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1. Shave "with the grain" (direction of hair growth, WTG)

2. Light touch

3. Never shave over the same area twice. If you really need to, apply more moist lather over the area before making another pass.

4. Use styptic pencil for any nicks, or a shave balm after.


Years ago I began using a straight razor and found that really helped. The issue with modern cartridges is they have way too many blades and that causes irritation. A traditional straight razor is only one blade and won't get clogged because you just rinse off and it's good as new. There can be a large upfront cost ($300+) for the razor, leather strop, and brush, etc. But if taken care of, that one razor will last you a lifetime or more. My blade has over 2,000+ shaves and looks brand new and going strong.


The number of blades doesn't really give you a better shave. It's more of a marketing thing. A properly honed and stropped straight razor will give you a cleaner, closer shave with each stroke than a multiblade catridge any day of the week, and with less irritation, no matter how thick your beard is.


There is a steep learning curve, but it's a skill and nostalgic experience.  But straight razors really do give the best shave with minimal irritation provided you have good technique. Straight razors are wickedly sharp though, far sharper than a surgical scalpel. But that's good because you're much more likely to cut yourself with a dulled blade than a super sharp one, as odd as that sounds. You don't want any tugging of the hair going on. The blade should just slice right through effortlessly.


One common test is the "hanging hair test". If you glide the blade over your arm hair, without the blade even touching the skin, if the razor is slicing hairs off in mid-air, then that helps you get an idea of the keenness of the edge and usually is good to go.


Most blades are about 3 inches long and so cover a larger area with each stroke. One key is to keep the angle of the blade at about 30 degrees to the skin. The trickiest part is going over the curvature of the chin and maintaining that angle with light touch. You'll get the hang of it though.


Watch the good videos out there. With a good hollow-ground blade you can hear the whiskers being sliced off. Like a singing noise. As many people say, "it's like buttering toast". Good luck.

Edited by FvckAcne

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