Photos of my face - the pain :(

Thoughts and input on anything related to wet shaving or men's grooming.
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jboy
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Photos of my face - the pain :(

Post by jboy » Tue Mar 27, 2012 5:10 am

hi guys

i'm 34 and have been shaving since around 13. i use a mach 3 turbo razor, which i really don't like for all the skin-scraping reasons you've all discussed. i used to use the Sensor and Senor Excel blades but they don't sell in my country anymore. i'm a wet shaving convert in theory and have already ordered everything i need to get going, but while i'm waiting i wanted to ask your opinion on whether the way my skin looks now is every going to change, even with wet shaving?

until today, i've always shaved once WTG and once ATG to be able to get a smooth shave. but what's always bugged me is that no matter how close a shave i get, i still see black hair follicles on my face, which are sometimes quite 'bumpy' in apperance (though smooth when touching my face).

today, i decided to get started towards the road to a better shave by going once WTG and once XTG, and no ATG. the good news i guess is that i managed to have quite a smooth shave. the bad news is that the hair follicles are still just as visible, and the 'bumpy' appearance is still there.

from a distance it looks fine (i think?) but up close you'll really see the problem i have.

i'm not using any pre-shave treatment but i put on face cream after shaving. normal nivea stuff.

am i doomed to never look like i've shaved properly? am i just always going to have this problem? i'm not sure that even wet shaving can save me because these hairs don't disappear, even though the shave is smooth.

what do you guys think?
Last edited by jboy on Thu Mar 29, 2012 1:50 am, edited 1 time in total.

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jww
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Post by jww » Tue Mar 27, 2012 6:23 am

This is a game of patience and technique. Everything depends on your blade angle, pressure and good preparation. You can get a bump-free shave with a cartridge razor, but it's very difficult to get proper technique because of the pivoting heads which tend to be the rule with cartridges.

Roam around the forum -- there is plenty of help here.

Welcome to SMF.
Wendell

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Squire
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Post by Squire » Tue Mar 27, 2012 7:02 am

Hi jboy, welcome aboard. Do the bumps cause you any discomfort?
Regards,
Squire

jboy
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Post by jboy » Tue Mar 27, 2012 7:28 am

thanks for the welcome jww and squire :)

the thing is, i have a bit of temporary burning after shaving on some days, not all, but otherwise no, no pain at all.

the worst part is that it FEELS smooth but looks anything but smooth! :?

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ateace
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Post by ateace » Tue Mar 27, 2012 7:29 am

Welcome to SMF.

A traditional double edge razor gives an entirely different shave from a cartridge. Once you learn the proper technique, you may find that a single blade is much more suited to your beard and skin.

Good luck and let us know how things go.

gsgo
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Post by gsgo » Tue Mar 27, 2012 9:10 am

Welcome to SMF.

With fair skin and a dark beard you most likely will need to get used to a shadow type appearance. It is sometimes necessary to accept what we have been blessed with.

Trying hard to shave to close will most likely lead you to some cases of irritation and razor burn which you seem to be experiencing. Try shaving a bit easier, lighter, slower and make sure to do a full prep to soften up those whiskers and finally you may want to consider playing around with some pre shave items to help in the process. WTG and XTG strokes for now, save the ATG for the final touch on the spots that need it.

As you gear arrives and you peruse all the information you will need to build a routine and develop your technique.
Good shaving,

Gary

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Squire
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Post by Squire » Tue Mar 27, 2012 9:27 am

jboy you should not have a burning sensation with any razor. It's possible your face doesn't like multi blade razors (they work well for most) or a reaction to shaving products, but is more likely the burn comes from trying to hard to eliminate those residual black spots.

Some men, through a combination of skin tone and heavy dark beard (think the lead character on the Monk tv series) can look like they need a shave right after they have shaved and there is nothing to be done to change that except live long enough to have gray whiskers.

Let me suggest we concentrate on the means rather than the outcome. Consistently good shaves are the result of good technique. A DE razor is a tool and as with all tools there is a learning curve. It isn't difficult, anyone who can ride a bike or swing a golf club can do it, but technique can only be learned by practice. Fortunately this doesn't require leaving the house.

Work on good technique using quality shave products first and we can touch on finish polishing further down the road. After all, you have the rest of your life to practice so there's no hurry.
Regards,
Squire

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jww
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Post by jww » Tue Mar 27, 2012 9:31 am

Squire wrote:...can look like they need a shave right after they have shaved and there is nothing to be done to change that except live long enough to have gray whiskers.
...
Ahem -- of course many of us have graduated into the grey beard clan - including our esteemed poster quoted above .....

Who was it that used to have "It's your face, not a race" in their signature tagline? Loved that one.
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desertbadger
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Post by desertbadger » Tue Mar 27, 2012 10:25 am

jww wrote: Who was it that used to have "It's your face, not a race" in their signature tagline? Loved that one.
That was Racso AKA Oscar.

Welcome to SMF jboy!

Regards,
David
Regards,
David
Gotta have the "Fat"!

jboy
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Post by jboy » Tue Mar 27, 2012 10:44 am

@ateace: i'm hoping that this is the beginning of finding the answer!

@gsgo: for a long time i've had to learn to live with it, but after learning about wet shaving, i have hope that it will HAVE to be better for my skin than what i'm doing right now. at the very least, it'll be more fun, and smell better, and have more pre- and post-care for my skin.

@Squire: yeah, the joys of genetics :( but you're right - there's no rush. but before i go grey would nice :)

@desertbadger: thanks man!

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ShadowsDad
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Post by ShadowsDad » Tue Mar 27, 2012 1:39 pm

Welcome to the forum! You mentioned that you couldn't get products in your country. Just curious, what country? It makes no difference to us helping you, again, I'm curious only.

