Monthly Archives: February 2015

SOTD 2/26 The Process

02262015

Pre: Maggard Razors PSO – Lime
Brush: Custom Boar by Steve Brown Swirl Handle
Soap: Maggard Razors Shaving Soap – Lime & Bergamot
Razor: ’66 Gillette Slim Adjustable
Blade:  Gillette 7 O’Clock – Yellow (3)
Splash:   Thayers Natural Remedies Lemon Witch Hazel w/ Aloe Vera Astringent
Post: Nivea Sensitive AS & Lucky Tiger Bay Rum AS

The weather is about the same and I’m frankly sick of it, so I’m not gonna talk about it today.  Instead let’s talk about shaving! 😉

Great shave this morning!  Everything I used today are all tried & proven products that are in my regular rotation.  Nothing new.  And as expected, the shave was nearly perfect.  BBS front to back, no errors or discomfort.  Had the Slim set on ‘4’.  Feeling good and smelling good!

Someone asked me about my shaving process and I noticed that it had been awhile since we’ve discussed it.  I don’t fluctuate from my process too much day to day.  I do 3 passes on my dome.  With the grain, against the grain, and once across the grain.  I’ve found that combination will usually get me BBS or super close to it with a minimum, to no irritation.  Occasionally I will have to do some “blade buffing” in my problem areas, which are over my ears.  The hair there is like sheared off steel wool and refuses to cooperate.  It really depends on the blade/razor combination I use.

On my face I also tend to do 3 passes although to be honest I could probably get away with just two passes.  I do a “down” pass, an “across” pass, and a final “up” pass.  I dont associate these passes with a grain direction because the hair on my face grows all over the place.  But these passes typically get me super smooth and irritation free.  here my problem area is on my neck, just to the left of my adams apple.  There is a patch of hair that grows totally contrary to all the rest of my neck hair and I always have to go over that area several times to get it smooth.

Then after rinsing with cold water, I apply a witch hazel solution.  It’s refreshing and it will help close any tiny nicks, and it’s slightly antiseptic.  Both which are good for me as I am diabetic, AND on anti-coagulants so bleeding and infection are concerns.  Followed up most days by a balm/cream moisturizer, especially in the Winter.  Cold dry air tends to dry my skin out bad this time of year.  Finally I cap off the shave with a splash of some alcohol based after shave.  I kind of like the sting a bit.

So there’s my process.  Simple and effective.  Oh, just realized it’s Thirsty Thursday!  I still have some Kraken to devour lol

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SOTD 2/23 Cold River Flows

02232015

Pre: Shave Secret
Brush: Custom Boar by Steve Neon Barber Handle (The Force)
Soap: Cold River Soap Works – Savon No. 2
Razor:  ’72 Gillette Tech with Muhle handle (Frankentech)
Blade:  Feather (3)
Splash:  Humphreys Alcohol Free Cucumber Melon Witch Hazel Facial Toner
Post: Pinaud Clubman Classic AS

And the polar freeze continues!  Another record setting morning in SW Michigan.  Actual air temp was -4 Fahrenheit. With wind chill was more like -22.  Now they are saying it may drop even more, with MORE snow tomorrow.  I just don’t have the words to express my rage at this weather! LOL

Found another soap I hadn’t used in awhile.  Which was appropriate since it actually has the word “cold” in its name.  Cold River Soap Works Savon No. 2.  Love the scent of this puck.  I almost didn’t remember what it was as it was sitting in an unidentified VanDer Hagen cup, but one whiff brought it back to the front!  Even after sitting for almost a month uncovered it still lathered pretty well after soaking it a tad  bit during prep.  Made a creamy, slick lather that the blade just glided through.

Speaking of blade, using the Feather on it’s third shave, against a two day old growth.  Well, a two day growth on me is still almost nothing for most guys but enough that it feels quite different when shaving.  The Feather was still quite sharp and decently smooth.  Lots of audio feedback during the shave.  Left me with a silky smooth BBS shave face & dome.  No errors or issues.  I do think I will be tossing the blade after this shave.  I’m not gonna push my luck with a Feather! 😉

“Mondays are mundane, like Tuesdays minus 24 hours.” – 
Jarod Kintz

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SOTD 2/20 Light As A… Feather

02202015

Pre: Shave Secret
Brush: Shea Moisture Synthetic Brush
Soap:   Arko Men – Cool
Razor:  ’72 Gillette Tech with Muhle handle (Frankentech)
Blade:  Feather
Splash:   Humphreys Alcohol Free Cucumber Melon Witch Hazel Facial Toner
Post: Gillette After Shave Balm & Aqua Velva Classic Ice Blue

-13 actual air temp this morning!  With wind chill we are looking at nearly -30 Fahrenheit!  Good Lord!  What in the actual heck is going on with the weather?  It’s almost March!  We should be a good 20-25 degrees warmer by now.  Oy vey!

