10-20-2016, 10:00 AM
#1
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I would like to ask the wet shavers who have been in the niche' a while what NON ARTISAN products they think represent a "best value" (great deal, best bang for the buck, punch above their weight, etc.) in old school wet shaving. I want to specifically exclude artisan products to make it more of a challenge (and because artisan products tend to come-and-go). For example, I think the Dorco PL602 razor works really well for a $6 DE. The Van Der Hagen "Luxury" soap performs competitively with other glycerin soaps and goes for $4. Proraso is often cited as working just as well as more expensive shave creams. Some of the Omega shave brushes compete well with brushes costing much more. So...what are the best deals out there?

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 10-20-2016, 10:16 AM
#2
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Hi Mantic--

My best value non-artisan choices would be:

Dorco PL602 Razor - $6
Arko Stick- $2 or Proraso Red tub soap -- $7
Omega S Brush synthetic - $9

Cheers,

Alex

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 10-20-2016, 10:18 AM
#3
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Oh, it's not really fair to compare the price of a 5.2 oz tub of Proraso to a 75g stick of Arko.  Apples to apples you can get a 75 ml Proraso tub for $3+ in the US and for less than half that in Europe.

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 10-20-2016, 10:25 AM
#4
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Mark, I've been wet shaving since the summer of 2009 and watched your videos over and over to learn about "no pressure".   Wink

My favorite budget products:

Godrej shave creams
Dettol shave cream
Arko Shave cream
Arko Shave stick

RazoRock synthetic brushes
Maggard synthetic brushes
Omega "S" brushes (shorter loft, approx. 50mm loft)

Florida Water AS

Aside from some inexpensive vintage razors picked up back when one could do that, My recommendation would be Maggard brand razors or one of the inexpensive RazoRock razors.

Regarding shave soap, I feel quite strongly that when talking budget products we have to look at longevity of soap.  A puck of Tabac (or Fine, for those who don't care for Tabac's scent)  easily lasts much longer than the celebrated budget RazoRock soap and may indeed be more economical.

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 10-20-2016, 10:38 AM
#5
  • Smudge
  • Junior Member
  • Hertfordshire UK
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(10-20-2016, 10:25 AM)redrako Wrote: Mark, I've been wet shaving since the summer of 2009 and watched your videos over and over to learn about "no pressure".   Wink

My favorite budget products:

Godrej shave creams
Dettol shave cream
Arko Shave cream
Arko Shave stick

RazoRock synthetic brushes
Maggard synthetic brushes
Omega "S" brushes (shorter loft, approx. 50mm loft)

Florida Water AS

Aside from some inexpensive vintage razors picked up back when one could do that, My recommendation would be Maggard brand razors or one of the inexpensive RazoRock razors.

Regarding shave soap, I feel quite strongly that when talking budget products we have to look at longevity of soap.  A puck of Tabac (or Fine, for those who don't care for Tabac's scent)  easily lasts much longer than the celebrated budget RazoRock soap and may indeed be more economical.

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 10-20-2016, 10:49 AM
#6
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Without a doubt, Palmolive sticks - I love them and the lather they provide, and they are under $1 each, and I get 40+ shaves. Even the Palmolive cream is as good as Proraso for a fraction of the price (I bought it in Austria for €1,75).

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 10-20-2016, 10:52 AM
#7
  • Smudge
  • Junior Member
  • Hertfordshire UK
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I live in the UK, but have a sister that lives in Mallorca (Spain). There are some top notch products there that I'm fortunate enough to receive when requested.

La Toja (sticks, soaps and after shaves). Lea (Bea) sticks and soaps. The best one of all is Floid (Suave, Mentholado, Vigarosso and another I can't recall).

All dead cheap if bought there, but rather more costly elsewhere.

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 10-20-2016, 11:11 AM
#8
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Disregarding what you can get at the BST here on the 'nook, some of the best value* items I've found so far is the Arko shavesticks and creams, Dalan d'Men cream, Derby shavesticks and creams, GzD shavesticks, the Turkish #6 and #7 'horse hair' brushes, the Lord Racer razor (good but aggressive), the Wilkinson Sword Classic razor (a good DE for a beginner), the YUMA razor (pot metal goodness)...

Yet to find a cheap but good aftershave though; either they smell really artificial or they smell of teen angst and locker rooms  Undecided
 
*) aka cheap but good

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 10-20-2016, 12:02 PM
#9
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I just purchased two Palmolive sticks shipped to my door for $6. A tube of proraso red is hard to beat for $5, what an amazing scent that product offers. I got a vintage NOS tech for $7 shipped to me a few months back. Semogue owners club for $25 is a tremendous brush. So a tech , a tub of proraso red or Palmolive , and a semogue OC for $35-$37.

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 10-20-2016, 12:45 PM
#10
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Mitchell's Wool Fat for me.  That stuff lasts and lasts, and a refill puck is only $10-13 dollars. Great stuff!

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 10-20-2016, 12:52 PM
#11
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Legendary Arko.

Great value and great performance. It's not the best, but it's certainly better than some more expensive soaps I've tried.

Arko, Cella, MWF and Tabac. Old reliables for a reason.

When it comes to brushes, the king of value for me used to be boars but now, synthetics all the way. Inexpensive, easy to use, easy to whip up a lather and best of all (for me) miserly with soaps. Doesn't eat them.

Blades? I only use 2 pcs of Polsilvers in a month of daily shaving. A hundred pack would last me 4 years more or less.

Aftershave. Dickinson's witch hazel toner. Inexpensive and has a little natural (says in the bottle) alcohol, I suppose that's enough for it to have antisceptic qualities.

As for value razors; Tech's. Easy to find, inexpensive, lots of options. My favorite is the English flat bottomed.

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 10-20-2016, 01:06 PM
#12
  • Rufus
  • Senior Member
  • Greater Toronto Area
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As for shaving cream (I don't use soap), most of the TOBS creams, the Body Shop Maca Root and the Real Shaving Company.
As for aftershaves, the AV family of splashes.
As for badger brushes, the New Forest line, Simpson Colonel best, shavemac Finest, TGN 2-band finest.
As for boar brushes, the Omega B&B Essential Boar.
As for scuttles, the Moss Scuttle.
As for cartridge razors (I don't often use DEs or SEs), Mach3 and Sensor.

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 10-20-2016, 01:28 PM
#13
  • Mel S Meles
  • On the edge, ouch
  • 44.4899° south of the North Pole
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(10-20-2016, 10:00 AM)mantic59 Wrote: I would like to ask the wet shavers who have been in the niche' a while what NON ARTISAN products they think represent a "best value" (great deal, best bang for the buck, punch above their weight, etc.) in old school wet shaving.  I want to specifically exclude artisan products to make it more of a challenge (and because artisan products tend to come-and-go).  For example, I think the Dorco PL602 razor works really well for a $6 DE.  The Van Der Hagen "Luxury" soap performs competitively with other glycerin soaps and goes for $4.  Proraso is often cited as working just as well as more expensive shave creams.  Some of the Omega shave brushes compete well with brushes costing much more.  So...what are the best deals out there?

My answers would differ VERY greatly among the differing definitions of “wet shaving” that are carelessly thrown about.  For nearly 50 years, I have shaved every day with beard preparation comprising using a real brush to make a lather from a soap that had been specifically formulated to be used as a shaving soap, followed by use of a razor with a non-electrically powered blade.  These days, however, newbies argue vehemently that shaving that “really wet” is not enough to constitute manly macho “wet shaving."

Under my definition, I would nominate, for instance, Kiss My Face Lavender & Shea shaving cream, which might even get the stamp of “wet shaving” approval from a subset of the newbies. But if I nominated as a “great value” the Feather MR3 neo razor (conservatively, about 14¢/shave at Bull Goose Shaving prices), there would be screams from the non-old-timer crowd that any blade that is encased in a fixed mechanism cannot constitute any part of a “wet shaving” routine.

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 10-20-2016, 02:20 PM
#14
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Arko.  I prefer the tub over the stick.

Omega 49.

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 10-20-2016, 02:30 PM
#15
  • Agravic
  • Emeritus
  • Pennsylvania, USA
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Semogue boar brushes
Crabtree & Evelyn soaps (they are often on sale)

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 10-20-2016, 02:50 PM
#16
  • nikos.a
  • Senior Member
  • Athens, Greece
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Semogue boar brushes, I agree with Ravi here,
Shaving sticks, like Palmolive and Speick,
Old time classic lotions, like Aqua Velva and Old Spice,
Vintage razors, if you search enough, you can find great razors at excellent prices.

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 10-20-2016, 03:00 PM
#17
  • Agravic
  • Emeritus
  • Pennsylvania, USA
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(10-20-2016, 02:50 PM)nikos.a Wrote: Semogue boar brushes, I agree with Ravi here,
Shaving sticks, like Palmolive and Speick,
Old time classic lotions, like Aqua Velva and Old Spice,
Vintage razors, if you search enough, you can find great razors at excellent prices.

Ah yes, Nikos, GEM razors; performance:price is superb.

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 10-20-2016, 04:09 PM
#18
  • Mouser
  • Senior Member
  • Forest City, Florida U.S.A.
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Vintage razors (when I started), vintage blades  (when I started), Palmolive stick, the Fat, Coates creams, WSP Rustic soaps, Fine after shaves and soaps.......

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 10-20-2016, 04:57 PM
#19
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Speick cream a tube is 6 or 7 dollars and it is every bit as good if not better than creams costing as much as 10!times

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 10-20-2016, 05:00 PM
#20
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Maggards razors three piece in various design. Stainless handles and really well made heads that are very nice and attractively priced.

Semogue and Vie Long brushes. As much as I don't care for them, I really appreciate the value in synthetics too. Take your pick.

Palmolive stick, Arko, Prorasso White.

Derby blades and many of the Russian ones.

That's my short list of affordable and great performance wet shave basics.

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