Tag Archives: Black Beauty

12/2 Oops Upside ya Head


Pre: Maggard Razors PSO – Grapefruit
Brush: Custom Boar by Steve Brown Swirl Handle
Soap: Maggard Razors Shaving Soap (Tallow) – London Barbershop
Razor: ’88 Gillette Super Adjustable – Black Beauty
Blade: Lord Platinum (2)
Splash:   Wal-Mart Witch hazel 86%
Post: Nivea Sensitive After Shave Balm & Pinaud Clubman Classic

Pretty frosty this morn. Down in the mid 20s.  Still no snow though so I can deal with the cold!  I would not be disappointed if we had a green Christmas!  I really don’t think Chico would be either LOL

Odd shave today.  Started out with a proven favorite from Maggards, London Barbershop.  I’ve talked many times previously about how much I love this soap.  But for some reason today the performance was sub-par.  I know it has to be user error as it’s performed flawlessly for me many, many times.  But I can’t figure out what went south.  I prepared it the same way I always do.  maybe there’s been an unnoticed change in my water.  I just could not get a decent lather.  I got a lather, but it wasn’t the thick, cushion-y lather that I typically get with this soap.  It got the job done, but I was a little disappointed.

Secondly, I previously paired a Lord Platinum blade with my Black Beauty, which is typically a decent match.  Today not so much.  I’m blaming it on the blade.  I have noticed that the Lords can occasionally be inconsistent.  I think that’s the case with this blade.  It just wasn’t smooth at all.  I got BBS, but with mild irritation in many spots. Gonna pull the blade.  Cie la vie!

It’s Hump Day!  My mid-week drink today will be a bottle of Not Your Fathers Rootbeer from SmallTown Brewery!  That beer is good!


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SOTD 11/23 The Holidaze Begins…


Pre: Maggard Razors PSO – Grapefruit
Brush: GBS Pure Badger Brush
Soap: RazoRock Brain Freeze
Razor: ’88 Gillette Super Adjustable – Black Beauty
Blade: Astra SP
Splash:   Humphreys Alcohol Free Cucumber Melon Witch Hazel Facial Toner
Post: Fine Classic After Shave – Platinum

Yep.  Winter has arrived, just in time for Thanksgiving.  it was about 21 degrees Fahrenheit this morning, and we have a good 3 inches on the ground.  Was still a pretty nice walk this morning.  Chico was irritated because he hates walking on salt.  But he wont let me pick him up, and he refuses to wear paw covers, and we live downtown.  There is salt everywhere.  He just has to deal with it. I just keep an eye on his paws for any problems.

Really smooth shave this morning!  Pulled out the RazoRock.  This soap was one of my first artisan soaps.  back when I first grabbed it, RazoRock was all over the shave groups and forums.  Now I never see the brand mentioned anymore.  What’s up with that?  Did he “fall off”?  If I missed something, please fill me in!  Aside from that, I still love this soap.  It was also my first real menthol soap.  It doesn’t feel nearly as icy as it did back then, but I attest that to me becoming more tolerant of it.  Still has a nice chill though.  Makes a nice smooth lather, and has decent glide.  Skin feels moisturized afterwards.  Good soap.

Matched up an Astra SP blade with my Black Beauty.  This is always a great combo.  Performed as expected.  Was able to achieve BBS with minimal effort.  Some tiny spot of irritation on the back of my head but I blame that on user error.

So what are your T-Bird Day plans?


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7/1 Honeycomb Hideout


Pre: Maggard Razors PSO – Grapefruit
Brush: Custom Boar by Steve Brown Swirl Handle
Soap: Mickey Lee Soapworks – Bee Witched
Razor: ’88 Gillette Super Adjustable – Black Beauty
Blade: Gillette 7 O’Clock Black – Ninja (2)
Splash: Thayers Natural Remedies Lemon Witch Hazel w/ Aloe Vera Astringent
Post: Nivea Sensitive Cooling Post Shave & Captains Choice AS – Lime

“It’s the first of the month… so cash your checks and come on!” – Bone Thugs. That’s right it’s the first, so stay away from grocery stores because it is going to be a nightmare!  Especially with the holiday around the corner also!  Maybe it’s just where I live but MAN I would rather starve a day than go to the store on the first!

