Anyone here use a straight razor?

Discussion in 'Off Topic Area' started by StevieB8363, Feb 14, 2011.

  1. StevieB8363

    StevieB8363 Valued Member

    Today I dug out my straight razor (AKA "cut-throat") after about 10 years of neglect and had another go at using it. Not too bad, I took off a week's growth and still have my skin, but the edge needs work and I need more practice.

    So, just out of curiosity, does/has anyone else used a stright razor? If so, any tips?
  2. tonyv107

    tonyv107 Valued Member

    I've never used it but my GFs uncle swears by it. I think he just enjoys the routine more than anything. As far as I know you gotta steam a towel
    And wrap it on your face to open your pores and soften
    The hair.
  3. StevieB8363

    StevieB8363 Valued Member

    Yes indeed. I usually shave right after my shower, so that's not such an issue.
  4. slipthejab

    slipthejab Hark, a vagrant! Supporter

    Yes I have several. Years back here at MAP I made a thread devoted to straight razors. Shaving yourself with one is obviously a risky affair. It takes time... and patience. One slip and you can easily bleed out before you can have help arrive. I kid you not. :p

    I was just at the knife shop looking at a blade by JA Henkel. Good German steel. The ones I have are all from China... very affordable compared to German steel and to me just a good. You won't find anymore shops in Hong Kong that use them. Only the Mandarin Oriental still does a proper barbers shave... hot tall... massage and shave with a straight razor.

    I've got a canvas strap and sharpening powder... not as nice as the leather strap. But I don't use it every day. I only shave like this on the mornings when I have the time to heat a wet towel... and go the distance with the shave. It's NOT a shave you want to rush. I was recently in India and had a good shave every two days for practically nothing by the Indian barbers. Awesome.

    You can see why straight razors became collectable. Solingen steel blades, gold plating, ivory or ebony scales. Some of the most amazing craftsmanship on the ones with wooden scales and damascus steel blades. There are some custom Japanese knifesmith versions that will have you giving away your first born child. Just wow.
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2011
  5. Chimpcheng

    Chimpcheng Yup... Giant cow head... Supporter

    I think I'll stick with my Gillette Fusion ProGlide Power Razor, then again, I'm not really sure I should be hold 5 vibrating blades near my neck let alone a single cut-throat...
  6. StevieB8363

    StevieB8363 Valued Member

    I used a Gillete Mach 3 for years, but I think it's time to revive the lost art of straight-razor shaving. (For me at least.)
  7. Chimpcheng

    Chimpcheng Yup... Giant cow head... Supporter

    I hate shaving, I really do, but since getting married I find myself having to shave almost every day.

    I have one of those electric shavers that squirts out Nivea shaving balm or something (looks vaguely obscene, vaguely) which is completely useless at shaving. I find myself having to shave several times with it and having to go over the same areas multiple times, as I'm left with clumps of unshaven bits

    The Gillette type ones fair better, but again, despite 5 blades wobbling at my throat, I still have to go over certain areas several times (maybe my chin is malformed..?).

    So, perhaps a straight razor proper man shave is in order. Though I'm not sure I trust myself with one, so if I don't trust myself, I'm probably not going to trust someone else, even if they are a skilled barber... (Sweeney Todd springs to mind... LOL).
  8. StevieB8363

    StevieB8363 Valued Member

    You're using 5 vibrating blades and you still can't get a good shave?

    The old-fasioned razors might have something going for them after all.
  9. Southpaw535

    Southpaw535 Well-Known Member Moderator Supporter

    I would be tempted to see what the fuss is about but I can't sit in the kitchen eating without toying with the knife block. Same as Chimp, I can't be trusted with sharp knives.
  10. slipthejab

    slipthejab Hark, a vagrant! Supporter

    Pretty much once you've learned how to get a quality shave with a straight razor... everything else pales in comparison. Crappy plastic and gimmicky razors that are highway robbery for what they are.. pfffft... every year Gillette and the rest of them come out with some new gimmick and everyone runs off to buy it at some stupid price.

    There are straight razors that are still in top shape and they were forged at the turn of the century. People on about plastic razors is like people discussing their heirloom IKEA furniture. lol.

    FWIW (not much lol) below are my old straight razor threads from a few years back here at MAP: (ahhahahahahaha!!! funny I still laugh at this one!)
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2011
  11. StevieB8363

    StevieB8363 Valued Member

    Good points, but the turn of the century wasn't that long ago...
  12. slipthejab

    slipthejab Hark, a vagrant! Supporter

    The turn of the century BEFORE that one!
    For me the real turn of the century will always be 1900. Or at least as it's normally used in conversation... "turn of the century England" eg. indicating England, circa 1900.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Feb 14, 2011
  13. illegalusername

    illegalusername Second Angriest Mapper

    I had one, but the damned thing kept attracting snails.
  14. Chimpcheng

    Chimpcheng Yup... Giant cow head... Supporter

    For me, they're only any good when it's day old stubble. Anything over a few millimetres, then I find myself going over the same spots several times, and there's lots of tugging at hairs, they just don't glide smoothly.

    I've seen electric razors in the shop for £300+ and the boxes are littered with awards and stuff, maybe they're great, who knows, but I'm not dropping £300 to do something I loathe...
  15. boards

    boards Its all in the reflexes!

    I find this to be the problem for me too. Given that I hate shaving I often go for several days without shaving, now I tend to just get the hair clippers and put it on the lowest level, then use the razor from there. Works well for me.
  16. rivend

    rivend Valued Member

    I would not use a straight razor to shave with because of any distractions may result in an accident for me anyway.I buy razors 5 in a pack for 2 dollars and use a lot of shave cream.Electric shavers are for lazy people also. :banana:
  17. slipthejab

    slipthejab Hark, a vagrant! Supporter

    If you start to add up the cost of those cheapy plastic razors... you might be shocked how much you pay for a poor quality shave over the course of a year. On the other hand if you learn to use a straight razor... it will last you a lifetime and then some. :)
  18. StevieB8363

    StevieB8363 Valued Member

    I only shave once a week, so the cost isn't a huge issue. It's an unrewarding chore though, whereas using the straight razor is an accomplishment.

    Unfortunately it seems my sharpening stone isn't smooth enough. The blade still needs more work.
  19. Chimpcheng

    Chimpcheng Yup... Giant cow head... Supporter

    I try to get away with shaving once a week, but the wife has other ideas. Meh, besides, it's the only hair I have left that is actively growing! CURSE YOU MALE PATTERN BALDNESS!!!
  20. Moi

    Moi Warriors live forever x

    Just think of the ones Chimp & I use. I bought a sample pack of 3 for a little over a £10. Worth it though, takes about 20 seconds to be clean shaven pretty much regardless of the length of the stubble

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