I like it all...

Thoughts and input on anything related to wet shaving or men's grooming.
Tinman
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I like it all...

Post by Tinman » Thu Jul 31, 2014 9:50 am

It seems like with a just a little bit of practice to get the feel of a brush or razor; or learn the properties of a particular soap or cream; I am able to get good lather and enjoy a good shave regardless of what I use for a particular shave. Even with blades, although I can sense the differences between (some) different blades, these are very slight and pretty much inconsequential.

Admittedly, I've only used 3 DE razors and use 1 at home and 1 with my travel kit (I use BIC disposable when I'm not checking bags). But all three work well and as long as I'm paying attention to what I have in my hand, I get good, safe, and enjoyable shaves from each. Brushes are a little different in that they have different characteristics. But again, if I'm paying attention and use them according to how they work best, they each work well in achieving good lather and each is a (different) pleasure to use. (btw, I have 2 badgers one of which is a 2-band, 1 boar, and 3 synthetic).

Soaps and creams, they all work and I've liked everything I've tried (many) with only 2 exceptions to note. Williams was frustrating to get stable lather. Although I eventually proved I could do it, I ended up putting a drop of KMF on the loaded brush to stabilize the lather. Cella worked great, but I never did like the scent. After several uses, it was ok, but never more. Yes, there are favorites (Musgo Real for scent/performance and PdP soap for scent), but basically I've enjoyed them all, including the humble Arko, KMF, Van de Hagan, and Palmolive.

However, the most surprising, from reading the forums at least, is that I can barely tell the difference between blades. In 5 yrs using a DE, I've only thrown away 1 blade after the first use, and all seem to work for me.

Maybe I'm just not a discriminating person when it comes to shaving.

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ShadowsDad
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Re: I like it all...

Post by ShadowsDad » Thu Jul 31, 2014 10:34 am

Or maybe you're just a better shaver.

When I began I found huge differences in blades and found the ones I settled on. Today maybe it would be different, but I'll never know.
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

Tinman
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Re: I like it all...

Post by Tinman » Thu Jul 31, 2014 12:41 pm

Maybe the way I started has something to do with it. Following the advice of a long ago little league coach who would not allow us beginners to trade gloves or try different bats, I used the same setup for a couple of months when I first started using a DE and deciding if I was going to change from the Mach 3. I did not branch out to other products until my technique was pretty stable using what I had a first.

I had tried to use a DE back in the 70s, but kept making a mess of my neck (I didn't know about WTG and ATG) and I was very concerned about not being able to succeed on this much later try with the DE. Hence I wanted to limit variables and learn to do this with a minimum of blood. So other than a different soap/cream I really didn't do any experimenting for about 6 months or so.

CMur12
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Re: I like it all...

Post by CMur12 » Thu Jul 31, 2014 5:18 pm

Hi Tinman -

Aside from the fact that I require a razor on the mild side, most good blades, soaps, and brushes will work fine for me, too.

My shaving circumstances are that I have very sensitive skin and a coarse, but not very dense, beard.

- Murray
Give me Soap or give me death!

brothers
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Re: I like it all...

Post by brothers » Thu Jul 31, 2014 7:12 pm

I'm with you Tinman, I pretty much like it all. Some better than others, and I've pretty much settled down to a select few of each group. I must say when I was in the hunting mode, it was a blast. Now I'm in the maturing mode, which keeps me comfortable having and using what I like, as often or as sparingly as I like. It's all good.
Gary

SOTD 99%: 12 soaps & creams, SilkSmoke synthetic, General V2 by Colonial razors, Kai & Schick, Superior 70 aftershave splash + menthol + 444 asb

bernards66
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Re: I like it all...

Post by bernards66 » Thu Jul 31, 2014 9:12 pm

Well, once again, everyone's experience is a little different it seems. I've been shaving with a DE for 50 years now ( my God! is it really THAT long?!...sigh ) so I know what I'm doing and for me which blade I use makes a major difference. Most of the currently made DE blades that I've tried I simply won't use. Yes, I can shave with them ( more or less ) but many of them have either not cut well/cleanly enough and/or have irritated my skin...if not sooner then later. I'd prefer that this was not the case as it would make my life simpler but there it is. Aftershave is another area that is like this for me; most of them are a no-go for one reason or another. I can get a decent enough lather using almost any brush but there still are distinct differences in how easily I can do it and exactly how good the lather is. Ditto for soaps and creams. At this point I probably wouldn't would not be paying what I normally pay for shave creams and soaps if ones at a fraction of the cost seemed just as good but, with a very few exceptions, they don't.
Regards,
Gordon

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Squire
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Re: I like it all...

