Hey All, I have been shaving with a safety razor for about 7-8 years now. I have always had the same set up and routine until very recently. That set up/routine was: Wash face with very warm water for about a minute, while letting razor and brush warm in mug with hot water. Add cream (Body Shop Macca Root) to mug, later up so it is thick and apply to face. Shave from top of face to bottom of face Wash with very warm water again Apply more soap and shave left to right for the right side of my face and right to left on the left side of my face. Wash with very warm water, then cool down with quite cool water. Apply Nivea for men aftershave lotion. The only changes that I have made recently have been using a homemade pre-shave oil between steps 1 and 2 and I have switched to Proraso Sandalwood shaving cream. I have always found, that some days I have an amazing shave (my good shave days are even better now after using the pre-shave oil), other days are satisfactory and other days my skin feels just awful. The only variable I can see is with my razor blade. I used to use Bluebirds for 4 years but switched to Astra since then. The same issues happened with either blade. Also, when first starting off, I did try sample packs of blades and chose the ones that worked best for me. I have also looked at how often I use each blade. I have tested blades on their first, second and third shaves and sometimes a blade on the first use is amazing and other times it is terrible. Same with the the second and third uses. My technique, while probably not perfect, is basically the same every time I shave. I am at a loss as how to have a consistent shave. The only reason I shave is because my wife likes a smooth face and I do enjoy her affections lol. I would really like to enjoy shaving, but consider it a necessary evil much like taxes at this point and I would like that to change. Any suggestions? Thanks in advance gents!