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The Art of the Shave: Introduction of Essays

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No one knows exactly where or how the miracle of wet shaving originated. It is generally believed that during the 18th century, certain members of the French aristocracy began cutting their beards into various shapes and configurations using hot water and a straight edge. Further adaptations to this crude process soon followed. In London, at about the same time, barbers began giving shaves to wealthy patrons. This worked well, for barbers were the only ones permitted to perform medical surgeries, thus enabling them to develop a very lucrative side business shaving beards, an easy addition to their regular surgical duties as they already possessed the scalpels, cutting and shaping utensils required to efficiently cut hair. 


Essay #1: The Third Revolution in Men's Shaving

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It has often been said that there are two types of revolutions in the world. The first is typically a noisy one, full of sound and fury, yet in the end signifying nothing. This type of revolution tends to be convulsive, violent and short-lived. And despite the passionate and all too hopeful expectations that they often inspire, this kind of revolution rarely satisfies anyone’s needs—except those of its leaders. Most people look upon such revolutions as bad things—and they usually are.


Choosing the Right Blade

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After the first challenge of selecting the appropriate razor for your wet shaving setup, then the question of which blade comes in to play. With the increased popularity of traditional wet shaving over the past few years, many different brands of double edge razor blades from different parts of the world have become readily available. While most are perfectly capable of performing the basic duty of cutting through hair, there are differences in each blade that have be taken into consideration.


Your First Razor

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One of the first hurdles that one has to overcome after making the decision to take up traditional shaving is to choose the correct razor. While the range of different double-edge safety razors produced today is fairly narrow, there are a lot of options for weight and handle designs that can make more of a difference than you may expect. Selecting a razor that is well balanced, comfortable to hold, and appropriate for a beginner's skill level is critical to enjoying your first shaves while you become acclimated with using the double edge.


Method Shaving for Newbies

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Method Shaving is a fairly new concept and it is evolving as the products are continuously improving. This leaves room for some confusion and misunderstanding of the process and how the products are used, so hopefully I can shed a little light for the "method curious." Not everyone wants to take the time to read Charles A. Roberts' 75-page "Primer on RMWS" and FAQs, which is understandable, so I cover the basics in this article. Yes, I have read the whole manuscript and found it very informative, and yes, I am that much of a shave geek.

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