30/04/2014

SOTD 30/04/2014

Meet my new friend, Ern ...



Loaned to me, this C.Friedr.Ern 'Eagle & Snake' 28 shaved me clean this evening.

He's got a hell of a voice! What a singer! Every stroke ... zschingggg! Definitely the "1912" of straight edge shaving!

I'm getting dangerous with straights. I've really found my angle, an angle which I can get a good, close shave without fear of beaching the blade into my face or dulling it by dragging it down on an angle too shallow. I'm really finding my way with straights.

So, the shave ...

Routine

Hot Towel
TOBS Eton College
Pure Badger
C.Friedr.Ern 'Eagle & Snake' 28 Full Hollow
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Vintage Cussons Imperial Leather Aftershave
Vintage Cussons Imperial Leather EDT

Technique

Face Lathered
Two Pass - WTG & ATG

Impression

In other news, I've plucked up the courage for an against the grain pass and did okay. Two nicks, gone in the alum wash.

Vintage Imperial Leather is very nice indeed and I am so glad I shaved with the TOBS Eton College soap - a simple lemon over patchouli, complimented by an overture of classic Gent scent, citrus up top, patchouli in the middle, vanilla and woods down below. Lovely job! Curiously, I find the aftershave stronger than the EDT, which probably means the EDT is projecting very nicely to everyone else.

Dare I try it for work tomorrow?

29/04/2014

SOTD 29/04/2014

Anniversary shave for the ASR 1492246 1924 Patent which I believe is something around the blade holding mechanism that came in with the Valet VB series.


Routine

Hot Towel
NuAge Men PSO
Ingram's Shaving Cream
Pure Badger
ASR Valet VB1 - Feather Hi-Stainless [1]
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Ogallala Bay Rum - Limes & Peppercorns

Technique

Bowl Lathered
Two Pass - WTG & XTG

Impression

What a wonderfully smooth shave! The VB1 gives a light shave in my hands, the Feather simply granting it a ruthless efficiency and so a light touch leaves a close shave with absolutely no irritation, evident in the alum wash.

Talk about fire and ice! Or ice and fire, whichever way around you read it ...

The NuAge sets it up, the Ingram's keeps it chilly, practically freezing with the cold rinse and then the fire from hot peppercorns. What a buzz!

27/04/2014

SOTD 27/04/2014



Another sensational shave with the Le Grelot, tonight with a GEM blade ...

I said "sensational" ... and it certainly was not without sensation! The blade gap is practically an abyss and it was with both fear and love that my heart fluttered shaving again with this razor. Using the lightest of touch, the razor rasped away at my face, wiping off a couple of day's growth. Once again, once with and once cross was quite sufficient but I made a final with the grain pass just for fun at the end.

Phew! I survivied! No cuts, no weepers and once rinsed off and alum applied, it was quite clear I had just had one excellent shave.

This combination is massively aggressive!

I made a few familiarities with GEM razors after my first shave with this, likening the weight and heft to a Streamline, that wonderful sound and glide from the 1912 and the aggression of the Micromatic OC. This combination is way beyond the Micromatic OC. This combination is almost surgical!

Splash of Clubman for afters and we're ready for dinner ...

25/04/2014

SOTD 25/04/2014


Digging out some of my more interesting scents, I thought a lovely shave with C&S No.88 would set off perfectly and finish with a good splash of 4711, light rose complimenting throughout.

I was right ...

This was one of my best ever shaves and that came about, I am certain, because of my admiration for the razor.

What a sensational shave!

Two passes did it - with and cross. That was all. I made a final with the grain pass just to polish, but it was not in the slightest bit necessary, just nice.

In use, the Le Grelot feels like an Ever Ready Streamline. It has the heft. It also has a smoothness more akin to the 'Little Lather Catcher', the 1914, with the aggression of the Micromatic Open Comb.

What a sensational shave!

