11-12-2012, 04:40 PM
#1
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I was thinking about this during a shave or two recently, as I often do. I know all of us are bound to have at least one good mistake made during our traditional shaving journey that we'd take back if we could.

I thought it'd be amusing to share them! Any kind of mistake at all. Maybe you totally misused a product, ruined a vintage item, totally overpaid on eBay, cut your earlobe off, whatever!

I'll share one of my biggies. I was still quite new to this whole traditional shaving world. I had purchased one of the nice dark blue Old Spice mugs and long handled boar brushes circa 1985 from eBay. A very nice pair, and very likely NOS. I intended to use the brush, it was the first boar I'd ever encountered. Well I soaked it and it gave off a really bad, what I kinda thought was, chemically paint thinner kinda smell. It didn't go away with just soaking, and I thought that some dummy used it with something they shouldn't have at some point in its life. I thought the knot was toast. I had a buddy reknot it with a TGN boar, and lets just say it turned out well but not as nice as it once was. Turns out, that smell which I thought was a nasty chemical, was a strong instance of typical boar funk. After encountering many more boars, I now know. But I still feel bad for wrecking a perfectly good vintage brush.

So what mistakes have you guys made along the way?

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 11-12-2012, 04:47 PM
#2
  • Johnny
  • Super Moderator
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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As for as the shave, none. I had a good teacher.

As for as purchases, plenty. There have been a few eBay duds, but the most recent was about a year ago. After reading wonderful reviews about a particular product I went whole hog and bought their soap, cream, after shave, etc. After receiving the high dollar product I discovered two things, I did not like the scent and the product broke my skin out.

I found one of the posters (this was on another forum) that recommended the product and sold it to him and half price.

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 11-12-2012, 05:02 PM
#3
  • Dave
  • Moderator Emeritus
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Made plenty of mistakes. There's been quite a few times when my enthusiasm was quite a bit above my technique resulting in being disappointed in items that I just wasn't ready for yet. Best example is the Futur. I tried it a couple of times and my technique wasn't good and I sold them. The Futur is now one of my top 2 razors with my Tradere and I really enjoy using it. Tabac was another along with Astra SP's and a SOC Boar. I might have a regret shave one morning with the Futur, Tabac, Astra Blade and the SOC Boar. I didn't give the SOC Boar long enough to break in and didn't get good lather with it. It's now the best boar brush I own

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 11-12-2012, 05:16 PM
#4
  • tgutc
  • Senior Member
  • Michigan
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One mistake I made was not lathering long enough. It took me quite a while to realize I needed to start loading for 30+. Also, when I started I used a lot of Derby blades...Not sure what I was thinking.

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 11-12-2012, 05:32 PM
#5
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I share all three of your mistakes guys, to some degree or another!

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 11-12-2012, 05:33 PM
#6
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Hmmm, not really. Other than the really common ones nearly every one does (like nick the **** out of my first strop or two).

Although I did make the colossal error of trusting the knife salespeople. So, instead of purchasing the correct grit finishing stone for my straight, I bought an 800 grit stone. Took me forever to fix it. Guess I learned a lot about honing over those many hours.

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 11-12-2012, 05:40 PM
#7
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Listed for brevity:

Thinking I had "sensitive skin"
Only silvertip badger
Only mild razors
Only aggressive razors
Back to only mild razors
Focusing too much on cost per unit of a product
Thinking I would find the single greatest set-up and use it exclusively
Too many passes
Not loading the brush long enough past the bubbly stage

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 11-12-2012, 05:42 PM
#8
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Early on? Not listening to what my uncles and Dad told me ....moisturize to protect your skin after every shave. Back then you had to use Cornhuskers or products like Nivea or Ponds. My grandfather used to use some concoction of Bay Rum and olive oil. I thought it was too girly and never listened. I had 4 barbers in the family that shaved people for a living and had skin that looked younger than their years. Boy was I wrong and once I started I saw drastic improvements in my skin and my shave. Wish I had started sooner.

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 11-12-2012, 05:44 PM
#9
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Early on, I would never prep enough, and I went over the same spots several times per pass. Bad habits are difficult to break. Let's see... I didn't properly map the grain of my beard until recently, which drastically improved the ease and comfort of my shaves. It also took my a while to realize that I don't have to shave to a BBS result every day. In fact, doing so causes me more irritation than its worth. Mostly advice to those with tough beards. Two passes is enough for most days, three occasionally.

