Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Sixth edition links

with 5 comments

Following are links for the sixth edition; also posted here will be things discovered too late to make it into the sixth edition.

The 7th edition has now been published: It has a new subtitle: Leisureguy’s Guide to Gourmet Shaving the Double-Edge Way. This is thanks to one reader review from a man who expected the book would cover straight-razor shaving. The book description does indicate that the focus is DE safety razors, but for more emphasis I included it in the title. Now that the new edition is available, I will discontinue updating this page. The link above is to Amazon.com, but the book is also available from other Amazons: .co.uk, .de, .es., .fr, and .it. With the publication of the 7th edition, I will no longer be updating this post.

The Holy Black has resumed operations: Check out the store at TheHolyBlack.com. I recommend their Gunpowder Spice fragrance.

Artisanal shaving soaps in the UK: Tony the Blade just pointed out in a comment The Shaving Time Company in the UK, which offers a good selection of artisanal shaving soaps: Catie’s Bubbles, Stirling Soap, Shave Heaven, and others.

New on-line shave store in NY: Take a look at Shave Select. It’s recent, so it will be growing for a while: check back from time to time.

A good beginner kit: I responded at Wicked_Edge to a request for a good beginner kit and thought I should post it here—particularly after an Amazon review comment that readers would appreciate specific recommendations along with general guidelines. The following kit contains really good products.

The following are all from ShoeboxShaveshop.com:

Soap for pre-shave beard wash: This Razorock high-glycerin soap works well. Wash beard at sink after shower, rinse partially with a splash, and apply lather. $4.99

Brush: Any of these S-series synthetics from Omega: inexpensive and wonderful. Price varies, but assume $5.99.

Shaving cream: A tub of J.M. Fraser shaving cream, a really good shaving cream and the $15 price is for a 1-lb tub. It will work well even if the water’s somewhat hard. $14.99 — update: seems to be out of stock often. WestCoastshaving.com also carries it. Another alternative is to get a shaving soap: Latha is excellent and sells at a modest price.

Razor: The Parker 24C, an extremely good razor, both comfortable and efficient. Here’s my review. $27.99. Note that this handle works well also for the iKon Shavecraft #102 slant, so that for a later upgrade you can buy just the #102 head—and note as well, that the least expensive iKon handle (the OSS handle, which works quite well with the #102) costs more than the Parker 24C, so in buying the 24C you’re well ahead of the game

Blade sampler: Any sampler pack will do—he won’t know which brands work for him until he tries them—but this one would be fine. Read this post on blades to understand why a sampler pack is needed. $9.49

Alum: This one will do the job and has a protective case. $4.87

Styptic: My Nik Is Sealed will be handy in case of nicks. (See this discussion of alum v. styptic for more information.) $6.29

Total of above: $74.61—or, to look at it another way, 24 replacement Gillette Fusion cartridges (using Amazon prices in the US—in Norway, example, 10 Gillette Fusion cartridges comes out to $80).

Note that the total is much greater than the on-going cost. That tub of J.M. Fraser will last a long time, and blades generally will run under $10/year—under $5/year if some of the less expensive brands (Derby, Astra Superior Platinum, et al.) work for you.

I did not include aftershave, since those are more personal-preference choices, but certainly Shoebox Shaveshop has many on offer.

A good primer on the shavette: Nicely done if you’re interested in shavettes.

The biggest surprise in switching from cartridge razors + canned foam to DE razors + true lather? I asked it, and the answers are interesting.

Razor replating and restoration: RazorPlate.com is a new site that refurbishes and replates DE safety razors. I’ve not used the site, but wanted to point out its existence.

Blade alignment for the iKon slant and DLC slant: And probably also for the Merkur 37C and 39C. See this post, which includes a brief video.

Giving the Standard razor a standard handle: It turns out that the narrow-diameter threaded stud that extend from the Standard razor’s handle to screw into the cap can be unscrewed from the handle. Then screw it firmly into the cap, and you can use any handle with a Standard razor. My Standard head is now mounted on a UFO handle. More information in this public-service Wicked Edge post by sduncan91.

Stirling shaving soap: This soap is a new favorite after seeing this video tutorial by minimalisto on how to lather it.  I made a practice lather this morning, and minimalisto’s method works exactly as described. On playing with the lather I think Stirling is going to be a favorite soap now that I understand how to make lather with it. The tutorial is quite long (25 minutes), but it’s also very clear. After watching most of it, I had no trouble replicating the excellent lather he made.  – UPDATE: Today I tried it, using the tutorial method: great lather for the first pass, good lather for the second pass, mediocre lather for the third pass. What is it about this soap???

Another force driving the wetshaving movement: It seems important that we spend quiet time along with our thoughts, but that makes most people extremely uncomfortable to the extent that people strive to keep themselves always busy. Shaving allows a comfortable way to be quietly alone with our thoughts each day. More here, with a link to a relevant NY Times article.

Update to lathering method: In the current edition of the book, I describe two methods of lathering. One is “the wet-brush method”:(start with a dripping wet brush and hold the soap tub on its side over the sink, brushing the soap vigorously and firmly and letting the excess water spill away. Continue brushing until the bubbles being formed are microscopic, then brush for a couple of seconds more and bring brush to beard to work up the lather. This works extremely well for many soaps, among them HowToGrowAMoustache.com’s Synergy shaving soap, Strop Shoppe’s Special Edition soaps, Tiki Bar shaving soaps, and Catie’s Bubbles shaving soaps.

That method did not work so well with Mike’s Natural, and I finally learned that the mediocre lathers I was obtaining were because I didn’t work enough water into the lather. Mantic59 explained at the time that he uses a different method, “the damp-brush method”, which is also in the book: start with a damp rather than a wet brush, load the brush until it is well-coated with a kind of soap paste. Then brush the palm vigorously, occasionally extending it under a dribble of hot water from the tap as if accepting alms of water, then after working that in, going for another alm of water (“an alm for the palm”), work that in, and so on. The resulting lather is really exceptional and a handful of artisan soaps I had thought were of indifferent quality have with that method produced amazingly good lather. Live and learn, eh?

Although I described both methods and advised experimenting, I recommended the wet-brush approach. But now that I’m using the damp-brush, palm-lathering method, I’m definitely changing my tune. Use the damp-brush method for a week, the wet-brush method a week, and then another week with the wet-brush method. Then decide which is better based on your experience.

I’m now rewriting the lather section for the new edition. Some soaps that produce remarkably better lather with this method: Stirling Soap Company, Barrister & Mann, Dapper Dan, Green Mountain, and Mike’s Natural—and probably some others I can’t think of offhand. I should have changed methods the first time I found a soap that didn’t work well with the wet-brush method, but so many did work well, I simply focused more on those. My apologies. But at least I’m learning. (Experience is not one big thing, it’s a jillion tiny things that you accumulate like gold dust: it takes a long time and the discoveries are small, but given enough time, it adds up. I just got another little piece of experience.)

Another razor restoration/replating service: RazorPlate.com. Worth checking out.

Archive of old Gillette razor ads: Take a look at RazorArchive.com.

Good tip for the Mühle R41: cpacamper on Wicked_Edge advised me that keeping the handle of Mühle’s R41 open-comb razor close to the face results, counterintuitively, in a more comfortable shave that is also quite efficient, leaving a BBS result. (He also said that the brand of blade affects this razor’s performance more than most others, so you will have to do some exploring.) I tried it and he’s absolutely right: it works like a charm.

New source of blade samples: TryABlade.com sells an inexpensive sampler pack of 1 blade per brand, and also allows you to build your own sampler pack, brand by brand. As I point out in the book, single-blade samplers are generally unsatisfactory because when a blade doesn’t work, you have no idea whether it’s because the brand is bad for you or because that particular blade was a dud. (Uncommon, but it does happen.) You can get around this by buying two of the single-blade sampler pack; if you buy individual blades of different brands, you can buy 2 blades of each brand instead of 1. With this modification, Try A Blade seems to be a good source.

Excellent new beginner razor: The Apollo safety razor—stainless steel handle, three-piece design—costs $35 from Amazon and is an excellent razor: here’s my review.

Got hard water? Try using a little citric acid. (Thanks to DarxusC for pointing that out.)

Another good artisanal soap: Hardy Shave Products makes some interesting soaps. My own favorite so far is the Sweet Orange Tea Tree. He’s currently (12/21/13) moving his store, so it will probably be late February or early March before you can order.

Interested in collecting razors? This site will be helpful.