23/04/2014

SOTD 23/04/2014

... another loaner, this time a smiler!


Routine

Hot Towel
Erasmic Shaving Soap
Pure Badger
Straight 4/8?
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Old Spice Aftershave

Technique

Face Lathered
Two Pass - Both WTG

Impression

Measuring something like 4/8, this lightly smiling blade is one which I've been a little fearful of ... straight blades, fine, smiling blades could be unpredictable, but ... I was wrong and took to this quite happily.

The soap was good and absolutely nothing like the cream, but distinctively "Erasmic" in the scent. Enjoyed. Cheers!

Two passes, both WTG. Well, WTG and a little mucking around some complicated areas. I wanted a shave. I got a shave and a couple of fiddly areas that annoy me if I don't get them shaved also got shaved.

Not enormously close, but absolutely presentable and just the one nick under my jawline, gone with the alum wash. With my next shave with this blade, I'll go across the grain as well.

One step at a time ...

22/04/2014

SOTD 22/04/2014


Routine

Hot Towel
Gillette Sensitive Shaving Gel
Schick J - Personna Stainless Coated [2]
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse, Alum Wash & Mentholated Witch Hazel
Quorum Aftershave
Quorum EDT

Technique

Face ... erm ... slathered?
Two Pass - WTG & XTG

Impression

I've had this can of Gillette Gel since I gave up cartridge shaving and switched to traditional shaving. Tonight, I thought: "Why not?" ...

... and so, an efficient Schick shave with some Gillette goo. Truth be told it was pretty harsh. Harsh, not rough, nor aggressive. At least I'm now getting the opposite of what I got from Schicks some months ago ... nothing! My J is a little broken and the right hand retaining tooth slips sometimes. It's very obvious when it does, but I wonder if this defect contributed overall. Maybe, maybe not.

In all, I got a shave. The alum and my mentholated witch hazel cooled everything down and then the Quorum aftershave just fed and dried everything down. I love the face feel after Quorum. Love the smell, too, hence the spritz of EDT.

The gel? Oh, the gel? Well, yes, it did its thing.

20/04/2014

SOTD 20/04/2014


Routine

Shower
Edwin Jagger Tea Tree Shaving Cream
Pure Badger
Filharmonica Doble Temple 7/16 Full Hollow
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
4711 Echt Kölnischt Wasser
GFT Eucris

Technique

Face Lathered
Two Pass - Both WTG

Impression

Very much still a beginner ...

After two good passes, I thought I'd just neaten up a little under by lower lip and ... tink ... that's going to weep! It did, but thankfully it way all gone in the cold water and alum wash.

The cream spread very well for face lathering, just a little dot massaged between fingers and rubbed into my face then lathered up with the brush. Very easy.

19/04/2014

SOTD 19/04/2014

Continuing a theme with my later GEMs and Ever Readies ...


Routine

Hot Towel
Wickham Soap Company Super Smooth Club Cola
Kent Infinity Silvertex
GEM Contour II - GEM Stainless Coated [4]
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Brut Musk Aftershave

Technique

Bowl Lathered
Two Pass - WTG & XTG

Impression

I must say, I'm rather enjoying these milder razors for daily shaves. Both of these Contours have been to see out a blade. I'm sure I'll try them again soon with fresh blades.

18/04/2014

SOTD 18/04/2014


Routine

Shower
Wickham Soap Company Super Smooth South Sea Spray
Kent Infinity Silvertex
GEM Contour - Feather Hi-Stainless Platinum SE [4]
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Denim Aftershave

Technique

Bowl Lathered
Two Pass - WTG & XTG

Impression

Finishing off this Feather blade with another mild razor - the GEM Contour. It worked very well, seeing off a day's growth.

17/04/2014

SOTD 17/04/2014


Routine

Hot Towel
Rose of Bulgaria Shaving Cream
Kent Infinity Silvertex
Merkur Progress
Gillette Thai Super Thin [3]
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Rose of Bulgaria Aftershave

Technique

Bowl Lathered
Two Pass - WTG [3] & XTG [1]

Impression

Having tried out this blade in a light razor as well as a super-aggressive slant, I thought it only fair to try it in an adjustable and I was not disappointed in my third excellent shave from this Gillette Thai Super Thin. Three shaves and I think it's about done for my liking.

I have very much enjoyed that blade and have 11 more to go.

Rose of Bulgaria was sensational!

16/04/2014

SOTD 16/04/2014

Not feeling too cracking, but a good shave and a splash of Veg ought to perk me up ...


Routine

Hot Towel
NSS Rasage Traditionel
Kent Infinity SilverTex
Rolls Razor - A 48 7 (1948)
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Pinaud Lilac Vegetal

Technique

Bowl Lathered
Three Pass - Twice WTG & Once XTG

Impression

Good fun using this Rolls Razor again. After picking up a lovely Viscount set, I was inspired to use my working Imperial set - I still need to clean up the Viscount, truth be told.

Twice with the grain and once across, I was done. Good rinse and splash of the Veg, feeling much better.

15/04/2014

SOTD 15/04/2014

I enjoyed last night's shave so much, I thought I'd make a sort of repeat ...


Routine

Hot Towel
NSS Ice & Slice - Pure Badger
Merkur 37C Slant - Gillette Thai Super Thin [2]
Hot Rinse & Cold Rinse
Blue Stratos Aftershave

Technique

Face Lathered
One Pass

Impression

Again, the Gillette Super Thin performed. Yesterday, I mused that if I could get a perfectly acceptable shave in one pass, removing a day's growth, with a mild razor then a slant would be just that, but more so ... and it was.

Perfect shave!

Again, single pass and just a rinse off and aftershave.

14/04/2014

SOTD 14/04/2014

What a glorious Monday evening!


Routine

Hot Towel
NSS Ice & Slice - Pure Badger
Star Safety Razor - Gillette Thai Super Thin [1]
Hot Rinse & Cold Rinse
Brut Aftershave

Technique 

Face Lathered
One Pass ... all I needed

Impression

Many thanks to a chap on one of my shaving forums for rekindling my interest in double edge shaving after a good stint of single edge and experimentation with straight edge. He dropped one of these into a Tech and loved the shave. I commented that I thought that would be the case, more through instinct than anything, so he sent me some to try out for myself.

Well, I am happy to report likewise - I absolutely loved the shave and the blade gave a peculiar lease of life to an otherwise seriously mild razor. I'm using a Star safety razor tonight.

History lesson - GEM ceased the name somewhere along their timeline, switching to Star for the 1912 until its final withdrawal after a brief stint also as Treet. Well, Star wound up their razor production with a double edge safety razor using a Gillette Tech style design. It's mild, perhaps milder than the later, lighter Techs.

With a Gillette Thai Super Thin strapped in, one pass was quite sufficient. Yes, I used the "Gillette Slide" on a couple of areas that I know can be problematic, but that one pass was quite sufficient for one day of growth. I got the kind of shave I get from a single pass with a slant. In fact, I'll use a slant tomorrow just to confirm.

Simple rinse down, no alum, no witch hazel, just water, splash of cold and a good splash of Brut to finish off.

Simple and effective shaving!

Thank you to that chap - all my Techs now have a reason other than completing a collection gathering nothing more than dust or a few and far between simple polish at the end of a problematic experimental shave with something peculiar from the early part of the twentieth century. Cheers!

13/04/2014

SOTD 13/04/2014


Routine

T&H Cleansing Scrub
Hot Towel
T&H Pre-Shave Skin Protector
T&H No.10 Finest Shaving Cream
Kent Infinity SilverTex
GEM Push Button (Gold) - GEM Stainless Coated [4]
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Pinaud Lilac Vegetal

Technique

Bowl Lathered
Two Pass - WTG & XTG

Impression

Second go with this Push Button and my thoughts seem to have borne out; that the Feather delivers a completely different character to these milder GEMs. Not that it was a bad shave, just that the Feather seemed less patchy. It might be down to the blade, but I think they were equally used.

