The Art Of The Straight Razor

Why Straight Shave?

About five years ago, I'd just about had it with shaving. I'd go days inbetween shaves, but hated having a beard. The soreness, the ingrown hairs, constantly needing to buy more blades, the requirement of being clean shaven for work; it was all a pain. Shaving everyday irritated my face and, basically, was just no fun. For many years, I had a fascination with straight razors, and wondered how difficult it would be to learn. I was already disinterested with shaving itself, but thought it might be enjoyable to learn a new skill.

Researching into straight razor shaving, or wet shaving, as it's also called, grew my interest more. I purchased a straight razor & a strop, a mug & brush, and I was ready to go. Five years later, I'm glad I did it. I now enjoy shaving again. In fact, my shaves are closer than when I used a traditional razor. Rarely do I get ingrown hairs, and my face feels better after shaving. Soreness is greatly diminished.

What I've Learned

Since taking up this practice, or art, as some call it, I've learned a few things:

  • I've learned to respect knives more.
  • I've learned how to sharpen any knife.
  • What sharp really means.
  • The sharper a knife, the safer it is to use.
  • My face feels better after shaving.
  • I look forward to shaving.

Takes No Longer

Many people have the idea that using a straight razor is a long, drawn out process. This isn't true. In fact, I can shave just as fast with a straight razor as I do with a traditional razor. Once you've learned how to hold the razor & have used it for some time, it becomes as natural as brushing your hair. Another added benefit:  women enjoy watching a man use a straight razor.

Be Careful What You Buy

When it comes to straight razors, you get what you pay for. Don't skimp on a cheap blade! A good razor is a finely crafted instrument. Look, you're going to use this thing on your face; you want the best performance possible. So, what's a good blade? One that contains a high carbon content. Stainless steel razors are no good, stay away from them. They're cheaper in price, but are more difficult to sharpen. Carbon steel sharpens easily & shaves the best. The best razors available are those made with a high grade carbon steel.

If you can, get a DVD on straight razor shaving. Talk with your local barber. Go online & visit some forums. You'll find that there's quite a collection of straight razor enthusiasts. Many enjoy it so much that they collect all makes & models of razors, vintage & limited edition razors. But make sure you buy good equipment! Follow the link below, check out what they have to offer. I hope this page has been of some help. If it has, feel free to leave a comment below. Thanks for reading.

Shaving Video

Comments 2 comments

thelaserman profile image

thelaserman 6 years ago from Buffalo, NY

Great article! I have been considering shaving with a straight razor or not!


Twurl70 profile image

Twurl70 6 years ago from ma Author

Thanks Laserman, appreciate the comment!

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