From February to July, 2013, I conducted a rather in-depth study on the art of shaving. It was all very scientific. I even got a lab coat and a pair of protective goggles! What I discovered may not rank up there with Penicillin, but I will say this:
I have been shaving with the same disposable razor cartridge for over a month now and have not gotten a single razor burn, nick, or any irritation whatsoever. In fact, I have had to stop myself from switching the razor head cartridge out simply from a lingering thought that “I have to trade it out at some point! Surely it cannot last forever!”
The Study Overview
Ok, so maybe it wasn’t quite as scientific as I let on, but I did purchase or acquire samples to try out of the following:
- Several different kinds of shaving creams, soaps, oils, and home remedies
- A few different kinds of razors from disposable to mainstream to online “chances”
- Razor lubricating oil
Over the course of those six months, I shaved in just about every way short of hot towels with safety or straight razors. I didn’t want to learn a new skill, I just wanted a better, more comfortable shave and longer lasting razors. If you aren’t one of the members of Duck Dynasty, you know how much standard razors and refills cost. It’s disgusting.
As a point of reference, gentlemen especially, I also tend to have moderately sensitive skin. My shaving limitations are as follows:
- I have to be careful not to dry shave or I will burn
- Electric razors tear my face up
- I have to shave daily for work, but I do go weekends and some vacations without shaving sometimes
- Some soaps and other “home remedies” dry my skin out badly
- I never use after shave because of the ingredients (and cost)
- I have mild (but noticeable) sensitivities to ingredients such as Propylene Glycol and various alcohols commonly found in shaving products
- My facial hair does not grow all in one direction, it is rough, medium thick, and if it grows out, is curly rather than straight
Now we will discuss technique, after care for your razor cartridges/razors, and finish with products. It may seem a bit out of order, but if you decide to conduct your own research, following in this order can even extend the life of your current system and makes minimal changes. I’ve already done the heavy lifting and trial and error for you.
Let’s get started.
I learned several things by watching online shaving videos and testing new products. For one, my technique was all wrong. I don’t remember my dad ever teaching me how to shave, so I just kind of did what I did for most of my life. I found out that the best shaving technique is as follows:
You are actually going to make two passes –
Pass 1 – (Assumes that shaving lubricant has already been applied here)
Go WITH the grain of your facial hair, take small strokes, and rinse out your cartridge frequently to keep it from clogging.
Pass 2 – (Should not be necessary with the right product, but if needed, apply a light second coat of lubricant.)
Go against the grain of your facial hair, stroke length is as preferred, and continue to rinse cartridge frequently to keep it from clogging.
This two pass technique may appear at first glance to take too much extra time. If you examine your current technique,