Shave Secret

I despise shaving, first because it’s damn annoying and second because there are certain specific spots on my face and neck which, regardless of how much care I take or what razor or shaving cream I use, scrape raw every single time I shave. Because of this if I try to shave more than once every two or three days, not only do I look like I’ve rubbed my neck across asphalt while traveling at 30 miles per hour, I’m also in a little bit of pain — not enough to arouse genuine sympathy in others, mind you, but enough that I notice. Basically, shaving sucks.

Last year as I was about to start my book tour, I went to the store to see if I could find a can or tube of shaving cream that was less than three fluid ounces, that being the maximum amount of any fluid substance one is allowed in a carryon by the TSA. I didn’t find any, but I did find this stuff: Shave Secret, some weird concoction of oils whose makers promised the best shave I’d ever had from just three drops of the stuff on my face. It’s fair to say I was highly skeptical, but on the other hand it was small enough to carry on a plane and cheap enough that if failed in giving me a close shave I wouldn’t feel too taken. So I bought some of the stuff.

Somewhat to my surprise, the stuff works exactly as advertised: I put few drops in my hand, rubbed it across my face and did my razor swiping as usual, and then for the first time in twenty years didn’t feel like neck was on fire after I was done. And I got a pretty good shave out of it too.The major drawback of the stuff is that it clogs up your razor something fierce if you’ve got a multiblade setup (I use the Gilette Fusion myself), so you’ll spend a fair bit of time trying clean out your blades. But given cleaning out my razor and feeling like someone’s been sandpapering my face, I know which I’ll go for.

So, while I don’t make a whole lot of explicit product endorsements, if you’re someone who experiences a whole lot of razor burn, allow me to suggest you try this stuff out. I still despise shaving, but now mostly because it’s annoying, not because of what it does to my neck and face. That’s an improvement.

89 Comments on “Shave Secret”

  1. Sounds like it’s right up my alley. I gave up shaving with a blade and use an electric. I don’t get the close shave I would get with a blade but I’m not miserable all day either.

    If this stuff works, I may switch back. Thanks.

  2. I shave with bar soap, because I’m cheap and I’m lazy and I’m fortunate enough not to have sensitive skin. It can certainly gum up the blades, and the best solution I have is simple hot water. A basin of really hot water, water I’ve just boiled. A couple of passes in the water cleans up the blades with no trouble, and the blades cool sufficiently in the time it takes to raise the razor back to my face. I don’t know, of course, if it will also work with your oil, or whether it might remove too much oil from the blades, etcetera. But if you’ve just been using hot water from the tap, you might try it.

  3. Why not just grow a beard? It keeps your face warm in winter and protects it from sunburn in the summer.

  4. I’m lucky enough my wife of 25 years will let me go for days without a shave, and running my beard trimmer on its lowest setting over my face gives me that 2-day-old shave any time I want. But I was finding I still ended up using as many blades per month, because once you get a blade wet, it goes down in quality rapidly.

    Combine that with relatively leathery skin and a beard that helps avoid the most painful and sensitive places, and I find I can dry shave at least as good as one with shaving cream. The razor lasts longer because it doesn’t get wet or get cream and hair stuck to it.

    If I need to shave several days in a row, I will still use shaving cream (travel sized Gilette “Foamy” is within TSA rules, usually just $1 at drug or grocery stores), otherwise I will scrape off significant portions of face.

  5. My husband opted for a beard twenty years ago before I met him. I’ve only seen him shave it off once or twice, and it was like he lost three inches of face. Very disturbing.

  6. I last shaved on Friday 1 May 1981, the day I started a new job. The previous two winters I’d grown a beard for a night job delivering Chicago Tribunes — protection from the winter elements by the lake — and on that hot sweaty irritating May Day I decided I was done with shaving.

    Haven’t shaved since. Hack back the beard every six weeks or so.

    Dr. Phil

  7. Neil Gaiman used to have your problem as well, until he started using hair conditioner on his stubble prior to shaving (I got this off his blog, not by looking through his windows with binoculars or something creepy like that). He claims the trick is “the best advice he’s ever gotten from a writer.”

    I told my SO about it the other day, and not only did it improve his shave, it also made his beard significantly less scratchy.

    And how does one clean out a multi-bladed razor? Run it under the faucet a bunch?

  8. I used to feel the same way. I have extremely sensitive skin. I even found the electric I used for a while irritating to my skin (as well as less effective). I tend to grow hair very quickly, so that was a pain in the neck. (Har!)

    Honestly, though, it seems to me that the state of the art in men’s shaving products has come a really long way in the last few years. When was the last time you tried out the various options? I use Edge Sensitive Skin gel, a Gillette Mach 3 Turbo, and I raised the temperature on my water heater so I get pretty hot water coming out of the sink. I also use Aqua Velva, but that’s not new. I wouldn’t say I particularly like shaving now, but it’s not all that irritating anymore. It also doesn’t take as long.

    (I will say that I find alcohol-based aftershaves more effective in reducing burn than so-called “sensitive skin” lotions. It’s like the alcohol cauterizes whatever microscopic wounds there are, so the pain can go away within seconds. When I’ve tried the lotions in the past, my face has hurt all day.)

  9. Hunh. I think I have a bottle of this somewhere. I have a similar spot on my throat (my wedding pictures have a lovely picture of the raw spot and blood on my collar; this was before the ceremony and wedding night – yowza!). I just go wicked slow and try not to angle the blades wrong. but often I nick it. I figure if I give a sacrifice to the shaving god every so often I’m pretty safe.

    I use Trumper’s which is the shizz. Gives a good, clean have and usually no (okay few) cuts. And the wooden bowl is nice to keep for other things like lint, keys and small amounts of ice cream.

  10. For European readers, alternative source for a similar product, that also ships from teh Interwebs:

    Surprisingly enough, it is available in local pharmacies in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, countries where most men have perfected the art of the permanent 2 day stuble.

    I second John on the awesomness and traveliciousness of such products. However, for truly taking care of one’s razor-averse skin … get back to basics:

  11. I can also support these suggestions. I use a similar oil type product before applying regular shaving cream, and I haven’t had razor burn in, oh, must be two years I’ve been doing it now. In a pinch, a shower gel with “moisturizer” will do as well.

    This trick also allows me to shave against the grain. Not recommended in most men’s grooming articles I’ve read, but as I can mange it without razor burn I actually get by with only shaving every other day. Part of that, I will say, comes from having somewhat fair hair and relatively light overall “fuzz” aside from the top of my noggin. It also means I can’t grow a beard worth a damn.

  12. I hate shaving to the point that I actually got my face waxed.

    Three times.

    It drew blood every time, but I did it in the hope that the beard would grow back a bit thinner and easier to shave. It was an, um, interesting experiment, but I can’t say I think it was actually worth it. Shaving does seem to suck less, but I think that’s more by way of having an even worse alternative to compare it with.

    (that’s the end of the interesting part of this post; read on for a devolution into semi-interesting, although on-topic)

    I also tried an oil concoction that sounds similar to what you tried, John. Unfortunately, in my case, it burns like I’ve rubbed a really strong athletic heat rub on to some unmentionably sensitive part of my body. If you’ve ever slipped a bit too far with the heat rub, you’ll know what I mean.

    (that’s the end of the semi-interesting part of this post; read on for a devolution into fairly pointless rambling)

    I tried a beard once, too. My wife dislikes beards, and they look stupid on me.

    I bought a high quality Phillips electric razor in the end. I use it most days, and it really does shave nicely and closely for me – but I use a razor if I have gone more than a day since the last shave.

  13. I don’t get razor burn so much with razor shaves, but my facial hair is really coarse. This means that pretty much every time I razor shave, I break out something fierce around the lower part of my face. I use an electric and just accept that the shave won’t be quite as close as with a razor.

    I may have to give this stuff a try, because there are times when I’d prefer the really close razor shave. Did you find it just at the supermarket, John?

  14. Nothing beats ab old fashioned double edge safety razor and a good shave soap or cream. crazy cheap per shave, and a very very good shave.

    Plus nice scents instead of Generic Shave Smell.

  15. Where I found it: I’ve had no problem finding it in Wal-Mart, so I assume it’s otherwise widely available.

  16. I’m lucky; I have to have a thick bushy scraggly beard. If I didn’t, people wouldn’t know that I was an old codey guy! They’d have to listen to me rambling, like the time I wrote the network drivers to connect to Shelbyville. I needed to get copies of my old .usersrc files, so, I decided to connect to Morganville, which was where Shelbyville had its net backbone in those days. So I tied an 8″ floppy to my belt, which was the style at the time. Now, getting Cat 3 cable run cost a nickel a yard, and in those days, nickels had pictures of bumblebees on ‘em. ‘Give me five bees for a quarter,’ you’d say.
    Now where were we? Oh yeah – the important thing was I had an 8″ floppy on my belt, which was the style at the time. They didn’t have the black square ones because of the war. The only thing you could get was these round yellow ones…

  17. I suppose this is the downside of living in Cambridge (MA)… I have no bike or car, and actually have no idea where the nearest Wal-Mart is. ;-) CVS on the corner might have it… whee, adventure!

