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Getting a Close Shave

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
Whenever I shave, I can always still see hair underneath my chin on the top of my neck. EVERY TIME. I'm new to shaving with a blade.. I used to use an electric, but I have found the blade to be far less painful. I wash my face with hot water before hand, rub the shaving gel on my face, then shave with the grain. I use a Mach 3 turbo and Gillette shaving gel. I try to put the razor at the steepest angle I can, and have to push pretty hard.. Anyone with a similar problem have any good remedies? I figure there is some way to apply the shaving gel or angling or SOMETHING that I'm missing. My dad never really taught me how to shave.
post #2 of 27
I'm going to wait for the replies, too, as I'm in the same boat. I have four quadrants of diagonal growth on my neck.  There's down and to the right, down and to the left, up and to the left and up and to the right. Electric shaving seems preferable, but the fumigation from the alcohol preshave and resulting acne from slightly-bacteria-laden Norelco razor heads turn me off, understandably. Wet shaving is cleaner, but never closer (for reasons BrianSD outlined), more nonuniform, always more messy to clean up, more expensive and it makes me more sluggish in the a.m. Badger brush shaving improves closeness a bit, but at the expense of extra minutes of prep. and cleanup.  I want it over in three and a half, four minutes. Perhaps the Norelco wet shaver series is worth a try (sans their gel packets -- just a generic preshave liquid or gel).  Any reviews on that, anybody? Or perhaps we can all just rip our hair out, with tweezers? Please help us.
post #3 of 27
I suggest the following Take a hot shower first Wash face with a good cleanser Apply pre shave oil - I use anthony logistics, but you can get others too. Then a good shave gel (not cream) something for sensitive skin. Leave on for a good 5 minutes. Then start shaving with the grain.
post #4 of 27
A few suggestions - 1. Shave in the shower - Get a mirror for the wall of your shower - you can find them at Target, Bed Bath & Beyond, etc. I find that the steam and hot water of the shower really help give a closer shave. I generally shave just before getting out - it gives the pores on my face time to open up and allows the skin to be very moist. 2. Don't push so hard - I use a Mach 3 as well and it works much better when you just glide it along your skin. The razor is designed so that you just run it along your face and neck, you shouldn't have to hold it at a funny angle. 3. As for shaving with the grain, sometimes you have to break the rules. I know the purists will scoff and disagree, but I've been doing this for nearly 20 years and I haven't seen any problems. I generally shave my face with downward strokes. However, on my neck, to get a close shave I almost always end up shaving both down towards my body and up towards my chin. Additionally, I seem to recall reading something from Gillette that said the Mach 3 was designed to allow you to shave both with and against the grain - and to be honest - I'm not even sure which way the grain is on the neck (although I wouldn't recommend shaving side to side - you might cut your jugular or something.) Hope this helps, Bradford
post #5 of 27
Shaving against the grain is not as gentle on the skin, but it will shave more closely than shaving with the grain. Be sure to use warm water, not truly hot, on your face. I heard once that ideally your face should be wet for about five minutes before shaving so that the hairs have a chance to soften. If you let your face stay wet much longer before shaving your skin absorbs more water and starts to puff out a tiny bit, which means that your shave will not be as close. And of course avoid any shaving gel/cream/oil that contains irritants such as menthol, peppermint, eucalyptus, or strong fragrance. If the label says that a product is made for sensitive skin, that doesn't necessarily mean that it is any better for sensitive skin.
post #6 of 27
I use the following technique: 1. Hot shower 2. Apply pre-shave oil (optional) 3. Use badger brush to apply shaving soap 4. Shave with grain 5. Relather around chin 6. Shave around chin against the grain 7. Rinse face, apply post-shave moisturizer If I don't shave right after the shower, I splash hot water on my face or use a hot towel, and always use pre-shave oil. Shaving with the grain first, then relathering and going across or against the grain is a technique I picked up from Art of Shaving (which makes nice but pricey supplies, and very nice but supremely pricey razors and brushes). It results in a very close shave with a lot less irritation and risk of ingrown hairs. Once you get the technique down, it takes less than five minutes, including rinsing the brush. For me it takes about twice the time as using an electric, but it is a closer shave and a lot less irritating.
