The One With Powder

I recently joined a most interesting forum, though fora aren't really my thing. This one only allows actual, geographic neighbors, and functions as a digest listserv: you send an email, it aggregates with neighbors posts and sends a sort of newsletter. It's called Front Porch Forum. It's a Vermont product, so I don't know if you could find anything like it elsewhere. I guess you could set up your own on Yahoo!, if they still have Groups... but the low corporate umbrella provides an easy way to communicate in real life that you're "on" it, which seems like the most significant innovation.

Anyway, I got on there to do some flea marketing. Something like this:


Bring comfort and joy to the holidays with a new, old-fashioned, double-edge (DE) safety razor. These economical, quality selections from China have come to town and are conveniently available for pick-up whenever.

DF-813, $5: A high-capacity, low-angle shaver similar to the Turkish YUMA, but without the ugly brand stamp. This  entertaining, stylish choice for the experienced DE or straight shaver is also a logical start for one who would otherwise be drawn to an open-comb razor or shavette.

RM2003, $5: This modern version of the Gillette Tech features a fully capable, unbiased design. Lift the blade on the top cap, keeping the angle low, or pitch it down and ride the safety bar. The Rimei razor offers a complete course in the art of shaving, with just moderate risk to the skin.

YJL 8206-M, $5: One Super Speed clone famously brought DE back to store shelves recently. This less expensive alternative in aluminum, steel and zinc is still more decent than most. While giving cartridge users a safe option, its low edge exposure also allows old pros to make blades last longer.

ALSO AVAILABLE: blades, 5 for $0.75 or $1.50, depending on brand. Oil, $2.25. Soaps selected to perform with hard water, $2.25 - $8. Florida Water et al., $4 - $6. White nylon brush, black rubberized plastic handle, $6. Pur-tech faux badger brush, shiny black resin handle, $16. Education,

And I realized: I gotta get rid of that carbamide solution! "Just delete that," my wife says. Uh, yeah... I guess you don't really know the depth of my insanity, Dear.

So today, for trial #12: back to just-like Cetaphil for the skin moisturizing, followed by an oil cleanse so as not to get too engorged, which would prevent BBS by submerging the hair before the cut. This didn't do my lather any favors. With the pumpkin-juice/baking soda hair moisturizing prep on top of it, Stirling fizzled to almost no cushion immediately.

But when I put razor to face, I found that one pass would have been a good shave. Like butter! But again, because this is a "perfect shave trial," I pressed on to three passes, and found that by the water pass, my Super Speed wasn't catching any more hair. Slickness supported the full touch-up treatment, even on my neck.

Post shave was real weird. I had a film of NMF "wet rice paper" again, but because Stirling feels so good after rinsing, I forgot to dehydrate it and went straight to oil. The tackiness was most apparent at that point, however, so I went to Dollar Tree splash, which raised a light blue emulsion out of the oil and macerated skin. I applied a wet towel to remove and neutralize it, but I was still a bit tacky.

I realized what I needed was a traditional barbershop dusting of powder. I had accidentally finished my shave like barbers do! But I don't have powder. All I have is some Bentonite clay, from early soap-doctoring experiments. I retrieved my second shaving brush, luckily the soft synthetic, and applied just the smidge that stuck to the lid of the small storage container after I shook it up. And that was enough.


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