It’s fair to say that the art of straight razor shaving has become lost in the modern world. Replaced by numerous electric razors, trimmers or razor blades with too many blades for them all to have a purpose.
Not only do modern shaving techniques drive people away from using straight razors, they also remove the care and attention that was second nature with shaving. Modern shaving is all about getting in and out as fast as possible, to get back out into the rat race.
Straight Razor Shaving Gets You Back to Basics
It has long been accepted by many individuals that this form of shaving takes you back to basics, but that doesn’t have to be a bad thing.
Depending on your age, how do you think your grandfather or great-grandfather shaved? It certainly didn’t involve fancy shaving gels and blades that tell you when they should be replaced.
Instead, he would have followed a strict shaving and grooming routine. Time alone in the bathroom, taking care of his appearance, indulging in some male grooming whilst thinking about the day ahead.
All the equipment he needed was a shaving brush, often made with badger hair, a bowl with shaving soap and the bathroom sink full of hot water. He would wash his face to open the pores, lather up and then, while carefully looking in the mirror, use his straight razor to skillfully remove all of that stubble. Afterwards, he would rinse his face with cold water to close those pores and, if he could afford it, throw on some aftershave for a finishing affect.
The result? A crisp, clean shave unlike any other – the same standard of shaving modern barbers shops are charging premium rates for.
Now compare that care and attention to modern shaving?
First, we could use an electric razor while eating our breakfast or reading the newspaper. Alternatively, if you do still use a wet shave, then you will throw on some shaving foam from an aerosol, quickly rinse your razor, and then because it’s harder to cut yourself with them, quickly whizz across your face. No preparation, no afterthought.
With modern shaving, you miss out on the additional benefits of shaving with a straight razor such as the impact it has on the pores of the skin.
Missing Out On The Experience
Why do you think some guys go to a traditional barber once in a while to have a hot shave? It’s a bit of pampering for guys with no social embarrassment associated and every man bragging about having had one.
Thanks to the time that you need to take to avoid cutting your face open, straight razors forces you to slow down and think about what you’re doing. It forces you to be in that moment and to take care. How often do you do that in your life? Probably very little.
Taking some ‘me’ time is important to help keep your stress levels low. You need to pay attention, concentrate, and immerse yourself in your shaving experience. This will probably be the complete opposite of your current shaving technique, and you’ll soon start to appreciate the benefits.
A Better Shave
Straight razors provide you with a better and cleaner shave, every time. The razors get closer to the skin, compared to current, modern razors on the market. There are no blades to get in the way of one another, it’s just one clean swoop with the straight razor, leaving your skin absolutely smooth with all hair removed.
Combine a straight razor with a shaving brush for optimum results. Using a shaving brush helps open up your skin, exfoliates, and also leaves your hair healthier.
It’s Also Cheaper
The main advantages of a straight razor are the experience and the quality of the shave, which you would associate a high price tag with. However, it works out cheaper in the long-term.
You only have to buy the razor and strap so it can be sharpened. The only other expense will be the shaving foam and brush, but these costs are always going to be there with other shaving techniques. Straight razors will never need batteries or new cartridges for it to work, so minimal maintenance required to.
Overall, the real art of shaving with a straight razor is in the experience. Whether it be in the comfort of a barber chair or standing in your own bathroom, it will give you some time to think without distractions, whilst pampering yourself too.
The fact that so few guys will ever try this form of shaving is a shame and hopefully it will never become an art form that dies out.