Skip to comments.Straight razor shaving...
Posted on 06/26/2014 12:28:00 PM PDT by Chasaway
I need some straight razor advice, from some straight razor veterans. I've been shaving with a safety razor, mug and brush for 12 years. I've moved to a shavette straight razor in the last 3 months.
It seems to me that moving to a pure straight razor will mean sending razors off to be honed 3-4 times per year @ around $30 per pop.
Besides the "romance" and general badass-ness of using a true straight razor, what would be the advantages/disadvantages of moving to a pure straight razor/throat cutter?
And that's CLOSE! Baby butt smooth close. I have a pretty heavy beard, but I can shave the night before and get through the next day without noticeable stubble.
I popped myself a couple of times (minor) when I first started with the shavette, but since then I can only tell when I rub the alum bar over my face or splash some Osage Orange AS on.
It takes a bit longer (being careful, you know), but with the DE or the shavette it's more of an experience than a chore.
What I'm looking for is some counsel. Besides the romance of a pure straight razor, what are the advantages of one over a shavette? Will it shave even closer? Is it enough value-added in the experience category to make up for the added effort/expense required?
You probably know what I'm asking, because if you're a straight razor shaver you went through the same process.
I went down that route too.. I’m back on vibrating 16-blade razors now.
I have some thick hairs - I can kill 3 disposables in a morning. With the ridiculously expensive cartridges it costs me about $20 per season to shave.
And I’m sure that when there are 20 blades on the thing they’ll offer financing. :)
If you’re going to be a real cut throat shaver you’ve got to get into the zen of doing your own stropping and honing.
That’s what I feel like already.
I’m thinking I’m going down a rabbit hole into more Zen-ness.
A little off the subject, but a note on sharpening.
I bought a cheap belt sander 30” belt 1” wide. I can now shave with all my good knives. A Canadian company sells all manner of Belts, 250 grit to 1200 grit to leather strop belts.
I have maybe $100 invested totally and after a little practice free-handing the edge angles is simple.
Have you ever seen Sweeney Todd?
What is the company?
The first couple of times I even used a shavette my hand was shaking like I was an alky in recovery.
It was scary.
Now, not so bad.
This is off topic, but that reminded me of a funny story I read a number of years ago.
There was a debate between 2 candidates for some local office, and one of the candidates was completely bald. His opponent jokingly put his hand on the bald one's head and said, "That feels as smooth as my wife's bottom." The bald guy reached up, rubbed his own head and said, "You're right, it does."
But seriously, I think it’s cool, and I wish you the best of luck.
I just wanted to say that I am glad to hear that your razor is straight. Other orientations can create troublesome dilemmas...
We need more of that today.
Can’t help on this one.
I’m leaving enough blood around already from somewhere (foot, leg, arm, hand, head) about every day just from normal work around the house and I get the “Where are you bleeding now?” from the wife...
I’ll stay away from the straight razors. No sense adding to the blood loss, carpet, sheet and furniture stains.
I had difficulty shaving for years, wearing out blades and having difficulty getting the blade through the beard then I started shaving in the shower. Last thing I do before toweling off. The hot water and soaking makes all the difference. Beard comes off easily and the razors last much longer.
You are correct about honing, but I bought the stones required and do the honing myself. There are a couple of dedicated forums for straight razor shaving and there will be a bunch of good information for you there. I took it up about 6 years ago, after inheriting my great grandfather’s shaving mug. Once you get the hang of it I guarantee you, nothing else shaves as close. But, there will likely be some bleeding involved to get to that point!
Brother, you described me.
That’s one of the reasons I ask.
Somehow, I can cut myself with an anvil.
I’m amazed that I can get through as many shaves as I have without winding up anemic.
Dollar shave club. Our razors are F***ing great.
I’ve used a straight blade for a couple of decades, and never needed to have one honed for me. My present razor (I’ve owned two) is a Solingen stainless (DOVO En Vogue No. 105) and it has served me very well with proper care and use of a strop.
My 20-year-old son gets those. It saves him money compared to whatever he was doing before that (but after I told him, “No, buy your own razors.”)
“...likely be some bleeding involved..”
You could have left that part out! :)
I know there’s a learning curve to it. That’s part of the intrigue. I want to get to where I can sharpen/hone/stop my own stuff.
Off topic a bit, but I also want to get to where my knife/axe/hatchet blades are crazy sharp. I’ve been researching/studying/practicing that, too!
I think I already accept that it’s worth the effort. I guess I’m just looking for some kind of reassurance from guys that are as “crazy” as I am...guys who get it.
I did the straight razor thing for a while when I was young—mug, brush, the whole nine yards.
But then they invented disposable twin blade safety razors and canned shaving cream.
I also gave up my hand saw for a Skill saw, my manual typewriter for a computer, and the pitch-soaked rag on the end of a club for a flashlight.
One of my shavettes is a Dovo. In my research, I’ve seen that Dovo is a go-to straight razor.
Do you do your own sharpening/honing? Besides stropping, I mean?
Or do you not need it at all?
I’m not doing this because it’s easier and/or faster.
I enjoy the experience.
I wash myself with a rag on a stick.
I could, but he’d ignore me.
I pound my whiskers in with a hammer and bite them off on the inside.
you can extend cartridge blade life by drying them after shaving. water rusts and dulls the edge. i shake the razor, then do several strokes across my towel to dry the blades. you’ll get more life out of them, lots depending on how you personally shave.
Actually, I thought about that.
But I was worried that I’d have too much tooth wear.
Or buy them direct from the manufacturer.
Much less expensive than the name brands, and in my experience much longer lasting.
I’ve been doing the same thing for years. It works great.
Lee Valley Tools
Another son poured rubbing alcohol on his arms and lit it with a match. Whoooosh! hair-free arms.
More than a joke, it’s a true story. It took place around the Algonquin round table in the days of Dorothy Parker.
Doumo arigatou gozaimasu.
I used to watch my grandfather sharpen with the strap and shave. I thought I would be doing that when I grew up. Gillette came along.
“I pound my whiskers in with a hammer and bite them off on the inside.”
I was lucky enough to meet Chuck Norris one time. As a favor, he told my whiskers to stop growing or else! Haven’t needed to shave since...
He would do it. Should I expect him to die?
it pays for itself after the first pack of triple-tracks you DO NOT have to buy
Holy Cow, Slim!
I didn’t mean to indicate that I’d trade my retirement for a razor!
Those look like a lot of fun. And as a secondary use, I could put ‘em in my boot for bar fights!
I’ll mention it after his summer camp counselor job is over. Having him working all summer, away from home, is important to us! (For one thing, we’re saving a lot of money on groceries.)