Believe it or not, there are a lot of benefits of shaving with a straight razor, however, what are they and how much of a benefit do they really give?
Years ago when men wanted to shave, they went to a barber for the most part, as they were trained professionals who used straight razors.
Everyone loved their straight razor, and every so often we see a boom in sales of them even after all of this time.
So, why does everyone love straight razors?
Well, we are about to find out!
1. Say Goodbye To Skin Issues.
A common problem when shaving is the skin related issues associated with it.
Daily, millions of men all over the world prepare for their day by shaving, but 10 minutes later their skin begins to get red, inflamed and painful.
Razor rashes, burns and general irritations that accompany shaving are very painful and can literally ruin your day.
For the most part, the reasoning for this is improper shaving techniques, not using enough product or not accommodating for your skin type if you have sensitive skin.
However, one of the biggest reasons for irritations is multi-blade cartridge razors.
Multiple blades are being dragged over your skin, over and over again and dulling very quickly.
Due to the numerous swipes, the product has wiped off by the time it reaches the last blade, and you're mainly dry shaving once again.
Your skin needs adequate lubrication when shaving, which multiple swipes with a cartridge razor remove.
One of the benefits of shaving with a straight razor, you are using one solid blade and getting a closer shave than a cartridge razor could ever do.
Of course, you need to learn some technique and have a lot of practice to use a straight razor.
With practice you will eventually learn that you don't waste as much product, don't have to re-shave areas as often and can continually follow the grain.
So taking this into consideration, a straight razor leads to fewer irritations and of course, is way better for your skin than tearing it up with a cartridge razor.
A straight razor is just an uncovered blade you have to concentrate a lot more than you would with a cartridge razor, so being forced to pay more attention means you're focused and can limit any problems associated with shaving.
2. Be in Full Control
So straight razors do have a huge learning curve and are harder to use than typical store bought razors, but they do have some significant differences.
Unlike a cartridge razor, straight razors give you 100% control over the way you shave.
The performance of a straight razor is all on YOU.
The way you shave, your final result is all in your hands.
You have control over every aspect of shaving. A cartridge razor is really hard to flawlessly transition with the grain as the sizeable plastic casing is in the way.
Cartridge razors have no flexibility, and there is no way to adjust them unless you feel like destroying your razor.
Whereas with a straight razor, yes it is one big blade, but you have more control of the angle of the razor, the pressure and is more precise when transitioning with the grain.
You genuinely have full control over every factor of shaving with a straight razor compared to a cartridge razor.
There is nothing in your way to stop you from getting to those hard to reach areas, and with there being only one blade compared to multiple, they won't dull as quick or get clogged up.
This means you will get the closest and best shave possible.
3. Ingrown Hairs? NO MORE!
Everyone has experienced ingrown hairs at some point, especially younger men who are just beginning to learn to shave.
No one is immune from ingrown hairs; a proper shaving technique can help to prevent them, but the razor you use can have a significant factor into this.
A cartridge razor with multiple blades is designed to pull your beard hairs up from the skin and cut the follicle beneath which causes unpredictable growth and damages the hair.
An ingrown hair is when a hair grows out of and then back into the skin causing an inflamed and painful lump on the surface.
Cutting the hair follicles beneath the skin and causing unpredictable growth is the most known reason for ingrown hairs.
Multi-blade razors are the leading factor of this.
A straight razor physically cannot lift hairs no matter how hard you try to do it; therefore it shaves as close to the skin as possible and doesn't destroy the follicles.
Having a closer shave with fully intact follicles and no unpredictable growth not only makes a shave last longer but it also helps to prevent ingrown hairs.
4. Be The Manliest You Can Be
Not so much of a benefit but honestly, most men who use a straight razor feel at the pinnacle of their manliness.
Let's be honest, whats more manly than holding a sharp razor to one of the most delicate areas on your body to trim your beard?
