06-14-2014, 03:03 AM
  • Karlo
  • Active Member
  • Manila, PHL
User Info
I first used the blue Astras (Russian) Christmas morning 2013 and it didn't turn out well. It was my first exposure to redness and irritation, and I had a hell of time trying to soothe the rawness. I tried again a few days later and got the same, albeit less severe, results. I ended up giving the remainder of the hundred blades to my barber and he couldn't be happier.

Today, I found a solitary survivor in my blade box so I said, "Why the hell not?" Neutrogena face wash for prep. Cade soap. Mühle synthetic and the same R89 that I shaved with on Christmas morning.

Results? Close comfortable shave! WTG and XTG were pleasant. ATG was also smooth except in my mustache area where I felt the blade tug just a little bit. All in all, similar to Astra SP but with more audible and tactile feedback. Suddenly, I regretted having ditched my stock so quickly.

So what changed in six months? Reviewing my journal, I saw that my Christmas shave was all wrong. I was using a new cream, a new boar brush that had yet to break in, and a new blade. My succeeding shave still had the new brush and the new blade. Too many variables were in place. Late journal entries revealed that I was allergic to the cream regardless of blade and brush. It wasn't the blade that was giving me grief!

I learned an important lesson today: minimize variables when testing a new product. It'll spare you unnecessary pain and waste.

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