You will agree with me on a crucial fact:
The art of shaving in a serious manner, like real men, by now it is a lost art.
Ended in oblivion, like many beautiful things in life.
The contemporary male has not the faintest idea of what it means to shave in the manner of grandparents with a manual razor, like when there were no electric or disposable razors.
There will be a reason why the razor is the only one used by barbers, beard professionals.
In fact there is a clarification to be made, the one used by barbers is the shavette, similar to the manual razor but not exactly the same, chosen for hygienic reasons, since it allows to change the blade with each use.
It's nice to handle such a reliable, heavy tool, made of hard metal, one has the feeling of doing a real job in a workmanlike manner, and not a sissy pastime.
How to shave with a manual razor?
Is the manual shaver dangerous?
How to sharpen the razor freehand.
Guide to the best manual razor on the market
I have no idea when this change of course actually happened, but the precious Italian tradition of cutting beard by hand domestic has slowly disappeared, the fathers have stopped handing it down to their children, has won the society of consumption and haste.
Lately though this sacred ritual is back in vogue, ready to return the lost masculinity to true warriors.
Believe of save time and money using disposable blades?
Ahahahaha, I'm sorry but it makes me laugh.
Take your time in your pocket and see how much a disposable blade actually costs, and don't tell me how much you reuse it, because it's really an insult to the Art of Shaving La Barba and to pure and raw masculinity.
The freehand razor, also called a barber razor because it is precisely in his hands that he has continued to live and beat before being rediscovered in recent years, is certainly a fundamental tool in the arsenal of the modern man who wants to rediscover the masculinity of the past.
Very popular lately even in the environment hipster.
The Benefits of Hand Shaving
This type of razor undoubtedly presents crucial advantages on other shaving methods, let's find out together:
The manual razor is like the brush of an artist, allows to draw our beard exactly as we want, without compromising and with great precision.
There blade is in direct contact with the skin, seems to be gods warriors in the forest that they shave between one battle and another with the same knife that will serve to kill the next enemy and to earn the eternal glory.
The hair is cut directly at the root, creating an effect smooth unparalleled with the common blade or even worse with the electric razor.
It takes a little while to do the hand, but you know that the best things are gained through practice and patience.
I also didn't believe how much the final result could actually be far from that achieved with common media, until 7 years ago I decided to do the definitive step, throw away once and for all the razor blades and get serious.
The manual razor undoubtedly also carries a economic advantageIn fact, on balance between razor blades and shaving foam you end up spending much more by adding up your expenses over time.
Without even calculating theenvironmental impact, which in recent years has been fundamental, the human being seems to have fought against the nature that meanwhile has presented itself to ask for the backlog of damages caused so far.
Traditional shaving does not waste material, makes use of objects that last over time, and do not end up in the garbage at each use. The only thing that needs to be changed is the blade, in case you opt for a shavette, otherwise not even that.
The contemporary razor blades, even the most advanced ones destroy the skin, look in the mirror in what condition you are after a shave with a disposable blade, and you will understand what I mean.
Many men go around today without having the slightest idea that they are wearing an obscene shave, full of imperfections, irritations, roasts and stains, hairs that grow below the bulb and other horrendous consequences of this kind.
The real men of the past, look at the classic black and white photos and you will understand what I mean, they had one much more precise and impeccable shaving.
Switching between an electric razor or the economical razor blades and the manual double-bladed razor is like going from a 90s Panda to a Mercedes.
I'm not exaggerating, trying to believe.
Is the manual shaver dangerous?
The freehand razor is very similar to a white weapon, in antiquity it was even used for this, as a weapon to always carry around.
The razor is practically a close relative of the knife, and we could say that shaving is like engaging a white weapon duel against oneself.
When you go from the barber to shave in a sense he puts his life in his hands, it is an act of extreme trust, but also an implicit association between two men. Something that is getting more and more lost in a world so feminized.
It is very difficult, however, to hurt yourself with the manual razor, if you pay attention.
Imagine the knurled knife you use for meat.
This too can potentially be a death weapon that you could hold to stab someone. But there will be a reason why there are not ten murders a day in our apartment building despite the fact that kitchen knives are constantly available to everyone.
