Hey guys, I wanted to wait until after my second shave with my new DE razor to report in, just in case the first one was a fluke!
For only the second time in 14 years of shaving now I woke up, showered, and then had a very pleasant and relaxing shave. The first time was yesterday - when I shaved with my new kit for the first time.
My two shaves have both gone well. The first one was by no means perfect, but it wasn't a complete bloodbath. After I'd cleaned up and staunched the few patches of blood around my (albeit, very sensitive) neck/throat area, I realised that the shave was smoother than any I've had with my electric razor, and smoother than all but the most red-raw, against the grain shave with my old Mach 3. And it was still noticeably smoother when I got home.
My second shave this morning actually took longer, as I watched a bunch of tutorials last night and concentrated on lather, then my blade angle, pressure, and trying not to automatically reshave areas. My neck was a little less red afterward, and there was less blood, so I'm rating that as an improvement.
I thoroughly enjoyed both experiences, and I am amazed at the difference the addition of this little ritual has made to my morning. When compared to the gnashing and roaring of my electric razor, (which has gotten noticeably louder recently, resulting in some hearing damage..), the nice pleasant, relaxing and quiet experience of wet shaving, and then walking out to put on a crisp white shirt made me feel like a million bucks.
Thank you guys for creating such a wealth of information, and making it available for all who are interested to find, and for all the helpful suggestions, answers to stupid questions that no one is game to ask in person, and nice clear tutorials!