How to shave with a safety razor
When starting out with a safety blade, focus on going slowly—establishing a rhythm takes time, Pike says. If you go too fast on the first attempt, you’ll likely end up with a few messy cuts. “A lot of people will blame the razor if they get a bad shave,” Pike says. “It’s not the razor. It’s you.”
- Focus on maintaining a 30° or 45° angle between the blade and your skin. The rounded head and the tip of the blade should rest nicely against the skin at this angle.
- Don’t hold the razor perpendicular to your skin and drag straight down—you’ll shave more than just your whiskers in that case.
- Shave each section of your face with the grain of your hair, not against it. (This is why guys with whorled facial hair shouldn’t use a safety razor—it’s too hard to establish one set direction in which to shave.)
- Lastly, and very importantly, don’t apply a lot of pressure. The blade is sharp, and holding it at this angle will allow it to do an effective job without any added force.
Otherwise, your pre- and post-shave regimens probably don’t need change for safety-blade shaving, says Pike. You still need to wash your face with warm water, lather on pre-shave conditioner, or go directly for the conditioning shave gel or soap. Afterwards, splash on some cold water to close the pores, and hydrate with soothing post-shave balm (if you have dry skin) or liquid aftershave (if you have oily skin).
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