Archive for the ‘Shaving’ Category
Well, I’m tired of having stacks and stacks of shaving soaps, so I’m cutting back. Here’s the ebay listing.
Two of them are somewhat rare: Floris is a high-end soap, but a few years ago they reformulated the soap and the result was not good. I think they’ve done another reformulation to try to fix it. This soap is from before the first reformulation (and the wooden tub is quite nice). And the Geo. F. Trumper Almond is the same story: fine soap, from before the reformulation. And Trumper did not only reformulate, they outsourced the making of the soap.
So, they’re listed. If you have questions, let me know. I’m selling them together as a lot, so I won’t be breaking apart the dozen.
The Italian flag synthetic brush shown, from Italian Barber, is just a little large for me (24mm instead of my preferred 20-22mm), but quite workable and luxurious feeling. It easily produced a fine lather from RazoRock Zi’ Peppino shaving soap, fragrant and thick. (I did, of course, give the brush two good shakes before starting to load: synthetic brushes hold more water than one would think.)
The Rockwell 6S system is a fine razor, comfortable and efficient with all 6 baseplate “settings” (two per double-sided baseplate). It’s a very good razor for the long term since (a) it’s quite well made, (b) it’s stainless steel, and (c) the various “settings” (R1 through R6) allow you to accommodate your current preference. (Preferences change over time, quite apart from perhaps needing to take down a week’s growth at some point.) Three passes, perfectly smooth, no problems.
A good splash of Zi’ Peppino aftershave and the weekend is now officially underway in this apartment.
Nuávia is another soap that, like Tcheon Fung Sing, has a simple formula but works quite well (and like TFS, it hails from Italy). The Omega 21762 is wonderfully soft for a boar brush—close to badger—but of course some like a stiffer, scrubbier brush, and this is not that. I like it a lot, but the action and feel don’t match other boars (and nevertheless it does an excellent job).
Well-lathered, I picked up the S3S. It does a fine shave, and I easily got a smooth and trouble-free result. The mass of the head seems to help in shaving with a conventional razor, pushing the edge of the blade efficiently through it’s straight-on chop.
A good splash of Phoenix Artisan Sandalwood, which I like, and the weekend is on the horizon.
The Plisson synthetic brush is excellent, and it is very like other “Plissoft” knots—no surprise, since it was their model. It easily got a good lather from Phoenix Artisan’s Solstice shaving soap, whose fragrance appeals to me a lot: Sage, Sweetgrass, Cedar, Rose Absolute, and Benzoin Resin.
The Maggard V2 open-comb head is a clone of the Parker 24C/26C head, but the MR7 handle from Maggard is much better than the Parker handles: the MR7 is stainless steel and crisply knurled. The feel and performance is much the same, as is the price: ≈$30.
Three passes, no nicks, and BBS result, to which I applied a good splash of Stirling’s Executive Man. And then I start the day.
Although some find the Omega Pro 48 (10048) boar brush too large for face lathering, it has never seemed a problem for me. This brush is now well broken in and does a really fine job.
Tcheon Fung Sing, an artisanal shaving soap from Italy, is quite good: a very slick and dense lather with a light and pleasant fragrance, in this case Tobacco Verde. There seems to have been a change and the soaps now are identified as Linea Intenso and the fragrance is given as Tobacco Verde Forte, so presumably now the fragrance is stronger, which would not be bad. The soap is $22 from West Coast Shaving and $10 from Italian Barber, FWIW.
The ingredients are simple: Stearic Acid, Aqua, Cocos Nucifera, Potassium Hydroxide, Sodium Hydroxide ,Parfum—purely a coconut oil shaving soap (and thus vegan), but it does a good job. You can get 1kg (2.2 lbs) for €9.92 (US$10.60) in the traditional almond fragrance Italians seem to favor. The price shown is excluding tax, which you would not have to pay if ordering from the US.
And speaking of fantastic bargains, the Dorco PL602 is in the first rank of my razors in terms of comfort and efficiency, and it’s less than $5 including shipping. (Shop on eBay for best price.) I easily got a quite comfortable and trouble-free BBS result.
A splash of Stirling Soap Company’s Lemon Chill, and the shave is done and the day begun. The aftershave ingredients: Denatured Alcohol, Witch Hazel, Lemon Essential Oil, Aloe, Menthol, Glycerin, and Hydrovance (a moisturizing agent).
I like the Omega 20102 and have often recommended it. Unlike Semogue boar brushes, Omega brushes break in quickly, and this one has a very nice knot: large enough but not too large.
Stubble Trubble, which has an Etsy shop, seems to be currently inactive (“taking a short break”), but I bought this tub a while back (on the recommendation of Eddie from Australia). It’s a vegan soap:
Stearic Acid, Distilled Water, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Elaeis Guineensis (Palm) Oil, Potassium Hydroxide, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Sodium Hydroxide, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Sodium Lactate, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Glycerin, and Fragrance
I like the fragrance—espresso and vanilla—and though it’s claimed to have a hint of menthol, I don’t detect it, which is fine with me: I’m not all that fond of menthol.
The lather was exceptionally good this morning. The 20102 has a large knot, so twice I added a little water as I loaded it, which filled the brush completely with proto-lather. I worked the lather up on my stubble, taking my time because the fragrance was so pleasant.
Then three passes with the iKon 102 went extremely well. Yesterday I mentioned that the Eros slant seemed to have more blade feel than the 102, and today’s shave confirms it. I still love the 102 as one of the best razors I have, but I shave every day or two (the “two” being the Monday shave after skipping Sunday). Those who shave only every week or two have reported that for them the 102 tends to clog. But for a daily shaver, I would say there’s nothing better than the 102.
A good splash of Floris JF aftershave, and the day begins—initially with yet another heavy rain, though it has for now cleared up.
In the Guide, I suggest several options if you find yourself having to shave with hard water, one of which is to use citric acid. I just received an email from Craig B. reporting on his experience in trying it:
We moved to Pleasanton CA which has very hard water – coming from San Ramon CA whose water is super-soft. So I read with interest your comments on using citric acid. After looking in the local stores without success, I bought some on Amazon. Was I ever surprised!! I expected easier lathering and better lather quality – which is just what I got. What I was not expecting, and the bonus mentioned above, was that:
- The razor itself is much cleaner with only a very small amount of buildup.
- The razor rinses more completely, presumably because the lather is of better quality (not pasty and sticking to razor and blade).
- The sink itself in squeaky clean after shaving. The walls of the sink are slick and shiny, eliminating criticism from SWMBO.
Thanks so much for a great tip.
In asking his permission to quote his email, I mentioned that citric acid also is used as a salt substitute. It’s a white crystalline powder that works well in a salt shaker for the table. It adds lemony zest but no salt.
Your input on using citric acid as a salt substitute is good for several reasons. One is that salt is to be avoided for pretty much everyone in so far as possible. Secondly, this is particularly timely because the docs are telling us (in our 70s) to control our blood pressure by eliminating salt and avoiding soups and (diet) sodas and such because they contain too much sodium.. So using citric acid as a substitute sounds like a wonderful idea for us. Thank you so much for the extra tip.
Sounds like I need two salt shakers – one for the table and one for the sink. 🙂