Straight Razor Shaving Tips | The Art of Shaving

Straight Razor Shaving Tips 

Straight razor shaving is a traditional type of shaving that can be cleaner than using electric razors or those with a razor cartridge and also more enjoyable for the overall shaving experience. Learning how to use a straight razor to line up your beard can bring with it several benefits.  
 
Check out our tips for mastering the straight razor, plus products from The Art of Shaving that enhance your shaving experience.  

How to Use a Straight Razor

Straight razor shaving is a traditional type of shaving that can be cleaner than using electric razors or those with a razor cartridge and also more enjoyable for the overall shaving experience. Learning how to use a straight razor to line up your beard can bring with it several benefits.  
 
Check out our tips for mastering the straight razor, plus products from The Art of Shaving that enhance your shaving experience.  

Step 1: Prepare Skin for Shaving. 

Before you pick up the straight razor, pick up products that help prepare the skin for the shave. For example, pre-shave oil can help improve razor glide and prevent you from applying too much pressure when shaving. The increased razor glide can provide more control to “arch” the desired shape of your beard without compromising the results.  
 
In terms of how much to use pre-shave oil, a little goes a long way. A dime-size amount is usually sufficient. If you have dry skin or a very thick beard, you can use a bit more.

Step 2: Apply Shaving Cream. 

Now that you have prepared your skin for the razor, it’s time to apply shaving cream to help lubricate your skin and make the razor blade slide more easily on the skin as you shave.  
 
Use a badger brush when applying shaving cream to help spread an even coat on your skin. As with pre-shave oil, a little goes a long way. When applying, wet the brush with warm water, put a dime-size amount of shaving cream on the brush, and use a circular motion to lather up.  
 
If you find the cream to be too thick and not lathering easily, simply use more warm water in the brush. There should be enough shaving cream left on your brush for a second pass of your razor.

Step 3: Shave with a Straight Razor.

As you shave, use short, light strokes with your razor. This is a “chiseling” or shaping method. This is especially good for grooming your beard because it allows you to shave without going too deep into the beard line and ruining the shape. To prevent irritation, follow the grain for the first pass, then shave against or across the grain after lathering up for a second pass. 
 
Using a straight razor works well whether you have thick or fine hair. It makes “carving” lines in the beard easier to accomplish. Try to maintain at least a 30-degree angle when using the straight razor and never lay the razor flat to the face because this creates friction. 

Care for Skin After Shaving 

Applying a quality aftershave can help return moisture and soothe the skin. Not using an after-shave balm may leave your face feeling dry and itchy.  
 
When your face itches, you are more likely to scratch and bring bacteria to the skin from your fingernails. This can lead to irritation and redness and is especially true in the colder months when the skin can easily over-dry. Using a little bit more balm during the winter months can prevent itchy, dry or flaking skin. 
 
Check out The Art of Shaving for more products and ideas to make shaving with a straight razor effortless.


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