Least expensive starter kit: Here’s an inexpensive start:

$2.45 – BestShave.Net’s No. 6 Horsehair brush – I have this brush and it’s not bad at all. Wet knot thoroughly before you shower and brush is ready to go when the shower’s over. BestShave also has an inexpensive razor: the Yuma, for $1.99. However, quality control is imperfect and handle is quite short. I recommend instead one of the following, all of which are three-piece razors and thus offer the option of using a different handle if you want.

$3.80 – The Apache is a solid stainless-steel razor with a head that works well. It also sells under the names RiMei, Sodial, Silvertone, and probably others. It has a distinctive appearance, though, so it’s easy to spot. DealExtreme also sells it under other names, listed below. The handle is hollow and you can add heft by filling handle with small lead weights.

$4.50 – Sold as a RiMei and including a plastic case.

$4.50 – I believe that this Honglong is the RiMei head, but with a more interesting handle.

$4.90 – RiMei head, somewhat better metal handle.

Excellent new 3-piece razor: As I noted in this article, one sign of a traditional-wetshaving renascence would be the emergence of new manufacturers of traditional shaving equipment. And indeed we see iKon, Tradere, Weber, and now Standard Razors as new manufacturers of DE razors. The new razor from Standard Razors is quite good and interesting because of its various non-standard features, which I describe in this post.

Nice selection of shave kits: I just stumbled across this page.

New on-line vendor in UK: Check out Gallant & Klein.

Good news about Penhaligon: They’ve reformulated their shaving soap, this time to improve its quality. (Apparently the goal of the previous reformulation was purely and simply to cut costs—whatever it was, the quality of the shaving soap dropped off a cliff). Very good news.

A source of samples of shaving soap, cream, aftershave, etc., for the UK: At last there’s a sample store in the UK: Man Machine Sample Shop.

Another new on-line vendor. Double Edge Shaving Place in Singapore.

The origins of Bay Rum: A text from 1861, by John M. Maisch.

And more good artisanal shaving soap: I recommend the shaving soaps from the Los Angeles Shaving Soap company and from Petal Pusher Fancies.

The iKon Slant: See this post for a review of my first use, and this Wicked Edge thread for a discussion that includes a lot more information. Note the suggestion that you might want to treat the Slant to blue the steel—or make it black—and the fact that the iKon Slant head will be sold separately: supply your own handle.

How to Grow a Moustache shaving soap: Read this post for a discussion of the products I tried. I especially like the large-format tub for the shaving soap: a tin 5″ in diameter, which offers a wonderful palette for working up lather. The soap is superb: exceptionally good lather. Putting the soap into a large-diameter tin was a stroke of genius, but the soap can easily stand on its own even as a normal-sized puck. Well worth trying.

Build your own blade sampler pack: Maggard Razors has a nifty service: you can select the brands for your own sampler pack. One could object that the point of sampler packs is that you don’t know which brands will work for you, so how are you supposed to choose? But consider: a complete novice could choose a sampler pack of the least costly brands, looking for a good (for him) brand that doesn’t cost a lot. And someone with more experience can select only the brands he’s not already tried. And someone who bought a regular sampler pack could choose brands that are not in the sampler pack he already bought. Clever idea. Indeed, I’m thinking I might order some of the brands I’ve not tried.

Soften water with a Brita Maxtra filter: Joachim Moeller pointed out in a comment that, while regular Brita filters will not soften water, the Brita Maxtra filter does (along with removing particular matter, etc.). However, before buying a Brita Maxtra filter, I recommend you try a gallon of distilled water (only about $1) to be sure that the water is indeed the source of the problem. If it is, then going forward the Brita Maxtra would be worthwhile. However, I would not recommend that water for cooking or drinking or watering plants: because it uses ion-exchange as the method of softening, the softened water is high in sodium. (A regular Brita filter, which removes only particulate matter and odors, would be better for drinking water—and hard water tastes better and is also a source of calcium.)

Need shaving oil? LOTS of shaving oil? $60 for 2 qts. Not bad. Here’s the place, via this post on Wicked_Edge.

Electroplating service: I’ve not used them, but others have and liked them: ReliableElectroplating.com.

New on-line vendor in Australia: New to me, at any rate: SafetyRazor.com.au.

iKon Stainless Steel Slant: Expected availability late July/early August. Take a look.

ikon.slant

New UK shaving vendor: Niven & Joshua offer free shipping in the UK and have a nice range of products.

Emu oil as a pre-shave: I tried using emu oil for a pre-shave, based on a recommendation on Wicked_Edge.  It worked no better for me than other pre-shave oils, which in general do not work. However, if you do like a pre-shave oil, it’s worth a try.

DIY Bay Rum Aftershave Balm/Butter: This stuff sounds terrific. And I would experiment with it as a pre-shave.

Print your own razor-head protector: Cute.

Razor handles: In general, the handles of three-piece razors are interchangeable, and a few vendors are offering extremely nice handles sold separately. I’m adding them to the reference section, but here they are to date:

When possible, links are directly to the handles page.

Bad batch of J.M. Fraser shaving cream: A comment on a Sharpologist post led me to inquire of BeautyFactory.com (the makers of J.M. Fraser) whether there had been a formula change. I got this response today, 27 May 2013:

Thank you for your note and let me say thank you for your support of our shaving cream over the years. Just so you are aware, there has been no changes in ownership or the formula. We recently found out that our last batch was not “whipped” enough during the compounding stage and as a result the cream is a little too thick/ heavy to get it to lather.  (It will still give a smooth shave—just not enough lather to make it feel just right). We are in the process of getting a replacement batch done and will replace our clients inventory once this batch is filled.

If you have any questions I am always happy to help and I am hoping we can still say on your favourite shaving cream list.

Thank you ! David Kaufman

I’ve asked to buy a tub of the new batch when it’s ready, justs to check. But it sounds as though it was a fluke.

Samples of Thayers witch hazels available again: Thayers didn’t have the sample set for a while, but they’re back now.

New source of samples, including samples from artisans: The Wet Shaving Sample Shop.

New artisanal vendor in Australia: If you live Down Under take a look at Occams for your pre-shave soap, shaving cream, and brush. Doubtless the range of products will grow. Free shipping to Australian customers.

Good source for barber towels: You can get them from Appleton Barber Supply for $10/dozen—and Appleston aslo sells an excellent variety of aftershaves at low cost.

Rubinov’s Professional Barber & Beauty Supply: A brick-and-mortar store in Phoenix that also sells on-line.

Green Mountain shaving soap: Green Mountain offers a triple-milled shaving soap with an interesting puck shape available in a variety of intriguing fragrances—I used Lavender Grapefruit this morning.

If you live in or near Albuquerque NM, look at these photos taken in Model Pharmacy. (Click on title at link to see photos.)

Shaving soap/cream reviews: You might want to subscribe to the RSS feed from Greg’s Shaving Soap Reviews blog to stay on top of the reviews. It’s an easy way to stay abreast of soaps and creams.

Comprehensive post on acne and its treatment and prevention: Inequilibrium has authored a big reddit post on acne. Worth reviewing if you suffer from acne.

Yet another artisanal soapmaker with a good shaving soap: Barrister & Mann I tried this morning, and I like it.

Another artisanal soapmaker: Bathhouse Soapery shaving soaps are quite good.

Homemade aftershave: Another recipe, with step-by-step photos.

New source of blade sampler packs: Maggard Razors, in Michigan.

Another razor refurbisher/replater: Take a look at WestCoastRazors.com if you’re interested in razor work. (They also sell a full line of shaving supplies.) Here’s an example of a Fat Boy replated in black nickel and rhodium:

Custom FatBoy

Awesome handles for 3-piece razors: I just learned of UFO Razor Handles, a bilingual Spanish/English site that offers handles in a variety of designs and sizes, executed in Stainless or Titanium (the Titan series). Beautiful workmanship:

UFO handle

New vendor: Both brick-and-mortar (in Adrian, MI) and on-line: Maggard Razors, which despite the name offers a full line of wetshaving products. The proprietor is friendly and approachable, and the site seems to be growing pretty fast, so revisit every few weeks to see what new goodies they have on offer.

Another lather-warmer idea: misterchief177 suggested this electric candle warmer as a lather warmer in a comment on Wicked Edge. I haven’t tried it, but he is going to. It seems possible that it will be too hot, though, which would kill the lather. As suggested in the book, the Crockpot Little Dipper does work well.

My new favorite brush: It’s the Wet Shaving Products Monarch High Mountain White, $110 when the next batch is available. Here’s my report.