Enjoyed!

12/04/2014

SOTD 12/04/2014


Routine

Hot Towel
Palmolive Shaving Cream
Pure Badger
GEM Push Button (Gold)
Feather Hi-Stainless Platinum SE [3]
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Pinaud Aftershave

Technique

Bowl Lathered
One Pass - WTG

Impression

Just a once over with a very nice light shaving razor, efficient through the Feather.

Once again, the Pinaud delivered a superb aftershave. Phenomenal!

11/04/2014

SOTD 11/04/2014

Drinking Rum & Coke, I set about another shave with this loaner Filarmonica 7/16 ...


Routine

Hot Towel
SuperMax Shaving Cream
Kent Infinity SilverTex
Filarmonica Doble Temple 4/8 Full Hollow
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Jōvan Musk

Technique

Bowl Lathered
Two Pass - Both WTG

Impression

Another shave with this Filarmonica and much enjoyed. I got one weeper. I can't complain ...

Jōvan Musk is one I've not used for a while and seriously enjoyed it. Mrs liked it, too.

10/04/2014

SOTD 10/04/2014

First go with this enigmatic 7 O'Clock ...


Routine

Hot Towel
Tabac Shaving Soap
Kent Infinity SilverTex
ASR 7 O'Clock - Feather Hi-Stainless Platinum [2]
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Tabac Aftershave Lotion

Technique

Bowl Lathered
Two Pass - WTG & XTG

Impression

What a sensational razor!

Aggressive! Think GEM MicroMatic Open Comb aggressive, combined with the gorgeous butter knife over toast sound of the 1912, but backed up by the build quality of the AutoStrop range. It's a BMW with a four pot turbo banger under the hood! A 2002 Tii for those in the know.

Superb!


09/04/2014

SOTD 09/04/2014

Anniversary shave for my ASR Valet Model C set ...


Routine

Hot Towel
Wickham Soap Company Super Smooth Bay Rum
Kent Infinity Silvertex
ASR Valet VC1 (Model C Set) Patented 9th April 1912
Feather Hi-Stainless Platinum [1]
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Ogalalla Bay Rum - Limes & Peppercorns

Technique

Bowl Lathered
Two Pass - WTG & XTG

Impression

Nice anniversary shave for the razor, a patent now over a hundred years old.

Very nice. Much enjoyed!


07/04/2014

SOTD 07/04/2014

One final shave with this loaner cut-down Kamisori-style straight ...


Routine

Hot Towel
Erasmic Lather Shave Cream
Kent Infinity
Custom Kamisori
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Pinaud Lilac Vegetal

Technique

Bowl Lathered
Two Pass - Both WTG

Impression

First play with my new Kent brush and I found it very different indeed to a badger hair brush. It doesn't hold a lot of water and so you need to dip and pump quite frequently to whip up a lather, but it is thick, creamy and very protective. I had a fantasy face lather earlier with some soap and it took a long while in comparison to my usual brush, a simple pure badger. I'll get used to it, I'm sure. Different strokes for different folks.

Now, the razor. I've had this for a short while, shaved, stropped and shaved again. I think it's a bit scratchy now but shaved well nevertheless. I've played with this crazy cut-down and an hilariously slim Filarmonica over the last few days, but would you believe it? Polishing up with a Bic Sensitive, I nicked myself. I've not done this for weeks now, not with a straight, not with a single edge window scraper, double edged carpet cutter nor proper safety razor. The Bic bit me.

Blood flow stemmed with alum, I'll finish off and salute this razor prior to its return with the finest a man can pat onto his face: Pinaud Lilac Vegetal.

