Wet Shaving Routine - How to Use a Safety Razor
How to use a safety razor
If you are nervous about making the switch to a safety razor we get it. Yes, they offer a brilliantly close shave time and time again. Yes, they beat any cartridge razor hands down on value for money. And yes, they are better for the planet. But they are a bit scary looking.
The good news is there is really nothing to worry about. In fact, shaving with a safety razor can:
- Help eliminate razor burn.
- Save yourself some money.
- Minimise or eliminate ingrown hairs.
- Reduce acne associated with shaving.
- And do your bit for the planet.
Yes there’s a bit of a learning curve as shaving with a safety razor is all about the angle of the blade. Cartridge razors have a pivoting head allowing the blades to always be at the perfect angle. Safety razors do not. But once you have got used to a new style of shaving you will never look back.
Your wet shaving routine
We know that razors, and safety razors in particular, are generally marketed more towards men or facial shaving, than women who tend to shave other parts of their body. Girls get a few nice shiny (often pink) disposable or cartridge razors, or they use a “man’s” razor. So with that in mind we will look at both options.
A traditional wet shaving routine
Step one: Preparation
Male or female, face, legs or intimate areas, preparation is key if you want a great shave. The goal is softening the hair and preparing the skin by gently exfoliating.
Hot water softens and hydrates so shave after a shower or use a hot cloth pre shave.
Next you may choose to use a pre-shave oil (like the one from bathing beauty). This is especially useful if you have sensitive skin as the oil helps your razor to glide across the skin minimising irritation. A pre-shave oil also further softens the hair and lifts it away from the skin for a closer and more comfortable shave.
Finally apply a good quality natural shaving soap or cream using a decent shaving brush. This really is so much better than using shaving foam from a can, not only from an environmental and cost saving perspective but because you exfoliate the skin and lift your hairs in the process.
- 1. Wet the brush, you can even soak in warm water while you shower.
- 2. Use the brush to pick up a little soap and swirl around in a bowl to create a really good lather.
- 3. Apply the lather to your skin using the brush.
Step 2. The Shave
Shaving with a safety razor is a slightly different process to using a multi blade but it’s really nothing to worry about.
- Make sure the blade is sharp and clean. If it’s looking dull replace it.
- Warm the blade under the tap.
- Hold the razor to your skin at an angle of 30-45 degrees. You do have to think about the angle a bit more with a safety razor as it doesn’t pivot in the same way as a cartridge razor.
- Let the weight of the razor do the work. This is another difference between styles of shaving. With a traditional, double edged razor, you don’t need to apply any pressure. Just rest it against the skin and let gravity and the weight of the razor do the work using short strokes.
- Make sure you rinse the blade between passes and if the razor starts to hang you need to flip to the other side or replace the blade.
Rinse and moisturise
The final step in your shaving routine should be a cool rinse, pat dry and a nourishing moisturiser. Regardless of which part of your body you are shaving.
Next up: How often should you change your safety razor blade?