• The Shaving Mug and Brush

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    So many of
    the "guys" that contribute to this wonderful website have
    written to voice their personal preferences about shaving that I
    decided that even just an avid reader such as myself could contribute
    at least an opinion about shaving.


    For the past
    30+ years I have been a staunch user of the system of shaving mug
    and brush together with a razor.

    My razor of
    choice for every day use is normally a Gillette Sensor. I like the
    "Sensor Excel" blades best.

    I think that
    like most guys that have a mustache or beard I find that any razor
    with more than two blades is a bit difficult to maneuver around
    with on my face. And yes, I do remember that old Saturday Night
    Live skit years ago where they showed the then fictitious 3-blade
    razor "Because You'll Believe Anything" skit. Actually,
    I think that they got it about right. At what point does it become
    nonsense? 5-blades? 6-blades? 10-blades?

    Although I
    don't have a beard to work around I do sport what my friends call
    a "Wyatt Earp Mustache" that is just too cumbersome for
    anything more than two blades.

    I also like
    the pivoting Atra and non-pivoting Trac 2 systems. The razors that
    I have for these twin blades all have nice heavy handles and I can
    find replacement blades and even new razors for them very reasonably
    priced at Amazon.com.

    You can get
    50 Persona blades complete with the lubricating strip for both the
    Atra and the Trac 2 razors for under $24. Yes, that's less than
    50 a blade. Buy something else for a buck and they even pay the
    freight. Compare that with the replacement blades for those 5-bladed
    Fusion things. They practically give those razors away in order
    to get the repeat sales for the blades. What does that tell you?

    I do NOT like
    the disposable razors. They are just too light for me. Personally
    I like to have a shaving instrument with a little weight in my hand
    when I'm shaving. Also being a mechanical sort I can appreciate
    the fine craftsmanship of some of the better razors.

    Speaking of
    fine craftsmanship, I also use a double-edge safety razor if I need
    to shave a more than one-day-old scruff. Even a two-day beard will
    clog any of my twin blades. Again I favor one with some weight to
    it (3+ oz.) and a long handle (about 4 inches) although I do admit
    that I use the butterfly type for this razor.

    The "butterfly"
    mechanism means that I can replace the blades by simply twisting
    the bottom portion of the razor handle until the blade compartment
    opens up. Remove the old blade and drop in a new one, twist the
    bottom portion again to close it and you're done — simple.

    On what are
    called "traditional" double-edge razors you replace the
    blade by unscrewing the entire top portion and pulling the pieces

    To the double-edge
    safety razor purist it might seem almost sinful to use a butterfly
    razor, but I find that it works fine and holds the blade perfectly
    snug. Just like it's supposed to.

    The important
    thing though is that the shave is great with either type and replacement
    blades for double-edge razors are even cheaper than the twin blades.
    I can get them at Amazon for about 16 each. 100 blades for less
    than sixteen bucks! How about that 5-blade aficionados?

    As to the lather
    I have used a shaving mug for decades — they are one of the best-kept
    secrets around. A round soap bar lasts for 6 months and the brush
    gives a nice massage to my face. I like a good quality badger brush.

    For mugs you
    can use just about anything. Even an old coffee mug will do if it's
    wide enough. Personally I favor the tall "Old Spice" Grand
    Turk mugs that are still readily available on eBay. They are inexpensive,
    heavy, and just to my liking.

    The best shaving
    soap that I have ever found was from a guy that made his own and
    was selling it on eBay. It was supposed to be particularly good
    for people with sensitive skin. I bought a couple of his sampler
    sets of 2.5 oz. bars in an assortment of fragrances and they have
    lasted me for years. In fact, I haven't bought a can of Barbasol
    or Foamy since the 1970s.

    Alas my eBay
    home soap maker is no longer selling his shaving soap. When my supply
    runs low I guess I'll have to find someone else on one of the Internet
    "Homemade Soap" Blogs…

    I tried all
    of the other suggestions that have been listed here like shaving
    in the shower, not using any soap, etc, but this is what works for
    me. I shave after I shower and I use my shaving mug, brush and razor.

    Hey — it's
    a guy thing, and it's a personal guy thing.

    So for me the
    man's daily ritual is: The shaving mug, the badger brush, and the
    twin blade.

    August 6, 2010

    "Poots" Candidus [send
    him mail
    ] is an independent manufacturer's representative for
    technical industrial products that lives in Spring, Texas with his
    beloved basset hounds.

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