What We Can Learn from Our Grandfathers About Shaving
Did our grandfathers know something we didn’t about shaving? They just might have. Proper shaving method truly has become a lost art. Somehow over the last few decades, the traditional wet shave has gone by the wayside, displaced by cheap disposable shaving products.
This might be thanks to ever increasing busy schedules or clever marketing campaigns, but somewhere along the way we’ve lost an enjoyable male ritual that turned shaving into a treat rather than an uncomfortable chore. What is a traditional wet shave and how does it make a difference? Just ask your granddad or read on and I’ll tell you about why this ritual is, and should be, making a comeback.
A Shaving of History
As many historical references tell it, in the days before razors, prehistoric people used clamshells, sharpened flint and obsidian to shave (and we thought we had it bad). This was depicted in drawings on cave walls, revealing our obsession with hair removal started with the beginning of humanity. Later, archeologists discovered copper razors used by the Ancient Egyptians, who had apparently created a slightly more civilized and safe method for shaving.
The late 1600s gave way to the straight edge razor, made popular in Sheffield, England. It wasn’t until nearly 200 years later that the hoe-shaped razor most of us are accustomed to was invented. Shortly thereafter King Camp Gillette combined this shape with the disposable doubled-edged blade, and thus the safety razor was born.
The art of the traditional shave dates back the 1600s as well, but one needn’t a straight edge razor to do a proper shave.
The Traditional Wet Shave Method
If you’ve ever had a shave with a straight edge and a warm towel at the barbershop, you know what a treat it is. The lost tradition of the wet shave is a very similar experience and it can be done relatively quickly.
Still not sold? Keep in mind, the traditional wet shave method produces a better, more consistent shave, reduces skin irritations, razor burn and ingrown hairs, and actually makes your face look more clean and healthy. So how do you actually implement this method? It’s a quick 1-2-3:
- Prep – cleanse your face with warm water and a salicylic and lactic acid cleanser to soften the skin and expand pores. It’s best to do this in the shower or immediately after as the warm water further helps soften the beard and skin.
- Oil up – apply 2-3 drops of Shave Oil massaged into the skin.
- Brush up and shave – use a badger brush to whip the Shave Gel into a foam. Work the gel into the skin for 30 seconds. This feel pretty amazing and also helps work antioxidants from the gel into the skin, loosen beard hair and stimulate circulation. Shave using a DE razor, rinsing it under water as needed.
Simple enough, right? Let’s bring back this lost tradition and enjoyable male tradition, not only does it create an impeccable shave, it also brings the joy back to an otherwise unpleasant chore. What dapper gent wouldn’t embrace it?