Strapped up this morning with  Feather in the Tech head!  I remember back when I was afraid of Feather blades.  I still have a healthy respect for them.  My Tech is really the only razor I will use them in anymore.  That or the Merkur.  But they work spectacularly in the Tech.  I get a silky smooth shave that is almost unmatched by any other combo I have used. If I could only use my tech from now on, this is the blade I would want with it.  Achieved total BBS this morning with ZERO errors or skipping/tugging and I expect to get 2 – 3 more identical shaves from this blade.

Arko Men soap is NOTHING like the traditional Arko soap.  It’s almost like they are from different companies.  That being said, I do like this soap.  It’s a great cream.  Lathers easily into a creamy, slick mix.  The scent is pretty nice and subtle enough not to interfere with your aftershave.  And the price point is crazy good.  If you don’t have a tube of this in your shave den, you are cheating yourself.

TGIF!!

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SOTD 2/18 Mahogany Ninja Pt. 2

02182015

Pre: Maggard Razors PSO – Cherry Sandalwood Vanilla
Brush: Custom Boar by Steve Brown Swirl Handle
Soap: WSP Rustic Shaving Soap – Mahogany
Razor: ’55 Gillette Super Speed Blue Tip
Blade:  Gillette 7 O’Clock Black – Ninja (2)
Splash:  Humphreys Alcohol Free Cucumber Melon Witch Hazel Facial Toner
Post: Brut Original Fragrance Moisturizing ASB & Pinaud Clubman Classic AS

Woke up to another couple inches of snow.  ENOUGH ALREADY.  Where is Spring?  I mean really? Temp was -4 with wind chill. Oh and to the folks trying to say hi to my dog on these frigid mornings, nothing personal but it’s too cold for chit chat! LOL

Pulled out the Blue Tip to put in some work this morning.  Paired it with a Ninja on it’s second shave.  Which is a great pairing.  The Blue Tip is moderately mild.  The Ninja is sharp but still nicely smooth.  Should have been a great shave, and would have been, except i failed to notice that the doors on the razor weren’t fully secured and ended up nicking my self a couple good times before I realized it.  User error.  That’s what happens when I get distracted.  Well anyway after I corrected the issue, the rest of the shave went swimmingly.

Another WSP soap, Mahogany.  Love this scent.  And even though it’s the little sample tin, I have no problem loading the brush and generating great lather.  It’s the typical WSP thick & slick lather that I have come to expect from them.  Ended up BBS with little effort.

I’m scheduled to have some oral surgery tomorrow.  So I guess I should eat the rest of that chili I made last night, tonight huh?

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SOTD 2/16 Off On a L(arko)

02162015

Pre: Van Yulay Pre Shave Oil
Brush: VDH Boar Kit Brush
Soap: Arko (puck)
Razor: ’66 Gillette Slim Adjustable
Blade:  Gillette 7 O’Clock Yellow (3)
Splash:  Humphreys Alcohol Free Cucumber Melon Witch Hazel Facial Toner
Post: Pacific Shaving Moisturizer ASB  & Aqua Velva Musk

ZERO degrees this morning.  A frigid way to start the new work week.  With wind chill the air temp is like – 13 below.  The air hurts my face.  Why do I live where the air hurts my face? LOL

Had to grab the Arko today.  After having a super lazy day Sunday, I needed a stimulating shave this morning.  The Arko scent does that for me.  Just makes me feel invigorated.  And of course the slick, thick lather doesn’t hurt.  Arko has definitely earned a permanent spot in my rotation.

Haven’t used a 7 O’clock blade since November of last year.  This one was on it’s 3rd shave.  Was still very smooth, but noticeably less sharp.  Still there was no tugging or skipping, and it got me BBS with no nicks or irritation.  So 3 shaves is still the limit with the Yellows.  And I’m totally fine with that.