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 11-12-2012, 05:45 PM
#10
  • Arcadies
  • Senior Member
  • Greeneville, TN
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I honestly can't really think of any offhand, I guess I was lucky. I don't know if it counts, but when I was about 2 months in I bought what I thought was a adjustable slim Aristocrat on eBay and paid $40 for it and when I received it ended up being a plain old slim. I fell for bad photos with poor lighting that made it look gold, it was in great shape though, no brassing and had 80% of the number paint intact so it wasn't a total loss...ended up selling it though, didn't give me satisfactory shaves. I did however learn to scrutinize eBay listings more thoroughly before hitting BID/BIN.

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 11-12-2012, 06:01 PM
#11
  • Grumpy
  • Senior Member
  • DisneyLand
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I made a couple of mistakes and am still making some.

I have bought a couple of Krappy Razors off of The Bay but, mostly I have been luckly.

Then, I bought a pack of vintage Razor Blades. The Picture was so large, the description not very descriptive, the price not too high, so I bought it. I didn't ask what it was and didn't know it was a pack of Razor Blades until it arrived.

The one thing I would like to turn back would be the time when I opened by bathrool counter door and a ceramic Old Spice Mug fell onto the floor. Cermic vs. Tile ... the result ... Tile Won.

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 11-12-2012, 06:53 PM
#12
  • Tonality
  • Attempted Soap Sabbatical
  • Boston
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Assuming I needed the most aggressive razor to get a good shave. Everybody has a preference, and aggressive is not mine.

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 11-12-2012, 06:53 PM
#13
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I'm still new, and my big mistake was knocking my van der Hagen brush into the toilet Sad. Good thing my Vie-Long had just arrived and my Semogue is on the way.

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 11-12-2012, 06:54 PM
#14
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Flipping the razor to the other side of the blade without lifting it off my face far enough. Dodgy

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 11-12-2012, 07:06 PM
#15
  • savagejoerude
  • If you ain't a LOSER, you ain't livin'!!
  • New Orleans USA
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Maybe some mistakes but NO REGETS!!! Maybe my worst is passing on a couple nice razors that I really wanted when I had the cash to buy them.. I'm new to this so I'm sure I'll make plenty....

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 11-12-2012, 07:40 PM
#16
  • J_fro
  • Senior Member
  • From the 716!
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- Trying to convince myself I liked creams "cause they are cheaper"
- Trying to convince myself I liked SuperSpeeds "cause everyone likes them"
- Not knowing enough to know "old type fat handle" meant frankenrazor

Now all these mistakes yielded positives
- I know I like tallow based soaps
- I know I dislike TTO/ large head razors
- I actually like the fat handle on a tech.

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 11-12-2012, 07:58 PM
#17
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A good DFS is better then a poor BBS
sure if I have the time & effort but on most days I only have time and patience for a good DFS

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 11-12-2012, 08:03 PM
#18
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Feeling like I was doing something wrong for a long time before I found SEs.

Not leaving a place when my gut told me to. Would have saved a lot of hassle & wasted time with people putting on a front to help others when they are only out to help themselves.

Bio-Oil as a moisturizer. Yep, I tried it. Not recommended.

The yang to this yin...

Loving my SE shaves and getting the best & most enjoyable shaves of my life now.

I am now part of a great community that is not only taking traditional shaving to the next level, but also has a homey atmosphere with people being real & cordial at the same time.

I have my Krampert's Finest. Brian, you can never stop making my AS or else you'll be the reason I go back to trying things like Bio-Oil.

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 11-12-2012, 08:20 PM
#19
  • Tonality
  • Attempted Soap Sabbatical
  • Boston
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(11-12-2012, 07:58 PM)hedonist222 Wrote: A good DFS is better then a poor BBS
sure if I have the time & effort but on most days I only have time and patience for a good DFS

All too true! I've had too many mornings after where I knew yesterday's shave was of poor quality, though seemed good at the time. Then having to make the choice of shaving again over skin that wasn't ready to giving myself time to heal. Too often I chose the former.

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 11-12-2012, 09:05 PM
#20
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I cannot think of too many mistakes early on. My switch to safety razors was an easy learning curve because I went right to straight razors from electric, THEN safety razors. Kind of backwards huh?

A few things I have learned over the years are:

1) Bigger brushes work better for me, I always though having smaller hands meant I needed a small brush. Now the Chubby 3 is my best friend.

2) Merkur blades are not sharp enough for me. Geez, they feel dull when I occasionally try one out again.

3) Shaving creams were it for me. Not! I mostly use hard soaps and face lather these days.

The only real mistake I made early on was buying a straight razor and strop from AOS and learning it all the hard way before finding Straight Razor Place and getting a real "shave ready" razor.

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