Under $50 beginner kit: I finally put together an inexpensive intro kit for someone who wants to test the waters (or someone who wants to give a friend a kit so he can test the waters). It’s oriented to Amazon.com, so is US-centric. I went with Amazon because that seems to be the target (as it were) for quite a few novices. You can pass along the link to friends who are curious but don’t want to over-commit at the first step. Although the brush is excellent and can continue to be used indefinitely, I think most will eventually want to upgrade to a better razor—an Edwin Jagger, for example.

Intriguing vendor, new to me: I haven’t yet tried Nevermore Body Company‘s products, but this review on Wicked_Edge has convinced me to place an order.

Preliminary feedback on some new razors: I’m still testing, but I wanted to provide a preliminary report. The Weber polished head razor does not work so well for me, certainly not so well as the coated heads (DLC and ARC, though the latter may be gone forever). If you get a Weber, I strongly advise waiting for one of the times the DLC is available.

The RazorRock razor heads (I bought four RazoRocks to test, two straight-bar three-piece, an open-comb three-piece, and a TTO) are harsh for me, easily provoking razor burn. I have tried three different brands of blades but haven’t hit the sweet spot yet. I’m also paying increasingly close attention to blade angle. I know that some shavers like these, but I am having problems still with them.

The new iKon satin-finish straight-bar symmetric three-piece razor works quite well. The head is just side enough so that the blade ends don’t project beyond the head, but you still can easily remove the blade by grasping the short ends of the blade. Extremely nice razor.

New URL for Prairie Creations: The new URL is http://prairie-creations.com/pc/. Links in this post have been updated. From her site:

December 2, 2012 : I had a glitch on my site the last few days which has been fixed now. If you had my site bookmarked you will want to change to URL to http://prairie-creations.com/pc/ which has been changed slightly from what it was to increase site security.

Mitchell’s Wool Fat shaving soap: Link rot fixed for MWF from Carbolic Soap Co. Refill pucks here (US$8); bowl including puck here (US$20.50).

My Nik Is Sealed: Vermont Country Store no longer carries it. Amazon.com has it here, and ShavePlace.com has it here.

Useful gallery of Gillette razors: A gallery of various vintage Gillettes.

The Gillette Slide is the “proper” shaving stroke, according to Gillette: Note this post by HeyRememberThatTime, which contains links to old articles about the technique. The Slide is demonstrated in Mantic59’s video Advanced Shaving Techniques.

Loading the Pils and the iKon S3S (and others of similar design): See this post for a comment on how to load the Pils and iKon and why it can be tricky.

Caution in using essential oils in DIY projects: Note this caution from HeyRememberThatTime on Wicked Edge. Be careful. He was responding to a post that linked to these instructions on a DIY aftershave.

Krampfert’s Finest Bay Rum: I tried Krampfert’s Finest this morning and enjoyed it. It’s a “shake well before using” bay rum, has a good aroma and no sting at all. You can read more about it at the link. I also used my Brent’s brush and this morning noted how pleasant the wood feels in the hand: very nice texture, and quite a good brush.

Note for those trying a distilled-water shave: Bottled drinking water is generally hard water: the dissolved minerals make the water taste better. Also, because the minerals in hard water are dissolved, they cannot be removed simply filtering with (for example) a Brita filter. Nor does simply boiling the water soften it appreciably.

New recommendation for beginner shaving brush: Based on my experience with the Ecotools Bamboo Finishing Kabuki and its quite modest price, I’m now recommending this as a first brush for those who want to test the waters of traditional shaving. I describe the brush and its use in this post. Even if you’re not a beginner, you might want to give the brush a try: it’s quite effective and very pleasant.

Weber ARC no more: The Weber ARC has been discontinued. However, Weber is now offering a “polished head” model. I do not know the fate of the DLC head but it’s not listed as a product.

Repurposing makeup brushes as shaving brushes: This week I’ve been trying various makeup brushes as shaving brushes: Mon – Goat-hair kabuki, Tue – Synthetic kabuki (great success), Wed – Bronzer brush (success with handle adjustment), Thurs – Powder brush. Take a look at the links for the full story and specific brush.

Custom brush handles: Take a look.

Beautiful straight razors: This brand, and here’s a gallery—click on any thumbnail to enlarge the image.

Kabuki makeup brush as a shaving brush: The Ecotools kabuki brush works like a charm. See this post. You can pick one up at Target for around $8.

Storage shelves for soaps and shaving creams: You can get Zip Cabs made to your specified measurements. (And these spice shelves work well for brushes.)

Note update below on Mike’s Natural shaving soap. The secret is to use more water than you normally would.

Another new vendor: The HandleBar Supply is a new on-line shaving vendor with a good line of products. Located in Thousand Oaks, CA.

Edwin Jagger and Mühle metal-handled razors: Good summary review (with very good photos) of the various metal-handled models of the DE8x Edwin Jagger razors and the Mühle R89.

Interview with Mühle on synthetic-fiber shaving brushes: Very interesting interview in Sharpologist.

Mike’s Natural Shaving Soap: When I tried Mike’s Natural before, I had a problem with dying lather, but as people have repeatedly reported how much they like the soap, I decided that the problem may have been that I insufficiently loaded the brush from the sample; so I ordered two full tubs, and on first use, being careful to fully load the brush, the lather worked fine. I’m adding his soap to the list of artisanal vendors.

UPDATE ON MIKE’S NATURAL: It wasn’t so much that I needed to load the brush longer as that I needed more water. This is indeed a very thirsty soap and requires substantially more water than others. Here’s my breakthrough shave. The lather was copious once I added enough water—much more than I would normally add.

Alternative to My Nik Is Sealed: baileysinashoe on Wicked Edge found that My Nik Is Sealed caused a rash, but Pacific Shaving Company’s Nick Stick did not. On looking at the ingredients, he found:

MNIS: Aluminum Chloride, Benzocaine USP, SD Alcohol 38 B, Methylcellulose, Phenyl Salicylate, Bergamot (Citrus Aurantium Bergamia) Oil, Vitamin A & E, Aloe Vera (Aloe Barbadensis) Leaf Juice

Pacific Shaving’s Nick Stick: SD Alcohol (Ethyl Alcohol), Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice, Water (Aqua), Aluminum Chloride Hexahydrate, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil, Hydroxypropylcellulose

The problem seems likely to be a sensitivity to Benzocaine: “Benzocaine sensitivity produces classic allergic contact dermatitis reactions.” Benzocaine does not affect me so My Nik Is Sealed has always worked well for me, but obviously if you have issues with Benzocaine, go with Nick Stick. (FWIW, My Nik Is Sealed works better for me than does Nick Stick.)

New source of soap/shaving cream samples and custom blade samplers: Take a look at All Lathered Up.

Attractive handmade wooden-handled shaving brushes: I haven’t tried one, but they do look nice: Brent’s Brushes.

New on-line vendor in the UK: The continuing emergence of new vendors focused on traditional wetshaving products is, I believe, evidence of the growing trend to this style of shaving. AGreatShave.co.uk is a new vendor featuring (so far) Edwin Jagger and Taylor of Old Bond Street, both excellent choices.

Artisanal soapmakers: I just added to the appendix the list of artisanal soapmakers whose products I’ve tried and like, as clickable links. Thanks to scratchysaurus of WE for bringing the need for that to my attention.

Homemade Bay Rum aftershave: This recipe sounds easy and fragrant. The 6th edition emphasizes DIY shaving products, and I’m going to try this one. (In the meantime, Captain’s Choice remains a favorite.)

Another new DE razor manufacturer: Via this post on Wicked Edge (click photo at link to enlarge), I discovered Above the Tie.

Interesting comment on learning to shave with the Slant Bar: This comment in a thread on ShaveNook.com describes how one shaver transformed his Slant Bar experience (and opinion).

Dangers of shaving pubic hair: Body shaving has lately come to include pubic hair. This article in Salon points out the risks associated with the practice.

Adjustable razor as angle-trainer: In comments to this post, Chrom suggests that an adjustable razor—in his case the Gillette Super Adjustable—can be used to teach the proper angle by setting the razor on the mildest possible setting, which for the Gillette Adjustables is “1”. At that setting, some adjustables will not cut the stubble at all unless the angle is exactly right. If you have an adjustable, it’s worth a try, but my fear is that novices will try to compensate by using more pressure rather than by changing the angle. Still, it’s an intriguing idea.

