I’m the first to admit when I have a problem. I have what is known as “Shaving Cream Acquisition Disorder” (SCAD) and the related ailment “Shaving Soap Acquisition disorder (SSAD).
For the last seven or eight years (with a short break in the middle) I’ve shaved using the old school “Wet Shaving” method. This means whipping up a lather from either a shaving soap or cream using a shaving brush and then using either a straight razor (aka “cutthroat razor) or double edge razor to do the actual shaving. I’m not going to go into the ins and outs of wet shaving here: there are a thousand amazing resources online and I highly recommend you check them out. If you’re not sure where to start, try Mantic’s Sharpologist blog and videos or check out one of the forums such as Badger and Blade. I’ve been a lurker on Badger and Blade for years and, trust me, you’ll learn more than you ever thought possible about shaving there.
I have, however, two problems with wet shaving. The first is this: there are so many interesting and exciting creams and soaps out there, where do I begin and where do I stop?
When I started wet shaving, at any one time I would have 15-20 different creams or soaps in my bathroom. This was faintly ridiculous (not to mention expensive!), so I cut it down to one. For a time I used nothing by Truefitt and Hill’s Trafalgar shaving cream. This stuff is nothing short of wonderful, but I found myself getting bored. I needed variety!
The second problem is this: it takes a lot of time and thought to research what soap or cream to buy next and I’m pretty sure my girlfriend is bored of receiving text messages from me along the lines of “What do you think of a pine and cedar scent? Do you prefer it to lime?” Not only is this boring, it’s also irrelevant as the stuff I buy tends to have natural essential oils in it, so the scent disappears shortly after I’ve shaved (and I mostly use an unscented aftershave).
So, I’ve made two decisions.
Decision 1: I will have three (and no more than three) shaving soaps/creams at any one time.
One of these will always be a soap made by Proraso because—and let’s be honest here—life without Proraso isn’t really living at all. The second soap/cream will be mentholated (gotta love that menthol chill! And yes, this is in addition to Proraso). The third will be non-mentholated. On the non-metholated front, I’m currently finishing up a tub of Geo Trumper’s Limes, it’s a great performer but I’ve grown tired of the “key lime pie” scent and want something more natural. My next non-mentholated soap will be from Mike’s Natural Soaps down in Brooklyn, NYC. I’m super-excited and will be checking my mailbox every day until it gets here.
Decision 2: I will stop bugging my girlfriend about all this and will instead share it with the world.
I think this is a great idea, don’t you? Instead of potentially putting my relationship on the line, I’ll write posts about my obsession instead! The occasional review here and there, maybe updates on how my restoring of those straight razors is going. That sort of thing. I might even add a new category to this site:
No need to thank me: you’re welcome.