So as always, just use common sense, a delicate hand and above all do not rush. And you can be calm and relaxed that the shaving will proceed in complete safety every time.
If you are hurried by nature or because your commitments force you, you have two options:
The first is simply not to use the manual razor, and opt for more "easy" solutions.
The second is to change lifestyles and take advantage of the barber razor to start learning a new rhythm of life, more aware, disciplined and above all rebelling against the society that wants sterile heartless machines.
How to shave with a manual razor?
First thing is to prepare a beard.
If you want to have a nice clean shave you have to prepare properly, and you can't throw yourself like a razor barbarian in the hand.
The objective in this phase will be to make the beard softer to avoid irritation and errors in the cut.
The best advice I can give you is to shave immediately after you step out of the shower. Hot water in fact hydrates and softens the beard just enough to make it ready for a perfect shave.
But not everyone can afford a shower right before a shave, so what to do if you want to avoid washing?
It is necessary first to wet the beard with warm water, a warm towel is another excellent option to soften the bristly hair of the beard.
Take a small amount, imagine a small spoonful of shaving cream and put it in a cup.
Soak the water brush and rotate it inside the cup until you get a nice thick foam.
Then apply the foam with the brush in rotary movements on your face.
When your face is pretty covered, give it a few shots to smooth it all out and make it homogeneous.
The real shave
Shaving with a safety razor requires real skill and technique. That's the beauty of this style of shaving.
It is not for mammolette.
But once mastered, shaving in very little time becomes child's play.
The four secrets for a spectacular shave are:
1) use the least possible pressure
2) Tilt the blade as far as possible from your face
3) avoid counter-hair, especially at the beginning
3) proceed by degrees reducing the beard to levels, not trying to eliminate it immediately. This step will take some time to get used to, especially if you've used razor blades all your life.
You don't need to stand there and press on your face because the weight of the razor is enough to cut the beard. If you press against the skin you practically risk rubbing yourself. So be extremely careful, I recommend.
To avoid unintentionally applying pressure to the razor, try to keep the razor in the hands from the tip of the handle, this should prevent accidental pressure.
The razor angle is probably the hardest part to manage, the perfect angle is probably between 30 and 45 degrees.
To understand what it means, place the tip of the razor head directly on the cheek, with the handle parallel to the ground. Now slowly lower the handle until the blade can cut the whisker. Practice on your arm if you don't feel comfortable exercising on your face.
Avoid the counter-hair needed to avoid the growth of hairs under the skin. So, especially at the beginning, when you are not very experienced, I suggest you cut only the hair.
Just do more than one pass to get the perfect smooth effect, don't worry.
The main goal of manual shaving is to gradually reduce the beard, not to cut it cleanly in a pass. Many men try to do this, they hurry as usual, and that's where their first mistake is.
If you want to avoid skin irritation, lather well and pass the razor over your face several times, patiently. You will get results that all your friends will envy you, I assure you.
Dry the face with water this time cold to clean the pores of the skin.
I suggest you use a nice aftershave on your skin at this point.
It serves above all to attenuate any type of possible irritation and to give the skin that healthy look that we like so much.
What is the shavette?
Sometimes it gets confused with a freehand razor, but it has a substantial difference. In fact it is not equipped with a fixed blade, but disposable blades.
It combines the manual dexterity of the free-hand razor with the possibility of replacing the blades.
It costs less than the free-hand razor and guarantees greater hygiene.
Best freehand razor and best shavette
Dovo freehand razor, the one I have always used
If you are looking for a definitive freehand razor, which settles once and for all for what concerns your shaving needs: here it is, the Dovo.
I have been using it for about five years, and I am very happy with it.
First of all, it is well built and assembled in the hands, in short, it looks like a serious object, with balls.
In fact, from the packaging it usually arrives sharp and after a few passes on the beard it tends to improve.
Perfect when paired with a frame strop.
The handle has the classic charm of the objects of the past, although perhaps it could have been made a little more balanced and heavy, but all in all it is a great handle.