1. Forums

Art of Manliness Real-Shaving group

Badger & Blade

Damn Fine Shave

RazorandBrush (message board and link to sales board)

RazorAndStone

Shave Bazaar (buy/sell/trade only)

ShaveCanada

ShaveMyFace

Shave Nook

Straight Razor Place

The Shave Den

The Shaving Room

Wicked Edge

2. Reference

BruceOnShaving

Gillette Rockets (British equivalent of Super Speed)

Gillette date codes

Gillette historical pricing strategies (razors-and-blades myth)

Mantic’s shaving videos

Mr-Razor.com (in German: use Google Translate for other languages)

Museum of Safety Razors

Razor Archive (old Gillette ads)

Schick Injectors

Sharpologist.com

ShaveInfo.com

Shaving 101

Wicked_Edge Deals (special offers on shaving stuff)

Garry’s Sample Shop and Shaving product samples sources (check fragrance, test for skin sensitivity, etc.)

3. Blade Sampler Packs

Blade sampler packs are available from:

3a. Artisanal soapmakers

Following are artisanal soapmakers whose products I’ve used and like.

3.b. Samples of shaving products

The artisanal soapmakers listed above sell samples of their soaps, shaving creams, aftershaves, and so on. For commercial products, you can buy samples from:

3.c. Razor handles sold separately

Links below are directly to the handles page when possible.

4. Vendors

Following is a list of representative vendors patronized by the wetshaving community. This list is volatile, so you may want to recheck it as new vendors come on-line.

  • = complete vendor (shaving brushes, soaps, creams, razors, blades, aftershaves)

H = handmade shaving soap, creams, lotions, aftershaves, and so on.

C = happy to accept calls from men seeking product advice

Above the Tie – info@abovethetie.com – A very interesting store with many fine vintage razors and shaving products and soon to offer their own stainless DE razor.

A Great Shave – A new on-line vendor featuring (so far) Edwin Jagger and Taylor of Old Bond Street. Located in the UK.

Al’s Shaving Products – contact form on the site – Exceptional shaving creams made by a straight-razor shaver initially for his own use. Try the 7-day pack of samples as an introduction. He also makes aftershave splashes and balms. The fragrances are excellent and he offers customer-fragranced shaving cream.

Appleton Barber Supply – 800-236-0456 Central Time –info@appletonbarbersupply.com – Primarily of interest for great selection of aftershaves (at link). Also sells barber towels for $10/dozen.

Art of Shaving – 800-696-4999 Eastern Time – Art of Shaving shaving cream and soap and aftershave, Merkur (shave oil found by many to be too gummy). Soaps and brushes excellent but expensive; limited range of DE shaving equipment.

Atkinson’s – info@atkinsonsofvancouver.com – 604-736-3368 800-803-0233 Pacific Time – Plisson

BadgerBrush.net – This site offers attractive handcrafted shaving brushes and DE razors (with Edwin Jagger heads). A wide variety of woods are used. It also sells supplies for making your own brushes.

Barclay Crocker – sales@barclaycrocker.com – 800-536-1866 – Many brands of Bay Rum, Merkur, Proraso, Musgo Real (including Glyce Lime Oil pre-shave soap), Geo.F Trumper, Truefitt & Hill, Taylor of Old Bond St, Col Conk, Woods of Windsor, Caswell Massey, Shave Brushes & Mugs, Barclay Crocker Custom Scenting.

Barrister & Mann – Artisanal shaving soaps. Contact form at Web site.

Best Grooming Tools – customerservice@bestgroomingtools.com – Wide selection includes Col. Conk, Dovo, Erasmic, D. R. Harris, Edwin Jagger, Merkur, Muehle, Musgo Real, Parker, Proraso, Simpson, Speick, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Valobra.

BestShave.net – 90 0224 413 2710 – bestshave.net – 90 0224 413 2710 – There’s also a contact form on the Web site. Located in Bursa, Turkey. – Arko, Astra, Coll, Derby, Gibbs, Permasharp, Racer, Rapira, Shark, SuperMax. Free shipping on blades.

Blankety Blanks  –  djb@blankity-blanks.com – 512-263-8355 Central Time – Artisanal shaving brushes and supplies for making your own shaving brush (scroll down at link)

BM Vintage Shaving –  sales@bmvintageshaving.com – 760-799-5539 Pacific Time – Col. Conk, Derby, Dovo, Edwin Jagger, Gessato, Merkur, Vulfix.

Bon Savon – info@bonsavon.com – 877-832-4635 Pacific Time – Provence Santé, Pre de Provence, Swedish Summer Soap, Lightfoot’s Shaving Soap

Bramble Berry – 877-627-7883 Pacific Time – Soapmaking supplies, including Melt & Pour Base for shaving soap: add your own fragrance.

Bull Goose Shaving Supplies – BullGoose@bullgooseshaving.net – Astra, Cyril R. Salter, Derby, Erasmic, Feather, Lord, Merkur, Omega, Proraso, Shark, Simpsons, Speick, Tabac, Taylor. Offers blade sampler packs.

Carbolic Soap Co. – Mitchell’s Wool Fat Shaving Soap (best price, even with shipping from the UK)

Classic Edge – 416-574-1592 Eastern Time – Has straight razors in addition to DE razors. Arko, Col. Conk, Derby, Dovo, D.R. Harris, Edwin Jagger, Feather, G.B. Kent, Lea, Merkur, Palmolive, Parker, Proraso, RazoRock,

CH* Classic Shaving – info@classicshaving.com – 760-288-4178 Pacific Time – Cyril R. Salter, Dovo, Feather, Merkur, Proraso, Rooney, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Thiers-Issard, Truefitt & Hill, Vulfix, Zowada

Connaught Shaving – info@suffolksupplies.co.uk – 07963 325842 – Arko, Carter & Bond, Derby, Gillette, Merkur, Mitchell’s Wool Fat Shaving Soap, Parker, Proraso, Treet. Offers blade sampler packs.

The Copper Hat – Located in Victoria, BC: They offer their own line of brushes, plus Parker and vintage safety razors, and products by Adam, Alpa, Pitralon, TrueShave, and Williams.

Crabtree & Evelyn – 800-272-2873 Eastern Time – Edwin Jagger, C&E Shaving creams and soaps and aftershave.

Details for Men – 888-680-2857 Eastern Time –contact@detailsformen.com – Art of Shaving, Derby, Feather, Gentlemens Refinery, Gillette, Musgo Real (including MR GLO), Pré de Provence, Proraso, Provence Santé, l’Occitane, Merkur, Muehle Pinsel, Speick, Valobra, Williamson, and others. Offers blade sampler packs.

eBarbershop – sales@eBarbershop.com – Col. Conk, Crabtree & Evelyn, Merkur, Personna, Pinaud, Woods of Windsor — quite a wide variety of aftershaves and cologne.

eBay – At the link is a list of eBay offerings, including bulk-purchase Israeli and Derby blades, safety razors of all kinds, and the like. List sorted by newly listed, but can be resorted to find auctions ending soonest.

Elite Razor – robert.d.quinn@eliterazor.com – 404-918-2345 Central Time – Offers a wide variety of razors and brushes with handles custom-crafted of wood, stone, or neo-resinate. Worth browsing for special gifts for traditional shavers.

H* Em’s Shave Place – emily@shaveplace.com – Crystal, Derby, Dovo, Em’s (shaving soaps and creams, aftershaves, lotions in wide variety of fragrances), Feather, Geo. F. Trumper, Merkur, Musgo Real, Omega, Proraso, Simpsons, Speick, Tabac, My Nik Is Sealed. Also: see ShaveInfo.com

C* Enchante Online – enchantetx@sbcglobal.net – 888-220-2927 Central Time – Derby, D.R. Harris, Feather, Geo. F. Trumper, Israeli Personna, Merkur, Shavemaster, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Wilkinson.

Esquires of Piccadilly – sales@esquires.com.au – +618 9324 1101 Perth time – Dovo, Merkur, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Vulfix.

Executive Shaving Company – Cyril R. Salter, Dovo, D.R. Harris, Edwin Jagger, Geo. F. Trumper, Rooney, Merkur, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Thiers Issard, Truefitt & Hill

Fendrihan – www.fendrihan.com – info@fendrihan.com – 905-230-1254 Eastern time. Col. Conk, Derby, D. R. Harris, Gold Dachs, J.M. Fraser, Merkur, Musgo Real, Simpsons, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Valobra, Vulfix, Kent shaving soap (same as Mitchell’s Wool Fat). Offers blade sampler packs.

  • Gallant & Klein – hello@gallantandklein.co.uk – Growing selection of equipment and supplies for traditional DE shaving.

Garry’s Sample Shop – A great resource for buying samplers of various shaving products (soaps, shaving creams, aftershaves, balms, and the like) so you can test them (for example, on your forearm) to be sure that you have no sensitivities that would preclude your use. Obviously, you also get a chance to check fragrance, lathering, etc.

G.B. Kent & Sons PLC – vjp@kentbrushes.com – +44(0)1442-232623 – G.B. Kent shaving brushes (and hair brushes), Kent shaving cream and shaving soap (shaving soap is same Mitchell’s Wool Fat Shaving Soap).

The Gentleman’s Groom Room – +44 (0) 1382 801504 – Arko, Arran Aromatics, Czech & Speake, Essence of Scotland, Floris, G.B. Kent, Geo. F. Trumper, Merkur, Mitchell’s Wool Fat, Omega, Osma, Parker, Simpson, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Timor.

The Gentleman’s Shop – sales@gentlemans-shop.com – 01488 683536 / 684363 (UK) – Art of Shaving, Castle Forbes, Dovo, D.R. Harris, Edwin Jagger, G.B. Kent, Geo. F. Trumper, Merkur, Rooney, Simpsons, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Truefitt & Hill. The G.B. Kent brush is an exceptional brush for soaps, and the BK4 is the best all-round size.

H The Gentlemens Refinery – 866-444-7428 Mountain Time. Excellent shaving creams, aftershave balms, shave oil, shaving brushes. Products manufactured by a fourth-generation barber.

Gifts and Care – contacto@giftsandcare.com –  (+34) 96 3400 220 in Spain – Lots of horsehair brushes, including horsehair and boar mix and horsehair and badger mix, in a range of grades. Also, Castle Forbes, Floïd, La Toja, Lea, Merkur, Myrsol, Proraso, Taylor of Old Bond Street. They also carry an extensive collection of makeup brushes.

Ginger’s Garden  – Handmade “shaving-cream soap” that lathers abundantly and is available is a wide variety of fragrances. Also available is a glycerin soap. Soap comes as pucks, in tubs, or as shave sticks.

The Golden Nib – Supplies for making your own brush: badger knots, handle blanks, razor heads, and more.

Green Moutntain Soap – A very nice line of triple-milled shaving soaps in triple-milled pucks of an unusual shape. Interesting fragrances and a very good lather: worth a try.

The Groomed Man – 0844 8120465 – Cyril R. Salter, D.R. Harris, Derby, Dovo, Edwin Jagger, G.B. Kent, Merkur, Mühle, Simpsons, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Timor, Wilkinson

  • The HandleBar Supply – 805-317-4283 Pacific Time – Arko, Astra, Captain’s Choice, Caswell-Massey, C.O. Bigelow, Col. Conk, Derby, Dorco, Feather, Geo. F. Trumper, Gillette, Merkur, Shark, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Vie-Long, Vulfix

Hardy Shave Products – Some very nice shaving soaps—try the Sweet Orange Tea Tree, for example.

Highland MensCare – service@highlandmenscare.com – 877-284-1887 Eastern time – Acca Kappa, Anthony Logistics, Art of Shaving, Bluebeards Original, Castle Forbes, D.R. Harris & Co., Edwin Jagger, Feather, Gentlemens Refinery, Geo. F. Trumper, G.B. Kent, Lucky Tiger, Merkur, Musgo Real, Personna, Pre de Provence, Proraso, Royall Lyme, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Truefitt & Hill, Wilkinson Sword.

Himage – 1300 349 020 in South Melbourne – Astra, Castle Forbes, Coates, Col. Conk, Geo. F. Trumper, Mama Bear, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Truefitt & Hill, Cyril R. Salter, Derby, Dovo, Merkur, Proraso, Mitchell’s Wool Fat, Mühle, Pashana, Simpsons, Vulfix, Semogue, Thayers

Honeybee Soaps – Honeybeespa@att.net –  Handmade shea butter shaving soaps, along with broad line of handmade creams, lotions, shampoos, and other toiletries. Wide variety of fragrances. Note: URL is http://www.honeybeesoaps.net

Ian Tang’s Shaving Workshop – Frank Shaving brushes: well-made but inexpensive badger shaving brushes.

iKon Razors –  Stainless iKon razors in a variety of designs, Feather blades, knobs for the Merkur Progress, stainless knurled razor handles, and other offerings.

The Invisible Edge – Cutthroat razors and supplies in the UK.

Italian Barber –  support@italianbarber.com – 647-800-4622 Eastern time – Specializes in Italian shave products, but has wide range: Acca Kappa, Atkinson, Bolzano, Booster, Cella, Col. Conk, Cremo Cream, Feather, Geo. F. Trumper, iKon, J.M. Fraser, Lord, Merkur, Omega, Palmolive, Proraso, Rapira, Valobra, Wilkinson Sword.

Kell’s Original –  dan.kell@kellsoriginal.com – A variety of excellent shaving soaps made with hemp oil, aloe vera, or a combination, in a variety of fragrances, including unscented.

Kinetic Blue – Astra, Dorco, Geo. F. Trumper, Merkur, Mühle Pinsel, Penhaligon, Truefitt & Hill.  Blade sampler pack available.

KnifeCenter.com – 800-338-6799 – Altesse, Col. Conk, Dovo, Kent, Merkur, Omega, Parker, Pre de Provence, Thiers Issard.

Lee’s Razors – leesrazors@aol.com – 800-503-5001 Eastern Time – Col. Conk, Derby, Dovo, Feather, Geo. F. Trumper, Merkur, Mitchell’s Wool Fat Shaving Soap, Musgo Real (including Glyce Lime Oil pre-shave soap), Proraso, Simpsons, Vulfix.

Lijun Brush – Inexpensive shaving brushes of reasonable quality from China.

London’s Bathecary – 434-220-0540 Eastern Time – Caswell Massey, Floris London, Geo. F. Trumper, Lightfoot’s, Mitchell’s Wool Fat Shaving Soap, Penhaligon’s, Taylor of Old Bond Street.

Maggard Razors – 517-990-7002 Eastern Time – maggardrazors@gmail.com – physical store at 124 Maiden Lane,  Adrian, MI 49221 – C.O. Bigelow, Captain’s Choice, Edwin Jagger, Omega, Parker, Simpson, Taconic Bay, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Van der Hagen. Also offers straight razors and related supplies, along with restoration services. Sells blade sampler packs.

Mama Bear – sclark@core.com – Full line of handmade shaving soap, shaving stick, shaving cream, aftershaves, along with regular soaps. Wide variety of fragrances. Also containers (make your own shave stick), alum bar.

MasonRazorWorks.com – Does restoration, repair, honing, scale replacement, and other services for straight razors.

Men’s Biz – 1300 784 789 – service@mensbiz.com.au – Astra, Col. Conk, Derby, Dovo, eShave, Feather, Geo. F. Trumper, Men-u, Merkur, Musgo Real, Personna, Proraso, Taylor of Old Bond Street.

men-ü – 800-987-6790 Central time – their own line: shaving creams and soaps, shaving brushes, and aftershaves. They offer an excellent synthetic-bristle brush.

Moss Scuttle – 902-657-3215 Atlantic Time -The famous Moss Scuttle along with a wide variety of pottery and hooked rugs.

Mühle-Pinsel – info@muehle-shaving.com – German company. Baxter of California, D.R. Harris, Edwin Jagger, Geo. F. Trumper, Mühle-Pinsel, Proraso.

Mystic Water Soap for Men  – info@mysticwatersoap.com – 240-396-6831 Eastern Time – a good variety of excellent shaving soaps, tallow-based soaps using tallow from grass-fed beef raised locally in Maryland.

Nashville Knife Shop – info@nashvilleknifeshop.com – 812-988-9800 Central Time – Col. Conk, Cremo Cream, Derby, Dovo, D.R. Harris, Merkur, Mühle, Proraso.

Nancy Boy – contact@nancyboy.com – 888-746-2629 Pacific Time – Nancy Boy products, good for sensitive skin.

Nanny’s Silly Soap Company – Many fragrances of handmade soft shaving soap.

New Forest Brushes – Handmade fine badger shaving brushes at very reasonable prices.

NkdMan.co.uk – customer.support@nkdman.co.uk – Art of Shaving, Czech & Speake, Edwin Jagger, Merkur, Mühle, Proraso, Simpsons, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Truefitt & Hill

l’Occitane – 888-623-2880 – Cade line of shaving soap and cream, aftershave shea butter balm.

Olivia Shaving Soaps – German company. Handmade shaving soaps and creams; Crema Sapone Cella.

Orient Outlet – An outlet for a Turkish store. Large selection of blades and Arko products.

Pacific Shaving Company – Shaving oil, liquid styptic in applicator.

Penchetta Pen & Knife – 480-575-0729 – Primarily custom brushes and razors, but also stock Omega, Simpson, and Vulfix brushes and shaving creams and Parker razors.

Pens of the Forest – Handmade shaving brushes and razors in unusual designs, with option of coin in base. Also sells fountain pens, penknives, etc.

  • The Portugal Online Shop – theportugalonlineshop.com – info@theportugalonlineshop.com – portugalonlineshop@gmail.com – +351 962 774 286 Portugal – 444, Antiga Barbearia de Bairro, Ach Brito, Confiança, Musgo Real, Semogue. Many different pre-shave soaps available.

Prairie Creations – Handmade shaving soaps and creams, including shave sticks. The soaps are based on tallow or tallow combined with lanolin, with choices of scented, essential oils, or unscented.

Pureman.com.au – info@pureman.com.au – (07) 3012 7990 in Brisbane – Astra, Baxter of California, Cella, Col. Conk, Derby, eShave, Feather, Floris, Geo. F. Trumper, men-ü, Merkur, Personna, Proraso, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Truefitt & Hill.

CH* QED – qed@quod.com – 401-433-4045 Eastern Time – Castle Forbes, Cyril R. Salter, Geo. F. Trumper, Merkur, Musgo Real, Omega, QEDman (his own line of soaps and lotions), Proraso, Savile Row, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Truefitt & Hill.

Queen Charlotte Soaps – info@queencharlottesoaps.com – Excellent handmade shaving soaps and shaving creams, along with shampoo bars, bath soaps, etc. The shaving soap contains tallow, palm oil, and coconut oil for a creamy lather; avocado, castor, and olive oil for skin conditioning; cocoa, shea butter, glycerin, and aloe vera extract for moisturizing; kaolin clay for a slickness; and natural vitamin E as an antioxidant.

Razor and Brush: The content from the old Razor and Brush remains available at the link.

Razor Blades and More – 323-362-6201 Pacific time – has blade sampler packs; Col. Conk, Cyril R. Salter, Edwin Jagger, Floïd, La Toja, Pinaud, Proraso, Malaspina, men-ü, Mühle, Musgo Real, Omega, Palmolive, Parker, Irisch Moos, Tabac, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Wei-Shi.

RazorsDirect.com – 888-445-0224 Eastern Time – carries a good variety of razors (which this site calls “handles” rather than “razors”), and does offer a blade sampler pack. I’ve not ordered from them.

RazorPlate.com – Razor restoration and replating. Gets very good reviews.

TheRazorShop.com – 0422 953 284 Brisbane, Australia – Comoy, Dovo, King of shaves, Merkur, Otoko Organics, Proraso, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Shavemac, Vulfix, Truefitt & Hill, Zenith.

Restored Razors – dave@restoredrazors.com – (0)7885 488189 – Does razor replating in nickel, silver, gold, or rhodium. Also sells vintage straight razors.

Retrorazor – chaddmbennett@retrorazor.com – Derby, Weishi, starter gift-packs, shaving workshops in Seattle

Royal Shave – info@royalshave.com – 800-801-0769 Pacific Time – Calani, Castle Forbes, Col. Conk, Edwin Jagger, Feather, Gold Dachs, D.R. Harris, Hasslinger, G.B. Kent, Merkur, Mitchells Wool Fat, Mühle, Parker, Pils, Plisson, Simpson, Speick, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Thater, Geo. F. Trumper, Truefitt & Hill, Vulfix.

SafetyRazors.co.uk – info@safetyrazors.co.uk – +44 (0) 0845 009 0053 – Merkur, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Cyril R. Salter, Simpsons. Also sells vintage razors. Contact for information about replating nickel-plated razors.

Saint Charles Shave – sue@saintcharlesshave.com – Handmade shaving soaps, creams, aftershaves, lotions, eau de toilettes.

Scodioli – Etsy vendor of handmade shaving soap, cologne, and other grooming supplies.

Sesto Sento – info@sesto-senso.com – 301-668-5018 – Castle Forbes, Geo. F. Trumper, Merkur, Musgo Real (including Glyce Lime Oil pre-shave soap), Omega, Pashana, Proraso, QED Shaving Sticks, Savile Row brushes, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Truefitt & Hill, Vulfix shaving cream.

Shaveabuck.com – info@shaveabuck.com – 732-239-2607 Eastern time – A very broad selection including items hard to find in the US, at good prices. Includes Arko, Astra, Bea, Boots, De Vergulde Hand, Delong, Derby, Edwin Jagger, Erasmic, Feather, Frank, Godrej, James Bronnley, Kappus, G.B. Kent, Lavanda, Lea, Lightfoot’s, Lord, Malizia, Merkur, Mitchell’s Wool Fat, Mühle, Parker, Pitralon, Rapira, Sabi, Shark, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Timor, Treet, Valobra, Wars, Wilkinson

  • The Shave Butler – A Portuguese store; Bolzano, Col. Conk, Derby, Elios, Feather (blades and razors), Institut Karité, Iridium, Lavanda, Merkur, Mitchell’s Wool Fat, Mühle, Musgo Real, O Melhor, Proraso, Semogue, Top Secret, Veleiro

The Shave Den Shop – part of The Shave Den Forum. Nice selection of shaving soaps and creams, both with fragrance oils and essential oils, along with aftershaves, colognes, and the like. Well worth a visit.

Shavemac – info@shavemac.de – Dovo, Haslinger, Merkur, Olivesoap, Shavemac, Speick, Tabac, Weleda.

Shave Nation – 866-388-2088 Central Time – Cella, Col. Conk, Dovo, Edwin Jagger, Feather, Geo. F. Trumper, Mühle, Parker, Proraso, RazoRock, Taconic, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Tweezerman, Vitos. Has blade sampler packs. Lots of stuff for the straight-razor shaver.

The Shaver Shop – askus@shavershop.com – Col. Conk, Edwin Jagger, Geo. F. Trumper, HeadBlade, Merkur.

Shave-Shack.com.au – enquiries@shave-shack.com.au – +61 (0)430 300 635 – The Otoko Organics shaving soap (under “Modern Shaving”) is remarkable. Also, Castle Forbes, Fitjar, Frank Shaving, Goodfella, Otoko, Proraso, Simpsons, Vulfix, Weishi.

Shave Shed – (03) 9005 6717 in Victoria, Australia – Col. Conk, Derby, Feather, Irisch Moos, Merkur, Mitchell’s Wool Fat, Palmolive Proraso, Tabac, Taylor of Old Bond Street.

Shavetools.com – 424-274-2838 Central Time – Astra, Cella, D.R. Harris, Gillette, Merkur, Omega, Parker, Proraso, Rapira, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Valobra, Vie-Long, Vulfix.

Shaving.ie – info@shaving.ie – 01 5240758 – Located in Ireland. Arko, Cella, Dovo, D.R. Harris, Edwin Jagger, Feather, Floïd, Geo. F. Trumper, Merkur, Mühle, Musgo Real, Omega, Parker, Pashana, Proraso, Semogue, Simpson, Speick, Tabac, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Timor, Vitos

Shaving Shack – enquiries@shaving-shack.com – 01752 898191 – Check out the Otok0 Organics in particular. Cyril Salter, Derby, Dovo of Solingen, D.R. Harris, Edwin Jagger, Erasmic, Feather, G.B. Kent & Sons, Merkur, Mitchell’s Wool Fat Soap, Musgo Real, Omega, Otoko Organics, Parker, Plisson, Proraso, Simpsons, Speick, Tabac, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Truefitt & Hill, Vulfix.

ShavingStuff.com – shavingstuff@shavingstuff.com –  Not a vendor, but a site that routinely reviews shaving equipment and supplies, from time to time finding things of interest to traditional wetshavers.

ShavingStyle.com– 647-773-1414 10:00 am – 8:00 pm Eastern time – Castle Forbes, Coates, Col. Conk, Cyril R. Salter, Dovo, Dubl Duck, Edwin Jagger, Goodfella, Merkur, Mühle, Omega, Proraso, RazoRock, Semogue, Simpsons, Tabac, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Vulfix, Wilkinson.