  18. I am going to second an old fashioned safety razor. The upside is that since it doesn’t work on the yank and cut concept I dont get ingrown hairs even with a coarse beard.

    The downside is that is requires technique, so the first couple of weeks I was alternating between amazement at how smooth my face was with reminders that I had taken off a a bit too much around my jaw line because I was used to the multi-blades.

    Now, its generally a smooth, easy, somewhat fun shave every day for me.

  19. I’m a girl, so I guess I’m lucky in that they make amazing razors now with the shaving cream built in and I don’t need to worry about it!!!

  20. The last thing I do every morning in the shower is shave. Maybe it’s the steam, but since discovering the glory that is the shower shave I’ve never gone back. I used to slice myself to ribbons shaving over a sink, even with shaving cream. I can shave in the shower with bar soap (in a pinch) and get a perfect shave with no red skin.

    I highly recommend it.

  21. Gotta second Mr. Pree in #19… *personally*, I opted for the full beard, but at least two people I know swear by the old-school double-edged safety razor… and one of them is a woman! (Legs are way more trouble to keep up than faces, ask Krissy!) But, seriously. The blade won’t clog nearly as badly as a triple-set, and if it does, you just twist and rinse and presto! clog gone. And, yes, the blades aren’t quite as available as the high-tech systems, but they’re *cheap*, and the good ones will last a while.

    Dunno about conditioner pre-shave, but I do know that it makes the facial fuzz softer…. the ladies like it that way. :) (But then, I’ve got one of these Charlie Brown faces that looks much better covered in fur.)

    Fur vs. no-fur? Dude, there ain’t but one person you should listen to about that, and that’s Krissy. She’ll kick your butt if you’re wrong, and she knows where you sleep.

    Good luck with what you come up with.

  22. Annalee Flower Horne @11 pondered:
    And how does one clean out a multi-bladed razor?

    A: Either a Water·Pik or a Shower Massage (both by Teledyne) on pulse setting work well. Give the back side a brief blast to remove the last bits of crud at the ends of your razor.

    Another trick I picked up for those times when the nearest water is hours or days away: Scavenge a piece of Velcro™ hook material a few inches in size and keep it with your MBR. (Used hook fabric often works better than new.) To clean, press the razor face-on against the hooks and jiggle it slightly, so that the hooks extend between the blades. Slide the razor sideways (carefully!) in the hook-prone direction, then lift it away; the hooks will snag the cruft and draw it out from between the blades. Bang out the Velcro before stowing it for next use.

    Use a toothbrush if you’re truly desperate.

  23. Here’s another vote for old fashioned shave soap. I got a nice shave brush, wood bowl and old fashioned soap for last Christmas. It’s wonderful.

    I get a good shave every time, it smells awesome and manly, and it makes my razors last forever. I use a Fusion too – and my blades usually last me about 2-3 months of shaving every couple days before they start to get dull enough that the shave suffers or they don’t cut as well as they used to. I think I’ve bought one extra 4 pack of blades in the nearly a year since I got my new soap.

    It’s loverly.

  24. Just last week I had to take off the beard I’ve had since 1975. (New job, with dress & appearance rules.)

    Man, I don’t know who that guy in the mirror is, but he sure looks old. (The beard may have been almost pure white, but losing it added about ten years to my looks. Damn. Damn-n-n-n-n….)

  25. Old-fashioned shaving soap in a plastic mug, a shaving brush that I keep always in the mug (so it remains moist and soft), double-blade razor (I don’t find that three or more blades work any better than two, so why spend more for them?), shaving in the shower, and, above all, I never shave against the grain: for me it always results in ingrown hairs.

  26. I use something similar to our host’s – found it at the local drugstore while hunting for something, anything, that was more comfortable than plain hot water and less messy that shaving cream…

    Mine is “Cromwell & Cruthers Shaving Oil for Sensitive Skin” and claims to be a mix of six or eight oils plus a few other things.