It's a freehand razor great for both those who are already familiar with this art and for those who are approaching it for the first time, in fact I gave it to my brother last Christmas and in a couple of attempts he succeeded in learn the basics of shaving (coming out miraculously unharmed!), and I assure you that Marco is a total nerd.
If he can do it by hand, they can all do it, I assure you.
The shave that I get naturally with this Dovo is excellent, we're talking about a German brand that leaves nothing to chance.
The blade is in fact made of carbon steel, the wire is excellent and I can make it slide on the skin even the days when I am really distracted without doing damage.
An object that I'm sure to take me to the grave, like all valuables.
I recommend a small initial investment to start off on the right foot, without having to venture into cheap razors to see what it is.
I'll tell you what it is: shaving by hand is the only shave possible and once tried, you never go back.
But we need a suitable and performing accessory, the Dovo is this. Take it and then thank me.
Great quality blade
Perfect shaving state of the art
Price not cheap
AP Donovan 7/8 Professional
- Whether shaving with a razor becomes a pleasant ritual or an unpleasant event with subsequent skin irritation depends on the sharpening of the blade. Where the steel of a "Nirosta" kitchen knife has a hardness of "only" 54 Rockwell, the Japanese steel used for shaving A.P. Donovan has a hardness of 59 Rockwells. Hardened with a procedure similar to Shiro-Gami steel, this material offers the optimal characteristics to produce extremely sharp blades.
- If your razor is easy to maneuver and if it is balanced, this basically depends on the proportion of the weight between the blade and the handle. Heavy hardwood offers the ideal prerequisites to counteract an appropriate weight for the blade steel. For the handles of this razor made by hand, precious mahogany woods are used from the woods of Madagascar. Be fascinated by this symbiosis of steel and wood.
Here is another interesting product, for those who want to spend something less, because they don't have the courage to be serious and want to try what shaving by hand first.
That said let's see why this freehand razor was able to pass the Fabio test and then finish in this guide.
Okay, there can be.
Here is this Donovan, named as the American psychedelic singer-songwriter, there will be a reason.
A vintage object with a beautiful design and a good finish.
The blade must be skinned before use, from that moment on it travels on the skin of the face which is a beauty.
I tried this Donovan at the home of a hunter friend, in a boar hunt, I had forgotten to take my trusty Dovo with me and I must say that I didn't miss him so much, even if I wouldn't trade him for this ever never.
Shaving is very deep.
I always remind beginners to be careful when you have such objects in your hands, and avoid touching the blade directly with your fingers "to see the effect it makes", like children. You may regret it bitterly.
Best choice for quality / price
Very large blade, less maneuverable than the others
The Cambridge Cutthroat, battle shavette
- Elegant, effective and easy to handle – thanks to the refined wooden handle, the freehand razor has a solid grip and shaving becomes smooth, soft and precise. A little time and practice will suffice for not being able to do without it anymore;
- Combined tradition and practicality – a swing mechanism allows rapid blade replacement for a perfect shave with every use. Don't waste time sharpening the blades, replace them easily. The Cambridge Cut Throat professional razor contains everything you need for an immediate shave;
This shavette has a mythical name, The Tagliagola Cambridge, just for this name deserves to be in the mythical list of Fabio.
I start by saying that this razor does not have the lacquer on the handle, so it is not extremely resistant to water.
However, considering that it is not planned to bathe in the sea with a hand razor, I would say that this is not a defect.
Also because I take this opportunity to remind everyone that hand razors should not be kept wet, but rather before storing them in their case, they should be dried with a nice microfibre cloth, otherwise they immediately begin to oxidize, and goodbye …
It has a nice mechanism to insert the blade, intelligent and practical.
God blessed, great for those who still don't feel like switching to the razor by hand … even if … it goes well … you are happy ….
I would start directly with the heavy artillery if I were in your place, leaving the shavettes.
Even the packaging is very stylish, which makes it perfect for a nice gift in style.null
Dovo Shavette, the favorite of my barber Fiore
A nice shavete to start is this proposed by Dovo, it was this German brand that invented the concept and the name, made two mental accounts to understand that it is probably also the best shavette at the moment on the market, not the I put it in the first place otherwise it appears to me as a sponsor of Dovo, and unfortunately this brand does not give me a penny to write these words.