Well, maybe if you used a katana, but that's a different story.
So guys, go grab a beer, dawn your manliest lumberjack outfit, shave your majestic beard and show the world just how manly you are!
5. Saves You Time and Lasts A lot Longer
At first, even I didn't understand how a straight razor could make shaving last longer and save time.
I thought that it would just be like any other typical razor, but I was very wrong about it.
I touched a little on how cartridge razors destroy your hair follicles and cause unpredictable growth.
Well, let's imagine for a second that multiple blade cartridge razors weren't designed to pull the hair and cut the follicles; due to the design of them it would just swipe across the hair and trim it.
There would still be hairs left on your face which is clearly not the point of shaving.
A straight razor cannot in any way pull your hair to destroy your follicles meaning they are entirely left intact and healthy as they can be.
The razor gives you as close a shave as possible, leaving the area where the hairs are as smooth as can be without cutting your follicles and leaving hairs above the skin.
Due to how close the shave is, it means that no hairs get left behind or pop up from under the skin within a few hours.
Straight razors take less time to shave with (after some practice) than a cartridge razor as you don't spend time re-shaving areas of your face over and over again.
You don't have to unclog the razor constantly, and the results in general just last longer between shaves.
6. the experience in general
The experience of using a straight razor or visiting a barber to receive a straight razor shave is really something else.
It's a fantastic experience that not many men have had the pleasure of having.
A straight razor shave is a whole world different than the mundane cartridge razor shave.
A straight razor is an all-around tool; you don't need to spend time searching your local grocery store or buying multiple tools to shave, especially if you have a very long beard.
Cartridge razors wear down too quickly whereas a straight razor can last a lifetime with proper care.
You will never experience a closer or more pleasant shave than you do with a straight razor.
7. cost effective and environmentally good
Think about how much money you must have spent on cartridge razors over the years?
Yep, more than you care to think about right?
As a long-term solution, a straight razor will save you a lot of money.
The initial cost of a straight razor will be more expensive but as mentioned previously, with proper care can last a lifetime.
As a general estimate, a good quality straight razor can start at a price of $150 upwards.
If you properly care for your straight razor; you should only need to rehone (sharpen) the blade a maximum of 3-4 times per year or certain sellers/stores will sharpen the blade for you free of charge if you purchase it from them.
If you further want to save money after purchasing a straight razor; you can learn to sharpen it on your own, but I definitely recommend visiting a professional to have your blade rehoned.
You will still need to purchase a product to use with a straight razor (such as shaving cream).
In general, you won't use nearly as much product as you do with a cartridge razor.
This is probably the only ongoing cost associated with straight razor shaving, but in the long run, it definitely saves money.
Personally, in my household, we spend roughly $10 per month on packs of razors which adds up to $120 per year.
Whereas a straight razor on average costs $15-20 to rehone your blade so over the year, taking into consideration that you only need to sharpen the blade 3-4 times per year that adds up to a maximum price of $80.
That's at least a $40 in savings!
Which is a lot of money to be spending monthly on razors?
Not only are straight razors a cheaper long-term product they are actually more environmentally friendly.
Billions of "disposable" razors are dumped and sent to the landfill. Not only is this dangerous for landfill workers but can you imagine what it's doing regarding pollution?
Plastic in landfills can take up to 1000 years to decompose.
The blades found on cartridge razors are usually made of stainless steel which after time will break down but does not decompose.
So as a whole, straight razors are better for the environment as we don't need to throw them away.
What to take from this article
If you want a better, more effective and smart shave, then you should try a straight razor.
Even if it's not for you, whats the harm in trying at least once?
There are many benefits of shaving with a straight razor compared to cartridge razors and do a better job which makes me sad that they are mostly phased out by electric and multi-blade razors.
They are cost effective, great for the environment, saves you time and are the best at what they do.
Do you use a straight razor?
Let me know in the comments and if not, why don't you use one? I'd love to know!
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