    Apparently C&C is Canadian:

    It’s cheap, not messy, one little bottle lasts forever and won’t alarm airport security apes. Is good.

  27. Another vote for electric. I use a hair trimmer to whack the long growth and then an electric shaver to take the rest off. I do have blades around – also Gillette 27 1/2 blades or whatever they’ve crammed in now – but I only use them if I’m doing an author appearance or some such.

  28. You know, if you despise shaving, you could just stop doing it… It’s not legally required or anything!

  29. Get a badger brush. Seriously. Those things are magic. I’m a girl and I even endorse this… as do all three boys in my house.

    Brushing on the shaving cream (use warm water also) makes a huge difference in the bump/pain/irritation factor. Even on my legs. And, um, other bits.

  30. I hate shaving and I hate beards. What is a boy supposed to do? I use electric clippers to reduce the beard to a stubble once every week or so. Looks manly too with just the right amount of stubble. :)
    If I really have to shave I use a disposable razor with a low irritant lubricated strip and a low irritant shaving gel (ph of 6.5) for sensitive skin that is available at supermarkets here in Oz.

  31. I’ve been on a quest for razor systems that don’t suck since my late teens, and it wasn’t easy. I have the same problem; sensitive skin and tough stubbles meant I got guaranteed razor burn every bloody time.

    I’ve been through the whole Gillette range – and some Wilkinson on the side. I’ve tried electric, but to my horror I discovered that it only replaces razor burn with dried-out skin patches, that look (and feel) even more horrid.

    Until a friend of mine recommended an old-fashion safety razor. He had sort of the same problems, and he swears by it, so I said I’ll give it a try. Turns out it’s not only the razor; it’s the whole shaving process. I was doing it VERY wrong.

    After two years of great shaving, here’s what I learned so far:

    * Moisture is really important. Always shave after a shower – barring that, get and use a hot towel to soften the stubbles. This is the most important step to a pain-free shave; I can’t stress this enough. If there’s no hot towel available and you don’t have time for a shower (!), splash your face for at least one minute with hot water – as hot as you can stand.

    * The shaving cream or soap or whatever you’re going to use should be on the oily side, so that the razor slides on the skin. Slide. Not scrape. A shaving brush helps, but it’s not necessary for every products. There are some lather-free creams out there which are better applied by hand.

    * The shaving itself. Regardless of the razor you use, you should always shave in the direction that your hair grows. Don’t shave against the grain, even if you think the result is not smooth enough. That’s going to lead to ingrown hairs, which are a major pain. Shave in small increments and rinse your razor often. Don’t forget that it’s trimming, not scrapping: don’t push the razor against your face. It’s better to trim incrementally (say, 4-5 times on the same spot) than to scrape it all in one go. By the way, if you have a safety razor, you should NEVER EVER scrape; you’ll end up looking like you got shaved by Freddy Krueger.

    * IMPORTANT: use sharp blades. No kidding. On a safety razor, a blade should be used for only two shaves, three tops. Fortunately they’re quite cheap, compared to the modern contraptions. A sharp blade slides; a dull blade pulls the skin and gives cuts and burns.

    * Putting on some manly aftershave lotion is important. What is even more important is putting on some rather less manly moisturising face cream. Or go for a alcohol-free aftershave balm.

    And that’s about it. I shave mainly with a safety razor nowadays – it’s something of a guilty pleasure for me, and I understand if people don’t want to invest the time in learning how to use one. It’s well worth it, in my opinion, but your mileage may vary.

    I also own a Gillette Fusion (the one with the battery in the handle), which I use as travel razor, or if I’m really in a hurry. I find that microvibrations in the razor blade are the most important invention in the field of shaving in the last 30 years. If you don’t want a safety razor, this is the way to go.

    One last thing. If you’re fortunate enough to have one of those old-fashioned barber shops in the neighbourhood, do yourself a favour and get a shave there. You’ll experience first-hand what I’ve told you above, and then you can make up your own mind about shaving techniques. And if you have problems like razor burn and ingrown hairs, you can ask the barber for advice; he’s a professional after all.

  32. Oh, and whenever you have the chance – like weekends in the woods, or SF&F conventions or whatever – give your face a rest. One or two days without shaving every now and then is good for the skin.

  33. How strange – I was talking about shaving a while back, because of a completely mad website I found off a poster on the wall of my local gym.

    (And even as I say this, I realise that it sounds… dubious.)

