Tips for Wet Shaving While Traveling, Part 3: Strops, Mugs, and Razor Cases

muhle-travel-kit

Welcome to Part 3 of Tips for Wet Shaving While Traveling! Today we will be looking at the best solutions for strops, mugs, and general toiletries when you’re on the go. Just because space is limited in your suitcase doesn’t mean you have to halt your grooming ritual. Get a fantastic shave away from home with the tips below.

Remember to check out Part 1: Razors and Blades, and Part 2: Brushes, Shave Soaps, and Aftershaves.

Strops

Traveling with a straight razor and want to bring along a strop? How you pack it will depend on its size. Long, hanging strops belong in your checked bag (lie them flat to prevent creasing).

Paddle strops are sturdier and smaller, so they can fit safely in your carry-on. We have used the Bison Paddle Strop Razor Case to great success. Measuring only 9 inches in length, this two-in-one strop and razor case maximizes space.

Mugs

No matter how well you pack a mug, there’s always the possibility that it’ll break during your travels. Plus, mugs are rather bulky to fit into your dopp kit. Instead, borrow a handy contraption from the camping world: a collapsible mug.

The Sea to Summit X-Mug Collapsible Mug is made of durable silicone and features an accordion design that folds flat for easy storage. Lather the same way you do with your regular mug, then let it float in a sink of hot water to keep the lather warm.

Razor cases and dopp kits

If you’re an infrequent traveler, you can get away with simply rolling your razor in a towel for storage. But if you’re always jetting from place to place for business trips, invest in a razor case that’ll keep your razor secure for the long haul. The RoyalShave Nappa Leather Safety Razor Case by Dovo holds your razor with an internal elastic band, and even includes a blade storage compartment.

Frequent travelers will also benefit from a dedicated travel case or dopp kit. Made of supple vegetable-tanned leather, the Muhle Small Handmade Leather Travel Bag features a rigid body for safe storage of all your toiletries. Plus, the leather will develop a unique patina over time, reflective of your life and travels. A dopp kit is another valid option – make sure to purchase one that can withstand sharp razor blades and possible spills, like the Piccadilly Gladstone Leather Washbag.

Untitled-1

Straight Razor Stropping 101: Types of Strops

Stropping is the process of maintaining a razor blade, with a threefold objective of cleaning, undoing damage caused by shaving, and realigning the razor’s edge. Every time you shave, the razor blade suffers from microchips and rust. In order to keep the blade sharp and in good working order, you must consistently strop before you set blade to skin.

The material of the strop is just as essential as a solid stropping method. And when it comes to material, preference is the ultimate determinant. As with mattress firmness or the rigidity of a car’s suspension, each person has a different taste for strop material – some like it hard, others like it soft, while there are many who fall somewhere in between.

If you’re stumped about which strop to get, check out our primer on strop materials and their particularities.

Cowhide

Russian:

Cowhide made using Russian tanning methods. It has an agreeable draw that is preferred by many shavers today.

30 Degree Russian Red Leather Strop

30 Degree Russian Red Leather Strop

Latigo:

Cattle hide tanned with alum and gambier. Durable and supple, it has a greater draw than English bridle leather.

30 Degree Thin Latigo Natural Leather Strop

30 Degree Thin Latigo Natural Leather Strop

English Bridle:

Vegetable-tanned leather that is smooth and firm. A large grain pattern gives English bridle strops considerable draw.

Bison English Bridle Razor Strop in Black

Bison English Bridle Razor Strop in Black, available at Bisonmade.com

Horsehide

Natural Horsehide:

Vegetable-tanned leather from the sides of horses that has been used for stropping for over 100 years. Natural horsehide is supple but requires a relatively longer break-in period than cowhide. Horsehide has a smaller grain pattern than latigo leather and provides a medium draw.

30 Degree Horsehide Leather Strop with Handle

30 Degree Horsehide Leather Strop with Handle

Genuine Cordovan Shell:

Leather from the membrane found under the skin of a horse’s rear. Difficult sourcing and an intensive tanning process make genuine cordovan shell very expensive – albeit well worth the investment.

Bison Maroon Shell Cordovan Leather Sharpening Strop

Bison Maroon Shell Cordovan Leather Sharpening Strop, available at Bisonmade.com

Ready to make your pick? Check out RoyalShave’s extensive collection of high-quality leather strops here.

%d bloggers like this: