2.02.2013

Straight Razor Shaving Time Log

Overview
Now that I have successfully moved away from the safety razor, I decided to log the time it takes me to do a complete straight razor shave in order to track progress. "Complete shave" as I describe it includes the pre-shave, three-pass shave, and the after-shave.

  • Pre-Shave: strop, splash hot water on the beard, apply pre-shave cream, and wet the brush. 
  • Three-Pass Shave: with the grain (WTG), across the grain (XTG), against the grain (ATG).
  • After-Shave: rinse the straight razor and brush under hot water, splash cold water on the face and neck, dry the straight razor, apply alum block, after-shave balm, and cologne, put all supplies away, and dry the counter.

Stopwatch | Image Credit: Mark D. Roberts

This time log began on February 2, 2013 which marked my third shave entirely with the straight razor. I will update this page on an ongoing basis.



Shave #27: February 22, 2013
Pre-Shave: N/A
First Pass (WTG): N/A
Second Pass (XTG): N/A
Third Pass (ATG): N/A
After-Shave: N/A
TOTAL: N/A
Comments: As indicated in my last entry (below), I decided to hold off on logging shave times for a while. Really want to get back to focusing on technique to better my shaving efforts, rather than get too hung up on time right now.


Shave #26: February 20, 2013
Pre-Shave: 4:54
First Pass (WTG): 10:32
Second Pass (XTG): 7:34
Third Pass (ATG): 8:22
After-Shave: 5:17
TOTAL: 36:40
Comments: I intentionally took a bit longer today. In fact, I'm questioning the value of this time log now. I became so caught up in time that I was no longer focused on experimentation or innovation so to speak in my shaving technique. This led to a lack of progress in either time efficiency or closeness of the overall shave. We'll see, but I may abandon this time log of a while in order to focus on the fundamentals of straight razor shaving.


Shave #25: February 18, 2013
Pre-Shave: 4:49
First Pass (WTG): 8:17
Second Pass (XTG): 5:18
Third Pass (ATG): 6:48
After-Shave: 5:04
TOTAL: 30:19
Comments: Not much to report today. Pretty standard shave compared to the last several.


Shave #24: February 16, 2013
Pre-Shave: 4:41
First Pass (WTG): 6:29
Second Pass (XTG): 6:11
Third Pass (ATG): 6:15
After-Shave: 4:42
TOTAL: 28:21
Comments: This was my most evenly timed shave, but not sure if that's really significant. Pre and after shave took the same amount of time, and then each pass took roughly the same amount of time. It's generally a bit easier on my skin if I don't shave with the straight in consecutive days, but today I did and I'm feeling pretty good still.


Shave #23: February 15, 2013
Pre-Shave: 4:42
First Pass (WTG): 8:00
Second Pass (XTG): 5:50
Third Pass (ATG): 6:58
After-Shave: 4:36
TOTAL: 30:08
Comments: Shave went fairly well. I have had a couple shaves in a row now with little to no irritation on the neck. It seems to help if I move in the blade in very short, extra gentle strokes somewhat XTG on the most inner hallows of the neck. Also, I only move ATG from about the mid-point of the neck and up. If I start the ATG from the base of the neck, that also tends to induce skin irritation. My time improvements have clearly stalled around the 28-30 minute range. Not entirely sure at the moment how that's going to improve very much.


Shave #22: February 13, 2013
Pre-Shave: 4:50
First Pass (WTG): 7:38
Second Pass (XTG): 5:20
Third Pass (ATG): 5:57
After-Shave: 4:55
TOTAL: 28:43
Comments: Today felt pretty good. Shave time dropped back down. No sense of razor burn or irritation, either in feel or appearance.


Shave #21: February 11, 2013
Pre-Shave: 4:47
First Pass (WTG): 9:01
Second Pass (XTG): 5:36
Third Pass (ATG): 7:36
After-Shave: 5:24
TOTAL: 32:24
Comments: Time was a bit slower today as I tried to move very gingerly around the inner hallows of my neck to avoid skin irritation in that area. Not sure this really had the desired effect.


Shave #20: February 9, 2013
Pre-Shave: 4:28
First Pass (WTG): 6:03
Second Pass (XTG): 4:35
Third Pass (ATG): 7:43
After-Shave: 5:21
TOTAL: 28:14
Comments: While this is my fastest shave time thus far, I seem to have reached a plateau on efficiency. From shave #15 to #18, I dropped twenty minutes off my time, but from #18 to #20, things have not really changed. I think I may need to do some more research and watch more videos on shaving the neck as that area continues to give me trouble.


Shave #19: February 8, 2013
Pre-Shave: 4:44
First Pass (WTG): 7:55
Second Pass (XTG): 4:47
Third Pass (ATG): 7:06
After-Shave: 5:01
TOTAL: 29:36
Comments: After shaving with a straight razor for three consecutive days for the first time, I decided to give my skin a rest as I had a bit of irritation after the last shave. With my beard somewhat thicker, it took a little extra effort on the passes but overall still pretty much in line with the time from the last shave.


Shave #18: February 6, 2013
Pre-Shave: 4:42
First Pass (WTG): 5:15
Second Pass (XTG): 4:31
Third Pass (ATG): 8:38
After-Shave: 5:38
TOTAL: 28:46
Comments: My goal this time was to apply less strokes over the same area on the first and second pass. Generally I would go over the same area multiple times but I tried to avoid that today in order to save time and mitigate irritation. Still struggling to move smoothly on the inner hallows of the neck, particularly the left side.


Shave #17: February 5, 2013
Pre-Shave: 5:05
First Pass (WTG): 9:44
Second Pass (XTG): 6:13
Third Pass (ATG): 8:30
After-Shave: 5:59
TOTAL: 35:34
Comments: I was able to shave some time off the first pass WTG, but things went a bit slower on the third pass ATG because I decided to apply this motion to not only my cheeks, but also my neck. This was also the first time that I have shaved with a straight razor on consecutive mornings, or within 24 hours. Slight neck irritation but I think I'm okay. Hope is that I can shave with the straight razor every 24 hours if I so choose.


Shave #16: February 4, 2013
Pre-Shave: 5:19
First Pass (WTG): 11:55
Second Pass (XTG): 5:52
Third Pass (ATG): 6:34
After-Shave: 6:29
TOTAL: 36:11
Comments: Not entirely sure how I chopped 12 minutes off my time since the last shave, other than more confidence in my technique. As I have been doing, I did not do XTG or ATG on the neck, but rather three passes of WTG in that area.


Shave #15: February 2, 2013
Pre-Shave: 5:57
First Pass (WTG): 15:25
Second Pass (XTG): 8:13
Third Pass (ATG): 11:05
After-Shave: 7:20
TOTAL: 48:00
Comments: Considering my first straight razor shave took 90 minutes for one pass alone, I am feeling decent about the progress I have made. As I have been doing, I did not do XTG or ATG on the neck, but rather three passes of WTG in that area.

1 comment:


  1. I enjoyed reading your articles. This is truly a great read for me.
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