Foritutde & The 207:

This morning's shave felt great. Today is also Tuesday so that means Tobacco Tuesday is in effect. So I grabbed Soap Commander and their Fortitude scented soap which has a beautiful aged hay, aged tobacco and dark rum scent to it. Speaking of rum, I finished off this morning's shave with a nice healthy double dose of Clubman Virgin Island bay rum scented aftershave:

The 207 was great. I was really slick after just 3 passes. I did mow off a few bumps but the styptic pencil took care of that. I didn't get too much burn from the aftershave splash but that's okay because it does have alcohol contained in the aftershave and is going to burn when applied. My Joby gorilla pod has not shipped just yet but it's projected to arrive this coming Friday. My razorine shavette also has not shipped yet either. Shave Nation is still waiting on the next batch to arrive from Italy and they are the only ones that carry it.

American Blend & The Doc:

Tonight's shave was Nirvana. Tonight I went with Fine Accoutrements and their American Blend scented matching set which is their take on Rive Gauche Per Homme (2003) which has a little hint of Gaiac Wood added to the scent and putting on the aftershave was like putting the icing on a cake. I got very little stinging due to the alcohol contained in the aftershave:

The Phoenix Artisan Accoutrement's doc razor was perfect and blissful to use as well. I was perfect after just three passes and I had an awesome feeling post shave afterward. I definitely made the right choice in switching back to the Gillette Silver Blue DE blades. No irritation and it was extremely comfortable during the shave. The next shave will be even better because these Gillette Silver Blue blades really start to shine in the comfort department after the first shave and they fall by the wayside around the fourth or fifth shave which is usually when I switch out the blades.

Bye Bye Perma-Sharps:

Every now and then, I have to make a decision to give something up or quit using something all together that I like and this is one of those times. As much as I love these blades and how effective they are when it comes to removing my barbed wire like stubble, I am saying good bye to these blades on a permanent basis. These are simply too harsh for my sensitive skin. So I am going back to Gillette Silver Blue blades which are more comfortable for me:

I will still recommend these blades to anyone who doesn't have as sensitive skin as I do and doesn't want to use Feather blades. The only difference between these and Feather blades is comfort. These are far more comfortable then the Feather blades are and just as sharp. My beard grows in way that I can't do just one pass. I have to have more to effectively remove my beard and two passes with these blade, my skin starts getting irritated. I don't go for perfect shaves, just close and comfortable is all and two passes aren't enough with my go to razors which are Merkur 42C (the 1904 Closed Comb) and Phoenix Artisan Accoutrement's double open comb. Three passes with those razors using a Gillette Silver Blue equals a near perfect shave with no irritation.

New SOTD Photo Set Up:

Today is a good day. After spending some time thinking and observing, I have decided to improve my photo set up. This specific set up is only temporary until I can get some better photography equipment. As many of you know, I was using the cabinet that my old home stereo system was contained in and using a Scottish styled flannel cloth that my old flannel sheets came in for a background. When we hauled it off, I lost my solid base for photos which I got back in the form of a nightstand which you see below. I used two cameras and memory cards to take these photos so I can put this specific blog post together. I also changed the size of my photos from 16 mm to the VGA setting on my Nikon Cool Pix B500 camera for several reasons. The first reason was because the photos took a really long time to upload and I don't have a lot of time these days. The second reason I decided to go to a smaller size is the fact that I can take more photos. I went from 6831 photos to 9,999 photos just switching to the VGA setting in my digital camera:

I loved using the top of my laundry hamper as a background and base. The natural wood color worked extremely well and really dressed up the photo. Unfortunately the base isn't too solid and it was hard to get my bottles of aftershave to stand up straight. The lighting was good there as well too. I just wish the base was more solid. These photos are still going to be used in my shave videos. I'm pleased to announce that I have purchased a Joby mini magnetic Gorilla pod for making shave videos. Now I will not be doing reviews. What I will be doing is basic video journalism instead:

While my nightstand is a more solid base, the lighting sucks over in that part of my room. So I have temporarily installed an old desk lamp until I can find something that will help with the lighting. I will have to find a solution to this after I get paid though because photography lighting can get very expensive rather quickly and I want to get a piece of equipment for sharpening my kitchen and personal knives. I'm not worried at all about the lighting in the bathroom for making videos because I've gotten some excellent photo results in my bathroom and my YouTube videos come out great when I film in there:

In addition to the old desk lamp, I put down a white bath towel down to help out with the lighting which is also only temporary. One piece of LED photography lighting should be plenty and easy to get. I will get it dialed in eventually. The new Joby Magnetic Mini Gorilla Pod will be a huge help. I also might switch out the white towel for a black towel. I will do some test photos of both to see which one works best for photos. Right now the biggest problem is the lighting. Florescent lighting seems to be the best. My bathroom mirror has one florescent light on each side of the mirror which does make shaving a lot easier. My blog will still be utilized in some way but not as much as it is today and when I started doing mail call and straight razor honing videos, I have slowed way down blogging. I'm doing no where near what I use to do which was at least triple of what I'm doing today in terms of producing content. I have sneaking suspicion that removing the bath towel might be a good thing and stick with what I have been using by itself.