Post by Squire » Thu Jul 31, 2014 9:24 pm

Together Gordon and I have been shaving for 100 years, good grief.
Regards,
Squire

Tinman
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Re: I like it all...

Post by Tinman » Fri Aug 01, 2014 6:16 am

Uh oh.. Does this mean I will be more and more selective and need better and more expensive stuff as I go? :shock: :lol:

Rufus
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Re: I like it all...

Post by Rufus » Fri Aug 01, 2014 7:39 am

Squire wrote:Together Gordon and I have been shaving for 100 years, good grief.
This started me thinking about how long I've been shaving, and, oh Lord, it's going on 50 years :shock: Over that time I've done a great deal of experimenting especially with razors: DE, SE and cart. I seem to have a love-hate relationship with DE and SE razors; sometimes they work very well for me and sometimes I resort to a cart. out of frustration. Currently I'm in one of my cart. periods, but I do feel my DE's tugging at me to give them a try. As concerns brushes, for the best part of my shaving life I was satisfied with just 1, a Simpson's PJ 1 in best, but in 2008 I decided that I needed a second brush for travel. This was a turning point for me and I decided that I needed a replacement for my PJ and acquired a Rooney Finest 2/1; I must say that my Rooney has not turned out to be as sturdy as my PJ, as after just 6 years of use the knot has started to hollow-out in the centre whereas my PJ shows no such sign of wear. After this there wasn't a brush I didn't like the looks of and I'm now up to 25. With respect to soaps and creams, after a brief foray into the world of soaps I've found that I'm a cream man through and through. Today my creams are predominantly TOBS although I do keep a few tubes of C&E, Real Shaving Co and Body Shop creams on hand for a change of pace. I'm not into colognes and EdTs at all, but I do like aftershaves and have a dozen on hand; again my A/S's are mostly TOBS, but I do like the Royall line. In the final analysis, I love my morning shave and my day is not complete without it; I find that as well as making me feel clean it invigourates me and sets me up for the day.
Bryan

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Squire
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Re: I like it all...

Post by Squire » Fri Aug 01, 2014 9:14 am

Tinman wrote: Does this mean I will be more and more selective and need better and more expensive stuff as I go?
Not really. It's sorta like fly fishing, you can pay a lot for custom rods and hand finished reels or get the same or even better performance on the water with relatively common stuff. The trick is you have to know what works and how to get the best out of the equipment. That sort of knowledge can only come with experience and trying things out to see what suits you best.

Of course you can also tap into the collective experience of the members here. We are willing to share and actually like talking about this stuff.
Regards,
Squire

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Squire
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Re: I like it all...

Post by Squire » Fri Aug 01, 2014 9:17 am

Rufus wrote: I love my morning shave and my day is not complete without it; I find that as well as making me feel clean it invigourates me and sets me up for the day.
Amen bro.
Regards,
Squire

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ShadowsDad
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Re: I like it all...

Post by ShadowsDad » Fri Aug 01, 2014 1:20 pm

Tinman I know of one gent who has one razor, one brush and uses up one soap before buying and using another. So restraint is possible.

I was restrained for 6months, or was it a year (?), before trying different gear. I have exactly 2 modern razors, and all of the rest are used from 50 years ago and more. Used razors are fairly inexpensive. My most expensive acquisitions are brushes and I have nothing hugely expensive. So it's possible to have a great deal of variation in your shaving on a beer budget. I didn't acquire my collection overnight, but over the course of maybe 2-3 years. That could have been me in the first paragraph, but I found that I really like having a different shave experience every day.

Then there are those folks who have the most expensive items. The difference between the least expensive way to go and the most expensive is just cash. The shaves are identical.
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

Jbbmad2
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Re: I like it all...

Post by Jbbmad2 » Fri Aug 01, 2014 3:01 pm

Nicely put Brian.
Bruce
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Gig'em!

pausted
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Re: I like it all...

