I recently purchased several Kell’s Original Ultra Aloe soaps and have been waiting for a good opportunity to try them out. Seeing as today is my first day following my month of Desert Island shaves, I figured that it would be the perfect time. I have used Kell’s Original soap before and was impressed with the performance, but I did not like the scent (Black Tea), so this will be my first try using some of the other soap scents that Kell’s has to offer. I bought a tin of Juniper Sage, a puck of Vanilla Bean, and a 1 oz. sample of Energy. I had planned on a puck of English Rose as well, but decided to wait on it. All of the soaps smell great, but the Vanilla Bean smells so amazing that I absolutely have to try it out first.
I am using my Parker SRW with a PolSilver Super Stainless blade for today’s shave. I don’t really have a good reason behind choosing the SRW, it just seemed like a good idea. It’s a standard disposable blade straight razor with a tight blade lock and tightly fitting scales, a good balance, and excellent blade exposure. I enjoy using it, but I am not a huge fan of its small, bland scales. I am considering buying a set of replacement scales to make this razor look a bit more flashy.
I am returning to my somewhat neglected boar brushes today, and after a quick glance have decided on the Omega 11137. I usually reserve this brush for thick superlather where a large loft is an advantage, but it is well broken in and has soft tips, so it will work well as a transition from badger to boar.
Following my usual prep I performed a three pass with the grain/against the grain/across the grain shave and finished up with a cold water rinse and an application of alum. The Kell’s soap lathered quickly and easily and though it still smelled excellent, it was somewhat diminished in scent once lathered. I did have to replenish my brush following the second pass, but the soap did well otherwise. The Parker SRW performed well, but the PolSilver blade is probably done for. This is the third shave with this blade, it is somewhat harsh and drags a bit more now than it did on either of the two previous shaves. I am still searching for the perfect blade to go with my Parker DBSRs, unfortunately my experience with DE blades in DE razors does not seem to translate well to their performance in DBSRs. I want something with longevity as well as smoothness; I think that I will try either a Lord Platinum or a Personna Lab tomorrow. The Omega brush seems to have been a poor choice for this shave. It created lather well, but did not hold as much as I would have liked. Having to refresh my lather is an annoyance that I can avoid simply by choosing the correct brush. Today I chose poorly and ended up having to reload, tomorrow I will not make the same mistake. In the end I managed a damn fine shave, with zero nicks and just a little irritation on my jaw line. The soap left my skin soft and smooth with a nice vanilla scent lingering. A somewhat lackluster shave, but I think that I can improve upon the results tomorrow.
Pre: Hot shower and warm water splash
Razor: Parker SRW
Blade: PolSilver Super Stainless
Brush: Omega 11137 boar
Soap: Kell’s Original Ultra Aloe Vanilla Bean
Post: Cold water rinse and SAL Alum
Kell’s Original Ultra Aloe Vanilla Bean:
Omega 11137 boar: