Shaving, tips and advice

Discussion in 'Health and Fitness' started by Guns, Sep 19, 2010.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. Guns

    Guns LE Moderator Book Reviewer
    1. The Royal Navy

    Well there was another thread on shaving bumps and much good advice banding around I thought I would start a dedicated shaving thread.

    Years ago I taught a young lad in my division to shave as he come from a single mum household and no man had ever taught him to shave. So my advice for newbies or some shared ideas for the more mature men.

    By the way shaving is the kind of thing that only you can tell if it works so these are just my thoughts.

    Shower. Gets the face warmed up and helps lift the beard (the little bristles). I tend to use a good quality face scrub (recommend Niva refreshing face scrub) every few days to help clear the dead skin and help clear the face. It helps stop ingrowing hairs.

    Next is the shave. I will go through my routine but you can adapt it as you need.

    Hot water. I soak the razor blade and strop it (by this I mean run it along my inner arm against the cutting edge. This removes the small imperfections on the blade and helps it remain sharp. I use one Mach 3 blade per month on this routine.). Then using either cream or soap (I use cream as I have sensitive skin but again personal preference) and a good quality badger hair brush work up a leather. I have a small bowl for this. If you follow the link at the end you can spend way too much. Any little soap disk works just as well. Lather the face, if using a brush paint the lather on up and down, circler motion will degrade the hairs in the brush. The act of brushing the lather on lifts the beard and makes shaving so much better. Then you shave with the grain of your beard. Not all your face is the same, for example I shave upwards on the bottom of my neck but downwards on my chin. It is the way that your hairs grow. I

    If you shave against the grain you lift the hair and damage the roots. This leads to razor burn, bumps and infection.

    Rinse you face with cold water when done, this helps seal the pores and tighten the skin. I use a block of Alum to seal any cuts and to help freshen the face. If you find you get cuts then a Styptic pencil from Boots or the like helps. Then some form of after saving balm. Leave for at least 10 mins before splashing on the after shave and it won't hurt so much.

    I use a Kent BK12 shaving brush, Mach 3 blade when in a hurry but prefer my Edwin Jager double edge razor and D R Harries Arlington Shaving Cream. Additionally Gentleman's Shop Block of Alum and Edwin Jagger After balm (Sea Buckthorn).

    Can recommend here for all your needs The Gentlemans Shop

    And here for advice The Shaving Room • Index page

    Well the floor is open. ANy thoughts????
  2. As you rightly said, it's a personal matter. I've used a safety razor with double-edged blades for yonks and had to experiment a bit before finding a combination of razor, blade, and soap that I actually enjoyed shaving with.

    My first was a Gillette bought from boots, one of the plastic jobs you can still get. It was ok, but I didn't find the shave that comfortable or the result that close unless I ripped a layer of skin off with the beard. When my grandad passed on I got his Wilkinson which I'd admired for ages and that was a vast improvement until some pikey sod (possibly Assault Pioneer possibly not - just saying, like) lifted it from my kit. Nowadays, I'm on a Merkur adjustable which gives a great deal of control to the pitch of the blade so you can adjust the shave to the hair pattern of different parts of your face.

    Hot towels are ok for a barber shop but a bit difficult logistically for domestic use, so I always shave after a shower in order that my pores are open and the follicles extended. With a good quality brush it’s possible to make a decent lather out of any ordinary soap but I find a decent shaving soap makes the whole experience quicker and far more relaxing. My personal preference is for Proraso, guess it’s just my Italian blood. Whatever you settle on, pay close attention not just to creating a thick and creamy lather but also to working that into your pores and under the bristle with the brush.

    Never shave against the grain of the hair, for therein lies the road to ingrown-follicle-Hell. The first pass should go with the direction of hair growth, then lather up again and have a second pass across the grain. If you’re using a real blade and not one of those cartridge efforts then let the weight of the razor do the work instead of pressing it into the skin since you’ll only cut yourself if you do. That's another area in which a decent safety or cutthroat scores above a plastic 'David Beckham' effort.

    Rinsing with cold water closes the pores and like Guns I also use an alum block applied while my face is still wet, then rinse again. Pat dry with a towel, else you’ll just open any minor nick back up again. After shave balm or whatever is a matter of choice but I find it helps the skin recover wherever I’ve been a bit overenthusiastic.

    If I have an early morning start, I find that I can shave last thing at night (circa 10.30 or 11pm) and still have a better shave mid-afternoon the next day than I’d get from using an electric razor first thing in the morning. There’s also something in the whole pampering lark that I get from a good wet shave that makes me think maybe – just maybe – the missus has got it right. Don’t tell her I told you so!
  3. Now i know why i like having a beard!!!!
    Save so much money on buying shaving gel & razors!
    • Like Like x 2
  4. maguire

    maguire LE Book Reviewer

    hedgetrimmers do not make a good substitute for a Philishave. :(
    • Funny Funny x 1
  5. BiscuitsAB

    BiscuitsAB LE Moderator

    I use this before and after shaving.

    Proraso Pre-Shave Cream

    wouldn't go back to a cartridge razor ever.

    The best thing about old school shaving is you take your time and it becomes a ritual. I used to just drag the mach3 or the quatro across my face in the shower and that was it. Now i take time my time and its turned what used to be just something that had to be done into something that is enjoyable.
  6. **** me, its all David ******* beckhams fault

    I either don't shave and just beard trim once every week or two.

    Or if I have to, a scrape with a Bic blue and soap

    Man the **** up fellas, It'll save you thousands of quid on perfumed ******* marketing gimmick toiletries
    • Like Like x 2
  7. If you want a proper shave on the cheap, then a fairly inexpensive brush (hog bristle rather than badger) and a half-decent safety or open razor, and bar of soap does it. After shower, warm your face further with flannel dipped in hot water, then rub a bar of soap over your stubble. Work up rich, thick lather with the brush, dipping it in the hot water now and again. Shave should be nice and easy.

    Splash on a bit of aftershave to tighten your skin and close up any nicks. Don't waste your cash on those Mach 3G pieces of crap.
  8. Any insight in to why I seem to have a problem of looking like a survivor of a nuclear reactor accident?
  9. I use an old (1950s) Big Ben razor that takes the flat double edge gillette pattern blades. Lather up with a shaving brush and some ordinary soap (Pears or Cussons) and shave with or against the growth depending on the part of the face. No problems and blades are 38p for 5 in Wilco. :)
  10. no no no no no no no no no.
    keep it simple. Heat. Water. Sharp Blade. Shave in the direction your hair grows.
    thats it. no amount of oil, soap, badger hair brushes, moisturising face protector, foam, gel, safety wires, exfoliants, massaging rubber doohickeys or anything of that ilk will make any difference at all ever. most of that crap is marketed at women and gays anyway.
  11. That may work to remove bumfluff from the chin of a callow youth, bearded lady or testosterone-free Nancy-boy. Men with bristles need something more to soften them than water, unless you're happy to lose half your face at the same time.
  12. No one has mentioned shaving oil..... I spotted the stuff in Home Bargains a few months back.

    Tiny little container for £1, claims you get up to 90 shaves

    Shaving Oil - Original | Somersets Skincare

    You splash on some hot water, drop 3 drops into your palms, then rub over your stubble

    Wait for a minute for it to soften the stubble, then shave.

    Only problem is it tends to clog up multiple blades, so a single works best, needs frequent rinsing and tapping to dislodge the crud.

    No need to rinse off, the oil is said to be good for the skin, just pat dry with a towel.

    Very little water needed, so could be great for the lads out serving........
  13. Tesco's shaving gel, mach 3 razor, get at least 6 shaves from a blade, lots of hot water before, cold after, i shave against the grain as well as it gives a smoother feel to your skin, and E45 to moisturise afterwards.

    That said my flat mate is a tech with loads of designer products, so if going out i use all of his stuff.
  14. Be a real man.