Post by pausted » Fri Aug 01, 2014 3:38 pm

ShadowsDad wrote:
Then there are those folks who have the most expensive items. The difference between the least expensive way to go and the most expensive is just cash. The shaves are identical.
I agree completely. I have several soaps and creams, none of which was very expensive, yet, I still have a nice variety which keeps things interesting. My most expensive brush cost $30.00. I don't feel in the least deprived. I'm happy with my daily shaves.
Best regards,

Basil

brothers
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Re: I like it all...

Post by brothers » Fri Aug 01, 2014 5:49 pm

ShadowsDad wrote:. . . Tinman I know of one gent who has one razor, one brush and uses up one soap before buying and using another. So restraint is possible. . . .
That worked wonderfully for me for several decades. It wasn't restraint, it was complete and total ignorance of the fact there was a whole new universe of shaving options opening up around the world. Now that I am aware there's a variety, I like that variety. I've been able to try a lot of stuff, most of which was/is very good, and in all price ranges. As a really smart man once wrote, there's a time to acquire stuff and a time to stop getting stuff, and to get rid of stuff. Restraint is one thing, and actively reducing the volume is another. That became an attractive option to reduce the variety of stuff I keep and use. I've sold and given away tons of really good stuff, and still have several years' supply of really good stuff that is being reduced through attrition, and selling it is still a very effective option. Even if I eventually find myself back down to one razor, etc., I'll still have an outstanding shave every day.
Gary

SOTD 99%: 12 soaps & creams, SilkSmoke synthetic, General V2 by Colonial razors, Kai & Schick, Superior 70 aftershave splash + menthol + 444 asb

rsp1202
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Re: I like it all...

Post by rsp1202 » Fri Aug 01, 2014 7:37 pm

ShadowsDad wrote:. . . Then there are those folks who have the most expensive items. . .
The fortunate ones have a disposable income budget that I envy. More power to them, but it's difficult to keep my own impulses in check and not get depressed because I can't compete. Actually, it's not about competition. I'm a gear guy who appreciates fine tools and likes to use them, and it's been a constant struggle to maintain my minimum shaving needs without going overboard. I fail a lot. I've thought about leaving the forums because of this -- there's enough stress in daily life without adding wetshaving acquisition desires to the mix. But I like the subject too much.
Ron

brothers
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Re: I like it all...

Post by brothers » Fri Aug 01, 2014 9:20 pm

Ron, I understand how you feel about the acquision obsession. Once we get past it we enjoy what we already have a lot more. It gets even easier to focus on what we have when we no longer give a hoot about what we don't have. A big bonus is how great it feels to use something up or otherwise dispose of stuff. There's probably some interesting psychology in there somewhere?
Gary

SOTD 99%: 12 soaps & creams, SilkSmoke synthetic, General V2 by Colonial razors, Kai & Schick, Superior 70 aftershave splash + menthol + 444 asb

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ShadowsDad
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Re: I like it all...

Post by ShadowsDad » Sat Aug 02, 2014 12:13 am

I understand that Ron.

I built a shave cabinet, what, 3 years ago? When it began to fill up I thought about building another and realized that that was NOT the solution. The solution was restraint and the one cabinet. One of the reasons I decided on this is that my shaves simply couldn't get better no matter what piece of hardware or software I acquired. Understand, I use my own products :D .

So back then I placed that limit on my shave gear. But I'm in a different position than many folks. I may make an exception to that since I plan on expanding my line and I don't know if the cabinet will hold them. But there is always the countertop since they'll be in SS flasks.

Gary, 100% on target. I was the recipient of some Speick cream from you and it works fine for me, but ultimately I'm in software reduction mode myself. That's not easy with business contacts, but I must try to do it. The cabinet is just so big.
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

CMur12
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Re: I like it all...

Post by CMur12 » Sat Aug 02, 2014 12:33 am

I hear you, too, Ron. We used to go to the store, choose from a limited selection according to the budget, and learn how to use what we had.

When I came here, my idea was to get a good razor and brush, along with some blades and soap, and I would be good. The slippery slope came with the desire (cultivated by these forums) to find the perfect razor, the perfect brush, and the perfect rest of it.

I'm not buying much now, having settled on my chosen tools and having built up a stock of my preferred expendables. As such, I often feel like I don't have much to contribute to discussions about the latest gear.

Do stick with us. You are a valued member of this little community.

- Murray
Give me Soap or give me death!

rsp1202
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Re: I like it all...

Post by rsp1202 » Sat Aug 02, 2014 6:55 am

Thanks, guys. It's good to have an in-house therapy staff that makes house calls.
Ron

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