Nostalgic Shave

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EL Alamein
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Nostalgic Shave

Post by EL Alamein » Fri Aug 09, 2019 6:03 pm

Today I decided to do a nostalgic shave, that is, to shave with the stuff I shaved with as a teen when I started to use a straight.

The star of this shave is Noxzema. I used the same brush I bought at an old tobacco store (the store is now decades defunct) and Noxzema.

I washed my face with soap and water and painted on the Noxzema.

For full disclosure when I was a teen and for many years thereafter I didn't actually use Noxzema most of the time but the drug store knock-off from either CVS pharmacy or Rite Aide Pharmacy. Those were cheaper and I was buying my own stuff from an early age since mom and dad divorced and funds were tight.

How was it? Different from what I remember but still a very good shave. Though post shave as the numbing wore off I could tell my skin didn't like it as well as my Taylor's soap. No irritation but I could tell I wouldn't want to use it everyday.

I know Noxzema has been reformulated and even though I didn't use it that much as a teen I could tell something was off. The scent is different. Maybe the change had something to do with it as my skin has gotten more sensitive.

One thing that happened was something I had forgotten about using anything that numbs - some spots felt a little more aggressively shaved. Probably due to the numbing and not feeling what I was doing. I have gotten this with Proraso and the old Musgo Real as well.

Anyway, it was good to go back and remember but I still like my hard soap better.

Chris

Rufus
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Re: Nostalgic Shave

Post by Rufus » Sat Aug 10, 2019 4:22 am

Was that Noxzema skin cream or shaving cream?
Bryan

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fallingwickets
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Re: Nostalgic Shave

Post by fallingwickets » Sat Aug 10, 2019 2:00 pm

what i think is amazing is that you remember the details. i cant remember a single thing about shaving as a teen except that i started before i needed to because i had read or heard that the more one shaves the faster one gets to grow a beard and who didnt want to be 'older' back then?? :roll: :D :roll: :lol:

taking a wild guess, canned brut or yves saint laurent and then aramis in a jar in my twenties.

clive
de gustibus non est disputandum

CMur12
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Re: Nostalgic Shave

Post by CMur12 » Sat Aug 10, 2019 4:53 pm

I remember my first shave and the trepidation with which I approached my face with a razor and live blade for the first time. It was a Type L Schick Injector and Noxzema shave foam from a can.

I continued to use that razor for the next five years, though I tend to find it a bit aggressive now. At the time, it was what I had and I did what I needed to do to make it work. I remember that, as new whiskers appeared on different parts of my face, I figured out how to approach them (direction, pressure, etc) so that no harm was done to my skin.

- Murray
Give me Soap or give me death!

EL Alamein
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Re: Nostalgic Shave

Post by EL Alamein » Sat Aug 10, 2019 5:53 pm

Rufus wrote:
Sat Aug 10, 2019 4:22 am
Was that Noxzema skin cream or shaving cream?
Rufus, it was the skin cream, plain old Noxzema.

I tried it because my boss at the time recommended it saying he used it. I was working at my High School when he recommended it. I would clean the rooms and boards after school to make money for tuition.

Chris

EL Alamein
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Re: Nostalgic Shave

Post by EL Alamein » Sat Aug 10, 2019 6:09 pm

fallingwickets wrote:
Sat Aug 10, 2019 2:00 pm
'swhat i think is amazing is that you remember the details. i cant remember a single thing about shaving as a teen except that i started before i needed to because i had read or heard that the more one shaves the faster one gets to grow a beard and who didnt want to be 'older' back then?? :roll: :D :roll: :lol:

taking a wild guess, canned brut or yves saint laurent and then aramis in a jar in my twenties.

clive
Clive, I remember some details distinctly. I remember the trepidation of using a straight for the first time. It was on the recommendation of my best friend's father who said it gave the closest shave possible. Mom, at the time, was telling me I hadn't gotten close enough with the other implements I was trying (Gillette Atra, left behind by Dad, and Dad's old DE razor from the 1960's).

Initially after buying a straight I couldn't figure out the angle. I couldn't imagine one would use anything less than ninety degrees or it might cut the skin off. Of course, that didn't work. My breakthrough was watching an old video on public TV of a World War I soldier shaving with a straight razor in the trench. I could distinctly see him using an acute angle of less than ninety degrees. I still remember that after watching that I went directly to the bathroom and copied what I saw (I hadn't shaved yet that day). It was a revelation and I figured out how to use a straight.

