I started shaving when I was about 16 or so. I was self-taught, no father around, so I bought my own razors, I started with one of those Gillette Mach3s and have been using them ever since. I believe they’re up to 5 blades now. Electric was never an option for me, the ease of use was tempting but they just don’t give a close enough shave for my preferences so I muddled through with the disposables.
Ah yes, the disposable razor blade business model.
- Make a product
- Make an attachment for said product
- Charge big $$$ for attachment
- Make attachment need replacing frequently
Since I was going to have a few weeks off due to the new baby I decided it might be a good time to finally get around to trying shaving with a “old fashioned” safety razor. I’ve read about it before and it has always sounded intriguing but it has also sounded like one of those things that was too much work for too little gain. 20 minutes to shave? Multiple passes? Are you kidding me? It takes me less than 3 minutes with my current setup why change? Also, how could something over a hundred years old be as good as something new and improved? I am the last person to think anything not benefiting from technology is better than something that is.
Still, I wanted to try it. I got myself a simple Merkur Razor and a badger brush. I did a little research and settled on Proraso shaving soap and a good styptic stick. Once I had all the items in hand came the next part of learning how to actually do the thing. I’ve read so many horror stories of knicks and cuts, of bathrooms left looking like scenes from the Saw movies, it was intimidating to say the least. Youtube to the rescue.
After watching the video I felt sufficiently skilled and attempted it myself. I am happy to say I didn’t cut myself once, no blood, no horror. They do call them safety razors, it can be easy to knick an earlobe or lip but with enough patience it’s completely avoidable. And the shave, oh the shave, is wonderful. Perhaps it’s a combination of the new shaving soap and exfoliating brush but it’s the closest, softest, least irritating shave I have ever had. I can’t imagine ever going back. The results are fantastic and even the process is unique. There’s a satisfaction in stealing away for those 15 minutes and shaving in the quiet time.
I recommend everyone try it at least once, I think you’ll find it worth it.