Best one yet
I've been at this for about 6 weeks with increasingly good results. I've stuck exclusively with the Merkur HD and have been working my way through the blade sampler pack. Last night, I plugged in a Swedish Gillette for the first time, and used my new Chubby 3 in Best with Trumpers Voilet. My preshave is glycerin on my wet face. Well, it was the best shave yet. The combination of the great lather produced by the Chubby and the sharpness of the Swedes gave me shaving pleasure deluxe.
I think it was the Swedes that made the difference. I had been using Derby and Israeli blades (I liked the Israelis better) with the C&E $35 Best brush, which is a very good combo, but the Swedes kicked it up a notch (BAM!). No dragging or pulling, no razor burn, no irritation, no cuts. BBS on the cheeks, but still some work to do on the neck. It's not bad and no one would notice it wasn't shaved BBS, but I can feel the difference. That means more work on technique on my neck. I have about 3 different growth patterns down there, and it's tricky to get the HD to get a nice flat plane to go across. But, I'll get there. I'm most definitely encouraged.
When I feel a little more confident that my technique is down pat, I'll plug in a Feather and try that bad boy. Best thing I ever did was to sell my GEM SE and Superspeed and concentrate on using one razor only and getting that down. I can use various creams with no noticeable difference, but getting consistent with the razor is key for me.
On a related note, when I started this DE adventure, my wife was extremely opposed to it. She remembered her father shaving with a DE and coming to the breakfast table most every morning with little bits of bloody toilet paper on his face. She was afraid I would cut myself and I guess bleed to death. I told her I was careful and had good equipment and any cuts I got at first would only be a function of learning the technique. I haven't cut myself in 3 weeks, but she still doesn't like the idea very much but is maybe coming around. Geez, some women are real wussies.
So, take heart all you newbies. It will get better. Plus, it's a good bit of fun.
I remember the bits of toilet paper on my dad and me when I started shaving in high school. But---and this is important---we didn't know what we were doing, and we had nowhere to go to get guidance. Commericals and ads were the only source of information, and they provided precious little. I whipped up a lather from Old Spice soap directly in the mug and used a Gillette Blue Blade and two passes: one N-S, one S-N, the second with no lather. Grain? What do you mean, "grain"? I read once back then of a guy lathering up for the second pass and it seemed so strange to me then that it stuck in my memory to this day. Who knew?
here's to another fan of the swedes
congrats on the shave. wait untill you get your first perfect. you will spend the rest of your life chasing it lol. I also found the swedes to be the best by far but they are pricy (over $1 each after shipping for me) i use feathers as my daily blade. they are the second best IMHO and are pretty cheap when you get them on sale.