post #7 of 27
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the replies. I'll try retro's method of shaving with the grain, then against. If I do shave against the grain around my chin and center neck, it does give a much closer shave, but I've always been told never to do that as it will cause ingrown hairs. I usually start shaving immediately after applying the shaving gel, I will try giving it a few minutes to soften the hairs then as well.
post #8 of 27
just a warning against shaving against the grain-ingrown hairs and bumps. I used to exclusively shave against and I had ingrown hairs a lot. When I went to totally with the grain, they stopped. Its not AS close, and I have to shave more often (used to shave every other day-now I shave daily), but its worth it, complexion wise.
post #9 of 27
There is no over-stressing the importance of a good badger hair brush. I,too, used to have a problem with razor bumps and irritation. I moved to Aveeno as a first step - helped somewhat, but I also had to make sure I didn't shave too closely. Then I moved back to using a cheap shaving brush, and good shaving cream - better results, but still, the shave was not too great. Finally, I moved to a silvertip badger brush. The incremental change was the greatest this time around - no irritation, and a very close shave - without having to shave against the grain. And I still manage a shave in under 5 minutes when I'm pressed. Charles at qedusa.com is a good source for shaving supplies. He has a line of badger brushes which are quite reasonably priced. I'm not linked to him in anyway, besides being a satisfied customer. Hope that helps
post #10 of 27
GLIDE the razor over your face. never press hard. also, if you use an electric, it is recommended that you clean and lubricate it after each use. i use 'remington shaver saver.' the alcohol in it should take care of any bacteria. i agree that the best method is to go with the grain first, then relather and go agianst the grown only for those few stubborn hairs that require it.
post #11 of 27
Another vote for with the grain, relather, against the grain.
post #12 of 27
I also use shaving oil, badger brush, with, then against the grain. Another idea might to find a good barber that still gives a good shave, and ask him for advice - everyone's situation is unique.
Charles at qedusa.com is a good source for shaving supplies.
Good link. I've used Taylor of Old Bond Street for years now; it's great to have travel size brushes and shave creams. I go to Black Cat Cigar in Philadelphia.
post #13 of 27
Thread Starter 
I tried using shaving oil last night for the first time and wow it seemed to make a really nice difference. The shave was closer on my neck (with the grain) and I had minimal razor burn and no cuts after. Not sure if the oil helps with burns/cuts but it seemed to in my case.
post #14 of 27
The absolute best shave cream I've ever used is Musgo Real, made in Portugal and available on-line.  Just do a Google search.  I get the closest shave, smooth like a baby's butt.  It comes in a tube and only a small amount is required.  Sometimes I have to go over some of the rough spots, but the end result is terrific.  I use a Mach 3 or Mach 3 Turbo blade, both are excellent. Here's the best price I've found. http://www.barclaycrocker.com/index.p....s_id=35 A tube lasts about 2-3 months and I buy 6 or more at a time.
post #15 of 27
All the previous tips are good. However, I would bin the shave gel - awful stuff. I use Geo F Trumper products, which I find exceptionally good; similar to Taylor's but I think they have the edge (pun intended.). I used to have terrible trouble shaving, and always ended up with sore skin and cuts. Now I use a badger brush, Trumper's skin food, Trumper's shaving soap (or cream, if travelling), and a Mach 3 razor - I find the Turbo version dreadful, but it's a matter of experimenting. The best recommendation I can give is that for almost 4 months I shaved daily in cold water, outdoors, whilst on a military 'adventure' in the desert. Trumpers shaving cream proved equal to the task. It made a real difference. It is also economic - 1 tub of shaving soap lasts many months, and is cheaper than gel in the long run. Trumpers They ship internationally.
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