Later On

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

Archive for the ‘Shaving’ Category

A fat-waist brush handle and a coffee-theme shave

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Stubble Trubble’s Up and Adam, whose fragrance is espresso and vanilla, comes — well, came: the brand is defunct — in a tub that fits nicely in the upturned lid, but now that I’ve tried the lid-as-pedestal approach, I prefer that the lid not be upturned, since then just the rim gets wet from splashed water, not the entire top of the lid.

This Mühle gen 2 synthetic has a handle not at all wasp-waist — just the opposite — and doesn’t offer any grip assistance at the base. Nonetheless, it is totally comfortable to hold and the knot is excellent: wonderful lather generation and retention. And that fragrance!

Three passes with the original .68-P Game Changer wiped away the stubble (trubble indeed!), and then a splash of Phoenix Artisan’s excellent Spring-Heeled Jack — coffee fragrance that dries down to an interesting and attractive hint of something… something familiar…. something nice…

The weekend begins.

Written by LeisureGuy

31 October 2020 at 10:35 am

Posted in Shaving

Gillette seems to be bringing back double-edge safety razors

with 6 comments

I received the photo above from Eddie of Australia, so the AU$30 price is US$20, which seems about right. Based on my experience with the recent Gillette Heritage, this is likely to be an okay razor.

I note also the transparent shave gel, which helps you not be able to tell where you have shaved and where you have not (as well as sharply diminishing the pleasure of prep). :sigh: Procter & Gamble, you sometimes seem hopeless. Note that the DE blades are US$0.98 apiece. Not interested, though I’m sure this helps with their profit margins. (The Gillette blades cost more then 10 times what my Astra Superior Platinums cost, and more than 5 times what my Personna Lab Blues cost.)

Written by LeisureGuy

30 October 2020 at 12:47 pm

Posted in Daily life, Shaving

A hefty no-waist brush with Meißner Tremonia shaving paste and the Game Changer

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This Plisson European Grey badger brush has a plated brass handle, so it’s a hefty brush. No waist, but a belt of sorts. The pedestal base is flared a bit so that it can be used as a grip, but I find I use it as a secondary  grip, mostly holding the brush mid-handle.

The feel is a pleasant coarseness. Again, I loaded the brush well with MT’s wonderful Woody Almond shaving paste. I did have to add a little water during loading, which clearly distinguishes this shaving paste from a shaving cream — I’ve never had to add water to a shaving cream to load the brush.

The lather from a well-loaded brush, when worked up on (washed and partially rinsed) wet stubble, fills the knot fully, so that the feel on your face is like a warm firm cloud. The added texture of the coarse (but not scratchy) bristles was very pleasant.

The Game Changer .84-P is a fine razor and efficiently (and comfortably) smoothed my face in three passes, and the splash of Anthony Gold’s Red Cedar aftershave finished the job and made Friday seem quite promising.

Written by LeisureGuy

30 October 2020 at 10:36 am

Posted in Shaving

Top as pedestal, a waistless brush, and the benefits of memetic evolution

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This tub was not specifically designed for the top to be a pedestal (as was the top to Dr. Selby’s used yesterday or (as a reader commented) as are Proraso tubs), but Steve Riehle’s suggestion works well.

The lid-as-pedestal has an advantage beyond simply finding a place to put the lid that requires no real estate beyond what the tub uses. The near side of the sink tends to get wet during my shave — I keep a sponge on hand to wipe it dry after the shave — and with the pedestal the bottom of the tub stays dry. The rim of the lid that sits on the countertop may get wet, but that’s just a rim, not a surface.

I notice that I load the brush a bit more after doing a bit of bowl lathering, and I believe that has improved the quality of the lather. This brush, a Rod Neep one-off, has not waist at all, but the base — its feet? — is prominent and provides a good grip. It looks somewhat as if the based were designed with a brush rack in mind — the sort of rack that holds the brush upside down, putatively to aid in drying (though in fact experiments have clearly demonstrated that it is no help whatsoever: capillary action takes care of the drying quite well). I don’t have such racks — my brushes stand proudly upright — but the base does prove to be handy.

BTW, this brush has the Rod Neep option of a coin embedded in the base. I chose a coin from 1984, the year I moved to California.

