Thursday, March 29, 2018

Lord Platinum Class Vs. Feather Blades and P.R.A.

I have been applying my P.R.A. (progressive razor aggressiveness) process with great results. (For more information on PRA, see my article on
My Phoenix Artisan Accoutrements DOC

I've currently had three shaves with my Lord Platinum Class blade. This blade isn't dangerously
sharp, so my use of my mild Double-Open-Comb (DOC) razor was limited to the blade's maiden shave. Then as is my custom, my razor progression went next to my 1965 Gillette Tech. This razor, too, was only needed for shave number two.

My '65 Tech Head on the PAA handle.
Then this morning I used my Parker Variant (set to one) for the third shave on this Lord Platinum Class blade, and a pleasant shave it was!

Contrast that to my prior blade, which was a Feather brand. Because it's a sharper and more irritating blade, I took several shaves with the DOC before switching to the Tech. Even then, the shave with the Tech was a bit too aggressive for my skin, so I returned to the DOC for a couple more shaves.

Then I returned to the Feather-Tech combination for a couple more shaves before finishing the blade's useful life in my Parker Variant. (By the way, since my PRA article was published on Sharpologist, I've relegated to my closet razor box my Ming Shi 2000S, the Merkur Futur imitator, because though good in its own way, one edge of the razor was slightly more aggressive than the other. The Variant offers as good a shave and is more uniform in the relative aggressiveness of its edges.)

Parker Varian
I should note that I found the Feather to be as durable as any of my other brands, which is counter to the experience of some others, who say that the useful life of the Feather blade is relatively short. I do admit that I recycled the Feather blade after the fourteenth shave -- not because it's useful life was anywhere near done; I could have easily gotten seven or more shaves from the blade. However, the shaves were consistently a bit irritating from the first to the fourteenth, so I figured it wasn't worth stretching the number of shaves.

It was much better to put the Feather blade into the blade-recycle can, and pull out a blade that is much more comfortable for me to use. The Lord blade was a welcome relief.

Happy shaving!

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Stupid Trolls and a Straight Shave

Foolishly Defending Preconceived Notions

A short while ago, I authored an article on, which compared Martin De Candre (MDC) shave soap to Williams -- arguably the Rolls-Royce of shave soaps to the Toyota Yaris of shave soaps.

I got some push-back comments from two readers trolling the article. Normally I try not to respond to cranks and trolls, but their comments kind of pissed me off due to their carelessness and stupidity.

Both criticized the pseudo science of my approach. In reality, I simply laid out my methods and my observations. I made and still make no claim of scientific method, which I actually understand, and those blockheads clearly don't.

One of the trolls took issue with my unusual lathering methods. But in reality, I merely loaded my warm, wet brush with soap from a soap cup and then face lathered. Not so unusual, eh, Sparky? What may have confused the simpleton troll is that I explained how I heated my water in a microwave oven rather than letting the tap run (and run and run) waiting for the water to get hot. Obviously this guy wouldn't score high in reading comprehension.

The other troll suggested that he goes through a puck of Williams in 35 shaves, while MDC lasts waaaaaaaaaay longer. Hmm. Okay, well, Williams pucks are 50 grams, while MDC comes in 200-gram quantities. Not much of a shock that MDC lasts waaaaaaaaaaay longer -- although I seriously doubt that any normal Williams user uses up a puck in 35 shaves. That joker must be really wasteful.

Or else his and the other troll's opinions are not at all objective and are primarily influenced by reputation and cost. My over-riding point of that Sharpologist article was that price doesn't always suggest quality. As someone who has a degree in marketing (among other subjects), I'm all too aware that brand image is greatly influenced by price. (For example, I think some apparently  failed shave-soap brands such as Pyrate Cove Soap Works were not successful because they were priced too low! I have re-evaluated three different pucks of this soap brand, and I find them to be every bit as good as MDC, though they were not much more costly than Williams, when you compare cost per ounce. I believe that if such soaps were more expensive, they would have been deemed higher quality and more desirable in the marketplace.) Anyway in this Rolls versus Yaris case, I didn't see much difference between the two soaps -- a conclusion that I didn't originally anticipate.

Since that Rolls-Yaris comparison, I've actually been doing similar comparisons with all my shave soaps, and my conclusions are contrary to my previously stated opinions in this blog. At this time, I believe that virtually all of my hard and semi-hard shave soaps perform about the same. The only major difference is in fragrances.

Once I go through my extensive inventory of shave soap (which may take a long time), I may just go with Williams because it's readily available and inexpensive.

It never ceases to amaze me how some persons react when their preconceived opinions are challenged by someone merely stating his own, individual opinion.  Sheesh!

My Infrequent Straight Shave of This Morning

I haven't had a straight-razor shave in a while, and on a whim I pulled out my Parker PTB this morning. I did a very basic 1-1/2-pass shave that was surprisingly easy given my general use of DE razors much more than my barber or classic straight razors.

Though I'm still a committed DE user, it was fun to have a go with a straight on my beard. (I normally, every week or two, shave the back of my neck with the PTB.)

Happy shaving (and trolling if that's your thing) :-D