First impressions last a lifetime.
You look great but your shadow is back
This shadow always happens.
Did you shave incorrectly?
At any rate – it has to go…
The bathroom is available at work but how tedious is that?
Walking down the hall with your shaving kit (hopefully it’s full).
Waiting until the sink is clear or having to lock the door.
Trying to be quick but get a good shave with a smooth result.
What a chore!
If only you could find a razor that would give you that crisp clean shave that will give you the confidence to close this deal.
There are a number of razors out there that work well. You have:
- Disposable razors
- Electric razors
- Cartridge razors
- Safety razors
- Straight razors
(Click here for a complete guide to these razors.)
Now some guys are afraid of the single blade shave. Maybe you’re anxious to use it; you just don’t know how. Well this article is going to explain to you the proper way to shave with a single blade razor. Do note that this method can be applied shaving with any kind of razor.
Like all things new, it might take a few attempts to get it perfect. Remember that anything worth doing and having is worth an investment of time and effort. So let’s begin.
The materials you’re going to need are:
- Safety razor
- Warm water
- Shaving brush
- Shaving cream or shaving soap
- Well lit room with mirror
Step One: Properly Prepare Your Beard And Face
Fill your bowl or sink with warm water and soak your brush in it. After you’ve done this, you need to prepare your face.
- Steam your face – The ideal way to do this is in the shower as the steam will soften the skin and help the pore to relax. If this is not an option, you can take a towel and soak it in warm water. You then place the towel over your face and hold it there for 10 – 20 seconds. The steam from the towel will help to clear out the buildup of sebum (oil that is natural produced by your body) from your pores.
- Use a pre-shave lotion that will help to soften your beard – pay special attention to the direction your hair grows when applying this product. It also is acts as a protectant from irritation to the skin. I recommend using a pre-shave lotion that does not contain alcohol. Products that contain alcohol can potentially be harsh on your skin.
- Apply shaving cream – take a small amount (about the size of nickel) and place it into one hand. Get your shaving brush and squeeze the water out. Then use the shaving brush to whip the shaving cream. Whip the brush in big circular motions in your hand. The desired outcome is a foamy lather will be on the brush that you can use to coat your face. Make sure that you don’t see any skin in the areas where the hair grows.
Step 2: Proper Shave Technique
Our faces are not smooth. We have imperfections, rounded edges from bones and the like. As such, it’s important that you’re gentle enough with the razor but also apply firm pressure that will get you a close shave. One way to ensure this is to use a razor that has a pivoting head so that it can move and adjust to the curves in your face.
When shaving with a single blade razor, you are going do it in three distinct passes.
- 1st Pass – Shave with the grain of the hair using long and steady strokes. Hair grows in varying patters for each individual. In general terms as the hair grows in the following ways. (1) North to South on your cheeks. (2) South to North on your neck. (3) Backwards on your jaw when you start at the chin. The One Blade is a weighty razor so use it to your advantage. Let gravity and the heaviness of the instrument do the work. You just guide it. Be sure to completely rinse of the razor blade and shake the excess water off. If you leave too much water on the blade it can drip off and remove the shaving cream that is on you face before you get to an unshaven part of your face.
- 2nd Pass – Reapply the shaving cream using the same method as described in step one. Remember to be thorough with your application – especially during this application because your skin will have already had the razor on it. The shave strokes should shorter and still going with the grain of your hair. Each stroke should be 1 to 2 inches long. This method is for fine tuning and to get hair that was left after the first pass.
- 3rd Pass – Again, reapply the shaving cream and go against the grain (opposite direction) of the growth of your hair. This is the final step in removing any hair that was left behind. You may feel some pulling or tugging but it should be minimal at this stage of the shaving process.
Step 3 – Properly Restore Your Skin
This is (arguably) the most important part of the shaving process. Restoring the skin helps it to heal and remain healthy. Shaving cream helps the razor glide smoothly over the skin so that that it doesn’t get irritated. However, it’s not fool proof. As such the skin gets scrapped. Shaving cream can also dry your skin out – depending on the kind that you use. For these reasons restoring your skin is critical. In order to properly rejuvenate your skin after shaving, you must:
- Rinse with cold water – This rids excess shaving cream off of your face and closes and helps to retract the skin and make it taut. When the skin is in this condition, it helps to keep dirt out which can lead to infection.
- Pat your face dry – don’t rub it as this can irritate the follicles and you could get ingrown hairs
- Apply an aftershave balm that is packed with essential oils that are going to rejuvenate your skin. Do your research to find what oils and products will work best for your skin type. NOTE: Aftershave is not a substitute for cologne so it shouldn’t be applied as such.
- Moisturize your skin – This is different from the aftershave balm. Our skin is porous and absorbs water. As such it needs to be replenished with a quality product that will help retain moisture.
From your teenage years to the golden period of your life you are going to have to shave. It is a rite of passage not to be taken lightly. You can also do some serious damage to your skin when done incorrectly. Improper shaving technique can lead to painful and unsightly razor bumps that can develop into dermatitis or the ever fun in grown hairs. The bumps can even turn into scarring that may or may not ever go away. So take it seriously and pass on this manly sacrament to the younger lads in your life. As men we know that shaving is a skill that must be mastered.