What is Straight Razor Shaving?

A straight razor is a razor with a long blade set in a handle and in traditional and current western versions the blade has the ability to fold into the handle. The straight razor is sometimes called an open razor or cut-throat razor.

During prehistoric times there is documented evidence that men used clam shells, stone or flint knives, and even sharpened blocks of iron to shave and cut their hair with. By the Bronze Age many cultures had developed razors designed specifically for shaving and by the 5th century B.C. razors were in common use throughout the world. These early razors were often constructed by the local blacksmith and the quality of the metal and edge could be extremely variable based on an individual’s given skill. It was not until the late 18th century that the first modern straight razors were introduced in Sheffield, England. In 174o Benjamin Huntsman developed the first hard grade steel suitable for use in the manufacture of blades and while this process was initially rejected b the English it was, albeit reluctantly, adopted by the French. Once the success of the French straight razor manufactures was readily apparent the English and eventually the rest of the western world adopted this process resulting the legendary “Sheffield Silver Steel.”

The straight razor was until the early 20th century the most common form of shaving and due to the skill and costs associated with using and owning them, shaving was usually done by a professional barber. It was not uncommon for men from all levels of society to visit the local barber on a weekly basis for a shave and hair cut. The introduction and mass production of an affordable safety razor, most notably by Gillette, in the early 20th century quickly changed this and by the 1950’s the straight razor shave was a dying art.

In recent years the straight razor has made a significant comeback as the desire for a more personal and ritualized grooming experience has manifested itself in modern society. Today many barbers proudly offer a straight razor shave and this trend shows no real signs of stopping. The retail consumer has also embraced the straight razor as they have become more affordable in comparison to the mass produced alternatives, particularly over a period of several years of ownership.

The straight razor is a time-honed tool, designed to give you an extremely close and accurate shave. There are many straight razors available on the market to choose from based on the steel used, functionality, scale materials, and brand. We will be talking about this more in the weeks to come. If you want to learn the different ways to hold a straight razor go here.

 

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Inspired Style: He Spoke Style

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We have followed Brian Sacawa’s blog “He Spoke Style”  for a while now and we are always in awe of his classic style and love for style and grooming. This is captured in his photographs. This week we really enjoyed reading his post about “Shave” where he describes it as ” Also like my morning coffee, I like taking my time and enjoying the process of shaving. It’s one of the few times that I force myself to slow down during the day.”

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Read more here: Shave

What brands do you prefer when shaving and why?

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How to Style: Hair

4fa921bcc41a810ebaede0b7cd389b15Want this look? Not too sure which product to use? Do you have thick hair or thin Hair?

This look can be achieved with slight waved or straight hair.  Use two fingertips with of wax or hair paste to achieve this dry, messy style. Place the paste/wax on the palm of your hand and warm it up creating heat to easily apply. Then work through dry hair from ends to roots. Make sure you have enough in you hair but not too much that it starts clumping.  Use your hands to apply to your hair to style, do not use a comb, and place as desired, rubbing palms back and forth on hair.

Take a look at these products below that will help you achieve this look with ease: They can be found here: www.pomades.com

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Product: Imperial Premium Barber Grade Matte Pomade Paste

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Product: Uppercut Featherweight Hair Paste

HR_465-038-00_baxter-of-california-clay-pomadeProduct: Baxter of California Clay Pomade

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Inspired Style: David James Gandy

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Meet the Male Model who has been seen as the face of Dolce and Gabbana and has a last name that rhymes with Dandy. This gentleman’s name is David James Gandy. He is a favorite role model of ours. This United Kingdom native, not only has style and swag as a dapper gentleman but a man with morals and values that exudes. The ladies take one look and go crazy. At his interview with Vogue UK tells us,” He also wants to promote great dressing for men that, he says, “shouldn’t be difficult”. “Men are still quite scared of the connotations of looking gay, even in 2010,” he says. “But dressing well can be easy. You don’t have to buy a suit from the most expensive labels – you can pick one up from Zara or Marks & Spencer and for an extra £20 or £30 you could have it tailored to fit you perfectly – and nothing really looks better than a tailored suit. And because we’re limited to jeans, T-shirts and suits, it’s important to be confident with accessories to look good.”

He is a favorite to many. Check out more of him here: David James Gandy

 

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Pictures: David James Gandy

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