It’s Hump day again!  Mid-week so I needed something to kick me into “getting ready for the weekend mode”.  Mickey Lee’s soap is just what I needed!  I haven’t really had this soap that long.  I think this only my 3rd time shaving with it, but I can already definitely say this soap makes my favorite lather!  That’s a pretty bold statement considering all of the great lathering soaps I have in my obsession.  And this isn’t a knock at any of them.  Just giving props!  This lather is perfect for me and the way I shave.  Easily generated, thick, yogurt-y, dense lather!  And I could go on and on about the scent of this soap.  If you haven’t smelled it, what the ‘H’ ‘E’ double hockey sticks are you waiting for?

2nd shave on the Ninja blade.  Still very sharp and decently smooth.  Minor buffing in the problem areas.  The Ninjas seems to stay pretty consistent through 3 shaves for me.  Pretty sure I could actually push this blade to 4-5 shaves.  Definitely 4.  But feh.. blades are still super cheap right?  3 and out is my motto!

Happy Hump Day!!


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6/29 Almonday!


Pre: Maggard Razors PSO – Cherry Sandalwood Vanilla
Brush: Custom Boar by Steve Neon Handle (The Force)
Soap: Wholly Kaw Premium Shaving Soap Vegan – Almond Medley
Razor: ’88 Gillette Super Adjustable – Black Beauty
Blade: Gillette 7 O’Clock Black – Ninja
Splash: Thayers Natural Remedies Lemon Witch Hazel w/ Aloe Vera Astringent
Post: Master Well Bay Rum AS

What a great weekend!  Started with a relaxing Saturday doing some casual shopping then spending the evening in good company watching old British sitcoms.  Sunday got up early and headed out to the West Michigan lakeshore on Lake Michigan.  If you have never been to a Lake Michigan beach, you are missing an amazing experience!  I don’t know about on the Wisconsin or Illinois side, but the West Michigan beaches are some of the best fine sand (non-oceanic) beaches in the country!  And man the beautiful people were out in full force!  Ended up spending the entire day there just relaxing, people watching, and listening to music.  Had a nice packed lunch with plenty of liquid refreshment.  A definitely needed respite!

Monday morning!  After that near perfect Sunday I need a fantastic shave to start my week off.  So I pulled out a soap that I know is a guaranteed performer, Wholly Kaw!  Not too mention that it is one of my favorite scents – Almond Medley!  I was NOT disappointed.  The Kaw whipped up into some thick, rich and creamy lather with plenty of cushion and glide!  I got kind of luxurious with it this morn and made a bit more than I needed for the shave and laid it on nice and thick.  Made for a really lux feeling shave.  The entire bathroom smelled great!

The tools of the morning were the Black Beauty, on setting ‘4’; and a 7 O’Clock Black blade.  A combination I have used before and it performed as expected.  Super close, super smooth BBS shave.  No errors or buffing necessary.  Even on the neck, which as you know is one of my problem areas because of the insane directions the hair grows there.  But today it went smooth.  Maybe I should wait a couple days between shaves all the time.. nah LOL

It’s another week, but already the 2nd week of SUMMER!

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Valentines Day Shave


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 1/5 Menthol Monday


Pre: Shave Secret
Brush: Shea Moisture Shave Synthetic
Soap:   Headblade Headslick
Razor:  ’88 Gillette Super Adjustable – Black Beauty
Blade:  Astra SP(2)
Splash:   Wal-Mart Witch Hazel 86%
Post: Pacific Shaving Moisturizer & Fine Classic AS – Platinum

Wow!  I picked a heck of a day for a menthol shave!  Temp was at 7 degrees Fahrenheit for our walk this morning.  Consequently it was a very short, very quick and frigid walk.  Chico did his business with record swiftness LOL

First Menthol Monday of 2015!  I pulled out an old favorite.  One of the first soaps I ever used back when I first started shaving my head, Headblade Headslick.  This soap gets passed over by a lot of folks because it is marketed to head shavers.  I’m here to tell you that it is a good soap for shaving period.  Head, face, whatever.  Well maybe not whatever, as it IS a menthol soap, but definitely use it on your face and neck.  It has great cushion and very good slickness.  The lather is easy to whip up into a creamy, thick consistency with just a small amount of water.  And bonus for you menthol overs – it has an appreciable menthol kick to it that slowly builds during the shave.  I guarantee it’s worth it to give this soap a try.