    But the oil thing is interesting. I’m in a constant state of sulk/razorburn/three-day stubble, so anything which helps is clearly a direct gift from the Divine Not-so-hurty-face Gods. I may build a temple for them and write a few Not-so-hurty-face hymns.

    If it works.

    See how my faith is conditional? I’m a bad believer…

  34. I agree with #9–it is probably baby oil, or a variation. Something women have used for years to shave their legs, but also clogs up the razor.

  35. I had heard about it before, and based on your recommendation I was going to buy a bottle, even though I use an electric shaver. Then as I was hunting for the “buy” button (since theirs looks like an ad, banner blindness kicks in and you don’t see it), I saw this message at the bottom of their site:

    “Proudly Made in America by English Speaking Americans.”


    On further investigation, they are based in Corpus Christi, Texas.

    They probably can do without my non-English non-American money, then.

  36. What about those electric things that are designed to smoothly and gently shave.. er, kiwis and peaches, apparently?

  37. I’m late to the discussion, as usual, but while my facial hair is on the fine side, it is dense and shaving was often a painful experience.

    The best thing I have found (and the stuff I still use to shave the margins of my beard) is Neutrogena shave cream (hope the link works). It doesn’t contain any oil, which is good for people like me who tend to get acne, and it really does prevent the red bumps and screaming.

  38. Oh, yes: like your Shave Secret, it is no-lather and it does tend to clog multiblade razors, but I find that running hot water from the tap at ordinary pressure works to get the gunk out.

  39. Annalee Flower Horne and others already pointed toward Harlan Ellison’s solution, so I’ll just third that one.

    Plus, it amuses me to take advice from two writers I admire.

    Otherwise, I went with the Ambrose Burnside look: moustache and sideburns meeting in the middle. A lot less real estate that needs shaving. Bonus: I’ve never seen anyone else use it. Truly a unique look. (If you need a picture, click on the blog link)

  40. I bow (again). I’ve never read a blog post about shaving and have over 40 people talking about their shaving too AND at the same time, Ilearned about many of my other favorite male authors’ shaving problems. Only you, John.

  41. Just shave in the shower, you never cut yourself.
    I learned this trick from a friend of my sister’s when I was a teenager, and for a long time I found that shaving actually was the only thing I could do in the shower that took enough concentration to keep me from thinking about her shaving in the shower, as that was embarrassing when relatives were around.
    But now that I have that under control, I still prefer to shave in the shower purely for its no-slicing-myself-uppiness.

    Oh, and totally unrelated, a bacon joke which I hear is always allowed on this blog.

  42. For information on all things shaving, check out Straight Razor Place ( It has forums on shaving soaps, aftershave lotions and balms, and discussion about preshave oils. Plenty of info on double-edge and single-edge razors, too. If you’re looking for tips on process, you’ll find it there too. The touchstones are:

    * Shower first.
    * Use hot water. HOT. I said hot, dammit!
    * Blades should be wicked sharp. Dull blades are death.

    Beyond that, it’s up to personal preference and how much you want shaving to be a get-it-done-fast or relaxing-way-cool experience.

    I’m currently experimenting with straight razor shaving. It’s fun, interesting, and there’s a world of exploration with razors, honing, soaps, scents, balms, you name it.

  43. That stuff has been a household favorite for a while. I did find that the oil actually helps the blade last longer, despite the clogging. Clogs can be removed by banging the blade against the sink or the shower floor.

    We recently switched to cheap olive oil, price per ounce is better, and add essential oils (which can be found in the hippie section of your mega mart.) Works just as well for us.

  44. Another vote for old-fashioned, double edged safety razors. I also shave in the shower, which lets my beard get softened up, and use Proraso Shaving Cream from Italy in the green tube with a shaving brush (they also make a variety in a red tube with wheat germ oil for extra sensitive skin). Both a much better shave, and less expensive, than the typical Edge gel and multi-blade, disposable razor variety.

    Proraso makes a pre-shave cream that’ll soften your beard up even more, or I suspect your shaving oil would do the same…

  45. I’m very fortunate in that I don’t get razor burn, so I shave with shaving soap, a shaving brush, and a Gillette mach 3. If there was razor that I could fund that used the reusable blades that had the closeness of the mach 3, I’d buy it. It’s all about being classy as second in importance to getting a good shave.

    Oh, and #49 has it right – shaving in the shower is much better, for some reason. Probably the humidity on the razor.