ShoeboxShaveshop.com – shoeboxshaveshop@yahoo.com – 786-200-2774 (between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. Eastern Time) –  Anherb, Arko, Cella, Erasmic, Figaro, Fitness, Institut Karité, Lord, Mitchell’s Wool Fat, Omega, Pre De Provence, PREP, Proraso, Speick, Tabac, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Treet, Weishi.Offers blade sampler packs.

Smallflower – Voice 800-252-0275 Central time – fax 773-989-8108 – Geo. F. Trumper, Mitchell’s Wool Fat, Muhle Pinsel, Musgo Real (including Glyce Lime Oil pre-shave soap), Pre de Provence, Provence Santé, Proraso, Speick, Tabac.

Straight Razor Designs – service@straightrazordesigns.com – Baxter of California, Castle Forbes, D.R. Harrris, Heirloom Razor, Maestro Livi, Merkur, Truefitt & Hill. Both straight and safety razor products.

Strop Shoppe – kali@stropshoppe.com – Handmade shaving soaps by a biochemist from excellent ingredients (stearic acid, glycerin, coconut oil, palm oil, rice bran oil, and fragrance). Soaps lather quickly and abundantly. Also offers shaving brushes from Whipped Dog.

The Superior Shave – admin@thesuperiorshave.com – 904-482-1175 Eastern Time – Derby, Dovo, Feather, Merkur, Mühle, Omega, Parker, Proraso, Simpson, Thiers-Issard, Valobra, Vulfix.

Superlather – help@superlather.com – 727.483.5639 Eastern time – Alt Innsbruck, Erasmic, Floïd, Ingraam, Irisch Moos, Noxema, P.160, Palmolive, Pitralon, Proraso.

Total-Shave.nl – This is the English-language storefront of a vendor in the Netherlands. Arko, Cella, Derby, Feather, Omega, Palmolive, Parker, Proraso, Sharp, Speick, Super-Max, Tabac, Vergulde Hand, Wilkinson

Tradere Razors – offers a stainless steel open-comb razor and also the handle sold separately.

Traditional Shaving Company — Astra, Colonel Conk, Crystal, Cyril R Salter, Derby, Edwin Jagger, Feather, Mama Bears Soaps, Merkur, Osma, Personna, Saint Charles Shave, Simpsons, Taylor of Old Bond Street, and Truefitt and Hill.

Traditional Shaving Supplies – info@traditionalshaving.com – +353 1 5240 758 in Dublin, Ireland. Acca Kappa, Astra, Cella, Coates, Edwin Jagger, G.B. Kent, Feather, La Toja, Merkur, Mitchells Wool Fat, Mühle, Omega, Semogue, Simpson, Speick, Sputnik, Tabac, Timor.

Tulumba – info@tulumba.com – 866-885-8622 Eastern Time – Arko, alum block.

C* Vintage Blades LLC – jim@vintagebladesllc.com – 410-357-8055 Eastern Time – Col. Conk, Dovo, D.R. Harris, Floris London, Merkur, Rooney, Shavemac, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Thayers, Truefitt & Hill, Vulfix.

Vintage Scent – Worth browsing for brands you won’t find elsewhere: 444, Confianca, Floïd, La Toja, Lavanda, LEA, Semogue

Weber Razor – service@weberrazor.com – An artisanal solid stainless-steel three-piece razor, available in two models, one whose head coated with “diamond-like carbon” and another with  ”ARC” (Advanced Razor Coating). They also sell the stainless handle separately.

C* The Well Shaved Gentleman – 443-717-3969 Eastern Time – Strops for straight razors.

  • WestCoastRazors.com –   – 714-356-8222 Pacific Time – ocrazorman@gmail.com – Stunning restorations (using, for example, black nickel and rhodium on a Fat Boy), along with shaving supplies.

West Coast Shaving – contact@westcoastshaving.com – 877-710-6037 Pacific Time – Cella, Gillette, Goodfella, Merkur, Mitchell, Proraso, Shavemac, Taylor of Old Bond Street, Valobra.  Offers blade sampler packs.

WhippedDog.com – Secondhand straight razors of good steel restored to shaving shape. Feather Popular DE razor. Very good brushes at very good prices. Knots and other supplies to make your own razors. Free shipping. Good place for beginners to acquire a good starter kit at a low price.. Check out his free introductory guide to straight-razor shaving (PDF).

Endnotes

[1] Epicurus and (of course) the Wikipedia entry.

[2] Mihály Csíkszentmihályi: Flow discussedFlow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience ( for inexpensive copies).

[3] Sharpologist article “Shaving-Tool Innovation and the Weber Razor” – and  Harvard Business Review blog post on Gillette strategy in India (note comments at the link).

[4] Obsidian razor macrophotograph

[5] Obsidian razor shave: See here and here (betelgeux from Wicked_Edge).

[6] Miracle shaving device (Amazon review)

[7] Bruce Everiss low-cost high-luxury kit

[8] Whipped Dog beginner kit

[9] Skin care

[10] Gillette statement of cartridge life

[11] Andrew Webster shaving-cost Excel spreadsheet

[12] Cognitive dissonance

[13] Ben Franklin story.

[14] Life changes from new self-regard

[15] Another personal-renewal note ; and another

[16] Kamasori razors

[17] The Art of the Straight-Razor ShavePDF and book

[18] Straight Razor Shaving; also the discussion in this thread

[19] Wilkinson technology

[20] Intellectual-property law

[21] Gillette strategy in India

[22] Changing for Good

[23] Shy/bold in animals

[24] Explorer/settler brain chemistry

[25] Revisiting Mach 3

[26] “What was I thinking?

[27] Returning to cartridges

[28] Women using DE razors

[29] eBay safety razors

[30] Read what brderj and DEsquire say

[31] Getting to Yes (inexpensive secondhand copies)

[32] Predictably Irrational (secondhand copies)

[33] Restoring old brush: Part 1Part 2; Part 3

[34] Wire-bending tool

[35] Videos by Mantic59

[36] Videos by betelgeux (theshockwav)

[37] Mantic59’s Advanced Shaving Techniques video

[38] Interactive beard-map diagram

[39] Photosensitivity

[40] Potentially harmful cosmetic ingredients: list1  and list2  for two lists; also search for “harmful cosmetics ingredients”

[41] Tallow as plant product

[42] Hair conditioners

[43] Ach. Brito Glyce Lime Glycerin soap

[44] Pre-shave soaps

[45] 100% glycerin

[46] Pre-shave oil recipes

[47] indiexsunrise shave oil recipe

[48] Softens the beard

[49] Hydrosol

[50] Somewhat drier

[51] Synthetic bristlesEdwin Jagger synthetic brushesMühle synthetic brushes

[52] Advantages of synthetic bristles

[53] Horsehair brush anthrax scare

[54] Suribachi bowl\

[55] Semogue 2000, but I suggest you avoid it

[56] Omega boar family

[57] Guide to boar brushes

[58] Several grades

[59] Made by hand

[60] Clear differences

[61] Vulfix brushes

[62] Simpson brushes: See at Em’s Shave Place, Gentleman’s Shop, and Lee’s Razors

[63] Gary Young on the Wee Scot

[64] Rod Neep artisanal shaving brushes

[65] Rooney brushes: See at Vintage Blades LLC and Classic Shaving

[66] Emilion, Victorian, and Thäter with hooked tips: See this thread (includes photos)

[67] Gary Young on hooked bristles

[68] Andrew’s close-up photos of hooked tips

[69] Simpson measurements

[70] Omega brushes

[71] Omega brush measurements

[72] Kent brushes (also has Rooney and Edwin Jagger brushes). The BK4 is the best size.

[73] Bruce Everiss review of Morris & Forndran brushes

[74] Bruce Everiss review of New Forest brushes

[75] Wooden-handled brushes

[76] Shaving brush innovations

[77] One video

[78] Some nice accessories

[79] Mühle travel brush

[80] Anatomy of hair shaft

[81] Brush cleaning

[82] Gold Dachs Shaving Brush cleaner

[83] M.A.C. brush cleaner

[84] Moss Scuttle

[85] Dr. Moss quotation

[86] Georgetown Pottery

[87] Robert’s Feats of Clay

[88] Dirty Bird Pottery:  See tinyurl.com/3s2twxf

[89] Rival Little Dipper lathering bowl

[90] Air well

[91] Water softener technology and options

[92] Sunbeam Hot Shot

[93] Zojirushi hot-water dispenser

[94] UtiliTEA kettle

[95] Surprising improvement from distilled water

[96] Hard-water regions

[97] Using scuttle for distilled-water shave

[98] J.M. Fraser’s shaving cream

[99] High praise

[100] Nancy Boy shaving cream

[101] An illustrated guide

[102] Mitchell’s Wool Fat Shaving Soap

[103] Tabac shaving soap

[104] Rivivage shaving soap

[105] Virgilio Valobra shaving soap

[106] Bruce Everiss review of Otoko soap

[107] Essence of Scotland shaving soaps: available from The Gentleman’s Groom Room (UK) and Razor Emporium (US).

