I never could get an irritation free shave with an electric or cartridge. I got good shaves with a straight, but I got frustrated with the stones and decided to try a DE. I get good shaves, but if I try for a second shave with a blade the results are poor (irritation). I have tried Swedish Gillete, Feather, and Merkur and they all shave acceptably on the first shave and unacceptably on the second.
Comparing this to the straight, it makes perfect sense. No one shaves without stroping. If you do, it feels dull. On a few occasions I even stroped my straight in the middle a shave with noticeable improvement.
When I was using the straight, I wondered why the thing was so long. At any moment, you only shave with a fraction of the length and the length makes it more difficult to maneuver. Now it is clear. The length is so that the blade does not go dull during the middle of a shave.
I have also noticed that by the end of my shave with a fresh blade, the blade is duller than I would like. This slightly dull blade still works fairly well except for the chin where it pulls a bit which it does not do with a fresh blade if I shave the chin first. Whichever side of my face I shave first experiences less irritation and a closer shave. It makes sense. Double the length of the DE to correct for having two edges, and you still have less edge length than a straight.
I am going to try a cheaper blade, perhaps Derbys, and change the blade halfway through each shaves. ½ shaves per blade. And I read most of you are getting 3 or 4 from a blade. Yall must have less sensitive skin.
Anyone else throw the blade away after a single shave?
I do not mind throwing out the blade after one shave, particulary considering that that I get my best results with Aveeno canned goo which is relatively difficult to clean from the blade compared to the soaps and creams popular here.