Sunday, July 6, 2014

Ahhhhh... Back to the Familiar Ritual

My first post-traveling shave was terrific -- near perfect.

With a new Astra Superior Platinum blade in my Merkur 37C slant, I chose my most recent rich, slick, and creamy shave-soap formulation, and, after splashing cool water on my beard a few times, lathered up with my Van Der Hagen (VDH) boar-bristled brush.
The main tools of my back-to-home shave: the Merkur 37C slant-bar razor, called a two-piece razor, but here completely disassembled into its actual three main components; a test puck of my rich, slick, and creamy shave soap formulation in a re-purposed yogurt cup; and the still-damp Van Der Hagen boar-bristled brush.

And just a small aside on the brush:
Many may scoff or roll their eyes at the inexpensive, non-boutique brand, with its common-man plastic handle. Yet with use, the bristles have softened, and the knot of the brush is still dense with boar hairs. With a mind to simplify my life, I have stored my badger brush in the shaving box up in my closet to wait until needed. This is because the VDH brush continues to be a good shaving accessory, rendering other choices unnecessary.

After two passes, I had a very close shave. A final half-pass touch up, and I was clean and slick.

After an alum-block rub, I used a splash of witch hazel, and finished with a tea-tree-oil after-shave lotion.

The ritual always ends with clean up: rinsing and shaking out the brush, rinsing and drying the razor and lathering bowl, drying and palm stropping the blade, putting the blade in the 33C for tomorrow's shave, drying off the counter, and putting everything in its place.

Happy shaving! (Mine was.)

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