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Thread: A little help please

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    Member OmidFarahbakhsh's Avatar
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    Default A little help please

    So I've been shaving with a DE for a few weeks now (merkur 33c/ merkur super blades) and I've found that second pass ATG on my upper lip always feels like I'm digging under the hairs, lots of pull and razor burn, little bit of blood from time to time, which as you can image doesn't feel too good. Just wondering if someone can tell me what I'm doing wrong without actually watching me shave. Is it my angle, beard prep, am I not removing enough hair on my WTG pass, dull blade ( I only shave once or twice a week and have been using the same blade for about 3 weeks)? Any help would be greatly appreciated.
    As a side note I'm getting the the end of the wilkinsons sword soap i bought a few months ago anyone wanna recommend a good decently priced soap to try preferably something I can get at a local drug store (in Canada).

    Cheers
    -Omid

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    Senior Member blabbermouth 1OldGI's Avatar
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    I'm guessing from what you describe that you've got about 6 shaves or so on the blade you are using. For me at least, that's about time that the edge on a typical DE blade starts to get rather sketchy and begins to pull. So for starters I wouldn't go much beyond five or six shaves with a blade. So point 1: Change your blade.

    A sub-issue of dull blades is sometimes excess pressure. I've caught myself doing this (especially if I'm trying to squeeze just one more shave out of that blade.) It's almost an unconscious response, you think you can compensate by applying a bit more pressure on the head of the razor but this actually causes more problems than it remedies. Point 2: Make sure you're not applying excessive pressure to the head of the razor.

    If you only shave once or twice a week, it also sounds like your beard reduction with just a WTG pass is inadequate. What I mean is after the WTG pass the stubble is still a bit long to go immediately to an against the grain pass. Were it me, I would do 3 passes on this area: WTG, XTG across the grain (like from the center line of your upper lip out towards your ears) and the third pass would be ATG. Adding the new blade and an additional pass to further reduce the length of the stubble before you go ATG should fix the problem. Point 3: Add an across the grain pass to further reduce the stubble length before going against the grain.

    Hopefully these tips will help. Sorry I can't be any help on soaps as I'm not sure what is available in Canada.
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    Well Shaved Gentleman... jhenry's Avatar
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    ++1 on 1OldGI's suggestions. A week of shaves (ie. 6-7 shaves) is the maximum of shaves I can get from a DE razor blade. The number depends on any number of factors, but the chief one, imho, is your beard. If your beard is coarse, it means that you may have to change your blade earlier--perhaps every 2 weeks.

    Another variable to consider is that Merkur de razor blades tend to shave somewhat harshly anyway. You may want to consider getting a sampler pack of blades other than Merkur and try them out. I like Wilkinson Sword (Germany), Lord (Egypt) and Feather (Japan) de razor blades. There are others as well. Try them all and determine which one works best for you.

    As for shaving soap...See if you can find Williams or Van der Hagan shaving soap in your local drugstore or discount store. My preference in shaving sopas is Mitchel's Wool Fat or Tabac. You can order either of them from an online vendor.
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    The Assyrian Obie's Avatar
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    Hello, Omid:

    My good friends 1OldGI and jhenry have made excellent suggestions to solve your problem. I'll add a few more thoughts, if I may:

    As a rule, I replace blades after the third shave, since I feel the blade starts to lose its edge. Also, Merkur blades tend to be rough, at least for me, and from what I've read through the years, for many other gentlemen. Try Personna (red pack), Gillette 7 O'Clock (yellow pack), and even Derby. I have found Astra to be a good blade, too. Better yet, get a sample pack to give you some good choices.

    I suggest doing three passes — with extreme light pressure — one with the grain (north to south) and two across the grain (nose to ear, ear to nose) to slowly reduce the beard. In the mustache area, avoid going south to north against the grain. This tears up some folks. Try it across the grain and, if you must, angle the shave rather than going straight up.

    Also preparation is important. Yes, as jhenry suggested, Williams and Van der Hagen will do for now, but do think of the other soaps he recommends. You can't go wrong with them.

    Regards,

    Obie

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    Senior Member blabbermouth hi_bud_gl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OmidFarahbakhsh View Post
    I've found that second pass ATG on my upper lip always feels like I'm digging under the hairs, lots of pull and razor burn, little bit of blood from time to time, which as you can image doesn't feel too good. Just wondering if someone can tell me what I'm doing wrong without actually watching me shave.

    Cheers
    -Omid
    This is why i say always don't shave ATG. takes time you will get great shave with just wtg and xtg. Try scything motion slowly or you will slice your face and never try it again.gl

  6. #6
    Senior Member Muguser's Avatar
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    Omid,
    You can try making some faces when shaving around the mouth, to try to make the area easier to shave. I sometimes push my nose to one side, or up with a finger, to reach the hairs directly under the nostrils. I still cut myself sometimes, but it is usually when rushing, or being careless ( earlobe, rim of nostril )

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    Forum mogwai thebigspendur's Avatar
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    I know after 3 shaves no matter the blade the shave quality really goes downhill fast so I never push more than 4 shaves with the same blade. Other than that I guess it's the usual shave technique thing with pressure and stroke and angle and stretching the skin.
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    Wet Shaver Newbie Archadvance's Avatar
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    I find that rather than employing a head on ATG on my upper lip that going ATG at 15 to 30 degrees off of a direct ATG pass reduces my burn and weepers.

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    Member OmidFarahbakhsh's Avatar
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    thanks for the input everyone i'm sure this will prove tremendously valuable and I'm going to change my blade right now so I don't forget. I know I saw poraso in a local drug store any thoughts? As far as your recommendations for the life of the blade is that in relation to each edge of this that for the blade as a whole I haven't really been paying attention to which side I using so as far as I know I could have shaved with the same side every time. Finally any recommendations on how to differentiate which edge is which, will a sharpie dot on the side of the blade harm it in any way?

    cheers
    -Omid

  10. #10
    Member Gigmaster's Avatar
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    You're using the same blade for 3 weeks? If I did that, the Blood Bank would be following me around with a bucket!

    No matter how many times you have used a blade, when it feels like it is 'pulling', use the other side, or change the blade. Everyone has a different type of beard, and some of us are very hard on blades. Mine is like barbed wire, and I do good to get more than 3 or 4 shaves each side from a DE blade.

    Another tip is to use light pressure. You don't need to 'dig in' with the blade. Let it do the work. I have found that making the first stroke with the hair grain, then the second against the grain, shaves very close with no discomfort, as long as I do it slowly.

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