At first glance, this seems like a simple enough question to answer. Shaving is simply removing the hair you don’t want on your face. But when you dig a little deeper, this process of putting a sharp piece of metal to your face to cut away this hair is more complex. It is something into which a lot of thought and care must go.
The ideal shave should cut your hair as close as possible to your skin, without damaging your skin.
To do this, first, your skin must be prepped to allow for the maximum separation between skin and hair, so your razor attacks only your whiskers, and not your skin. Then comes the actual act of shaving off this hair.
This brings us to the razor, and the actual act of shaving. It is essential to realize that all razors are not created equal. And while they will all cut your hair away from your skin, they will not all do this the same way – or the right way. It is vital to make a choice here. A choice between convenience and effectiveness. A choice between easy-in-the-short-term and long-term-perfection.
This is where we help you make that choice.
For too long now, we’ve been told that the more blades our razor has, the better the job it does. This, however, is more marketing gimmick than fact. The truth is, a single-blade, double-edged razor is actually the best a man can get. Watch the video below to understand why.
Closer to the truth. Cutting through the myths.
Let’s take a closer look at how multi-blade razors actually work. The first blade is too blunt to cut; it just pulls your hair up, and your skin with it. Then, the next blade cuts. Think of what this constant pull-and-cut is doing to your skin. The hair being pulled up also causes it to be cut below the skin, increasing the risk of in-grown hairs.
What about the claims of giving you the closest shave? The blades are too close together and too angled, which results in a very inefficient cutting edge. If your hair is slightly on the thick side, or if you have a 2-day stubble, they just don’t work well. You will find yourself scraping your razor multiple times over the same spot, and still never getting as close a shave as promised.
Single-blade razors, on the other hand, use a single incredibly sharp blade, and give you complete control over the cutting angle. Your hair is cut in one clean stroke with no pulling. You’ll get an extremely close shave every time with a single stroke. It also never cuts hair below the skin, greatly reducing the risk of in-grown hair. All this makes the single-blade razor a far more efficient shaving tool, and one that is better for your skin in the long run.
Blades vs Beards
To those of us who like a bit of character-giving stubble or an expressive beard, the multi-blade razor is no friend. The angled-blade design cuts your hair on different levels. This makes following the line of your beard too troublesome, and reshaping it nearly impossible.
Conversely, the single-blade razor cuts on the level, and effortlessly slices through the thickest hair. Making it easy to plan and shape your beard, as you get a neat line with each stroke.
Hidden under the shiny marketing claims of multi-blade razors is this unsavoury fact. The tiny between-blade gaps make them very difficult to clean, leading to unhygienic build-up of hair and shaving foam particles. The expense of these cartridges also causes them to be kept around a microbe-friendly bathroom atmosphere longer than they should be. This makes skin infections a very real risk.
With a single blade, a quick rinse under warm water will easily wash away most particles. They are also cheap enough to discard after every few shaves. So you can ensure that only a clean, hygienic blade touches your skin every time.
The cost of the matter
Yes, a well-engineered single-blade safety razor costs many times your average multi-blade razor. However, blades are a mere fraction the cost of cartridges. Since shaving is something you are going to be doing throughout your life, your long-term expenses with a single-blade razor are going to be substantially lower.
We understand if your initial reaction to having a whole shaving ritual is “Do I have to?” Not only do you have to, but you’ll soon find yourself wanting to.
The practical part, first. How you prepare your skin and hair before will be the deciding factor in how good a shave you get, and how you treat it after will dictate how good your shave will feel.
A warm-water soak softens your skin, and loosens the debris in your pores. A pre-shave scrub exfoliates your skin. This eliminates debris, as well as dead-skin particles, and allows the razor to perform optimally.
Foam is another compromise for the sake of convenience, and a poor substitute for the brush-and-cream regimen. Experiment with this yourself. Use foam on one side, and cream on the other – you’ll notice the difference in the smoothness of your shave.
Shaving by its very nature will strip your skin of moisture. It is important to restore these lost oils to your skin with a non-alcoholic balm.
Then there is an additional benefit to taking your time going through the ritual. Shaving will no longer feel like this chore you need to get through. It will relax you, pamper you, and allow you to spend some time on yourself. Isn’t that a better way to start or end the day?