Three passes with the RazoRock MJ90A and the shave was so remarkably good that I checked to see what blade I was using: a Gillettee Silver Blue (though keep in mind that blades are very much YMMV since the perceived performance varies both by individual and by razor.

Still, this razor, whose design is explicitly based on the Edwin Jagger design, is IMO a improvement on the EJ head, a tad more comfortable and more efficient. In response to the comment linked above, I observed that, over the long run, design seems to follow a reverse Grisham’s law, with good design driving out bad.

A splash of Floïd to carry forward the Italian theme suggested by the Tcheon Fung Sing soap and the razor (from ItalianBarber.com), and the day (overcast and rainy here) begins. Floïd is a good aftershave for such a day: the menthol is quite mild, and the fragrance is warm. And my face is exceptionall smooth.

Written by LeisureGuy

29 October 2020 at 9:35 am

Posted in Shaving

Tub top as pedestal: Dr. Selby shows the way

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In response to my kvetching about shaving soap tubs that do not fit into their upturned lid, thus forcing me to find a place to put the lid on a limited countertop, Steve Riehle suggested that I not upturn the lid but use it as a pedestal to support the open tub. The scales fell immediately from my eyes — and his suggestion is exemplified by Dr. Selby’s 3X Concentrated Shaving Cream, whose lid is specifically designed to serve as a pedestal, as shown in the photo above.

I will keep that example — and his suggestion — in mind as I move through the large-topped tubs.

Dr. Selby’s is quite a nice source of lather, and this morning I used the Yaqi narrow-waist brush with its badger knot (rather than the synthetic knot I normally use), partly because I was using the Yaqi matching DOC razor and partly because I wanted to compare it to the Whipped Dog knot from yesterday, which it resembles in profile.

The Yaqi know does have its similarities, but I think the tips of the WD brush are somewhat smoother and softer. Of course, I’ve had the WD brush a lot longer, so it’s seen more use and perhaps what I detect is the difference between a badger knot that’s been used enough to acquire the comfort and polish of age and one that’s still brashly young.

The razor did a fine job, and a good splash of Diplomat was a satisfying conclusion. I sure wish I knew the fragrance profile of that aftershave — well, in a way, I do know it: I can smell it right now. But I’m also interested in a description written by someone whose sense of smell is better than mine. It has a definite spice note, but mixed with other things.

Written by LeisureGuy

28 October 2020 at 11:18 am

Posted in Shaving

Late start but great shave, with a peculiarly nice (but inexpensive) shaving brush — and Dark Limes

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I positioned the brush to the right for better light on it. This is another octagonal handle with a slight waist (but also a cute little base), but whereas yesterday’s brush handle was in cross section a regular octagon — all angles and sides equal — today’s brush is an octagon with all angles equal but sides alternately wide and narrow: like cutting the corners off a square at a 45º angle, but not so much of the corner as to make all the resulting sides equal, but somewhat less.

It’s a satisfying handle, but what struck me most about the brush today is the knot — a silvertip, as you see. It’s a Whipped Dog silvertip set at the usual depth. (I don’t like deep-set knots which to my taste lack sufficient give.) In using it this morning I made an excellent lather from Meißner Tremonia’s Dark Limes (a fragrance that I increasingly like: definitely lime, but not so bright/fresh as most lime fragrances — thus, I suppose, the name).

As I worked the lather up on my face and into the stubble, I became aware that this knot — at least when well loaded with good soap and blossoming with lather — feels unusually good: it soft, but not fluffy; it yields, but with some resistance; it is not so much “dense” as thick — not in the least scrubby, but no pushover. Yielding but definitely not just giving up.

It’s hard to describe, but this morning it struck me as a superb brush. The knots for comparison that came first to mind were the knots of my (much more expensive) Rooney Emilion and Rooney Victorian, but this knot has more loft and thus a little more “give.” The brush cost $35 some years ago, and I will definitely be using it more often. This is one of those badger knots that synthetics have not yet matched.

Well-lathered — and I did take my time, because I was enjoying the experience so much — I picked up the Yaqi double-open-comb razor and quickly and easily got as smooth a finish as one could ever want.

A general splash of Geo. F. Trumper West Indian Extract of Limes aftershave, and I feel very good about the day already.

A note on MT Soaps: a reader let me know of the difficulty of procuring these soaps, and my former sources are of no help: StraightRazorDesigns.com is no more (Lynn retired) and Maggard Razors no longer carries the brand. You can, of course, order from Meißner Tremonia directly if you live in one of the countries to which they will ship (US and Canada not included).

