If you read my first post about shaving you most likely got the basics. We talked about how good it is a proper shave. Yes indeed, it will change your day and even your mood. But how to reach the perfect shave? Wet shaving!
Nowadays there are really several options and brands and the offer can be sometimes a bit confusing if not overwhelming.
The main producers come always with brand new razors and a legit question comes to our mind. If we need the latest product on the market because the previous is not good anymore…how could they manage to have those perfectly smooth faces in the past?
Well gentlemen, the truth is that sometimes new doesn’t mean better and speaking about shaving we have the perfect example.
Wet shaving is the classic old way of shaving. As the word says itself, it all starts with water. But then you need the right tools:
- a brush
- a shaving soap or cream
- a razor
Disclaimer: personal experience
Contrarily to what many believe, in my opinion the first two are more important than the last one.
Don’t get me wrong though. I do believe that a classic double edge (DE) razor is way better than a cartridge razor. And a straight razor is way better than a double edge.
But I got the biggest improvement in the quality of shaving when I simply started to use a brush and a cream (or soap). These two elements are the key to get started in the world of wet shaving and to feel the difference on your skin.
Some wet shavers will also mention a bowl or mugs, but I don’ consider them fundamental. You can mount the cream directly on your face (face lathering) and this is the way to go for many wet shavers.
Ideally you should own a shaving bowl so that you can experiment and see what’s best for you. But again, not needed.
Cartridge vs DE
As aforesaid, I do believe that a DE razor is a huge improvement compared to a cartridge one. So, is any DE better than any cartridge razor? Absolutely not.
We love wet shaving because it perfectly fits our philosophy of life. We want the best. As simple as that.
Regarding cartridge razors the choices are relatively limited and we almost always choose what the market tells us to buy.
On the contrary, speaking about DE razors there are much more options and really much more variables and aspects to consider.
Wet shaving DE razors
There are two main kinds of DE razors:
- open comb
- closed comb
The open comb means that the blade is more exposed and therefore it is more aggressive and works better on longer hair.
The closed comb is designed to be more gentle on the skin, having the blade less exposed and it is ideal on shorter hair.
Furthermore, there is another type of razor called slant bar. It takes its name from the fact that the shaving sides of the head are slanted. Ideally, the slant bar razor shaves deeper than an open comb and at the same time more gently than a closed comb razor.
That being said, despite razor’s choice, it is the blade that makes a huge difference. Blades have to be sharp, if you feel that a blade is pulling and tugging too much, it means that blade is not for you.
The good thing about blades is that you can try so many different at a relatively little price. There are many shops online offering sample packs so you can have an idea of which blades work best on your skin.
My recommendation is to pick one closed comb razor and one open comb and try them both with several blades.
Remember that when you test a blade, you need to try it more than once in both razors before judging it. Our skin, mood, emotions, tiredness and even skin preparation can vary greatly, so our first impressions could be completely overturned.
Last but not least, the number of shaves per blade depends on too many factors, so really keep always in mind rule number one in wet shaving: YMMV.