Men: How to Shave Wet or Dry

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If you were a hermit, the only way you’d get shaved is to use two shells like a crude pair of tweezers and pull out the hairs. Ouch! No wonder man invented shaving as part of the daily men’s skin care routine. In recent times, you can choose from a long list of ways to remove hair daily from your face and other body parts.

Choose your shaving tools from one of the following shaving categories to fit your own lifestyle and personality.


• Straight razor. Also called open razors or cutthroat razors, these are the razors your grandfathers probably used. The first modern straight razor was assembled in 1740 by a guy named Benjamin Huntsman.

The blade of a straight razor turns on a pin, so the blade can be stored safely inside of the handle. Straight razor shavers use shaving cream applied with a special shaving brush to help avoid cuts, nicks, razor burn, and ingrown beard hairs. To keep the razor sharp, you drag it back and forth on a strop before every shave.

A lot of people say wet shaving with a straight razor is the best way to get a close shave. It’s traditional and green, too – you aren’t throwing away blades all the time.

• Safety razor. Once the safety razor was on the scene in the late 19th century, young men learning how to shave didn’t have to suffer through many nicks and cuts. Most safety razors are disposable.

Safety razors have different numbers of blades ranging from 2-5. Most include at least two to provide multiple swipes of the blade with every pass, resulting in a closer shave. To use a safety blade for shaving, you also prepare the face with specialized gels or shaving cream.


• Electric razor. A further improvement on the safety razor, the electric razor was patented in 1928. Electric razors include small rotating or oscillating (back and forth) blades that run on batteries or electricity. These shavers are considered by some to be more convenient and less messy than wet shaving.

Although electric razors have forever been the only dry shaving method (unless you want to risk cuts, razor burn and ingrown hairs), some of the newest versions of electric shavers can be used with creams and soaps.

With all methods, it’s important to get the face ready for shaving. Creams and soaps provide lubrication and soften the beard to make it easier to cut. Shaving preparations for electric shaving help the beard hairs stand up to be cut more easily. After shaving, apply moisturizers and healing preparations to protect and condition the face.

No matter which modern method you choose, you’ll find many helpful items and tools to make shaving easier and more fun. Thank goodness we don’t need the two-shell method anymore!


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