Before the question a bit about me.
As a new comer to wetshaving, I'm having a lot of problems with shaver bump or in growns or just plain ugly breakouts. I'm also 52yrs old and have had problem skin all my adult life. My skin I consider has always been very oily, particularly across my forehead. I have never really bothered about a proper cleaning regime, and apart from being washed in the shower, that was it for me. No cleansers, or moisturisers, nothing.
I have had two different courses of Roaccutane over the last ten years to try and clear my skin up. The side effects of the drug were very aggressive, but the desired effect would last for maybe a year after completing the four month course.
As over the years I have gone from full beard to clean shaven and back again, using disposables to finally electric over the last 2 yrs, and now to proper wetshaving (and what an addiction this has become).
I have been using my Merkur HD for a week now, with very mixed results. Started off ok, but on the second and third shaves very bloody with lots of breakout. I have swapped to an Israeli blade and not shaved for a couple of days to let my poor face settle down. Thankfully last nights shave was blood free, and my face is actually starting to look a bit healthier. I was also doing the three pass method but have reduced that back to two for the time being.
I'm using an assortment of different shave creams, mainly Proraso red & green, as well as the pre/post Prosaro. Also have Trumpers Lime shaving soap, and I finish off with an alum bar, and then add the Prosaro pre/post cream. And some Trumper Eau De Quinine AS which smells just great.
And now finally to the questions.
Witch hazel is mentioned a lot in these forums mainly Thayers brand. As I live in Australia and will probably have to order on line, I did a search for witch hazel, and found a few different brands. From my readings it seems to be very important as to what type is used. Charles from QED recommends Dickinson Blue brand which then comes in various different types (pads with and without aloe vera), and Classic Shaving sells Thayers witch hazel which also comes in various types (Thayers Medicated Superhazel with Aloe Vera Formula, along with other types of cleansing pads etc) If you read the blurb on their web sites and what goes into them they both claim to be the best.
I don't really know which witch hazel I should be going for considering the problems I have with my skin. I also have just read a review on the Green Clay masks that Charles sells, and think I would like to give that a go as well.
Probably in part to my own question, because I have to pay some very healthy shipping rates to get this stuff to me here in Oz, I ideally only want to order from one supplier if that is at all possible.
Well that is my story so far, and I look forward your input.