Second shave on the Astra SP.  My go to blade.  Excellent sharpness.  Totally smooth.  Gives me a consistent DFS each and every time regardless of which razor I use, although I do love it in my adjustable.  Typically its very easy to push the shave to BBS if I feel like chasing the baby.

Ok folks, back to the regular grind after the holidaze.

Instead, I have an abundance mentality: When people are genuinely happy at the successes of others, the pie gets larger. –  Stephen Covey

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SOTD 12/19 Van Yulay Day


Pre: Van Yulay Pre Shave Oil
Brush: Custom Boar by Steve Brown Swirl
Soap:  Van Yulay Soap of the Gods – Hercules – Cucumber Melon
Razor: ’88 Gillette Super Adjustable – Black Beauty
Blade:  Astra SP
Splash:   Humphreys Alcohol Free Cucumber Melon Witch Hazel Facial Toner
Post: Van Yulay Mens Toner – Cool & Refreshing & Fine Classic AS – American Barber

I have to admit.  I wasn’t real impressed with the first sample I received of Van Yulay Creamy Soap.  It was very foamy, runny, and didn’t have any cushion.  Then Monica contacted me and said that she wasn’t happy with that formulation, and would be sending me a sample of the new batch.  I didn’t have high hopes for it, and to be honest I kind of forgot about it.

Well yesterday I got a package from her.  In it were samples of four products:  a re-formulated cream, a new puck style soap, a “toner”, and a pre-shave oil.  Ambitious!  So I decided to try them all together this morning.  I’ll review each below..

I chose the puck sample this morning.  Did my normal “soak” during prep.  Speaking of prep, the pre shave oil is nice.  I didn’t really detect any scent but the consistency and feel is pretty decent. Not too thick, nor too runny.  Felt protective.  Back to the soap, the scent is really nice.  It says “cucumber-melon” but it’s totally not like my cucumber-melon witch hazel.  This scent is much sweeter.  It’s more a fruit sweet, not a candy sweet.  It lathered really easily.  I added a couple of teaspoons of water and it whipped up nice and smooth.  NO FOAM.  Talk about a 180 degree turn around!  The lather has decent cushion and slickness.  Lasted much longer after application than the previous formulation, but still starts to dissipate sooner than soaps like Arko or Kell’s.  Not a deal breaker though.

Skin feel after the shave was great.  Topped off with the Van Yulay Toner.  Again, didn’t really detect any specific scent but the feel is pretty good.  Not sticky at all.  Once it drys the skin feels smooth.  Overall I would say Monica has done a great job with the new products and I really like the scent of the Hercules soap.  If you haven’t checked them out yet, you should!  Find them at Van Yulay!

Used the Black Beauty set on 4 with an Astra SP blade.  Made for a typically smooth comfortable shave with minor tiny nicks in my problem areas.  Caught the baby this morning with ease. LOL


TGIF!  Any pre-Chistmas parties going on this weekend?


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SOTD 11/7 Call Me Big(elow) Papa


Pre: Shave Secret
Brush: Shea Moisture Synthetic
Soap: C.O. Bigelow – Eucalyptus
Razor:  ’88 Gillette Super Adjustable – Black Beauty
Blade:  Blue Bird Hi-Stainless (2)
Splash:   Humphreys Alcohol Free Cucumber Melon Witch Hazel Facial Toner
Post: Pacific Shaving Moisturizer & Fine Classic AS – Platinum

Was slightly brisk during my morning walk.  Maybe bracing is a better word.  Either way it made me want some menthol in my shave.  So I went to one I haven’t used in a bit, the C.O. Bigelow.  A lower mid range priced cream, the Bigelow is a great performer.  Apparently its re-badged Porasso Green. Love the menthol in this soap.  It’s not “slap you awake” jolt like some soaps, it more so creeps up on you so you finish with a nice icy feel.