[108] Bramble Berry melt-and-pour shaving soap base; also a Wicked_Edge thread; and

another recipe, at About.com

[109] More information

[110] This excellent tutorial

[111] Video referenced above

[112] A shaving stick container

[113] Superlather video

[114] StraightRazorPlace superlather tutorial

[115] Gillette myth (giving away razors to blades)

[116] Microphotographs

[117] Blade reviews with photos

[118] Feather Blade Safe

[119] Pacific Handy Cutters blade bank

[120] The Art of the Straight-Razor Shave, by Chris Moss—book or PDF—and  introduction to straight-razor shaving by Larry of WhippedDog.com

Excellent introduction to straights

[121] Three types of razors

[122] Razor handles from Pens of the Forest

[123] Edwin Jagger razor head

[124] Edwin Jagger razors

[125] Inadvertent blind comparison

[126] Whipped Dog beginner kit

[127] Bruce Everiss and the three razor shave: See (in sequence) One and Two and Three

[128] Slant Bar history

[129] Slant works well

[130] Gillette slide

[131] Loading Progress

[132] This advice (Futur)

[133] Vision user’s manual

[134] Tradere razor review by mpperry

[135] Diamond-Like Carbon

[136] Common Gillette razors

Also see these Super Speeds

[137] Dates of Gillette razors

[138] Fat Boy disassembly instructions

[139] Lady Gillette photos

[140] Wilkinson Sword Classic review by Bruce Everiss

[141] Eclipse Red Ring review by Bruce Everiss

[142] Schick Injector

[143] GEM G-Bar

[144] Schick various models

[145] Pella single-edged blades

[146] Ultrasonic cleaning

[147] Bleached Fat Boy

[148] Art of Manliness on restoring razors

[149] Maas metal polish

[150] Holding the tip

[151] Pointed out angle

[152] Tiny travel razor

[153] A similar approach

[154] Useful diagram

[155] The basic 4-pass method

[156] Advanced shaving techniques

[157] Hydrolast Finishing Balm

[158] Total Shaving Solution

[159] All Natural Shaving Oil

[160] Kinexium ST Shaving Oil

[161] Gessato Pre-Shave Oil

[162] Non-comedogenic chart

[163] Natural 1 oz bottle

[164] Cobalt blue 1 oz bottle

[165] First Method video

[166] Method shaving supplies

[167] Wikipedia article on alum

[168] One woman notes

[169] Aluminum not hazardous: See here and also this PDF

[170] [UPDATE: Vermont Country Store no longer carries My Nik Is Sealed. You can get it from Amazon.com (at the link) or from ShavePlace.com (at the link).

[171] Proraso Styptic Gel

[172] KDS Lab Liquid Styptic

[173] Lengthy review

[174] Mantic59 video on aftershaves

[175] Skin problems with aftershave

[176] Variety of fragrances

[177] Sampler package

[178] Thayers Aftershave

[179] Booster’s aftershaves

[180] Proraso pre- and after-shave

[181] The Emperor of Scent: Inexpensive copies

[182] Wikipedia perfume article

[183] Mild acne photos

[184] Moderate acne

[185] Severe acne

[186] Sulfur-based compounds

[187] AcneNet

[188] Acne.org: See  See also this post for additional tips

[189] Low comedogenicity

[190] Wicked_Edge acne reference post

[191] Mayo Clinic articles

[192] Anticancer: A New Way of Life

[193] Findings on sugar: See informative article in NY Times and also an extremely informative talk.

[194] Pictures of razor bumps and rash

[195] Themba’s technique: See the threads here and here (scroll down at both links)

[196] Innomed Lice Comb: Easily found with a Google search

[197] Moore Unique Razor Bump Tool

[198] Bump Fighter Razor

[199] Barbicide

[200] Bump Fighter

Bump Patrol

Dermagen Skin Revival System

Elicina Biological Treatment

Follique treatment

High Time Bump Stopper Products

Moore Unique Products

No Mo’ Bumps Aftershave

Prince Reigns Gel

Smart Shave Products

Tend Skin

[201] Homemade version of Tend Skin

[202] Eczema from shampoo

[203] A beginner shaving kit

[204] Low-cost high-luxury shave

[205] Whipped Dog beginner kit

[206] Bump Fighter Razor

[207] Poll on ShaveMyFace.com

[208] Brush restoration: Part 1 – Photo and thread; Part 2 – Photo and thread; Part 3 – Photo and thread

[209] Interactive diagram

[210] “Exploring the Science of Shaving

[211] Write-up on MSNBC

[212] Mantic59’s series of videos

[213] Geofatboy shaving videos

[214] A comprehensive list

Written by LeisureGuy

28 January 2007 at 7:30 am

Posted in Daily life

5 Responses

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  1. Hi would you mind letting me know which hosting company you’re utilizing? I’ve loaded your blog in 3 different internet browsers and I must say
    this blog loads a lot faster then most. Can you recommend a good hosting provider at
    a honest price? Thanks a lot, I appreciate it!

  2. LeisureGuy….I ran across a razor sold on Amazon that appears to have a EJ/MUHL type head and a stainless steel handle. Apollo Quality Products. I bought one, and admittedly the first one arrived broken during shipping, but, even after Amazon refunded my money the vendor contacted me and sent me a free replacement and I have to say I was surprised. The razor is on the heavy side and despite the satin finish on the head, it didn’t grab and overall the razor was nicely balanced. My first shave wasn’t great, but, I decided against my better judgement to use the supplied Merkur blade….will definitely try something more to my liking…but, with a lifetime warranty and nice weight, this looks to be a possible up and coming company. The only thing I was actually disappointed with was that it is not what I’d call a piece of art razor, but, it seems to be very functional.

    philjones2013

    23 March 2014 at 8:43 am

  3. Many thanks. I am always on the lookout for good workaday razors. I’ll check it out.

    LeisureGuy

    23 March 2014 at 8:53 am

  4. Just decided to return to double edge shaving after many years and after reading Leisureguy’s Guide to Gourmet Shaving Shaving Made Enjoyable Sixth Edition by Michael Ham. Enjoyed the information provided in the book and appreciated the large number of Web Links to companies selling products on line. I had a great experience with Italian Barber and BullGoose Shaving Supplies and received some great shaving supplies. Thanks for the wealth of good information.
    I did have one bad experience and provide it in case it may be helpful to others. After spending considerable time shopping at West Coast Shaving and being initially impressed with their Web Site for easy to set up an account with separate billing and shipping addresses, I received an email my order had been cancelled without any explanation. Being curious I called and inquired. I found out this is a very “small” company in more ways than one. Though I explained I shop all over the world and ship many times to addresses which are not my billing address and their very own Web Site was set up for separate billing and shipping address, this little company was concerned about fraud on an order of $59.00 ($28.75 in product and over $30.00 in shipping) even after I spoke with a representative. Now this company had already submitted for payment before canceling my order. This means they expect to receive payment and then refund to me. Sounds fishy! If they don’t want to ship to addresses which are not the same as billing addresses it makes no sense to have their Web Site set up as it is. I would expect a reputable company would not have submitted to the credit card for payment on an order they cancelled. Concerned about this situation I called my credit card company and alerted them to possible fraud by West Coast Shaving.
    I am confident I will get my refund because of the credit card company I am with but this could be a problem for others and I submit this is a case of “Buyer Be Ware”. There are too many good companies to do business with than to take a risk with a company about which a risk question has been raised.

    Larry Bankester

    4 March 2015 at 3:36 pm

  5. Hi Larry, my name is John and co-owner of West Coast Shaving. I apologize for the issue with your order. We usually catch these before being submitted but as it’s a manual check, missed this one. In this case we did catch it after the fact and had to issue the refund, which was submitted even before contacting you. You should received the refund email immediately and it should already be reflected in your card transactions. Please contact us if this is not the case. We will take care of any problems immediately. We care deeply about our customer’s security and have been faithfully serving the wet shaving community since 2007.

    John Koontz

    12 March 2015 at 6:02 pm


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