  46. I shave in the shower and I have for years. With a fog-free mirror, all that nice warm steam really softens the stubble, and it’s easy as pie to rinse the blades by just passing the razor through the stream of hot water.

  47. I quit shaving years ago on the grounds that $DEITY must want me to have hair there, because every time I remove the stuff it just grows back.

  48. Hand lotion can work well, and can be handy if you don’t have water available because it just rubs in. Also good in winter when your skin dries the heck out.

    For an electric razor, this doesn’t work, but I find that talcum powder helps. It acts as a lubricant, and gives the razor a dry surface to pass over rather than moist skin that it wants to stick to.

  49. I use this old spice goo: I’m not fond of the aroma (I’m not fond of most toiletry aromas), but it is low alcohol and does stop the burning almost immediately upon impact. However, shave secret does sound pretty interesting…i like the idea of preventative measures to head off the burning.

    And, just wondering, do your (anybody’s) cats ever look at you oddly while you are shaving, seemingly wondering why you are removing your fur? For all the pain it causes, it seems they may have a point (assuming I’m reading their minds correctly).

  50. I tried shaving in the shower; it didn’t work for me. Go figure.

    Although I don’t use a brush, I bet that does help a lot. Another one of the things that has made a difference for me is starting to really rub the lather in, instead of merely spreading it on my face. I don’t know if this is why, but I imagine that I’m basically getting all my stubble standing up when I do that, and making it easier for the blade to cut it down. Regardless of why, though, I bet the effect of a brush is similar to what I’ve experienced.

    As for going with or against the grain, I wish I had that option. My beard from my jaw down doesn’t grow in one direction. It swirls around, so that any direction I shave in is against the grain–and if I don’t shave in three or four directions, I will leave visible stubble in patches on my skin.

  51. I have ingrown hair, so going several days without a shave is painful. My face seems tricky to shave, and I often end up with stuff I have inexplicably missed. So here is my method:

    – Live in a warm climate, preferably humid. My current domicile of Hong Kong is perfect.
    – Shave in the shower. The heat and damp makes the skin soft.
    – Gilette shaving gel (not cream) works best for me.
    – I used to be a Gilette Sensor (non-Excel) guy but have since switched over to the Fusion Power. It is just amazingly smooth. The vibration made me nervous at first but I don’t cut myself more or less than before.
    – Afterwards, I go for Gilette After Shave Gel. Very nice. I dislike traditional aftershave.

    My head gets the same treatment, but apart for some weird areas around the ears, shaving the head is dead easy.

  52. Jim Wright, tough as saddle leather @37 spake soothly:

    I use a cheese grater to shave, dry, and #2 kerosene as aftershave.

    Cool, but do you use Boraxo as shampoo and teethbreesh?

    Skin condition? Hell, I’d have to have skin before a condition could set in.

  53. I dunno if anyone else’s mentioned this, but if you rinse your razor with rubbing alcohol after you use it (or just dry it on a towel), you can significantly extend the life of your razor.

  54. Sounds like the giant economy size is just baby oil. Something to think about for home use, anyway.

    My “secrets” for shaving:
    1) I never go directly against the “grain” of the beard. So despite what the ads show, you don’t go up the neck to the chin.
    2) If you look at the ingredients labels, shaving cream is basically shampoo. Shampoo is cheaper.
    Pure hair conditioner tends to clog up the blades a bit, so I use use a low-end shampoo+conditioner that works up a small amount of lather without drying out the face too much.

  55. Hmmm, I have the same issue with my face. Electric or blade, my face looks like I lost a fight with someone using shattered glass coated hand-wraps. I’ll have to try this stuff out.

    Thanks for the tip!

  56. John, you have hit upon one of my wierd hobbies. I tried for years to get a good shave with the Mach 3 but after a while it was annoying paying so much for blade cartridges. Then I tried an electric. They SUCK! Then I tried an old fashioned safety razor and that whole method of shaveing with a brush making your own shaving cream etc. and it is awesome. Now I actually use a straight razor too when I am feeling adventurous and Manly.
    I also have your problem of sections of my face that are hard to get smooth but as a few other people have mentioned, if you do one “pass” with the grain, one across the grain, and one against the grain, you will have the smoothest shave you have ever gotten. I wrote a post about it too.

  57. Just got to say that I too have had many problems over the years with shaving and looking like I took sandpaper to my neck.

