A quick estimate: Most men my age have shaved about 15,000 times! We should all be experts but I was not.
Over the years, I’ve used a variety of shaving equipment. My first “razor” was a high tech cordless rechargeable Remington electric razor. The rechargeable battery did not last very long but I used it for several years as a plug-in. Thereafter, I tried several different types/styles of razors.
My dad used a classic “butterfly” Gillette double razor so I had to try one of those. The razor on the extreme left is a modern version of that razor. Next I tried the Gillette “Atra” (second from left) and used it for many years. After the Atra, I used a variety of disposable razors but, most often, the fancy three bladed Gillette in the middle. I always used cheap shaving cream – usually Barbasol.
A little over a year ago, I decided to test/experiment/play with other shaving equipment. Of course, I first browsed the ‘net and found, to my surprise, that “classic” shaving techniques and equipment were quite the fad. The recommended technique is to shave three times (well, three passes: with the grain (down), across the grain horizontally) and against the grain (up)). I bought a modern “butterfly” double edge razor (the one on the left), several different blades, a brush and a couple of different shaving cream/soap packages. After trying several combinations, my preference was: Edwin Jagger razor (4th from left) with Derby blades, a cheap brush, Old Bond Street Sandalwood shaving cream and aftershave. Although at first, I whipped up the shaving cream in a cereal bowl, eventually I ordered a “scuttle” to keep the whipped up shaving cream warm. This was a nice setup even though all too often my face was nicked in the process of shaving.
One day I realized that, in all fairness, I had never tried one of the modern five bladed vibrating wonder shavers. The razor is cheap (~$10) but the blades are expensive (~$4 each). Even so, in the interest of fairness, I gave it a try. No contest! — and no nicks either. For the past five months, I’ve been using the Gillette Fusion ProGlide with the same cheap brush, Sandalwood cream and aftershave shown below. It’s been great!
As the novelty wore off, I stopped using the scuttle every day and also changed to a quicker two pass (down then up) technique (except for special occasions) but continued to relather in-between passes. The $4 vibrating “blade” lasts about a month. The AA battery lasts a few months.
Some web sites I found useful and/or interesting regarding shaving and equipment include:
Shave Nation (lots of tests and demos)
The Art of Shaving
Shaving: The Art of Manliness
Edwin Jagger shaving accessories