Proraso Green & The Double X:

Today's shave was phenomenal! Today is Proraso Friday over in the How To Grow A Moustache Google+ community and I decided to participate. So I grabbed Proraso Green which has a menthol and eucalyptus scent to it and I finished it off with a healthy dose of good old Osage Rub which adds even more menthol feel to the ultra slick post shave:

I can confirm that I do NOT need to buy another stone and here is why. My Double X straight razor shaved the exact same way that my ZY razor did the other night. Two completely different razors with completely different types of steel and they BOTH ended up producing a perfect shave. No burn from the styptic pencil which I have been using after each shave whether I need it or not, and no burn from alcohol based aftershaves and colognes either and they usually burn no matter how my razors shave. I should have a mail call arriving today so I might produce a YouTube video later today. It will depend on what I time I get done with yard work today which should not take too long today. My last trimming job really knocked things down in terms of using the weed eater and there's only one or two spots that really need the weed eater. I also noticed that the leaves have started to change color and that can mean only one thing. Fall is right around the corner. That's when my new mower and yard sweeper will really get tested because I almost get buried in leaves.

Asian Plum & The ZY:

Tonight's shave was perfect in every way possible. I have changed my mind about getting another finishing stone because I have proved to myself that I have the ILR stone down pat. Thank you Dr. Matt Robins. I now know exactly what I need to do to get the edge exactly where I need and want it to be in both comfort and efficiency. More on that here in a bit. I wasn't planning on shaving tonight until I looked in the mirror and seen that I had quite a bit of growth. So I decided to go with A&E Soaps and their exceptional Asian Plum scented soap and matching aftershave splash. I did NOT get any burn at all from the aftershave which has alcohol in it:

As I mentioned before, the ZY razor was perfect after I took it to the ILR and did Dr. Matt's under running water technique until the razor was sticky on both sides and then I turned the water up. Once it got sticky like it did previously, I stopped and went straight to the smooth leather side of my strop and performed 5 round trips. I did not go back to the ILR or anything else afterward. I went ahead and shaved and was slick as black ice after 3 passes with the exception to my chin which I touched up using different angles than I did before. The end result was a perfect shave.

Cuban Tobacco & The 207:

This morning's shave was great. I got to craving tobacco and since it's Tuesday, Tobacco Tuesday is in full effect. Today I went with Wet The Face and their semi sweet and moist Cuban Tobacco scented soap followed by the equally amazing matching aftershave splash:

The 207 was also extremely good. I was slick as black ice after just 3 passes and touching up the bottom of my chin. So my last honing session paid off with the exception to my J.R. Torrey which was tossed out but that's okay, I got a ton of shaves out of it and couldn't have been happier with its performance and longevity. I do have plans to buy some Gold Dollar 66 straight razors and hopefully I will end up with a 7 day set of them here before long.

Grapelicious & The Double X:

Today's shave ended up being great. Today I went with KShave Works and their grape soda scented product line, Grapelicious. This is a very strong grape soda scented soap. And to finish off today's shave I went with their matching aftershave splash which is witch hazel based:

I first started off with my recently discovered Jr. Torrey but I have honed it too much to where it no longer takes an edge so I switched out for my Griffon Double X razor instead which was a night and day difference for the better. The double X mowed through my 2 day old beard like nothing. I was slick as black ice after 3 passes. This shave was nothing short of perfect. Too bad I had to toss out my Jr. Torrey. I didn't really have much of a choice. Not unless I was to put 6 layers of tape on there and to me that kindly defeats the purpose. I don't use tape when I hone unless I'm creating geometry that I can work with which usually means back beveling.

Lemon Chill & the ZY:

Just what the doctor ordered. Every time I do yard work, my sinuses really act up. So for this morning's shave I decided to go with Stirling Soaps and their heavy mentholated Lemon Chill shave soap which has a lemon meringue pie scent to it. The menthol was great and was really needed and much appreciated this morning. It opened up my sinuses and stopped the sneezing from the dust and allergens from mowing the yard yesterday. And to finish off this morning's shave, I went with Stirling Soaps glacial lemon chill aftershave balm which is also fantastic:

The ZY razor was okay at first until I took it to my fire hose strop for 10 round trips which really put the edge exactly where it needed to be. I ended up being comfortably close after 3 passes. I have decided to get a Naniwa 12K super stone. I'm going with the S2 version which is the 20 mm size. It's the full size version of the Naniwa 12K super stone which produces a very fine but comfortable edge. Dr. Matt put one on a razor for me when he back beveled a problematic razor for me.

Endurance & The 42C:

Today's shave felt great and was perfect. I got to craving Soap Commander and I wanted something that is unique so I grabbed their fantastic "Endurance" scented soap. The scent on this soap is a 1938 Vintage Old Spice scent. After I finished my shave, I went with a healthy dose of today's Old Spice splash and then I followed that up with Soap Commander's Endurance aftershave balm which is like putting the icing on a cake:

The 42C was perfect in every way possible. I ended up slick as black ice after 3 passes. I did NOT get any burn from the aftershave splash at all which is a really good thing. Shaves like this will always keep the DE safety razor in my shaving arsenal. I normally prefer to use a straight razor but on occasion to break things up and to keep my sideburns trimmed, I use a DE safety razor. It's kindly a little tricky to keep sideburns straight and even with a straight razor.

Foritutde & The 207:

This morning's shave felt great. Today is also Tuesday so that means Tobacco Tuesday  is in effect. So I grabbed Soap Commander  and th...