“It is better to offer no excuse than a bad one.” – George Washington

 

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Valentines Day Shave

02142015

Pre: Maggard Razors PSO – Cherry Sandalwood Vanilla
Brush: Custom Boar by Steve Brown Swirl Handle
Soap:   WSP Rustic Shaving Soap – Pumpkin Spice
Razor:  ’88 Gillette Super Adjustable – Black Beauty
Blade:  Astra SP(4)
Splash:   Thayers Natural Remedies Lemon Witch Hazel w/ Aloe Vera Astringent
Post:  Nivea Sensitive ASB & Master Well Bay Rum AS

CRAZY weather this morning and the rest of the day.  One minute its clear and typical cold, the next minute its zero visibility, high winds, and feels like it’s 30 below!  So of course I canceled any plans I had to leave the house today LOL

SO, on this Valentines Day, which since I’m still single is just another day, I decided on the Pumpkin Spice soap.  No real reason why, other than it’s one of the easiest lathering soaps I own.  It could be THE easiest lathering soap.  I know it’s definite one of the top 3 best lathers as far as performance for me.  And I also love that the lather isn’t white.  It’s got a kind of vanilla look to it, which fits perfectly with the scent.  Love WSP soaps.

Astra SP on it’s 4th shave in the Super Adjustable on setting 4.  Great shave.  Smooth with no errors or nicks.  My faith has been totally restored in my Astras.  I’m going to start automatically taking them to 4 shaves.  I need to go back to my blade box and start going thru the rest of the other blades I have.  But I love my Astras so much LOL  But hey, variety is the spice of life right?

Did I mention it’s blizzard-ing here?

 

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SOTD 2/12 Little Off The Top

02122015

Pre: Shave Secret
Brush: GBS Pure Badger Brush
Soap:   Maggard Razors Shaving Soap (Tallow) – London Barbershop
Razor:  ’30-’40s Clix Bakelite
Blade:  Astra SP(4)
Splash:   Humphreys Alcohol Free Cucumber Melon Witch Hazel Facial Toner
Post: Brut Original Fragrance Moisturizing ASB & Fine Classic After Shaving Splash – American Barber

16 degrees this morning!  A bit frosty I’d say!  Looks like we got a dusting of fresh snow last night.  I have to admit I like being the first to put footprints in snow lol

A virtual visit to the barber!  Pulled out the London Barbershop this morning.  Love the scent of this soap.  And I’m sure by now I don’t have to tell you I love Maggard Soaps performance!  And I stubbornly cling to my theory that the tiny bit of tallow that they say is in this soap, makes it’s lather just a tad denser than their all vegan soaps.  It’s my story and I’m sticking too it 🙂

The Astra SP was on it’s 4th shave.  As expected it performed fantastically.  Still nicely sharp, super smooth.  Gave me a BBS with no blood loss or tugging.  I could probably go to a 5th shave but why press my luck right?  4 shaves is more than getting my money out of the blade in my book!

Another Thirsty Thursday!  On deck for tonight – The Kraken Black Spiced Rum! What’s your liquor of choice?

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SOTD 2/9 Menthol Monday

02092015

Pre: Shave Secret
Brush: Custom Boar by Steve Neon Barber Handle (The Force)
Soap:   Headblade Headslick
Razor:  ’30-’40s Clix Bakelite
Blade:  Astra SP
Splash:   Wal-Mart Witch Hazel 86%
Post: Gillette Lotion ASB & Fine Classic AS – Platinum

Good morning!  New week and new attitude!  First of all my newly repaired brush appears to be just fine.  Can you tell it’s been broken in the pic?  It was the black collar that fractured.  I think I did a pretty decent patch up job. My only concern is I didn’t check that the adhesive was water proof first, so at some time in the future I may have to repair the repair.  Ah cie la vie.

Menthol Monday!  I had to pull out the Headslick as it’s almost gone.  I still love this soap.  It’s the only “commercial” (i dont count Arko, Derby, or Bigelow as commercial) soap that I use with any regularity.  Super easy to generate thick, slick, creamy lather.  The menthol is definitely there and builds over the shave.  I say this every time I use it, but honestly if you haven’t tried it, you should!  And not just for head shavers, the lather feels great on my face also!  It’s priced great too.. at about $7 a bottle, this one has lasted me over 8 months,

So, I had to go back to my Astra SP blades.  I threw a new one in the Clix razor… and it totally redeemed itself!  My shave this morning was excellent!  Smooth, comfortable, and a total BBS.  ZERO errors or irritation.  That’s why these are my go to blades.  I’m writing the nightmare shave off to a bad blade.  I’ve got to stop being so stubborn about making bad things work.  If its bad, toss it!  Right?

