I was always curious about straight razor shaving for a long time, but the expense was intimidating. On a lark, I did some research on wet shaving, and found out about DE/Safety Razors. The Merkur brand was pretty common, and the price was right. I paired this up with Tabac shave soap, Feather razor blades, and a badger hair brush, and WOW!.
The shave I get is so much smoother, and the irritation is almost non existant. I do not need a balm anymore. I can just rinse off with cold water, throw on a little witch hazel, and I am good to go. I even noticed that my skin on my neck has cleared up, no bumps or pimples that used to form from shaving.
All this, and because of the inexpense of razor blades and shave soap vs. the cartridges and foam, I am saving probably over a $100 a year easily. This razor paid for itself in a just a few months, and now it is all profit!