This is my third day with the DE. Merkur blades in a Futur. Proraso, badger-brush, conditioner, hot towel. Lather in a cupped palm, a touch of cream on the face too -- lather is slick and hot in the beginning, cold and thin by the end. The menthol is irritating by the end, and my face is dry.
Here's my razor technique -- NS with stretched skin, cheeks, neck, upperlip, lowerlip. Then half of the V, then the other half of the V -- basically guenron's method, but skipping the SN pass.
I have trouble finding the right angle. On the cheeks it's easy. Hold the razor with handle parallel to ground, then drop angle until it starts moving by itself and cutting (2-3 finger grip). But below the chin, on the neck, and especially on the upper lip -- all areas of heavier beard -- the razor never starts cutting at all! It just catches the hair and stops -- gravity is at the wrong angle too, I think, so I have to consciously drag it. I've basically been doing touch and cut everywhere with a fairly exposed DE blade -- and my face feels it.
I was surprised to find another recommendation, which I shall try, hold the razor with handle parallel to the body (right angled to the ground), then rotate it upwards and away from the face, until the razor starts to slide and cut (This is AFDavis11's suggestion). Any idea on which method is recommended? This method seems kind of backwards because at the beginning the blade is against the skin, yet I'm going to give it a shot.
The futur is heavy, which is supposed to be good. But is it too heavy? I keep feeling it might rotate around the handle, ie I have to keep it balanced -- this makes my grip a bit tighter.
Laney1566 says in this post that using an adjustable, once you've reached the 3 setting, starting from 1, prepares you for the Merkur razors. Does that mean the HD and Futur are too harsh? Should I pay the crazy ebay prices for the 40s singlespeed?
This morning I was all set to put in another classicshaving order for a Merkur HD, but Laney's post stopped me cold. I don't want to blow more money on the DE thing only to get another razor that leaves my face raw. At this point I'm not sure about DE, or Merkur (blades or futur), but I know I'm sick of disposables.
What do the regulars think? I have some creams and blades in the mail, but if the razor's the problem... should I try a different brand than Merkur, or just spring for the HD? or a 40s SS?
This week's been rather rough -- getting up early, getting to work raw :-)
If I didn't like the ritual that makes it worth getting up earlier, and the concentration shaving requires (almost like a morning meditation) I would probably quit. But learning anything takes more than three days, and perhaps I just got the wrong equipment.
Thank god for alum and creams though!
cheers to all the fine folks on this board,