Oh almost forgot!  In the pic you can also see a sample of Mama Kats Body Butter.  I have been using it for a couple weeks or so and I have to say I love this stuff!  It’s not greasy, absorbs easily, and is moisturizing.  I love the scent but don’t ask me to describe it LOL  I also know she dosen’t make any medical claims for this product but I swear it made things heal faster.  Maybe not but it definitely didn’t hurt!  Give it a try!

“So. Monday. We meet again.  We will never be friends—but maybe we can move past our mutual enmity toward a more-positive partnership.” ―  Julio Alexi Genao

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SOTD 2/8 A Hex Upon You

02082015

Pre: Van Yulay Pre Shave Oil
Brush: Custom Boar by Steve Brown Swirl Handle
Soap:   Dr. Jon’s Handcrafted Shaving Soap – HEX
Razor:  ’72 Gillette Tech with Muhle handle (Frankentech)
Blade:  Dorco Stainless (3)
Splash:   Van Yulay Mens Toner – Cool & Refreshing
Post: Aubrey Organics City Rhythms ASB

So my weekend started off kind of funky.  Saturday morning I ended up somehow knocking my FAVORITE brush off the shelf, sending it crashing to the floor, where the “collar” shattered.  I must of stood there and stared at it for at least 5 minutes before I could bend over and pick up the pieces.  I was in shock.  This brush is a one of a kind brush.  The prize piece in my brush collection.  Shattered.  Well after I composed myself, I realized all wasn’t loss possibly as it had broken into only 2 large pieces that fit back together with precision.  SO I pulled out the super glue and put it back together.  So far so good.  Looks almost good as new.  I don’t think the average person would notice the repair.  I do of course. And it irks me.  But at least I can still use my brush.

So on to this morning s shave.  It was pretty god shave.  No issues at all.  Still using the Tech head with the Dorco blade.  On it’s 3rd shave, still feels nice & sharp, and smooth.  I’m really glad I rediscovered this blade.  Going to try them in some slightly more aggressive razors and see how that goes.  I still dont know what happened with that Astra SP blade.  Kind of makes me a little gun shy to try it again.  But I will… eventually.

My 2nd use of Dr. Jon’s Hex soap.  Still not my favorite scent but the performance only gets better!  Think I found the sweet spot for lather.  Generated a nice slick, smooth lather this morning.  Decent cushion, great razor glide. I like these soaps.  They are just a hair behind Maggard Razor soaps or WSP soaps for me.  Just a hair.  And that’s not a bad thing 😉

Sunday, Sunday, SUNDAY!!

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SOTD 2/6 Don’t Call It a Comeback!

02062015

Pre: Maggard razors PSO – Lime
Brush: Shea Moisture Synthetic Brush
Soap:   Derby Shaving Cream – Lemon
Razor:  ’72 Gillette Tech with Muhle handle (Frankentech)
Blade:  Dorco Stainless
Splash:   Thayers Natural Remedies Lemon Witch Hazel w/ Aloe Vera Astringent
Post: Pacific Shaving Moisturizer & Aqua Velva Classic Ice Blue

I really think I may be addicted to shaving.  Why?  Because yesterday, because I felt like my head needed to heal after that slaughter-fest Wednesday, I didn’t shave.  First time I’ve missed a shave since I started back in July 2013.  I mean it made sense. My dome was still super tender and the huge scar on the top was slow in healing. So I thought it best not to push my luck and leave well enough alone.  It was the WORST feeling though!  All day I felt just.. off.  And I couldn’t stop rubbing the prickly fuzz.  I HATE stubble on my head!  So suffice to say yesterday wasn’t a great day for me.

I was determined to make this mornings shave a great one but I still had to approach it with “kid gloves”!  So I paired up my mildest hardware – my Frankentech razor and I reached waaay back into the past and popped in a Dorco blade.  I know right?  I haven’t used one of those in forever.  Mainly because it is so mild.  Next I knew I needed as much protection as I could get so I pulled out the Derby shaving cream.  Why?  Because it has great cushion and razor glide so the blade would slip over the injured areas with a minimum of resistance.  Plus the lemony scent is soothing.

I used absolutely ZERO pressure during this shave.  This shave was probably more delicate than my first shave when I was still intimidated by the blade!  I moved very slow and deliberately.  And I did NOT chase the damn baby LOL  Consequently I ended up, not BBS, but with a nicely close DFS.  And I did it without re-opening any previous wounds and no new bloodletting!  So I am satisfied.  More than satisfied, I feel great!  Perfect shave to end the work week on.

Now its time to celebrate!  TGIF!!

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