Like many newbies today I just started with my cheeks figuring as I mastered them I'd move on to the more difficult areas like my upper lip and chin followed by throat. I got there very quickly and have been using a straight ever since.

I do remember as a bachelor moving on from Noxzema to Col. Conk's soap and I liked it better. From there I started using the high end English soaps and creams. I liked those best. It was the advent of the internet that introduced me to them and I was giddy for finding them.

From there I found the earliest forums (read: the old Yahoo forum on straight razor shaving) and was ebullient at finding other's that actually shaved with a straight like I did.

Chris

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Re: Nostalgic Shave

Post by brothers » Sat Aug 10, 2019 6:31 pm

I learned on my dad's Tech, blades, and shaving cream. Then I got my own personal Gillette Slim (I don't know from where or from whom) and was stuck with it as a result of my youthful hard-headedness, because a real man only needs one, and if you have one, by cracky, that's it. :evil: I scoffed and cursed the aspect of a man using an adjustable razor. Dadgum sissies! Not me! That's girl stuff, don't you know! So I cranked that bad boy all the way up to 9 and left it there and never looked back. That was my dadgum razor come hell or high water. Never failed to cut the crap out of my face every time I used it, and because of my stubborn attitude cutting and bleeding became a fact of life that only resulted in my increased cursing of that stupid sissy razor. Yep, I was an idiot. (Probably still am?) It was still set on #9 many decades later when I retrieved it from my mom's medicine cabinet where I had left it when I moved out to be on my own, Schick Krona in hand.
Gary

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

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drmoss_ca
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Re: Nostalgic Shave

Post by drmoss_ca » Sun Aug 11, 2019 3:22 am

EL Alamein wrote:
Sat Aug 10, 2019 6:09 pm

From there I found the earliest forums (read: the old Yahoo forum on straight razor shaving) and was ebullient at finding other's that actually shaved with a straight like I did.

Chris
I believe young Elbolicious (later EL) arrived there just before I did. There was a brief period when enthusiasm and novelty made that forum a happy place. The personalities and politics began to intrude...
Remember Dave Francis, Tilly, c_utz, Sideshow Bennie? Tilly made up such names for the barnful of barber hones she acquired and resold on that brand new site called eBay. Itsapeach, Peaches'n'Cream, Skute etc. I still have them. The Skute (for "it's cute!") was a hard vulcanized rubber hone with embedded abrasive. Very small but such a fast cutter. So much to learn, it seemed.
"Je n'ai pas besoin de cette hypothèse."
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Rufus
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Re: Nostalgic Shave

Post by Rufus » Sun Aug 11, 2019 5:11 am

EL Alamein wrote:
Sat Aug 10, 2019 5:53 pm
Rufus wrote:
Sat Aug 10, 2019 4:22 am
Was that Noxzema skin cream or shaving cream?
Rufus, it was the skin cream, plain old Noxzema.

I tried it because my boss at the time recommended it saying he used it. I was working at my High School when he recommended it. I would clean the rooms and boards after school to make money for tuition.

Chris
I’ve never tried using the skin cream to shave with. I’ve used it as a pre-shave and Aftershave, and to treat sunburn and other skin irritations. I still keep a jar close at hand to soothe my face if I have an overly aggressive shave or sunburn. My father swore by Noxzema and called it his wonder cream to treat whatever ails ya.

As for my early days of shaving, the first recollection I have is joining my father on the weekend when I was a wee lad and “shaving” along side him with a Schick injector without a blade and plenty of canned goop. Of course Noxzema skin cream featured prominently in my “routine”. Other than that my early shaving years are a blur. I remember my father giving me an electric razor for my 16th birthday, but I didn’t start shaving in earnest until my first year of university. However, because I’m fair haired I didn’t have to shave every day, and could make it close to a week between shaves. The requirement for daily shaving didn’t come about until I started working full time when I was in my 20s. One road I never went down was to use a straight razor. To this day straights terrify me; they’re not called cutthroats for nothing.
Bryan

EL Alamein
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Re: Nostalgic Shave

Post by EL Alamein » Sun Aug 11, 2019 6:47 pm

drmoss_ca wrote:
Sun Aug 11, 2019 3:22 am
EL Alamein wrote:
Sat Aug 10, 2019 6:09 pm

From there I found the earliest forums (read: the old Yahoo forum on straight razor shaving) and was ebullient at finding other's that actually shaved with a straight like I did.

