How do I get a deeper shave

Wet shaving: a comeback for grandfather's safety razor

Status: 07/20/2020 9:15 a.m.
Inexpensive and sustainable: the classic wet shave with a safety razor, razor blades and shaving soap.

Aromatic scent of sandalwood, patchouli, cedar, tobacco, citrus notes or lavender: even lathering it with shaving soap is an experience for the senses. The shaving brush gently massages the skin of the face, shaving with razor blades removes dead skin like a peeling. The classic wet shave is a real wellness break for men, where you can relax in the stress of everyday life - because the body care ritual requires at least 30 minutes.

If you use a safety razor with razor blades for the classic wet shave - as in grandfather's time - you can save a lot of money in the long run and produce less plastic waste. If properly prepared, the shave is just as thorough as system razors with expensive blade heads - and also suitable for delicate women's skin.

Instructions: Classic wet shave step by step

In order to achieve an optimal result when shaving wet with a safety razor and to avoid redness, cuts and irritation, optimal preparation of the skin and whiskers is necessary. With these tips the skin becomes silky soft and smooth:

  • Open pores on the skin of the face: For an even closer shave, it is important to lift the whiskers slightly so that you can cut them even deeper. This effect can be achieved by opening the skin pores with heat. A hot shower, a warm face wash and - also as a supplement - a warm compress are suitable as preparation.
  • Apply pre-shave oil or cream: If you have sensitive skin, you should now use a shaving oil or a special pre-shave cream. The trade also offers corresponding gels. These products leave an additional protective film on the skin and improve the gliding properties of the blade. They can also be used again later between shaves.
  • Lather beard hairs with shaving soap: Beard hairs have a hardness that is comparable to copper wire of the same thickness. It is therefore important to thoroughly lather and soften the stubble with shaving foam before shaving. To do this, whip up classic shaving soap with a shaving brush and massage into the skin of the face for several minutes.
  • Perform up to three shaves with a safety razor: First let the safety razor slide with a sharp razor blade over the whiskers without applying pressure. Keep an angle of about 30 degrees, both sides of the blade can be used. If the gap between the razor's comb and blade is clogged, rinse the stubble out with hot water. Foam again, depending on skin sensitivity, and shave again across the grain and once against the grain.
  • Close pores and small wounds: After shaving, rinse the skin with ice-cold water, this closes the pores again. If minor cuts are visible, apply a moistened alum stone to the affected areas of the skin. The dissolved crystal salt has a strong astringent effect and thus stops the bleeding. If the wound is closed, rinse again thoroughly with cold water. Let the skin soothe for a few minutes and apply an aftershave.

Select and buy safety razors and razor blades

Wet shaving fans should plan at least 30 euros for the purchase of a quality safety razor.

If you want, you can spend several hundred euros on your safety razor. But that is not necessary at all: high-quality entry-level models from quality manufacturers are available from around 30 euros. There are many Youtubers among the wet shave fans who have published detailed reviews of the most famous models. For example, you can quickly assess whether a safety razor shaves gently or aggressively. A beginner should resort to a mild safety razor with a closed comb. Whether a three-part model or a safety razor, the butterfly mechanism of which can be opened using a screw button on the handle, is purely a matter of taste.

An optimal shave can only be achieved if the blades are of good quality. Anyone who is used to the high prices for the system razor's multi-blade heads will be amazed at the savings potential: 100 quality razor blades can be bought online for around 10 euros. When choosing the right blade, it only helps to try it out. The optimal combination of razor and razor blade is individual and depends on the skin type. Tip: Buy a test package with blades from different manufacturers and find out the ideal set-up. Be careful with high-quality Japanese blades: As a rule, these products are so sharp that shaving for beginners will not go without bruises. The used blades can be disposed of safely in so-called blade collectors. In contrast to system razors, no plastic composite waste is produced.

Shaving brush: badger hair or synthetic hair?

When it comes to shaving brushes, it doesn't always have to be real badger hair: high-quality synthetic brushes are an equivalent substitute.

Opinions are divided when it comes to shaving brushes: While for some there is no alternative to the high-quality badger hair brush or bristle brush, many animal lovers are now using brushes made of synthetic fibers. Badger hair brushes are particularly soft, allow the shaving soap to be whipped perfectly and, at a mostly high price, offer a very pleasant feeling on the skin. Cheap bristle brushes are usually made of very firm pig hair and have to be soaked in warm water for a few minutes before shaving in order to get the necessary flexibility.

Traditional manufacturers now also have synthetic hair shaving brushes in their product range - with hardly noticeable disadvantages compared to real hair, but without animal suffering. The cheapest models cost around 20 euros. Big advantage: After being knocked out, they are immediately dry. There are also special travel brushes and transport tubes for traveling. Tip: Hang the shaving brush to dry in a stand with the bristles facing down, so that the knot cannot be damaged by waterlogging.

Shaving soap instead of shaving foam from a can

Good shaving foam should be airy, slightly creamy and opaque. If it is too thin, it is due to too much water when frothing.

The choice of fragrance compositions for shaving soaps is huge. In addition to the pleasant smell, a shaving soap should soften the beard hair, have good sliding properties for the blade and protect the skin when shaving. Many soaps are made on the basis of sebum; these products protect the skin particularly well, but are not suitable for a vegan lifestyle. Sebum can be identified as "tallow" on the ingredient list.

Shaving soap is foamed with a damp shaving brush, the consistency of the foam can be regulated by the water supply. The aim is to whip up an airy, covering and slightly creamy foam. Either pick up the soap with the brush, wipe it off in a shaving bowl and open it there or lather it up directly on the face. Shaving sticks can be particularly useful when traveling: Rub the moistened soap directly onto the face and lather with a damp brush - with your fingers if necessary. Cheap shaving foam from the spray can often does not offer optimal sliding and protective properties and does not soften the beard hair as well. As a disposable product, it also produces a lot of waste. Many shaving soaps, on the other hand, are available in environmentally friendly paper packaging and can then be stored in reusable pots.

Aftershave: Try out barbershop classics

A good aftershave nourishes and soothes the skin. The mostly high alcohol content also has a disinfectant effect.

The crowning glory of every wet shave is refreshment and care with a good aftershave. It cools and disinfects the skin and protects against infections. With the revived barbershop culture, aftershaves, which existed more than a hundred years ago, are celebrating their comeback. Because there were no electric shavers back then, some of these classics are specially designed for wet shaving. For example, they contain a lot of cooling menthol that feels like an ice pack on the skin - especially refreshing in summer. The aftershaves as well as shaving oils, pre-shaves, shaving soaps, blades, shaving brushes and safety razors are available in online stores and well-stocked drugstores that carry barbershop products.

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Market | 04/29/2019 | 8:15 pm