Instant burn, instant smooth, instant awesome!

I feel and smell amazing. If I was a polar bear, I'd go terrorise some tourists on the tundra!

Over and out ...

06/04/2014

SOTD 06/04/2014

You know those shaves where everything comes together and gives you that perfect shave?

Well, I just had one ...


Routine

Bath
Rose of Bulgaria Shaving Cream
Best Badger
Ever Ready Streamline - GEM Stainless Coated [3]
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Rose of Bulgaria Aftershave

Technique

Bowl Lathered
Two Pass - WTG& XTG

Impression

Rose of Bulgaria is Turkish Delight. Lovely as a cream with superb thick, creamy lather, then again as aftershave.

Once again, the Streamline delivered a lovely shave, the weight leading to a very light shave, swift and efficient. Loved it!

What with the angelic picture above, I also made up one of my usual dark, brooding snaps:

05/04/2014

SOTD 05/04/2014

Durham Domino Anniversary Shave

Happy Birthday to you!
Happy Birthday to you!
Happy Birthday Durham Domino!
Happy Birthday to you!!!

Patented 5th April 1910, this is my anniversary shave for the Durham Domino.


Routine

Hot Towel
Wickham Soap Company Mentholated Hard Soap (pre-Market)
Pure Badger
Durham Domino - Personna [5]
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Old Spice Original Aftershave

Technique

Face Lathered
Two Pass - WTG & XTG

Impression

These blades hold their own with a simple strop after use. I used this blade four times in a row before stropping and have stropped after each shave since. They come back good enough for two passes which is just about perfect for this type of shave.

I really like Wickam Soap Company's hard soap - I got to try out the mentholated hard soap from the first batch and like it a lot. If the new formula is anything like this, it will be a winner!

But come on ... who am I kidding?

Shaving with a carpet blade in a dog dresser and getting some of the best shaves ever? Really?

03/04/2014

SOTD 03/04/2014


Routine

Hot Towel
Cella Shaving Cream/Soap
Pure Badger
Filarmonica Doble Temple 4/8 Full Hollow
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse, Alum Wash & Witch Hazel
4711 Cologne

Technique

Bowl Lathered
Two Pass - Both WTG

Impression

First, many thank indeed to Jaycey for the loan of his slim Filarmonica. Billed as 4/8, measured, it's more like 7/16, but who's counting. It gave a lovely shave, perhaps a little rough but I am reliably informed that straight off the hone the first shave can be a little aggressive.

I did slick and slide around my face quite happily, finding a good angle with ease on such a slim razor and found it excellent for all the fiddly bits around nose, mouth and chin where I've struggled before with wider straights.

Boom! Victory fist pump! In fact ... Schick! Schick! Reload! Double-barrelled victory fist pump!

Now, this Cella. Gah! What a horrible soap! Really, sorry, I just don't like it. I've read great things about it but if I had known it was almond, I would have avoided it. I really don't like the smell. It lathered easily and lathered well, but on my face it dried out. I could see dry cracks on my lips and it was practically a crust by the time I got to my neck. I had to wash off and re-lather.

Still, great shave!

02/04/2014

SOTD 02/04/2014


Routine

Hot Towel
C&S No.88 & Pure Badger
Ever Ready Streamline & GEM Stainless Coated [2]
Hot Rinse, Cold Rinse & Alum Wash
Pinaud Lilac Vegetal

Technique

Face Lathered
Two Pass - WTG & XTG

Impression

I have been looking forward to shaving with an Ever Ready Steamline for some time and a kind chap on a shaving forum leant me his.

I have read that it is no different from a 1912, even that a 1912 is better, but I think that unfair. This is indeed an excellent shave and very much akin to the 1912, but the more solid feel, the heavier presence, the classier razor all go together to produce an altogether better shave than the 1912. All the 1912 elements are there, the blade feel, the blade sound, just that it is delivered in a more solid package.

Lovely shave ...