The Elusive Joys of Using Things Up

Posted: October 22, 2017 in Shaving Articles

For those who have been entrenched in wet shaving for a while, this one should be fairly familiar. The progression. The slow slide into the madness of gear acquisition disorder. The realization that you couldn’t stop buying shave equipment if you wanted to. The second realization that you have more stuff than you could use in a decade.

If you’re a shave hobbyist, there’s always a new tub of soap, always another aftershave or tonic or razor or blade. You reach into the back of the cupboard now and then, finding that you haven’t used a favorite product in months. Maybe even years. It’s something that could bring about shame, if we could feel such a thing, this deep into the psychosis.

From time to time, we will have a moment of clarity, or conscience, or simply look around our bathrooms and realize that we won’t be able to get in if we don’t start to dispense with some of our nonsense.

We begin to think of ways we can actually finish some of our older gear and, you know, make room for our new stuff. You know, the stuff we’re about to get. Through the mail. Any day now.

In the recent month or so, I’ve been happy to put paid to several products in my inventory, and I feel, well, accomplished somehow. The trick, I suppose, is to just keep going back to a product. Day in, day out, you have to keep the intractable urge to leap from one product to the next like a hyperactive ferret on crank. So, just the bottom edge of impossiblity.

Products I’ve used up of late:

A tub of Proraso Red. Yay! My first shave soap ever, and the last of the triple crown of Proraso tub soaps down. It languished in inventory for a long time, but not because of any drawback in its performance. It lathered well and protected, right to the end.

A 25-pack of Derby Premium blades: Good blades. Not wildly different than the normal Derbies, but a gentle, face friendly blade.

Lucky Tiger Tonic: I have to say, this stuff is the best non-alcohol splash I’ve ever used. Yes, even better than Thayer’s non-alcohol Witch Hazel. According to me. It’s going to be in the inventory again. No question.

Thayer’s Lavender Witch Hazel: Just finished that one yesterday. My favorite of the non-alcohol Thayers. I might get it again. Too soon to tell.

I’m getting pretty close to the end of a pump container of store-brand moisterizer, made to be similar to Aveeno. That’s an easy re-up, just as soon as it runs out.

So, a few products manfully used up. What now?

Well, I have a lot of samples to burn through, and so I’ll be working on them. Each of the small samples is good for about a week, while the larger, 1 ounce samples are good for quite a bit longer. Now, as I evaluate the different soaps, I’ll need to A/B test some of my stalwarts, just to remain grounded.

In my larger soap tubs, I’ll have to pick the next one to put on maximum burn. I believe that I might begin slamming through my Derby Extra blades, too. I have a few razors that work well with that blade. Razor Blades, to me, have become an element I don’t need to worry about any more. I have a few blades I really like. and I’ve kind of put that comparo to bed.

Razors? I’ve got one or two I still think about buying, but honestly, I’m getting such great shaves from my revamped Gillettes that I have no compelling reason to chase that ghost any further, either.

Soaps, though? Aftershaves? Shrug. Ain’t no stopping on those. The soap makers and fragrance pros in that field keep kicking ass, and I’ll keep slurping up the mail order awesome. Just sayin’. It’s shave madness, after all.

Cheers, and Happy Shaving!

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