I feel the BURN

Discussion in 'Shave School' started by Claude Stewart, Dec 11, 2020.

  1. Claude Stewart

    Claude Stewart Well-Known Member

    Good day everyone,

    Today was my first shave with a straight razor. A beginner set from classic shave. better razor is in the Mail.

    I did the hot towel. Lathered and circular brushed. Short strokes.

    The shave was rather smooth. Missed a few spots under my nose. To be honest, I couldn’t get the razor in the right spot.

    To the neck. Seemed to go smoothly. I would give it a 90% in close shaving.
    Rinsed in cold water.

    The only problem is now my neck is razor burned and as red as Rudolph’s nose!

    What happened?

    thanks for reading and any help. Cheers.
  2. Edison Carter

    Edison Carter Goo-bloomin' Stankster

    When I took up straights I worked up gradually from just partial shaves.

    It is a tall order to start off with full shaves.

    Hard to diagnose, but irritation is frequently caused by too much pressure or too steep of a blade angle.

    Based on the difficulty of severing hair, do you feel the edge was sharp enough?

    Skin stretching is very important, focus on it.

    Good luck. You can do this.
    Ron R and brit like this.
  3. John Beeman

    John Beeman Little chicken in hot water

    The neck was the hardest area for me. I had the same first straight shave experience.
    Not sure why but it was easy to burn.
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  4. Claude Stewart

    Claude Stewart Well-Known Member

    Oh no, a small nic high on the cheek. But all in all it went smooth.
    Edison Carter and brit like this.
  5. Claude Stewart

    Claude Stewart Well-Known Member

    Not sure about the blade being sharp enough?? What’s the best way to test for shaving?

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  6. Primotenore

    Primotenore missed opera tunity

    Article Team
    Welcome to the Dark Side. Claude.
    The neck suffers form too much pressure, OR a too steep of angle.
    Next time, but first let your neck heal, ;), keep the blade at a shallower angle and make sure you stretch the skin. Light touch!!! it'll improve.
  7. david of central florida

    david of central florida Rhubarb Rubber

    Yep, just exactly what he said.
    Too much pressure, and probably scraping some as well. Both or either will burn the skin. It takes time to develop soft hands, but practice is the key. If possible, skip it until it sufficiently healed before you try again.
  8. Claude Stewart

    Claude Stewart Well-Known Member

    Thank you
    Edison Carter likes this.
  9. Claude Stewart

    Claude Stewart Well-Known Member

    Thank you
    Edison Carter likes this.
  10. b1hart

    b1hart Speed Racer

    I'm betting on the answers already given.....next time: let it heal, shallower angle, lower pressure.

    Now...soap. Use the absolute slickest you have, make it slightly wetter than you would for a DE/SE razor. If you have something like Proraso Pre-Shave, put it on, then lather.

    Also...make sure for your first learning shaves, particularly for the neck, that you are shaving with the grain, and using short strokes. Beard map = less chance of irritation

    Hope that helps. Lots of straight razor users here at TSD, just let us know how it progresses.

    Welcome to the Dark Side!
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  11. Edison Carter

    Edison Carter Goo-bloomin' Stankster

    One of my biggest concerns in learning straights was how to know if a problem was the equipment or the operator.

    My first razor came from a source known for his ability to hone razors. After a week, I ordered another razor to use as my comparative control. I probably went 50 shaves using only a linen/leather strop before I felt refreshing was in order.
    Primotenore likes this.
  12. b1hart

    b1hart Speed Racer

    Glen Mercurio of Gem Star Customs - gssixgun here on TSD and elsewhere - Straight razor honing services/repair/restoration

    I've used him to restore a Friodur. Many who have responded are also customers.

    I know there's a rabbit hole of 'shave tests'....hair topping, thumb pad tests, hanging hair tests...the list goes on.

    This one is simple, but also shows great straight shaving prep:

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  13. feeltheburn

    feeltheburn Well-Known Member

    I feel the burn too.
    brit, Edison Carter and battle.munky like this.
  14. Claude Stewart

    Claude Stewart Well-Known Member

    Thank you
    Edison Carter likes this.
  15. ischiapp

    ischiapp Well-Known Member

    Preparation is the first technique to focus on wetshaving.
    I prefer oils more than creams as preshave.
    With straights I find better results with soaps.
    Best ones has great lubrication.
    And lathering with more water helps too.
    Over that, I totally agree with other users.
    Main detail to focus is the angle of the edge.
    Then stretching the skin, and apply short and fast stokes with low pressure.
    In the curve areas (as neck and jaw), use the point and the first part of the blade to work just in the spot precisely.
    After some dozens of shaves, all comes easier ... IF THE EDGE IS GOOD.
    BigD likes this.
  16. Claude Stewart

    Claude Stewart Well-Known Member

    Thank you
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  17. HamsterRage

    HamsterRage New Member

    I have the same experience the other way around. 25 years of experience with a straight, and just started using DE razors in December. I've been running through a couple of sample packs of blades, but it's hard to compare as my technique is constantly evolving.

    For instance, the first blade I tried was a Derby Platinum in a Wilkinson Sword Classic razor. Results were as you would expect - a bloody mess. Shaves got better regardless of which blades I used. Got better results when a 1951 Tech arrived in the mail. Best shave yet was yesterday with a WCS razor that just arrived with a Derby Extra blade.

    Gonna try a Derby Extra in the Tech to see if it's the blade or the razor.
    Edison Carter likes this.
  18. Edison Carter

    Edison Carter Goo-bloomin' Stankster

    I am of the opinion that top shaves using milder razors and blades is more difficult than shaving open edge......assuming the learning curve of open edge shaving has been absorbed.

    Good edge being a given, you automatically adjust angle vs pressure in straight shaving with little degradation on the end result.

    Some DE razors have a very narrow tolerance for being off angle.

    When I took up wetshaving using a DE I committed to the same gear for a month. I used Feather blades and changed them out at 3 or 4 days. Blade performance changes in that window, but not enough for me to blame anything other than myself for a poor result.

    Welcome to The Shave Den. Look up the monthly thread 30DC in Shave School. This month I’m practicing what they call a rule where you commit to the use of the exact same gear for a month.

    25 years with a straight? I’d love to hear more about that journey.

    I’m Bill.
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2021
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  19. Tedolph

    Tedolph Well-Known Member

    You are pushing too hard and your angle is too steep. Likely, you are trying to get a close shave on the first pass. Use a very light touch, experiment with a shallower angle (maybe only ten degrees) and see if that makes a difference. Don't worry at all about how close the first pass is. Let your second, and third if necessary, pass get you close.

    All this assumes your later is OK.

  20. Claude Stewart

    Claude Stewart Well-Known Member

    Thank you for your reply.

    Yes, I started doing what you advised. Also, I honed the razors to a better cutting edge. As well as upgraded to a pre shave balm and better lather.


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