Chris
I believe young Elbolicious (later EL) arrived there just before I did. There was a brief period when enthusiasm and novelty made that forum a happy place. The personalities and politics began to intrude...
Remember Dave Francis, Tilly, c_utz, Sideshow Bennie? Tilly made up such names for the barnful of barber hones she acquired and resold on that brand new site called eBay. Itsapeach, Peaches'n'Cream, Skute etc. I still have them. The Skute (for "it's cute!") was a hard vulcanized rubber hone with embedded abrasive. Very small but such a fast cutter. So much to learn, it seemed.
Dr. Moss, yes, I remember them!

I remember Dave giving his daily (or was it weekly) evaluations of straight razor values, at least I think it was him. I also remember him saying he never took his Thiers Issards to a hone because they kept their edge so well.

I remember Tilly and her hones. I only ever bought an Itsapeech from her and it was a disappointment over time. I remember the Skute she sold as well and I was interested but eventually discarded the notion, first, due to the lack of availability because they sold out so fast, then due to my disappointment with the Itsapeech hone. She had a bunch of hones though, didn't she? And I think she sold them all.

I also remember a guy named Joe who eventually revealed (elsewhere, I think) that he had an old Merkur razor design that actually predated the modern versions. He had a spat with Cory, I think, over whether he was telling the truth about the whole thing. I do remember that Joe didn't seem to care for me much. Cory also made a post about him on his Shavblog with a picture of the guy's name written backwards in the snow in urine (or at least it was implied that it was in urine).

I also remember a guy, who I believe was also named Dave and he would sell honed straights. I bought one from him because he advertised it as lightly used. When I got it I was astonished at how used it was and told him so. I remarked to him that the one blade I had used for nearly two decades straight had nowhere near the hone wear the one he sold me had. He graciously took it back and refunded me but was none to happy about it.

And of course there was Judge Carl. Great guy and he and I had a lot of similar observations. It was a shame he passed when he did.

And, yes, there was the politics.

Chris

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John Rose
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Re: Nostalgic Shave

Post by John Rose » Sun Sep 15, 2019 10:31 pm

My first shave was when I was about 6. (ca. 1959)
A plastic TTO razor with a cardboard blade.
The "blade" was die-cut in the shape of a real blade, and printed in blue to look like a Gillette Blue Blade.
John's First Shave.jpg
John's First Shave.jpg (147.09 KiB) Viewed 149 times
That's my Dad on the right.

Even back then I had a thing for blade longevity because I would take it out after each use and wipe it off so it wouldn't go all mushy.

Fast forward a few years - I got a Philishave electric for one of my birthdays. After a few more years, I bought myself a Gillette Super 109, some Wilkinson Sword stainless blades, and probably a can of foam of some sort. I'm convinced that the Super 109 is still somewhere in my stuff, but who can find anything after moving 6 times?
Don't chase the BBS.

Bill_K
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Re: Nostalgic Shave

Post by Bill_K » Mon Sep 16, 2019 8:06 am

What a great shot! Such memories.

I have a similar photo with my oldest grandson, who is now 4 years old. When he and his little brother come over and he decides he needs a shave, he chooses what soap/cream he wants to use. (I won't let him near the highly-mentholated Glacial Obsidian, though.)
Bill

EL Alamein
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Re: Nostalgic Shave

Post by EL Alamein » Mon Sep 16, 2019 6:33 pm

John, that is magnificent photo thanks for sharing.

And, yeah, it's tough to remember where things may be after moving so may times. I myself have moved five times in my life.

It's nostalgic when you find something that's been packed away for many years though.

Hope you find it.

Chris

CMur12
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Re: Nostalgic Shave

Post by CMur12 » Mon Sep 16, 2019 9:08 pm

John, that is a great photo and a great memory.

As far as moves go, I couldn't count the number of places I have lived. In and out of dorms and apartments, as a student. In and out of the country, having lived in multiple places in both Brazil and Portugal. My moves since returning to this country, finally settling into a permanent job, and ultimately retiring. A lot of old belongings have been lost along the way.

- Murray
Give me Soap or give me death!

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