Ask Aaron Q&A: Stropping a straight or open razor

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“Hello Arron, I have just purchased a straight razor and I have been very CAREFUL in using it. When I strop the blade, how long will it be before it gets sharp? I have stropped 40 times. I kept the blade flat and delicate when using it but I do not seem to get the shave I want. I did get A TINY bit of razor burn but no nicks,” asks Maxx Buczynski, from the UK.


“Mr. Buczynski,
Straight Razor shaving is the ultimate in wet shaving and highly regarded. It also takes the most time to master out of all the options out there. Since you just started I say give it some time. Most of the experts agree that it takes weeks, as in eight to ten weeks, for someone to learn to start shaving well with a straight razor. I think that with practice you will begin to see your technique improve and the shaves that you want start appearing.

If at that time things still are not going to plan, here are a couple of things that I would evaluate. It might be that in your learning process the edge has been accidentally dulled despite your best efforts. That’s okay, it happens to every learning straight shaver. Send it to be honed by a reputable person, this will do wonders for your blade. Also make sure you have a good quality strop, this can make also a big difference in the edge you are putting on your blade.

Kudos to you for taking the plunge into straight razor shaving! I highly recommend you join a wet shaving forum and begin to ask questions and participate there. You will learn great amounts of information from the gentlemen there and by experimenting with your own shaves. I wish you all the best!

Smooth Shaving!

Do you have any burning questions you would like to ask our wet shaving expert Aaron Wolfenbarger? CLICK HERE TO ASK AARON YOUR QUESTION

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