08 July 2006

Little Tiny Hairs

I hate shaving.
I put it off as long as I possibly can. There are several problems in putting it off:
Sometime in the last few years my beard decided it was no longer gonna match the color of my eyebrows........ therefore my nom de plume.

I have a patchy beard that has gaping holes in it, so when my beard begins to show, there is NO way to say it is attractive........
even calling it "macho" is a stretch. Don Johnson I am not!

After three days growth, it begins to itch.
Ugly, patchy, itchy, and grey...... I finally give up and shave.

Bill Cosby had a comedy routine years ago where he wakes in the morning and looks in the mirror, then calls his wife to the bathroom:
"Wife, look at me! Little tiny hairs........growin' out my face!"
The other line I remember from that bit was: "Zip-Zap, self sacrifice!"

And that's also true with my face. When I go a few days without shaving, my face is unaccustomed to the rigors of a razor, so when I do shave, I inevitably end up looking as if I've been in a minor knife fight.

We've all heard the myriad suggestions about making the task easier and more efficient:
I started shaving when razors had one blade, felt the improvement when we went to two, and even thought the three bladed razor was a slight improvement, even though it no longer fits beneath my nose to shave the hairs closest to that protrusion........ I have a Bic two bladed razor that I reserve for that task.
Now, of course, we have four bladed razors. I have no experience with them.
I can't imagine one would make a dramatic improvement in this uncomfortable task.

I'll relate what I have found, over the years, that seems to work best for me when I do finally break down and drag a razor across my face:

First, I cannot use an electric razor. When I do, unruly hairs get turned around 180 degrees and start a journey back into my face. Ingrown hairs are painful and look like blemishes. I end up looking like a 60-ish zitty teenager. Only a blade shave will do.

The ladies have it right. We see pictures and videos of them shaving those lovely legs in the bath. I agree, shaving is best accomplished during the bath/shower. I once heard a report that compared hair to 18 gauge wire. Strong stuff. It is best cut after being softened during the bath/shower. I always wash my face, rinse, then lather the parts of my face I want to shave. For this task I use regular Zest soap because it is easy, cheap, and convenient. If I were truly looking for perfection, some of the shaving gels work best for me and better lubricate my face to keep it from being irritated. Shaving in the shower makes it easier to rinse the razor, AND my face.

Once out of the shower, I use Vaseline Intensive Care lotion as an after-shave. This comforts and moisturizes my face, and I suppose helps to keep the moisture gathered in the shower from drying out quickly. Anyway, it feels great.

This routine works for me, but I still hate the job. I'm open to ANY suggestion that will improve the shave or make the job easier or maybe less onerous.
Can you help?



Dr. Logan here. As one who has a full face of whiskers and puts off shaving for 2-3 days at a time, there is only one best way to deal with the tiny little hairs: Daily.

I use a razor, but used to go the electric route. A razor is better. The shorter the whisker, the easier and faster the job.

What's the best type of razor? A sharp one.

And if you've never had a shave in a traditional barbershop, do so. It's a real treat, but only if they use a straight edge razor.

Tomorrow: Nose and ear hairs?

the golden horse said...

I am left totally speechless here on this one GB. Good luck on your quest for the perfect shave. I do see my husband suffer through his routine. He has a beard by 5:00 that would put alot of men to shame. He can grow a beautiful, full beard in a matter of days, too bad they aren't the going thing here.
I wish you the best.

E said...

Wow, I have the exact same problem, minus the beard not matching the eyebrows. I get the patchy madness, itchiness and all that good stuff. Like Dr. Logan said, suffer a little bit once a day, or suffer lots once every 3 days.

I also shave in the shower, and I'm glad to know I'm not the only guy out there that uses lotions up the face with intensive care after hacking a thin layer of skin and hair off my mug.

Purple Tabby said...

I wonder if a hot wax every 2 weeks or so would help.
I'm told that after a few waxes, most of the hairs give up and come back downy soft.

Ya just have to rip your skin off a few times

Chemo will get rid of hair but that seems a little extreme. Burned skin doesn't grow hair either.

(don't ya just hate smartaleck nurses?)

Sorry GB. I have NO good ideas for your dilemma.

Mike said...

I switched to Colonel Conk's shaving soap a couple years back with a brush and a mug.

It made a WORLD of difference. I usually go a few days also. I wash my face in the shower with hot water and soap, then whip up some shaving soap and put it on for a couple minutes while I wash up or whatever.

The other thing I found that helped a lot was to shave twice. First a quick once over, then hot rinse and lather up again and do a closer shave.

I bought one of those silly Gillete vibrating razors and it actually does make a difference. It seems like you don't have to pull as hard and it gets really close.


I recommend the Almond or Bay Rum soap. It feels really good to put some nice hot water in the mug and whip up some hot foam for your face. :-)

Neb Okla said...

"I bought one of those silly Gillete vibrating razors and it actually does make a difference. It seems like you don't have to pull as hard and it gets really close."

Amen. The vibration seems to make it easier to cut the hairs. If you forget to turn it on you notice a big difference. Cheaper than a real electric and more comfortable than a normal razor. I recommend it.

BoMarGirl said...

I'm with PT, have it waxed off. Pulls the hairs out with some of the root....doesn't hurt a bit.

Purple Tabby said...

In the Sandbox area of the world, they use tiny threads (maybe silk? suture material? I don't know) anyway they loop it around each and every unwanted hair and pull it out. I doubt that guys have this done since they like to grow full beards.

The ladies seem to like it though. I was never brave enough to try it but they say it's very fast and only moderately painful

the golden horse said...

Aren't you sorry you asked us smart alec women for help.
I bought my husband one of those T2's for vacation and my husband said they do a decent job.