Saturday, January 17, 2009

The Woes of Shaving Revisited

I have been shaving for almost 45 years. I started with the old double edged safety razor, quickly moved to an electric shaver, but reverted to a razor after a while. As most everyone else, I have moved through the evolution of razors from injectors to the modern "turbo" multi-bladed phenoms. Lately, I have become quite chagrined at the cost of these modern "marvels," which claim to pull and cut in great comfort for the closest shave ever.

Yet, that closest shave has caused problems for my aging face. I seem to experience more discomfort than ever. I began to look around on the net for alternatives, investigating the latest electric shavers, when I ran across some sites that convinced me to return to my roots. As I was reading one of the sites that touted the advantages of the old double-edged razors, I leaned over to an antique table by my computer that contains a drawer of a few of my father's knives and such. Low and behold, there were two classic Gillette double-edged marvels. One is a Gillette adjustable, that one site says is the best ever made. The other is apparently just as desirable.

What luck! I searched around, looking for information on blades. Sure enough, there were plenty of suggestions as to the best. I settled upon some Israeli made Personna blades that cost about 9.00 for 100 on Ebay. A bit cheaper than the modern, slick Turbos, which retail for about 20.00 for five of the apparently golden gems. My next choice will be shaving cream. Will it be the premium British made Taylor of Old Bond Street or the Italian Proraso? Will my old brush be enough or should I shell out thirty bucks for a new one? Maybe I will also need a new German made Merkur razor also.

I never thought of shaving as a hobby. Now, however, I have the time to savor a good wet shave in the morning. No rushing through my morning routine to have breakfast and hit the road to the office or worse, a day of driving. No, I will have my morning coffee with my daily crossword puzzle, blog and news site reads. Then a bite of breakfast. Then, and only then, will I go to the master bath to practice the almost lost art of wet-shaving with my double-edged safety razor of long ago.

Who knows, I might pull out great-grandpa's straight razor one day, hone and strop it to a fine edge, and...cut half my face off. No, I think I will wait on that one. I can still remember the barbershop days of my youth, when the barber would pick up that scary weapon, strop it and proceed to shave my neck. I will leave great-grandpa's razor in its case and in the display cabinet where it belongs.

3 comments:

Rod in Rabun Gap said...

I also prefer a wet shave to electric, and a good razor makes all the difference in the world, especially if you spend as much time outdoors as I do. Cold weather and dry air combine with a poor shave to make ones face feel like a power sander has had hold of you. A good after shave lotion helps as well, one with moisturizers, instead of the alcohol based ones. I still don't have time on weekday mornings to shave as I would like, but it does make a difference in the quality of the day. I don't know how it is to be a woman and shave my legs, but they should have to pull a scraper across their face everyday, and then spend about 8 hours in the cold and wind.

That Baptist Ain't Right said...

Agreed. I tried the electric razor in college, but it just didn't do the trick. The shave wasn't close enough & I, frankly, didn't enjoy it. I started using a double blade & then moved to the triple blade. But when Gillette came out with the 4 blade --- Heaven. Smooth. No nicks. No pulling. Just a good, clean shave. I'll pay the $18 for the 3 pack refill. Worth every penny.

My brother uses the same style safety razor as in your pic. He also uses the lather in a cup. He swears it is better, but I don't know. I do know it is cheaper since the lather bar is only $1.50 & will last a year, whereas the gel will cost me $2 on sale & last maybe 2 months.

I need to find one of those little shaving cups & a brush ...

Charles J. said...



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To shave is not enough, in fact, you need to take some really good care of your skin, and that is precisely what I want you to consider from now on, because I believe that every man has got to look good, right now we are living in a time in which appearances are hugely important, and that is just why you need to look better than your best, and do not worry, it is something really obtainable, you might just need a little bit of guidance into it, and trust me, you will not only look better, you will feel better about yourself and people will let you know.

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