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I Love Alum

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I Love Alum

Postby mjcomeau » Fri Jul 23, 2010 5:30 am

I have been shaving with a safety razor for about 60 days and absolutely loving it. Some days the shave is better than others, but the razor burn always persists. I have been using an alcohol based after shave, but later in the day when I went to work out, my face would burn. I just got my alum stone and used it for the first time yesterday after I shaved. WOW!!!! I love the way it made my face feel, no razor burn, and no burn when working out! I am hooked now!

Matt
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Postby function » Fri Jul 23, 2010 5:35 am

Welcome aboard, now onto business

Is it appearance of razor burn or feeling of razor burn?

Either way, if razor burn persists, you need to change something in your routine, be it prep, angle or number of passes.

I'm glad you treated the symptom, now go get the cause and things will be even better.
Nick




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Postby mjcomeau » Fri Jul 23, 2010 5:59 am

Nick,

It is the feeling of burn. I only get it on the very bottom of my neck on either side of my adam's apple. However, I don't have it now! :D

I usually wet my face with hot/warm water right after a shower and then lather up with shave soap and brush. I tried a wet towel sitting on my face for a couple minutes and that gave me the worst razor burn I have ever had. I don't know why, but I won't be doing that again! I cover each area only once in one direction, relather and repeat in opposite, and relather and repeat in diagonal. Nice and smooth. Rinse with warm and then rinse with cold.

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Postby jww » Fri Jul 23, 2010 6:29 am

Alum has been a staple of my post-shave ritual for quite some time now. It doesn't work for everyone, but when you find something that works, you stick with it - and don't ask questions why. ymmv, of course. :D
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Postby Squire » Fri Jul 23, 2010 8:31 am

Hey Matt, welcome aboard.
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Postby notthesharpest » Fri Jul 23, 2010 9:02 am

Hi Matt, glad you're here.
(Several new guys named Matt in the past week or so...)

Razor burn usually comes from pressing too hard (or shaving in the wrong way somehow) and getting scraped.

You can also get a burning feeling if you use a product that irritates you. Some guys react badly to aftershaves that contain a lot of alcohol. If you use too much strong soap, whether for shaving or for washing, even that can cause burning skin.

Alum stops minor bleeding. Because of that, I suspect that your burn is from the blade. I'd suggest modifying your routine to be more gentle with the razor on the parts that were getting the burn. Maybe fewer strokes - maybe not going directly against the grain in those places - using a shallower blade angle - something.


The wet towel treatment softens both whiskers and skin. I think your wet towel was not at fault - it just softened your skin and really made you notice that you were being too harsh with the razor in a couple of spots.

Sometimes it takes several tries to find out what the problem was. It's great that alum is working for you, but do try to fix the source of the problem before it even happens. (You can still use alum after, of course.)
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Postby desertbadger » Fri Jul 23, 2010 12:17 pm

Welcome to SMF!

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David
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Postby druphus » Fri Jul 23, 2010 12:35 pm

Welcome Matt1
Regards,
Andy
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Postby Asd » Fri Jul 23, 2010 6:07 pm

Hi, Matt! Welcome to SMF!
For my routine alum is really a must. I travel a lot and some shaves are under extreme are often. Irritation, minor cuts, burns because of a hurry - alum can treat them all. If you want, you can use another aftershave after it (me not). Anyway all that bad things like burns etc are not apeeares by themselves. Wrong blade choice, wrong soap or cream (like for me Arko works like a charm, but not Tet-a-tet), wrong angle, too much preassure, or maybe your beard is too dry. If your skin like mine becomes too sensitive after hot woter - try cold water shaving! It saves my face when I'm in hurry, but tke care of making lather and massage your face by the brush longer then with hot water. Hope it will help!
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Postby Racso_MS » Fri Jul 23, 2010 6:31 pm

WELCOME TO THE FORUM

Come often and stay long...

Jump in and enjoy yourself... :D
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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Postby mjcomeau » Mon Jul 26, 2010 4:34 am

Im on vacation, so shaves are few and far between. Shaved again yesterday for church! Can I tell you that I love Alum! It is what Ive been missing my whole life! :D

Matt
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Postby Blue As A Jewel » Mon Jul 26, 2010 7:00 am

Welcome Matt! I pulled out my Alum block because of your post and used it this morning after my first shave with my Feather Stainless - not bad!
- Ravi -

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Postby jww » Mon Jul 26, 2010 9:48 am

I am down to just a sliver of my most recent alum block -- time for a replacement.
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Postby mjcomeau » Mon Jul 26, 2010 3:28 pm

Ravi, glad I could help!

JWW, you can't go without! :(
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Postby ferroburak » Sat Sep 04, 2010 1:57 pm

I lose some sensitivity on my face if I use it too much..
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Postby Nikko » Thu Sep 30, 2010 3:54 pm

Hmmm this is very interesting as I've been finding the exact opposite with my alum. After my shave I've been dapbbing down them applying it and I've found it brings on a real stinging/pricklyness which is then very difficult to get rid of, regardless of whichever post-shave potions I subsequently apply.

Has me thinking that perhaps the alum I've been using (as I had a bunch of them already), http://www.grantsofaustralia.com.au/product6.html isn't suitable for shaving or somewhat differs in chemical composition to those used for shaving. Though reading up about this did lead me to believe they were essentially identical. Go figure.
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Postby jww » Thu Sep 30, 2010 5:23 pm

Remember that with alum you must rinse well after using it. Best to let is sit on your skin for a minute or two while you clean up, whatever, then rinse really, really well. You shouldn't have the prickly feeling if you have rinsed well. If you do rinse and still have problems, then it's likely a reaction. I know that I can use alum on my face without problem, but can't use it under my arms at all because of the stinging and some issues with rashes. Go figure -- I am not a dermatologist, so have no idea why this is, but it matters not -- alum still works fine for my shaving.
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Postby Falstaff » Thu Sep 30, 2010 7:39 pm

Alum Block. =D>
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Postby brothers » Sun Oct 03, 2010 5:00 am

Hi Matt. I agree that the alum contributes to a better post-shave regimen. Welcome to SMF. As you can see, there's a great group of guys from around the world here. That's really cool.
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Postby Timmy! » Wed Oct 20, 2010 7:12 pm

Welcome! So do I! It's wonderful!
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