Today was a complete testing day that I am passing off to all you fine folks as a Shave of the Day (which technically this is) ! I typically face lather so my gear consists of a brush, soap, razor, blade, and finally whatever finishing materials. The last could be anything from a balm to an aftershave to styptics and a bunch of “other” stuff. Out of my entire shave only 3 were out of my normal den, being the soap and the razor and balm; I use a lot of items in a typical SOTD even though I don’t always list them. I will be reviewing at a later time the “other” material so I am doing the SOTD here and the review “where it came from” as most know I write for a few sites. I am trying to be ethical, and keep the SOTD and review as separate as possible, So let’s get to it shall we !
As I said earlier this was mainly a review day so lets talk minute about what I already owned… Today was the last day on my GEM stainless steel blade, so I had to choose wisely my razor, as I am not sure the next time an SE razor will be in my rotation. I choose the GEM “Shovelhead” ! This is a notorious aggressive razor, I personally agree, but it is also extremely forgiving. So if your into that feel, but don’t want to worry about a zillion cuts or weepers this may be a great razor for you. Technique is of course pivotal here, and no razor is forgiving unless your technique is good. a neat little fact about the “Shovelhead” is that it flips forward to open, and you almost load the blade backwards; on more than one occasion I have tried to insert the blade incorrectly, think of the Every-Ready 1914 and the Shovelhead is the exact opposite flipping forward from the rear opposed to back from the front. I paired this great razor with a GEM SS blade now on use 4 … I really did not feel much tugging, but why chance it I have a lot of GEM and PAL blue blades…. sometimes you just need to let go….. so onto a new blade I went.
The second “in my den” item is Mitchell’s Wool Fat aka MWF. I love this soap ! At first I hated it and couldn’t get it to lather, as many others have made mention of, and have shied away from MWF because of this. I happen to have very hard water and by rights should have a terribly difficult time generating a lather. I used to have that problem, until one day on YouTube; I watched one of MAtic59’s video’s on lathering MWF, it changed my world. I finally was able to get this puck to lather ! I also have made video’s since as I modified the original Mantic video to my personal ways and to my “likes” in a lather. I find this soap relatively neutral to maybe powdery meets a barnyard hay like green aroma. I also find it does not residually leave much scent after fully rinsed. What it does leave is a very moisturized face as the lanolin in the soap is a wonderful moisturizer…. I think this also sometimes inhibits lather formation due to the heavy fat concentration, but that is only a guess. At another time I will do a tutorial again on MWF but lets leave it at today I could not have had better performance from this soap.
Now onto what is “new” and up for review in a bit. I was very graciously PIF’d a single first month “Wet Shaving Club” starter box kit. These Kits seem to be very popular, and a lot of sites now have “boxes” or revolving monthly products. It reminds me of when I smoked cigars more often. I would subscribe to one of the larger cigar sites, and each month 5 Random cigars would be at my front door. This is the same concept, but with traditional shaving ! Today I used the Boar brush, Whiskey ink and Lace cedar wood after shave, and yes match type styptic alum called Legends of London. I won’t go into detail as all these items are going to be reviewed. I will say I think some of these items are absolutely brilliant, and I would use again and recommend and others are still too “new”, and need to break in a bit more before I pass judgment. In fairness of the SOTD though I will say I had a great shave, and I used the Whiskey ink and Lace aftershave which has moisturizing oils as well as the great L’Occitane Baux balm, and that was the end of my shave. More on these items later though.
So that was my shave in a round about kind of nutshell !! I wish I could say more about these “club” items but it’s just firstly not time yet, and secondly these items will be reviewed from the PIF source before I go into details here out of respect, and simply I just haven’t used some items enough times to fairly talk about them …maybe Ill do an initial impressions review and later a “real” review. I hope you all had great shaves, and awesome days ! Tomorrow it’s back to work. – Aaron
- Pre: Hot shower w/ Garnier facial scrub
- Prep: USP grade glycerin 10 drops applied to face and neck
- Soap: Mitchell’s Wool Fat
- Brush: Wet Shave Club boar brush
- Razor: GEM “Shovelhead”
- Blade: GEM stainless steel (4)
- Lather type: Face
- Moustache type: Handlebar
- Wax and Pomade: Brooklyn Grooming “Williamsburg” & Zizilia
- Post shave: Cold water rinse and Shavex alum as well as “The Legends” styptic match
- After shave: Whiskey ink and Lave “Cedar wood”
- Balm: L’Occitane Baux
- EDT: L’Occitane Baux EDT