Whether you want to look your best for a job interview or you just want to impress the ladies, a clean shave is one way to show off that you’re a professional, attractive man who cares about your appearance. A great shave in a barbershop is a relaxing experience and a great way to socialize with your fellow man. But why bother paying for a traditional, old-fashioned straight razor shave over using your regular razor at home?
Let’s start with the experience of a traditional shave. In addition to the higher quality of a old-fashioned wet shave, although men might not want to admit it, a barbershop is just like a beauty salon in that it’s a place where you can get together to chat with other guys about what is on your mind. It doesn’t matter if you’re going to the barber to discuss last week’s sports stats, the latest politics, or you’re just in dire need of a shave and want to get in and out of the shop in a hurry, the barbershop can be your portal to looking and feeling your best, but also squeeze in some guy time.
It’s not uncommon to have “regulars” hanging out and reading the paper and talking shop with other male friends. It’s all about finding the barber shop that matches your personality. Some guys prefer the more urban barber shop settings where humor and wise-cracking takes precedence, where others want to go where the barber offers them a beer and tells them a dirty joke.
So once you’ve chosen the right barbershop, it comes down to the quality of the shave. When you choose the type of shave you get at a barbershop, you have countless options as to how you want it shaped, and exactly what you want shaved. It’s a totally custom process, and your barber has the skills to pull it off. By selecting a traditional wet, straight-blade razor shave that your barber offers, you will get a smooth shave that you can’t get from the typical disposable razors that you use at home.
A straight blade shave begins with softening your whiskers. Your barber – who, by the way, has been trained at a barber school to be awesome at this – will press a hot towel against your face to accomplish this feat (you’ll find this surprisingly relaxing). A layer of shaving cream will then be applied, and this cream is not like the green or blue goop that you slop on your face at home. Instead, it uses advanced ingredients that smell fresh and manly, and it will help to reduce redness and irritation; one great example is MenScience Advanced Shave Formula.
After the barber applies the shaving cream, he will then begin to shave you. Because of the type of razor that the barber uses, you will get a clean shave that is more accurate and closer to the skin than the razors that you may use at home. The barber must position the blade as far from your face as possible and go with the grain of your beard and mustache. The barber must also hold the razor at an angle between 30 and 45 degrees.
You’ll find that this type of shave takes a bit longer than when you shave at home. This is because a wet shave is done gradually, rather than hacking all of the hair off at once. Once the shave is over, your barber will then place a cold towel on your face to close your pores, and then aftershave will be applied. These steps help reduce redness, irritation and razors bumps that are common when you shave at home.
What is even better about choosing a traditional shave at a barbershop is that the prices are more affordable than you think. Most of your neighborhood barbers will only charge between $10 and $20 to make you feel (and look) like a king. Some guys choose to do the old-school shave before major events like weddings or job interviews, but others know the value of a great old-fashioned shave and treat themselves on a regular basis. The end result is your face looking younger, cleaner and smoother. You get to be clean-shaven without unsightly in-grown hairs and razor rash, and you will have a shave that lasts longer than the shaves you give yourself at home.
If you ask us, it makes sense to go to a trained barber for a higher caliber shave at least once in a while. A traditional straight-razor wet shave is an experience every man should have at least once in their lives, if not regularly. You work hard. You’ve earned it. Talk to your local barbershop today about getting into the chair for an old-fashioned straight-razor shave.
Guest Blog Exclusively for MenScience by Clifford at Barber-Schools.org