August 7, 2013

Shaving with a Straight Razor SOP

While there are a plethora of YouTube videos on how not to kill yourself while shaving with a straight razor, the B&WE presents (perhaps) the first straight razor standard operating procedure (SOP). Note that this SOP may not work for everyone and I am absolutely not liable for anyone following the directions herein. This is simply the technique I've come to use.
  1. Sharpen your razor or change blades, if necessary/applicable. Never strope or changed blades naked.
  2. Take a warm shower or wash your face and place a warm wash cloth over your face for a couple minutes.
  3. Apply pre-shave gel, if desired.
  4. Apply shaving cream liberally to your face, preferably with a horse hair brush.
  5. Clean brush.
  6. Brush shaving cream upwards on face to raise hairs.
  7. Open straight razor to a 270º angle.
  8. Run straight razor under warm water.
  9. Hold the razor in a backhand position. All shaving stokes should be with the grain at about 30º angle blade to face. Short strokes work best.
  10. Shave under nose, working your way to the corner of your lip.
  11. Shave left hand side of chin.
  12. Shave left hand cheek and jaw. Puffing the cheek sometimes makes shaving this area easier.
  13. Wipe shaving cream off blade with a tissue, carefully.
  14. Run straight razor under warm water.
  15. Wipe straight razor with a towel.
  16. Run straight razor under warm water.
  17. Hold the razor in a forehand position. All shaving stokes should be with the grain.
  18. Shave under nose, working your way to the corner of your lip.
  19. Shave right hand side of chin.
  20. Shave right hand cheek and jaw. Puffing the cheek sometimes makes shaving this area easier.
  21. Wipe shaving cream off blade with a tissue, carefully.
  22. Throw tissue away.
  23. Run straight razor under warm water.
  24. Close straight razor.
  25. Rinse face with cold water.
  26. Apply after-shave gel, if desired.
Below is a picture of a strope that you should probably own if you have a straight razor that does not have changeable blades. I'd write an SOP on stroping, however, I am possibly the worst stroper ever. My strope also has a "finishing linen strap." Despite looking for information about the linen strap, I've been unable to determine how or when to use it, except to assume you finish with it.