One of the things that many of the folks involved in the traditional wet shaving community have in common is their desire to try new and different things. Sometimes what starts off as a simple shave can spiral into an orgy of products, experiments, and outright excess. It can be difficult to say, “OK, I don’t need anything other than some soap, a brush, and a good razor with a fresh blade.” What it usually turns into is, “Hmm, I’ll add some of this cream…and try this new blade…ooh, I better use some preshave too…”
I started out today with a fairly straight forward set up: the restored Made-Rite brush with a pure badger knot, my 1912 with a Gem stainless steel blade, and some Kell’s Ultra Aloe Energy soap, but then I added on. I pulled out the Shave Secret for a preshave oil and decided to make a superlather using the Kell’s and some AoS Ocean Kelp. I also decided to use some of my trusty SAL Alum and a dash of AoS Ocean Kelp after shave lotion. I also made the decision to change out the Gem stainless steel blade for a Gem carbon steel just to see how the carbon blade would compare. The stainless steel still has some life in it, so it gets to live in the Clog Pruf for a while. In the end, what started out as a simple lather and rinse sort of shave ended up being a product extravaganza. The picture of today’s set up does not reflect all of these changes because all of that stuff is a pain to photograph together and because I already took the picture and did not feel like redoing it.
I did a three pass wtg/atg/xtg shave followed by a cold water rinse and my post shave add-ons. The results were a BBS shave with zero nicks and zero irritation. The superlather worked up into a nice creamy result, but the scent of the Kell’s Energy overpowered the AoS Ocean Kelp. Next time I’ll use some Karo Classic or Local Pig instead. The carbon blade was nice and smooth, but was not significantly different than the stainless steel blade. Overall, this was a good shave. My abilities with SE razors continue to improve and with that improvement my comfort level also increases.
Pre: Hot shower, warm water splash, and Shave Secret
Razor: Gem 1912
Blade: Gem carbon steel
Brush: Made-Rite pure badger
Soap: Superlather of Kell’s Ultra Aloe Energy and AoS Ocean Kelp
Post: Cold water rinse, SAL Alum, and AoS Ocean Kelp After Shave Lotion