05-16-2017, 08:42 PM
#1
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Hi,
    I'm still relatively new to this style of shaving. I've got some questions I was hoping some of you might be able to answer. 

1) How do I tell which direction the "grain" of my beard is running?
2) I have an alum block. I'm assuming that I apply this thing pre-wetted over my beard area immediately after I'm done shaving... correct?
3) I have some witch hazel. I'm guessing I should apply this next and should come AFTER the alum block treatment.... correct?
4) What exactly does the alum block do?
5) What exactly does the witch hazel do?

Thanks for any help...

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 05-16-2017, 10:25 PM
#2
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I'm sure that every wetshaver has his (or her) own set of answer for those, although most of them will be variations on the same themes.

1 - Simply lightly run your fingertip across your face in different directions. Going one way it'll catch as if on velcro - that is your ATG
2 - I wet my down and run it across my neck and lower face after shaving to check for minor nicks - if I got a visible nick (ie: I bleed) I just wet it and press against the nick... it stings a bit Tongue
3 - Witch hazel is currently not in my rotation. When it was I used it as an aftershave.
4 - Alum is a blood coagulant, which means it works as a astringent, and also have antiperspirant and antibacterial properties. So it cleans the skin, seals any minor nicks, and lets you know what areas of your shaves that can be improved...
5 - Witch hazel is also an astringent, and is often claimed to help tone and tighten the skin. It also allegedly helps prevent facial sweating; however I have no real experience with that since I usually don't sweat in that area much

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 05-17-2017, 01:36 AM
#3
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(05-16-2017, 08:42 PM)punchy Wrote: Hi,
    I'm still relatively new to this style of shaving. I've got some questions I was hoping some of you might be able to answer. 

1) How do I tell which direction the "grain" of my beard is running?
2) I have an alum block. I'm assuming that I apply this thing pre-wetted over my beard area immediately after I'm done shaving... correct?
3) I have some witch hazel. I'm guessing I should apply this next and should come AFTER the alum block treatment.... correct?
4) What exactly does the alum block do?
5) What exactly does the witch hazel do?

Thanks for any help...

As for #1 - if you are anything like me ... if you miss a couple days of shaving you can actually see which direction you hairs grow.  Mine seem to be .... below the jaw-line is roughly the angle from the center of under my chin towards the outside bottom of my neck.  Above the jaw-line is from center-line of my face toward the rear of my jawbone.  

Some folks shave 'North to South' on their face, but for me that is neither with the grain, nor against the grain and it is not 90 degrees across the gain either.

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 05-17-2017, 07:01 AM
#4
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Bayside, NY
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I rinse thoroughly with cold water then use witch hazel as a post shave splash. If/When necessary I'll then use my alum block. I find that after rinsing the alum off, 1 more splash of witch hazel is again refreshing and it leaves my skin soft and supple. None of this may be necessary but I do it anyway 'cause it's fun Biggrin

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 05-21-2017, 05:35 PM
#5
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Hmmm.  I've been wet shaving for several years but have never used either alum or witch hazel.  Maybe I'm missing something, but I figure that if I need skin treatment after my shave, I must be doing (or using) something wrong when I shave.

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 Yesterday, 04:41 PM
#6
  • Quando
  • Active Member
  • The Galactic Empire
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Yeah, okay, so, the alum block is your friend, because, it will let you know, exactly, where you pressed down too hard, while shaving.  This sting helps to prevent the sting of the alcohol, though, so, I find it to be quite helpful.  Witch hazel, I suggest you avoid.  It does stop facial sweating, but, so does alum.  Alum works like deodorant/anti-perspirant.  Witch Hazel works, by penetrating the pores, and, blocking the sweat glands from working, like poison.  I, seriously, recommend skipping that.  

The important thing to remember, however, with alum, is that you are supposed to let it dry, on your face, and, then wash off the excess.

My aftershave/post-shave order is this: 1.  Wash my face, with leftover shaving lather, 2. I rinse my face several times, decreasing the water temperature, each time.  I, also, run my shaving mug under the same water, in order to, gradually, cool it.  3.  I wash my face with Simple Facial Wash.  4. Alum Block.  I start to clean up, while it dries.  5. I wash off the alum, with bar soap.  Any hand/face soap will do.  Use cool water, when doing this.  Cool water, and, bar soap, both close the pores.  6. Pat dry the face with a towel, 7. Face Massage, w/Towel, 8. Aftershave Tonic (alcohol based), if any, 9. Aftershave Balm, 10. Pre-Shave cream, again, to cool down the face, and, close the pores, 11. Suave Lotion, or, any other brand.  

It seems like a lot, but, my face feels great, after I shave.

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