So you have begun shaving like a man taking down that Bluebeard stubble with a double edge, single edge, or straight razor, but still have some of that pesky stubble hanging around. Or perhaps you have been doing traditional shaving for a while, but are looking to take things to the next level? Today we will look at a handful of techniques that will help you get an even closer shave and take your shaving to the next level.
First off, a simple and practical practice is skin stretching. You will see this most often practiced by straight razor shavers and barbers. Taking the fingers of your opposite hand, pull gently the skin above the area you are shaving. This creates a more flat surface for the razor to glide over creating a smoother and closer shave.
The J-hook sounds just like it is executed. You could also call it the pivot stroke. Draw the razor down and then swing it very lightly in a j shaped motion. This stroke is helpful for shaving off those little remaining hairs, especially in places where the hair changes direction of growth or in swirls. The stroke can be reversed to an upside down j for the same effect.
Blade buffing is a very simple technique but a very effective one. Taking the razor, and with an extremely light hand, shave over the spot quickly and repeatedly. Preferably lifting the razor between each stroke. This helps eliminate those last little patches of roughness.
The last and most complicated of the techniques is called the “Gillette Slide”. It is named such for the technique comes from printed instructions included with Gillette razors manufactured around the middle of the past century. To perform the slide pull down the razor and forward at the same time. Be most careful to pull down as you pull across, otherwise you will slice a line on your face, an unpleasant experience to be sure. The Slide creates the same effect as a slant razor both slicing and cutting at the same time. This increases the efficiency of the stroke especially among varying hair growth patterns. In order for me to achieve a close shave on my neck around the Adam’s Apple, this is the stroke I use.
So now that you are shaving like a boss, you can take your shave to the next level with these techniques. Whether you use the j-hook, buffing, or slide, just remember keep a light hand and Smooth Shaving!