Give yourself at least ten minutes before shaving, once you get out of bed in the morning.
The first essentials to a perfect shave are water and warmth. When hair absorbs hot water it becomes softer and easier to cut and with warmth the skin and facial muscles become relaxed, making shaving so much easier. Thus the best time to shave is after a bath or shower. Soaking a folded flannel or small towel in hot water and wrapping it around the face for thirty seconds can also achieve this effect.
Those who desire a particularly smooth shave (or who have sensitive skin) might wish to apply a shave oil ; this protects the skin and helps the razor to glide smoothly across the face. (This is also good preparation for those who electric shave.) Massaging against the growth of the beard also helps to lift the beard in readiness for the lather and shaving.
Applying shaving cream or ‘lathering up’ can be done with either the fingers or a shaving brush. Using your fingers is a very successful way of preparing the skin and beard for wet shaving as well as revitalising the facial muscles. The shaving brush, filled with a good quality badger hair, will lift and moisten the beard, preparing it for the shave. We recommend American crew shaving creams and soaps which help to keep the skin and beard warm and wet during the shave. Alcohol based shaving foams and gels have the opposite effect, dispersing moisture and cooling the skin, which can cause irritation whilst shaving. If you use a brush we recommend getting a good quality shaving brush. a brush that is hand made and densely filled with Best or Super badger hair (Super badger is softer). good quality brushes are designed for comfort and guarantee many years of quality shaving.
Always use a quality razor with the sharpest blades available, avoid disposable razors with low-grade steel blades that bend when shaving. especially if you have sensitive skin.
Select a blade that suits your technique; cut-throat and safety razors for the competent and well tutored wet shaver, Gillette® Sensor® for those who require precision shaving around the moustache, beard and sideburns and Gillette® Mach 3® for wet shavers wanting an extra smooth shave. The revolutionary Mach 3® triple blade has an advanced lubricating strip, which indicates when the blade no longer provides a close shave. Getting the right tool for shaving is a personal thing but a perfectly balanced shaving razor, will providing a secure and comfortable grip during wet shaving wether it is a straight or safety razor.
Make sure you use a sharp blade that has been warmed in the sink or under hot running water. Shave with the grain of your beard, or move the blade sideways across the growth in awkward areas such as the chin and under the nose. Never shave against the grain as this pulls the skin in the wrong direction causing small cuts and ‘grazing’ to the skin and is the most common cause of ‘razor burn’, ingrown hairs and shaving rash. Rinse the face thoroughly with cool water to close the pores and pat the face dry with a soft towel do not rub. Rubbing reduces the skin’s elasticity and speeds visible signs of aging.
Cuts, Sometimes it happens that you’re in a hurry, push too hard, and the result is a cut that does not seem to want to stop bleeding. Some try to stop the bleeding with paper, others put a bandage over half of the face. Smart men are always a step ahead. A styptic pencil is a fantastic invention that contains aluminium-potassium sulphate which stops the bleeding immediately and tightens the skin. Pull the stick over the wound and presto, it stops bleeding! It stings a bit, but soon this is just a memory just like the cut.
A good wet shave exfoliates and cleanses the face, leaving smooth new skin and a healthy clean appearance. Newly exfoliated skin needs to be protected from the elements, so for healthy skin it is important that men use an after-shaving moisturiser. Products containing alcohol i.e. after shave should not be applied to the skin immediately after shaving as this may inflame the skin and cause dryness. For best results cologne and other fragrances should be applied to the ‘hot spots’ behind the earlobes and on the sides of the neck.