Soaps for Str8 shavers?

Discussion in 'Shave School' started by CatMan, Nov 1, 2007.

  1. CatMan

    CatMan Member

    Hello everybody,
    I'm using my straight razors exclusively for about 6 weeks now. Before with my DEs, I could use almost any soap I wanted. The shaving results had not much variation. Now with the str8, I find myself rotating soaps in very narrow circles (Tabac -> TSD -> Tabac -> TSD ...). If I try anything else, it gets bloody. The razor tries to jump. With increasing skill level I can see myself including TGQ soaps again into the circle, but that's about it. Does anyone else have similar experience after switching to straights? Am I doing something wrong, maybe? :confused:
  2. msandoval858

    msandoval858 Active Member

    I'm very pro soap when it comes to straights. I think good milled hard soaps provide the best shaves, nice balance of cusion and lubrication for the straights.

    Mitchell's Woolfat, Trumpers, DR Harris are among my personal favorites.

    Glycerin soaps really don't do a whole lot for me, but as they say YMMV.
  3. Will

    Will Nevermind

    I have had trouble using some soaps with a straight.

    De Verguld Hand

    Work pretty good.

    Aslo superlathering with them with Florena/JMF Cream. Works wonders.
  4. SSLSTudio...

    SSLSTudio... Forum Debugger


    Id agree doing superlather with JMF its super slick the slickest cream I ever seen sofar very nice slick basis for a straight.
  5. Damon

    Damon Member

    I haven't had a problem with any of the soaps really, tho I find with some I need to keep a steamed towel on my face longer.
  6. qhsdoitall

    qhsdoitall Wilbur

    Sure, two of you suggest J. M. Frasers Cream and it just happens to be a cream I don't have. You guys just...:p

    I know I have some Florena around so all is not lost. I do find the triple milled soaps tend to work a little better with the str8.
  7. jnich67

    jnich67 Member

    I haven't found that any soaps are better for for straights compared to DE. A good soap is a good soap for me. TGQ, Pre de Provence, Tabac, MB, QED, Floris, Penhaligons, and TSD (a new one yay!) are some of my favorites.

  8. CatMan

    CatMan Member

    Then my way of chopping off stubble may not be quite optimal. :D I guess I'll have to work on my technique a bit more.
    At least your (and others) statement gave me hope that I'll be able to use all the other soaps I own again, - eventually! Thanks for the replies, Gentlemen!
  9. Scorpio

    Scorpio Big Hitter

    I have found from my experience that if the blade is skipping there could be a couple issues at hand. Blade angle is off giving the edge of the blade the tendency to skip. This is not good with a straight as it could lead to blood letting. If the skin is not prepped properly in conjunction with a soap that may dry your skin it can lead to the blade skipping. If the skin is dry and not properly moisturized by the soap the blade will skip and catch...again blood letting. I try to keep my lather just on the wet side, still creamy but a hair wetter. This gives me that slick and cushion I look for when I shave with a straight. Again this is just from my experience with different types of soaps.

    After only six weeks you are still developing your skills. It is a skill that takes time and dedication. Keep at it, your angles will get more consistent and the shaves will improve. Hope this helps.

  10. CatMan

    CatMan Member

    Thanks, Raf! You mentioned very interesting points for me to observe. I know, it will take a very long time to really master a straight. Right now it's still just a trial-and-error game, with amazingly good results at times. Not every time though. I must say, I never had that much fun shaving! :cool:
  11. crackstar

    crackstar Israeli Ambassador to TSD

    I've had terrific results when I shave with a straight, if I lathered up with De Vergulde Hand, Erasmic, or Gold Dachs soaps. I once used Williams Menthol cream with my straight, and had an excellent shave as well.
  12. TraderJoe

    TraderJoe Pink Floid

    Sounds like a soap with clay will suit your needs, as you are finding with TSD soaps (the creams have clay as well)

    Some others with clay:

    De Vergulde Hand (in the form of Kaolin)
    Ltlsuz aka. Suzie Bubbles
  13. CatMan

    CatMan Member

    De Vergulde Hand is mentioned relatively often on this forum. I was unable to locate a place that sells it. Where do you get it from?
  14. Padron

    Padron Active Member

    You can get De Velgulde Hand from this fine fellow, SSLSTudio

    Click on the Barberculture link for a price list :)
  15. CatMan

    CatMan Member

  16. Hawkeye5

    Hawkeye5 Member

    One of my all time favs for any shaving is Pre de Provence. I just love that soap, and it has converted me from a 95% cream user to a 80% soap user. I'm through the experimentation stages and have settled on a select few products and razors. I'm attempting to simplify, but I still have a bunch of product to use up from the experimenting, and a few razors to sell after Christmas.
  17. Padron

    Padron Active Member

    I have been loving Institut Karite 25% Shea soap with my Str8 shaves......DE for that matter too :D

    Pre de Provence is great soap :)
  18. xChris

    xChris Member

    I agree with Raf. I find a wetter lather works better with a straight. So, maybe experimenting with the water ratio on your usual soaps/creams may yield better results.
  19. qhsdoitall

    qhsdoitall Wilbur

    I opt for slick over cushion with a str8. I want that blade to glide so I'm with you to wet it up a bit.
  20. CatMan

    CatMan Member

    A little over a month ago I started this thread.
    The good news:
    I'm now at the point where I can use any soap again. It just works.
    The bad news:
    I have no idea how I did it. :confused:

    It must have been a gradual change of several parameters simultaneously that made it possible. I also noticed that my technique has become more efficient. Previously I needed three passes + touch-ups (= almost four passes), now I get even better shaves with only two passes and just minor touch-ups.

    Aftershave has become optional, and is used to enjoy the scent rather than fixing collateral damages! :cool:

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