    That was until I read this blog entry and actually bought the product mentioned. I was flabbergasted to say the least. I use 4 little drops of this oil and I shave my face….IT WAS INCREDIBLE! No pain, no bleeding, and best of all a clean shaven face.

    Note: I found that using an old toothbrush very lightly helps clear out the gunk of th oil.

    Please excuse any misspelling or grammatical errors…Because I just don’t care enough.

  58. the problem with me is that if i use a machime it dosent gives a tidy look small bit of hair are always left ant they are untouchable if i use a razor i have a perfect look with (satisfaction) the problem is am only 17 so should i start using a razor ta shave or not >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>need help

  59. About a year ago, I found this product at a Target or other big box store somewhere in Minnesota; thought I’d give it a try. Outstanding! As the bottle began to whittle-away, I kept thinking I needed to resupply, but procrastinated and slowly switched back to shave cream over time.

    Just found out I must use an electric due to a future lifetime of blood thinners, but simply cannot stand a less than close shave at my neck. So I decided to cheat and finish-up my electric shaves with a blade, using the last of my Shave Secret. STILL OUTSTANDING!

    Highly recommend this product to anyone who has sensitive skin after a close shave, or has a similar problem as me and wants to reduce the liklihood of a nick or cut.

  60. Hi John.
    You should consider using a Double edge safety shaver, the good old fashioned one’s with a genuine razorblade. It totaly took care of all my neck burns and redness in a month or so of shaving!!! It was the best thing i ever did for my shaving and me!!
    It is SO easy to rins out when you are shaving, it’s almost scary.

    You will NOT be disapointed, i promisse!!!!

    Kind regards Lars Jensen

  61. I bought this today from Walmart, Im gonna give it a go and see if it works. I hope it does. because I get, ingrown hairs, bumps, and irritation.

  62. I’m almost 30 and i’ve been in the military for the last 10 years. I have to shave with a Gilllette Fuzion almost every day for work and i’ve had nothing but razor burns for as long as I can remember, i’ve tried every product on the market from shaving creams, to after shave lotions to expensive electric shavers. I even once met a man who shaved his face with a butterknife (no joke). My wife recieved a sample of Shave Secret and for the first time in her life experienced no razor burns when she shaved. I decided to experiment with this product. I purchased a bottle and commenced to shaving my chest (which i’ve never done before). I was of course expecting razor burns and the humiliation of not being able to be seen with my shirt off for a good while. I was mistaken. This product is first rate and it will now replace my shaving cream and after shave lotion that crowd my hygeine gear. The small bottle makes it easy to pack and this is very useful to us military types who are constantly traveling. I highly recommend this product to everyone and I will help spread to the word to friends and family alike.

  63. I shave my head and have tried all types of electric and regular razors and found that with using shaving cream I don’t get a clean shave so I picked up a bottle of Shave Secret. The product is great. I get a smooth shave every time and have been using it for a few months now. Today I looked in the mirror because it has been a few days since I shaved and noticed that there are quite a few nickel sized bald spots on my head. Has anyone else suffered from this using this product?

  64. Shave Secret is my best friend! It really works. small bottle, five or six drops and I’m in business. Glad I gave it a try.

  65. Ok, do not usually do this and certainly am not being paid to do it, but it is very seldom that a product I try on a whim that works out so well. I have always HATED shaving. Even the very best lubricated shaving gels did not prevent me getting pretty bad razor rash. I would not shave very often because of it, usually just once a week for church or otherwise on special occasions (like my wife insisting!). I was in Wal-Mart about two months ago and noticed a product called Shave Secret shaving oil. It is a little bottle and the product is a blend of oils. I bought it on a whim out of desperation for something that would work better than shaving cream or shaving gel. It works fantastically well! With it, I can shave daily and not be one constant case of razor rash and it leaves the skin refreshed, moisturized, and well conditioned. It can be found on-line at Oh, and it is a TEXAS product made by USA King’s Crossing, LLC.. Cuero, Texas.

  66. I didn’t take the time to read any of the comments but thought I would tell you my trick to cleaning out my razor after each stroke or two:

    Have a cotton ball (or Q-tip) or two soaked in rubbing alcohol (70% isopropyl alcohol) ready. After a few strokes, like you said, your razor head would get really clogged. When it gets clogged, wipe the blades with the cotton ball (or q-tip) then rinse with water as normal. The alcohol will immediately dissolve the oil and the water will flush the hair and remove the remaining alcohol/oil residue from the shave head.