+1 the maybe having to get accustomed to the fair skin dark/hair contrast. For some reason that's part of blade shaving. Some folks even say it heightens that effect, I find that to be the case. But it's what I was dealt also, so I live with it. Too, even with a BBS shave, a blade doesn't cut whiskers below the skin level. That's good and bad. Bad for the skin/whisker contrast you don't like, but great for helping to get rid of skin problems associated with shaving.

Yup, learn to walk and get the technique down then we can help with the rest. I suspect the irritation will decrease greatly with a blade. But give it time. It's not going to happen over night (but I hope it will), especially since you've been using a cartridge.

The biggest problem cart' shavers have is to not use pressure, since they had to use pressure to get the cart to do it's job, and it's second nature because of that. But that isn't the case with a blade. Pressure works against a good blade shave and will definitely create skin problems.

One other thing I can suggest is the use of an Alum block rubbed on your face after the shave. You can start that now, no need to wait.

When you need help, we're here.
Brian

Maker of Kramperts Finest Bay Rum and Frostbite http://www.krampertsfinest.com/
Or find it here: Italian Barber, West Coast Shaving, Barclay Crocker, The Old Town Shaving Company at Stats, Maggard Razors; Leavitt & Peirce, Harvard Square

jboy
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Post by jboy » Tue Mar 27, 2012 11:23 pm

ShadowsDad wrote:Welcome to the forum! You mentioned that you couldn't get products in your country. Just curious, what country? It makes no difference to us helping you, again, I'm curious only.

+1 the maybe having to get accustomed to the fair skin dark/hair contrast. For some reason that's part of blade shaving. Some folks even say it heightens that effect, I find that to be the case. But it's what I was dealt also, so I live with it. Too, even with a BBS shave, a blade doesn't cut whiskers below the skin level. That's good and bad. Bad for the skin/whisker contrast you don't like, but great for helping to get rid of skin problems associated with shaving.

Yup, learn to walk and get the technique down then we can help with the rest. I suspect the irritation will decrease greatly with a blade. But give it time. It's not going to happen over night (but I hope it will), especially since you've been using a cartridge.

The biggest problem cart' shavers have is to not use pressure, since they had to use pressure to get the cart to do it's job, and it's second nature because of that. But that isn't the case with a blade. Pressure works against a good blade shave and will definitely create skin problems.

One other thing I can suggest is the use of an Alum block rubbed on your face after the shave. You can start that now, no need to wait.

When you need help, we're here.
Thanks for the reply and encouragement Brian - fair skin isn't the best in many areas unfortunately. Oh well, not much we can do about it. I'm in Cape Town in South Africa, and we do have a traditional shaving shop in one of the shopping centres here, but I had so many questions and found a lot more variety by browsing the forum and shopping online.

I've included an alum block in the order so I'm prepared for the no-pressure experiment that will hopefully be a lot kinder to my face than I'm fearing.

Will definitely keep you guys posted. I can't imagine that things won't improve as I'll be going from cartridge only with no prep or after care, to DE blade + pre-care + post-care. At least I'll smell of West Indian limes no matter what LOL :)

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jww
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Post by jww » Wed Mar 28, 2012 6:30 am

Lots of excellent purveyors of shaving goods online, so no need to worry about the lack of bricks and mortar shops.
Wendell

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ShadowsDad
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Post by ShadowsDad » Wed Mar 28, 2012 9:34 am

Jboy, Don't think you're alone in not having good shaving items available except by mail order or online. It's happening in most places in the developed world. Personally I have to order stuff from around the world. I try to keep it to the continental US, but at times it's faster and less expensive to order from across the pond.

But I hope that's changing, it appears that it might be for some folks.

Locally I can't get any high quality items. I have available Williams, VDH and Bigelow, and a passable DE blade from Wal-Mart, and the blades from hell, Dorco, at a pharmacy. I can actually get much better SE blades locally than the DE blades that are available.

Anyway, my point is that you're not alone with that situation.
Brian

Maker of Kramperts Finest Bay Rum and Frostbite http://www.krampertsfinest.com/
Or find it here: Italian Barber, West Coast Shaving, Barclay Crocker, The Old Town Shaving Company at Stats, Maggard Razors; Leavitt & Peirce, Harvard Square

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Racso_MS
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Post by Racso_MS » Mon Apr 02, 2012 5:38 pm

JBoy,

WELCOME TO THE FORUM
Come often and stay long...

Here come the rhetoric:
It's not a race...
It's your face...
Take your time and enoy the shave...
Let the razor do the work, no pressure...
Preparation, preparation, preparation...
Technique, technique, technique...
Try to find the right combination for you based on the equipment you have and then experiment to find the right combination of:
Razor, Blade, Soap/Cream, AS/ASBalm etc.

The main thing is relax, slow down and have a good time...
Best Regards From the Deep South...
Remember; It's Not A Race, It's Your Face...
And As Always, Enjoy Your Shave...
(Racso) Oscar...

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jww
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Post by jww » Tue Apr 03, 2012 6:59 am

+1
Wendell

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jww
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Post by jww » Tue Apr 03, 2012 7:03 am

Apologies for the double post. The site went down when I clicked send, crashed, then I clicked send again -- my bad. :oops:
Wendell

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celestino
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Post by celestino » Tue Apr 03, 2012 9:32 pm

jww wrote:This is a game of patience and technique. Everything depends on your blade angle, pressure and good preparation. You can get a bump-free shave with a cartridge razor, but it's very difficult to get proper technique because of the pivoting heads which tend to be the rule with cartridges.

Roam around the forum -- there is plenty of help here.

Welcome to SMF.
+1 Be patient, use good products, good prep and technique and you will resolve your problem. Good luck.

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