GiftsAndCare.com (in Spain) and Smallflower.com (in the US) both carry Meißner Tremonia and I’ve ordered several times from each with no problem. Two notes about G&C.com:

  1. They also carry MT shaving pastes (which they call shaving creams, though the MT product is much stiffer than a shaving cream — more like a… well, a paste); and
  2. If you don’t live in the EU, you don’t pay the VAT, so look at the lower price in the lighter font: that’s the price without VAT.

Written by LeisureGuy

27 October 2020 at 11:47 am

Posted in Shaving

Natural Bay Rum and a brush with a slight waist

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This very nice little Vie long brush is either a horsehair brush (my view) or a boar brush (vendor’s claim). In either case, I soak the knot. The handle is octangle and a rather handsome resin, and as you see the waist is merely hinted at. Withal, the handle is quite comfortable and knot is excellent in terms of efficiency and (if soaked) feel. Even if you don’t soak it before use, by the time you’ve completed the first pass and start to lather for the second, the knot will have softened and be quite nice.

Meißner Tremonia’s Natural Bay Rum is another good soap with a full-throated fragrance (as it were): clearly distinct and present — and pleasant. However, this is another example of the tub not fitting into its upturned lid,  a low-level annoyance since I have to find a place to stash the lid and my bathroom has as little counter space as it can have and still have any counter space at all. It has ε counter space.

Still, a good and fragrant lather and a warm, comfortable brush soothed me, and then there was the pleasure of the vintage Merkur white bakelite slant, the first slant that totally bowled me over. Made probably in the 1930’s, a big case of them was found in a warehouse and for a brief period they were available again. Gone now, though.

After three passes, my face was perfectly smooth and a splash of Krampert’s Finest Acadian Bay Rum, an aftershave I like a lot, finished the job and launched the week.

Written by LeisureGuy

26 October 2020 at 10:05 am

Posted in Shaving

Polo, Rose, and Mamba

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The handle on Mr Pomp, the brush is the photo, is called a polo handle for reasons unclear to me, and the base is more a flare than the flange of the WWBT brushes. It’s quite a comfortable handle, and this brush is very nice. The knot is not dense (but also by no means fluffy) and has good resilience. And I do like the handle design.

At the right is another example — a Simpson Polo 10 in Best Badger. I do like the handle, and if you’re ever getting a new brush, it’s a handle worth considering.

I did the more thoughtful lathering I’m trying: thickly loading the damp brush, using only enough water to fill the brush with soap, brushing that over the stubble, and then gingerly adding small amounts of water, working in each addition well and considering the result before deciding whether more water is needed. I believe that as a result my lathers have improved, and of course the additional time spent in lathering is all to the good so far as prepping the stubble is concerned.

JabonMan’s Rosa Bourbon Eufros shaving soap has a wonderful fragrance — very rose — and made a terrific lather (using the method described and with the benefit of soft water).

The Mamba is for me a fine razor, and I throughly enjoyed the three efficient passes. A splash of D.R. Harris Pink After Shave, also a rose fragrance, and the weekend begins

Written by LeisureGuy

24 October 2020 at 9:21 am

Posted in Shaving

A brush having a different waist treatment with a thicker base, along with Phoenix Solstice and the redoubtable iKon #101

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The Simpson Emperor certain has a waist, and unlike the “flange” base of the G.B. Kent (or WSP Monarch), the Emperor’s based is thicker and comfortably rounded (apologies to Napoleon’s ghost). I really like this handle and asked a custom handle maker to make me one in black palm, but he had just decided to retire from handlemaking and I abandoned the idea.

The knot also is excellent — it’s the old (pre-Vulfix) Simpson Super, and this is size 3. It’s a favorite brush, and it showed its mettle today in making an excellent lather from Phoenix Artisan’s Solstice, a favorite shaving soap.

After a couple of days of playing with a lathering bowl, I now more deliberately load the brush well, brush the soap over the stubble, and then slowly and carefully work in more water, a very little at a time, to get exactly the consistency of lather I want.

The iKon Shavecraft 101 is a wonderful razor — and it’s still available, unlike several of my wonderful razors (such as the Stealth or the Merkur white bakelite slant). The 101 is for me both very comfortable and highly efficient.