    Now you’re ready for another few swipes!

    Hope this helps.

  67. Shaving oil has got to be the best kept secret of the last thousand years! It’s as old as the Romans. I recently switched to shaving oil and will never use anything else on my extremely sensitive skin. Absolutely the closest shave every time with no nics, cuts or irritation of any kind. I never thought shaving could be comfortable or enjoyable until now.

    Many people here complain of gunked up razors. While that may be true of multi-blade cartridge razors, I have since started using an old double-edged Gillete safety (butterfly type) razor I picked up at a flea market for $15. Not only are the blades super cheap at wal-mart but after I am done shaving they just pop right out and I wipe them clean with a tissue. Shaving oil is the way to go, no doubt.

  68. My God this stuff is unbelievable. I am so shocked I can’t believe I just got done shaving. What in the world just happen to me. I have NEVER NEVER NEVER EVER EVER EVER shaved my face and head that fast, that easy, and most importantly virtually pain free. I have tried EVERYTHING and I know people say that a lot but as God is my witness or your Higher Power, Allah, Buddha, whatever, I have tried it all and this stuff worked.

    Listen folks I am serious, I have been through it shaving, I have brutalized my face so bad while shaving that the foam or gel or whatever I was using at time was dark pink to red from all the blood. Shaving and showering after was an exercise in excruciating pain. Nothing I tried could prevent the cuts that lead to extensive bleeding and the sensitivity of my face and head. And then there was the bumps issue, which is a whole new battle. This product blows my mind. I got it one day thinking, what the hell I’ve tried everything else. Money was low and I needed something. I still can’t believe it. I am still in shock. Look, I am by no means saying this product is perfect, the gummed up razor, oily junk going down my drain, and the smell does not exactly go with my occasional cologne days, but right now it is the best product I have ever used and that is over twenty years of shaving. I just started using it but if these are the only down sides then I am all in. By the way if you are wondering why on earthing would I go through so much with shaving. My job requires it. To do what I do I wear a face mask that must have an airtight seal to my face. A beard or a badly unshaven face does not create a good seal leaving me vulnerable to toxins.

  69. I discovered Shave Secret in WalMart about three years ago on a business trip to the US. My shaving life has improved significantly since then. I love it that I can see the edge of my goatee, so my shaves are much more precise.

    I recommend shaving AFTER a shower – it really softens the skin and beard and makes the shave super-close.

    I use 5-6 drops instead of the recommended 3, so I do experience a fair amount of razor clogging (I use the old Gillette twin-blade Sensor Excel). But I’ve found the best way to unclog it is to hold the cartridge in a vertical orientation and tap it firmly 4-5 times on the edge of the sink, followed by a hot water rinse under the tap. The trick is to unclog it after shaving every quarter portion of your face.

    Another thing that works well for me is to make a light second pass of the razor with a bit of excess water. Makes my 50-year old face look baby smooth!

    If anyone knows of a good source of cheap, genuine Sensor Excel cartridges, do let me know. My target price is a maximum of $1 per cartridge (inclusive of shipping within the US, if bought online). I’m willing to buy in bulk – like 50 cartridges at a time. Any pointers to trusted sources will be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

  70. Have you tried old fashioned single blade razors? Helped me with the burn and with the clogging from shave secret. Plus refills for the blades are dirt cheap. I got a merkur – gold plated beauty of a razor that makes me feel like a millionaire.

  71. Shave Secret is good stuff. I started using it a couple of years ago and was ecstatic to get rid of the burdens and ineffectiveness of shaving cream. I was recently turned on to Kind Shave Oil ( and it is far better. It has a minty aroma to it and is a little less thick so it doesn’t clog my razor as much. Has anyone else tried this stuff?

  72. i’ve useded shaving creme for years and didn’t realize that if anyone can believe this it was the shaving creme that was burning up my face not the razors why?i saw DR oz one day on tv and he said it is the sodium laureth sulfate in the shaving creme burning my face and sure enough he was right, once i stopped using shaving creme the burn stopped i use sometimes ivory mild soap and shave secret what a difference and baby oil and i for one hate to shave like alot of other people but this works great. what a product. you see DR OZ says sodium laureth sulfate it’s in everything from shaving creme ,to shampoo,to toothpaste and a lot of body washes try shaving with body wash in the shower and it will burn the heck out of you and that’s no lie. it’s a burning agent sodium laureth is avoid this at all coast when shaving.

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