Blue Bird blade on it’s 2nd shave.  Still nice and sharp, super smooth.  If you haven’t tried this blade, I highly recommend that you do.  It’s right up there with the Personna Reds and the Astra Stainless.  Maybe even the Astra SP!  And you know how I love the Astra SP.

I mentioned earlier that I had started listening to podcasts during my shave.  It’s amazing how that has smoothed out the pacing of the shave and made it even more of relaxing, enjoyable experience.  Funny how changing something as small as what I listen too affects the process.  I am also amazed at how much information I get from the podcasts that I retain.  I think the focus I put into the shave bleeds over into absorbing that info.  That’s my theory anyway.  Hmm, maybe I’ll try one of those language tapes.

Parlez-vous français? 🙂


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SOTD 10/27 Mahogany Monday


Pre: Shave Secret
Brush: Shea Moisture Synthetic
Soap: WSP Rustic Shaving Soap – Mahogany
Razor:  ’88 Gillette Super Adjustable – Black Beauty
Blade:  Blue Bird Hi-Stainless
Splash:   Humphreys Alcohol Free Cucumber Melon Witch Hazel Facial Tone
Post: Dove Men+Care ASB & Pinaud Clubman Classic

It was supposed to be Menthol Monday, but I received a new soap sample Friday and wanted to check it out today!  After reading in one of my posts that I had wanted to try this scent, Scott P. was gracious enough to send me a sample of it he wasn’t using.  Cool guy right?

The sample is of WSP Mahogany.  First of all, the sample size is super generous.  It comes in a cute little tin thats jus a hair under 2″, maybe closer to 1.5″ across.  So I thought loading the brush would be tricky but surprisingly it wasn’t difficult.  After about 20-25 seconds of loading, I had plenty of soap on my brush.  I did use one of my smaller diameter brushes FYI.  I added a decent amount of water to the lather bowl and whipped up some great lather!  Having already used some WSP soap previously, I knew what to expect and wasn’t disappointed.

The scent is another one of those that is hard for me to describe, but I definitely like it!  It’s kind of cologne-y, but in a subdued manner.  Nothing garish or overly potent.  The scent blooms nicely during loading.  I found it goes great with the Pinaud, at least to my nose.  I will be purchasing more of this once the sample is gone.  One more thing about the sample, you will easily get several shaves from it.  Worth the price any day.

The Blue Bird blade is super smooth in the Super Adjustable.  Very close & comfortable shave with only 1 tiny weeper.  Other than that, I’d call this one BBS.  I can tell this is going to be a “head rub” kind of day LOL

” In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it goes on.” – Robert Frost

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SOTD 10/13 Old Jack Frost (Byte)


Pre: Shave Secret
Brush: VDH Kit Brush Boar
Soap: HTGAM – Frost Byte
Razor:  ’88 Gillette Super Adjustable – Black Beauty
Blade:  Personna Super Stainless – Reds(3)
Splash:  Humphreys Alcohol Free Cucumber Melon Witch Hazel Facial Toner
Post: Nivea Sensitive ASB & Fine Platinum AS

My eyes are still watering.  I haven’t used Frost Byte since September so I thought I’d bring in this Menthol Monday with it.  MAN!  I forgot just how intense the freeze is with this soap!  By the 3rd pass on the dome, my eyes are freely tearing up and me head feels encased in ice!  It’s is absolutely insane, but in the best of ways!  If you love the freeze, you are fooling yourself if you haven’t tried Frost Byte.  About once every couple weeks is enough for me, but I love it LOL

3rd shave on the Personna Red blade.  Still super silky smooth, and nice & sharp.  Ended up with a near BBS with out even really trying for it.  No weepers and just minor buffing over the ears.  I’m going to have to eventually do a head-to-head comparison with the Astra SP to finally decide which one I’m going to buy my first 100 pack of.  It’s not going to be an easy decision.  They are both such good blades for me!

Topped off the icy shave today with the menthol packing Fine Platinum!  It just extends the frosty feel after the shave even longer, and the scent is excellent.  I typically only use the Fine when I use menthol soaps as the scent seems made for them.  Even as I’m typing this post, like 15 minutes after the shave, I can still feel a tingle on my scalp.


Viva la Menthol Monday!!

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