Three passes produced perfection, and a splash of Solstice sent me on my way to end the week on an excellent note (not to mentioin that today I complete the Duolingo Esperanto Course, for me a six-month effort).

Written by LeisureGuy

23 October 2020 at 10:37 am

Posted in Shaving

A more distant cousin of the WWBT family, and the fragrance of pine and cedar

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I photographed my tub of Special 218 (a good tub, that sits comfortably inside its upturned lid) with lid removed so that you can see the darkness of the (glycerin) soap — due, I suspect, to pine tar, for certainly the soap has a rich, deep, dark fragrance of pine and pine resin. 

The brush has a very distinctive waist — it’s almost a miniature 400-style brush — and the knot (including the black base of the knot) unscrews from the (cammo) handle, which is tapped. The handle seems to be metal — at any rate, it has a nice heft — and the brush comes with two knots: a fine-bristled synthetic in the Target Shot coloring shown, and a silvertip badger.

The handle’s heft, shape, and texture make the brush extremely comfortable to hold, and this synthetic knot is a delight (beyond the coloring). It easily made and exceptionally thick and creamy lather, even given that this is a glycerin soap (which in my experience make excellent lathers — at least with soft water).

The Maggard V3A is a very comfortable razor — the “A” for “aggressive” is referring to efficiency, not to feel — and three passes removed all traces of stubble.

The crowning touch was the wonderful red-cedar fragrance of Anthony Gold’s aftershave, which seems excellent beyond the fragrance. I’m curious why there seem to be so few shaving soaps or aftershaves that go all-in on red cedar as the fragrance. Could it be expensive? It’s certainly a delight to the nose, so its scarcity in the market is a mystery to me.

Written by LeisureGuy

22 October 2020 at 11:48 am

Posted in Shaving

A Persian Jar by another name, and a shave by Stealth

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The brush shown is clearly of the same shape as yesterday’s Persion Jar, but the name Rooney gave this shape is Style 2. (Rooney also offered Style 1 and Style 3, and those came ins Sizes 1, 2, and 3. The Style 2 however, comes only in that size, which corresponds to Size 1 for Styles 1 and 3. This nomenclature, though unambiguous, was at first confusing.)

I returned to working up the lather on my face instead of in a bowl, but with a new appreciation of carefully working in a little more water after i use the fully loaded brush to coat my stubble. The small driblets of water I add to the brush are worked into both the lather on my face and the lather in the brush by brushing briskly over my face and particularly my chin.

Dapper Doc’s Old-Time Lilac & Fig shaving soap is here in the CK-6 formula, so the lather was particularly good. This tub, BTW, is one of those that will not fit inside its own lid, a minor inconvenience for those whose bathrooms have minimal counter top real estate.

With a well-lathered stubble — especially since I took my time in lathering as I added and worked in small amounts of water — the shaving was easy, especially with the Stealth, a very fine slant. Three passes produce a great shave: comfortable, smooth shaving and a smooth finish.

A splash of Lilac & Fig aftershave, and I’m read for the day. I’m off to Home Depot for a half-sheet of rigid foam insulation. I awoke this morning with a new idea: remove the tempeh incubator’s lid flaps altogether and make what amounts to a plug for the top from gluing together two pieces of rigid foam insulation, one that fits snugly just inside the box top and the other just a bit larger to cap the edges. That will work better: better insulation and when I remove the top, easier access to the box. (The flaps kept getting in the way.)  Home Depot sells such foam insulation in sheets: 1″ x 2′ x 8′. You cut it with a knife. I’ll buy one of those, cut it in half to transport it, and then make the lid with plenty left over for other projects (gift tempeh incubators?).

Written by LeisureGuy

21 October 2020 at 8:35 am

Posted in Shaving

Not quite so wasp-waisted nor ball-topped — and another go at the lathering bowl

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This brush handle seems almost an ancestor of the WWBT handle of yesterday’s WSP Monarch (and most famously of G.B. Kent shaving brushes). Both handle styles have a narrow waist, rounded top, and flared base, but whereas yesterday’s brush might be considered a peacock, this one is more a wild turkey, has a resplendent tail-feather display but not to the extreme shown by the peacock/Kent.

