April 6, 2012

My New Wetshaving Life

My weapons in the war against stubble

For this new change in my personal habits, there's only one thing I can blame: the Internet.

Very early on, I came across a gentlemen under the nom de post mantic59. Mostly, I would watch his YouTube videos while bored at my then-job. (He also had a great site which has now expanded into becoming....The Sharpologist! Soon to be a series on CBS!)

It was a strange world....a world where men embraced old school shaving. They would collect "vintage" razors, order blades from exotic places, and use brushes and special soaps in lieu of canned creams and plastic cartridges. (It's also a land where the facial hair of the Fab Four is fair game). It was a lifestyle that I yearned to embrace - after all, thanks to bad acne in my adolescence, I had relied solely on either electric razors or the can-and-cartridge method. Inside, I yearned to be a full-on wetshaver.

So thanks to Amazon.com, I ordered my first soaps and brush, and began learning how to lather. Immediately, although I stayed with the multiblade cartridges for awhile, I learned how to get that oh-so-smooth feel without the hazards of slicing off layers of skin or giving myself harsh rashes. But I was reluctant to spend money on a safety razor, and would content myself with this hybrid lifestyle.

Via bs_andreas on flickr

A few weeks ago, I found my dad's old Merkur Progress razor while trying to find nail clippers. Around my birthday, I ordered a sampler of double edged blades. This week, I began wet shaving in earnest.

And I absolutely love it.

Ok, the first time I cut up my face - learning to hold the razor at the right angle, as well as adjusting the razor to be aggressive, but not too aggressive, turned out to be a challenge. However, I got a handle on the angle and the adjustment, and after three passes...I'm close to how I love my shave; just a bit of grit, but overall, smooth. There's no more pleasing sound than the slight scraping of a safety razor blade against a well-prepared, clean, well-lathered face.

(Plus, with a Merz Apothecary downtown, I can invest in all sorts of aftershaves, exotic soaps, etc, without paying those pesky postage prices of Amazon, so I can smell truly manly).

Maybe this post is a little too self-indulgent, but I don't care. Sometimes, having a major league change of lifestyle....is definitely worth it.

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