A great product, recommended to me by Fiore, my trusted barber, I didn't have the chance to try it personally but he assured me that there is no better than this on the market.
It's his shavette of confidence, balanced, light, effective, durable.
Ergonomic, adapts to the hands.
Shaving is great.
In a nutshell perfect.
The Bluebeards Revenge the shavette for grandchildren
Here is another beautiful shavette, the Bluebeards Revenge.
What to say? I love these names so male, so warriors.
Perfect for those who are beginners, because it guarantees a shave without cuts even to those who are scared by the hand razor.
The closure of the blade is a bit cumbersome, but you do the hand.
At this price you can't really ask for better, considering that the handle is in excellent stainless steel.
The tool is light and the blade protrudes very little out of the body, with a bayonet connection.
Really a nice object, without frills, minimal, like a boy.
I gave it to my nephew, and he still thanks me.
Difference between blades
The blades of barber-free razors are not all the same, they are made in different sizes and styles that reflect the use to be made of them.
They are measured in fractions of inches.
The bigger the blade the more the shaving is aggressive, but at the same time it will be more difficult to use it, especially if you are a beginner.
So I advise you at first to orient yourself on a 5/8.
There are three types of blade:
The straight blade
The most common type, squared, perfect to finish all the points even the most difficult to deal with.
If you are not careful, you risk getting hurt.
The barber blade
These have the concave tip to be able to place the finger on it and switch to a sort of very high precision mode.
It is a blade for professionals, usually difficult to use on oneself, for obvious anatomical reasons.
The rounded blade
The rounded blades are rounded to avoid getting hurt …
How to sharpen the razor freehand
Let's start by identifying the two most valuable free-hand razor allies:
The Coramella and the Stone.
The strops are made in leather or jeans and serve essentially to keep the blade in perfect shape eliminating the microscopic grooves that inevitably form on the blade every time we use it.
The stone is used to sharpen the razor freehand, just like a knife, exactly.
The operation must be done every 2-3 months depending on how much the razor is used.
Sharpen a razor is not a trivial matter, and at the beginning it is better to get help from a professional or study in detail some video tutorials on the internet like this:
How to take care of your manual razor
A man who does not take care of his razor is not a real man.
It is good to always clean and rinse the razor after each use, remembering to let it dry before putting it in a safe place.
Razors by hand tend to oxidize if they are not dried.
I recommend using a micro fiber cloth for this job.
The world of traditional shaving with a hand razor is undoubtedly very fascinating, but also full of pitfalls if you are not willing to do the same with yourself once and for all to undertake an almost spiritual path that leads to healthy disciplined habits of a time.
I'll tell you what I mean.
In the modern world it is believed to be able to get everything immediately, paying, without waiting, without efforts, without stumbling, always everything smooth as oil.
This is what advertisers want you to believe, but alas, the reality is quite different.
Do you think Ronaldo is the greatest footballer in the world just for personal talent? Maybe you know how many hours you dedicate to physical exercise and continuous improvement, otherwise I invite you to do a search on the internet and find out.
All the great discoveries, the great inventions, the great achievements of man, the great works of art, are the result of suffering, patience, tenacity, discipline and great concentration. The ability to get up despite continuous falls, always keeping in mind the goal to be reached.
In light of this, do you really believe that shaving with a manual razor can be something "difficult"?
Let's not fool ourselves.
Rather, think of considering the transition to shaving by hand, the first necessary and essential step to becoming a real man.
It is by taking small steps that you learn the hard art of discipline, and how sweet the things gained with effort are.
But above all, how beautiful it is to do things with your own hands, why not also feeling the sweet taste of risking your life.
I hope these words of yours have been helpful and I refer you to the next article.
Hi, and good shave!
OTHER ESSENTIAL GUIDES:
Best Electric Shaver
Best Beard Regulator
How to cure beards
Hipster beard, How to make it grow
Best Safety Razors
Philips One Blade
Best Beard Oil
Best Silk Epil
Best Hair Supplements
Best Fall Shampoo
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