This shape is called the Persian Jar, though actual in actual Persian jars (the pottery), the base does not flare outward as do Persian-Jar style shaving brush handles. The flare at the base of the handle provides a secure grip by creating a narrower waist around which you wrap thumb and forefinger. (Not all brushes provide a flare at the base — note the Mühle brush handles in this post or (different handle treatment) this post.)

I went again at the lather with a lathering bowl and again I used somewhat too much water. I imagine over the course of a week — two at the most — I could get the water amount consistently right, particularly if I were consistent in the soap I used. But I like to vary the soap from day to day, so I think I’ll resume my no-bowl technique, particuarly given the very limited countertop I have. Still, it’s good to try new things.

In using this soap (same as yesterday’s), I note again with pleasure how the tub seats neatly within the lid. I like that in a soap (or shaving cream). Phoenix Artisan’s CK-6 soaps lack that feature, so I always have to find someplace to put the lid (limited countertop). I wish all soap manufacturers would select tubs that sit neatly within the lid when the tub’s in use. /whingeing

The RazoRock Old Style is another inexpensive razor with surprising excellence in feel and performance. IMO, it’s another great starter razor. I don’t believe this handle, which came with the first batch, is still available, and that’s a shame. I really like the handle.

Three passes to a perfect result, a splash of Geo. F. Trumper’s Spanish Leather aftershave, and the day is launched — and this morning I’ll have a patty of spicy tempeh breakfast sausage, which has been in fridge since Sunday for the flavors to develop.

 

Written by LeisureGuy

20 October 2020 at 9:18 am

Posted in Shaving

Experimenting is deliberate learning from experience: Lathering

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Tony5419 described in a comment his technique for lathering, using a lathering bow. I’ve not used a lathering bowl for a long time (issue: bathroom countertop real estate), but  I thought I’d give it a go.

I also long since stopped soak badger brushes but I could detect not difference at all between a soaked and an unsoaked badger brush (unlike for a boar or a horsehair brush, where the difference is distinct). Obviously soaking does nothing for synthetic brushes: the fibers are waterproof.

I’m using my other WSP Monarch brush — the one I like better — to reset the WWBT standard in our mind, and I like it soak while I showered. I then followed the procedure as described in tony5419’s comment. I didn’t quite see the change in texture/appearance that he describes — I need more experience for that — and as a result I think I added just a little too much water.

Still, the lather was excellent, and I do love the iKon DLC (now B6) slant now that I improved my technique (by keeping more of the cap in contact with my skin, the handle farther from my face). It’s a totally comfortable and highly efficient razor and left my skin perfectly smooth (and totally undamaged).

A tiny squirt of Hermès Eau d’orange verte balm (moisturizing cream), and the week begins with pleasure.

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2020 at 8:50 am

Posted in Shaving

Another take on the WWBT brush and a good comment on lather

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The RazoRock Keyhole brush shown has a 22mm synthetic knot and is a very pleasant brush at a reasonable price (US$10). Like the brushes in shaves this past week, it also uses a wasp-waist ball-top (WWBT) design, but with angles rather than curves.

I got an excellent lather from Phoenix Artisan’s Dark Chocolate shaving soap, a one-off for Valentine’s Day some years back. The fragrance is spot-on, and the drydown from the aftershave is quite pleasant (and not so identifiably dark chocolate).

I mentioned in the title a comment on lather — it’s this one, which provides a good and detailed description of the use of a lathering bowl, including the all-important brush loading to begin with. Thanks to tony5419 for the write-up. His comment stimulated me to try a lathering bowl again, though this morning my shave was well underway before I remembered. Today I’ll move a bowl into the bathroom so on Monday I’ll remember.

The Fatip Testina Gentile is an excellent little razor, though a recent correspondence mentioned so quality issues. I got three of these for the day my three youngest grandsons begin to shave, but I’m thinking now that the RazoRock Baby Smooth (which also comes in three finishes (black, white, blue) might be a better choice.

Three passes produced an excellent result, albeit with two tiny nicks on my chin — and My Nik Is Sealed again proved its worth.

A splash of Dark Chocolate aftershave and the weekend is off to a good (if somewhat late) start.

Written by LeisureGuy

17 October 2020 at 11:30 am

Posted in Shaving

CK-6, a terrific soap — and ATT’s R1

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Another G.B. Kent brush — the Infinity, their synthetic — with the WWBT design, though less extreme than the Kent BK-4 (or 8 or whatever). This is quite a nice little brush — good resilience without being scrubby, and much more present to the face than the Plissoft knots, which feel softer.

I tried loading the (well shaken-out) brush heavily with the CK-6 soap, applying it, and then adding a little water to the brush to bring up the lather a bit more. It worked well enough, but I was just playing around. This soap is (as you see) the Orange Doppelgänger, the homage to Chaps, byRalph Lauren. As I noted last week, the Doppelgänger gang line up like this:

Black Label = Sauvage by Christian Dior
Oxblood Label = Sartorial by Penhaligan’s
Orange Label = Chaps by Ralph Lauren
Grey Label = Creed Aventus

In the title I identify my Above the Tie as an R1, but in fact it’s an R, since I bought it prior to the advent of the R2 (the open-comb equivalent) and so the “1” was redundant at the time. And though I find their S1 slant to be superb, the S2 was too harsh for me. I can’t recall whether I have any experience with the R2. (Above the Tie’s 30-day no-questions-asked money-back guarantee makes the decision just to try one of their razors much easier — and in fact I used that guarantee with zero problems with the S2.)

The shave was exceptionally nice: great shaving soap, fine lather, excellent razor, good brand of blade for me, and, of course, a certain level of skill gained through daily practice. (I wonder: if I grew a beard again — stopped shaving — for six months, when I resumed shaving, would my skill have gotten rusty so that nicks would be frequent? We’ll never know.)

Written by LeisureGuy

16 October 2020 at 10:21 am

Posted in Shaving

Move to R4 from R3, and a great vintage lather

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The Wet Shaving Products Monarch — a very fine brush — also uses the wasp-waist ball-top (WWBT) handle design. It’s a good design, and this particular knot is excellent: more resilient that the G.B. Kent BK4 — more backbone — but still very pleasant on the face and effective at creating lather, which this morning comes from a vintage tub of Yardley, whose age I would guess at about 50 years. Its (lavender) fragrance is still quite present and the lather was excellent.

On a whim I moved from the R3 baseplate on my Rockwell 6S to R4. The blade is an Astra Keramik Platinum (speaking of vintage shaving stuff), and the shave was excellent. For me every one of the Rockwell baseplates, R1 through R6, is extremely comfortable.

A splash of Pinaud Coachman — vintage in years but still on the market — and the day begins.

I had another tempeh failure but a new theory, which I’m testing with the new batch: that, whether or not temperature was a factor, the use of baking soda was a primary culprit, making the beans alkaline and thus toxic to a mold that thrives on acidic foods.

Written by LeisureGuy

15 October 2020 at 10:05 am

Posted in Shaving

Direct memetic transfer — and one of the best razors available (and it costs $6)

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You’ll notice that today’s brush handle is a direct imitation of the G.B. Kent handle from yesterday (and that handle might well be a direct imitation of some earlier handle — that’s how memetic evolution occurs: inheritance with occasional variation and occasionally a mutation (a new idea).

I can see why this handle has survival advantages: it’s handsome, it’s comfortable, and it’s compact. With the Plissoft synthetic know in this Maggard 22mm brush I easily got a good lather from Dapper Dragon’s Terre du Dragon shaving soap.

The Baili BR171 razor is really of the first rank in terms of feel (in the hand and on the face) and performance — and for $6 it’s a great flaming bargain. This is the one of which I now have extras for those willing to try DE shaving. If you don’t have one of these, it’s well worth acquiring.

Of course, there’s the shipping cost above the $6, so I usually order a soap and aftershave or some such so I can amortize the shipping cost across several items, meaning the shipping cost per item is much lower. This is my idea of saving money.

Three passes produced as good a shave as anyone could want, and a splah of Pinaud’s Lilac Vegetal finished the job. The initial fragrance is not all that appealing, but the drydown is very nice.

Written by LeisureGuy

14 October 2020 at 9:58 am

Posted in Shaving

A 400 relative and a razor that delivers an eponymous result

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This G.B. Kent BK-4 seems somewhat related to the most recent two brushes (the same genus, perhaps, though not the same species), with the extended handle of the other razors squished shorter to produce the wasp-waist design we see, and the top-of-handle/base-of-knot portion grown more assertive and spherical.

This knot is quite fluffy and soft and provides a very light touch on the face — the brush to use if you’re sunburned — but it gets the job done quite well. Catie’s Bubbles is/are good soap, and Le Piment de la Vie is good all round: lather and fragrance.

