sounds pointless.

What I have learned from being around other men when they are shaving is that the vast majority do not know what they are doing at all. Some of them use expensive razors that they keep in service too long because of the price. Most of them make small, picking strokes and that is completely wrong and an invitation for cuts or abrasion. In the best case, it just takes way too long. I learned to make my average stroke at least 6 - 8" with subtly varied pressure at each millisecond. I can easily shave my entire face and neck in less than 60 seconds with a two-blade disposable razor that I replace once a week and dollar store shaving creme. I do it every day and I even have a mole that I have to be gentle around if I don’t want to bleed for the better part of an hour.

Help me understand this psychologically because I am truly interested. What is the appeal of exotic shaving strategies? It is fine if the answer is similar to the reasons women get pedicures but I don’t understand the thought process.

Same thing I always post in shaving threads:

I use Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap for all my shaving needs. A variety of pleasant, simple, natural scents, extremely slick for a smooth shave, and provides a simple, thin lather just with my fingertips. It doesn’t give you dense, thick lather, but I haven’t found that to impede my shave whatsoever. Available whereever hippies shop (and Target, lately).

For a razor, I have a basic Merkur double-edge and prefer Feather blades.

It’s a few things for me, some practical, some aesthetic. I found the cost of cartridges irritating and never liked disposables (both functionally, and because I hate disposable anything). I also don’t like the scent of most cheap shaving cream.

Switching to a double-edge safety razor has saved me a ton of money in the long run, and I find the whole process more pleasant. The razor is nice-looking, and becomes a little conversation piece / decoration on my sink when not in use.

There’s also an element of historical curiosity. I’m a child of the 80s and 90s, and I’m used to being mass-marketed to all the time. There’s something pleasant about shirking the shrill marketing messages I’m increasingly tired of. And I’m curious about how people used to do things. When I bought my DE razor (eight years ago? yeesh.), it was partly out of a curiosity to find out just what shaving was like for, say, my grandfathers. Turns out: pleasant.

Thanks. That is a good answer. I won’t be doing something similar anytime soon because I value speed, efficiency and overall convience over everything else (I spend incredibly little money too even though I use quality disposables; the only Mach 3 I ever used was one I got in the mail as a promotion; no thanks in the long term) but that does help me understand why someone would choose to do things differently.

Wasn’t talking about the DSC razors; I was talking about classic DE safety razor blades, as initially developed by King Camp Gillette. (Best Name Ever, by the way.)

So far as DSC goes, I’m willing to pay for the convenience of having them ship me blades every month or two, plus recording funny videos. :slight_smile: (Also, by avoiding Lifehacker, I don’t have to read ten thousand posts about how GTD will give me a closer shave if I only start making a bunch of post-it notes reminding me to shave. :rolleyes:)

Heh. A hot-glue gun worked well on mine. I like the Williams soap also; I tried some smell-good shaving soap with aloe, but it didn’t lather well and I didn’t like the shave.

That’s pretty much why I’m now using a DE razor, except that a double-blade disposable with a lubricating strip did an okay job.

I’m using my father’s Gillette adjustable (1959 according to the date code). I just got a 60-blade sampler. When that runs out, I’ll probably go with Astra blades because they’re cheap and they’re packaged in cardboard and paper, not plastic.

I bought a can of Edge shaving gel, but I splurged on a can of Proraso foam as well. I find Edge does a better job.

I’m undecided as to whether I’ll buy a brush and shaving soap or not. The safety razor was called that for a reason, and that was sufficient for men to switch from the straight razor. Shaving cream in a can also replaced the brush and soap, and I’d assume convenience was one reason, and there might be more. But we’ll see.

It’s a daily chore, more or less. Why not find a way to enjoy it, or at least make it less irritating? You have, but there’s no reason to think everyone else should find the same tools just as satisfying.