My Baby Smooth delivered its usual excellent shave. I do love this razor. I sent one to my son, and perhaps the three grandsons should in time get their own copies. Three passes, total comfort, and the aforementioned eponymous finish.

A splash of Booster Oriental Spice to carry forwrd the fragrance theme, and the day begins, overcast and somewhat rainy.

Written by LeisureGuy

13 October 2020 at 11:17 am

Posted in Shaving

Indian Flavour and a brush handle cousin to Saturday’s brush

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As you can see, the RazoRock 400 is definitely related to the Copper Hat brush I used Saturday. They doubtless share a common ancestor, the vintage Rubberset 400, with RazoRock’s hand being, so far as I can see, an exact duplicate, though the RazoRock’s knot is modern: a Plissoft synthetic. The RazoRock 400 comes in a variety of handles. Mine is aluminum, but it also comes in resin in various colors (butterscotch, for example, which is the classy name for “orange”).

It did a great job with Meißner Tremonia’s Indian Flavour shaving and the lather this morning was exceptional. I do wish that soap were more readily available outside Germany. The fragrance was exceptional and definitely had an Indian aspect. (Brief Esperanto factoid: the Esperanto word for the country is “Barato,” which is derived from the name India itself uses — “India” is a Western name, based on the Indus River. (In contrast, the Esperanto name for Beijing is “Pekino,” based on the old Western name Peking, which feel out of use decades ago.)

That wasn’t quite so brief as I thought it would be. Back to the shave, and what could have been better: a really thick and creamy lather with a tantalizing fragrance, an exceptionally soft knot mounted in a comfortable handle, and then the time-tested Merkur 37 slant, mine being the 37G. (This is the razor that Hoffritz, who prided itself on having the best of cutlery — scissors, knives, razors, etc. — chose as the razor to carry the Hoffritz name. You can still find secondhand Hoffritz razors from time time: they’re excellent, and they are basically Merkur 37s.)

Three passes, quite comfortable, and a face as smooth as it’s ever been. A splash of Pashana aftershave to carry forward the Indian theme, and I’m ready for a new week — and (up here) Thanksgiving.

Written by LeisureGuy

12 October 2020 at 10:27 am

Posted in Shaving

Brush handle evolution

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This type of handle emerged fairly early in the evolution of shaving brushes and has established itself as one distinct branch of the family (much as bow ties branched off early from long ties and continue to exist (in several varieties) as part of the overall genus neckties).

This particular speciman is from The Copper Hat, here in Victoria, and is made of Delrin®, a dense and tough plastic often used in making gears. The knot is extremely nice, and I like the feel of the brush. On Monday I’ll use another brush of this same overall species.

Doppelgänger soaps were the first that Phoenix Artisan offered in the CK-6 formula. Doppelgänger Black is one of a line of fragrances Phoenix Artisan brough out as knockoffs of (or homages to) premium lines:

Black Label = Sauvage by Christian Dior
Oxblood Label = Sartorial by Penhaligan’s
Orange Label = Chaps by Ralph Lauren
Grey Label = Creed Aventus

The fragrance is indeed very nice and the CK-6 lather is outstanding. BTW, “knockoff” is not necessarily pejorative. It simply indicates that the product (fragrance, handbag, design, etc.) is based on and derived from an original. Movies often include knockoffs/homages — for example, in the first Star Wars film George Lucas based the entire sequence of the attack on the Death Star from a sequence in the movie “Dam Busters,” including some lines of dialogue. He wasn’t trying to “get away” with anything, he was simply recognizing the masterful work of the earlier movie and carrying it on in a new story (thus the deliberate inclusion of the same dialogue). In the same way, Phoenix Artisan fully acknowledges Doppelgänger’s fragrance inspiraations and carries it on in a new (and wonderful) soap. The “Doppelgänger” name itself shows clearly the deliberate intention.

This sort of imitation and adaptation is one way that cultural evolution works.

Three passes with that wondrous Dorco PL602 — totally comfortable, extremely efficient — left my face smooth for a good splash of Doppelgänger Black aftershave.

I might at some point get a tub of Doppelgänger Grey: I like Creed Aventus.

Written by LeisureGuy

10 October 2020 at 10:16 am

Posted in Shaving

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