First time with a straight razor
Make yourself familiar with the steel and feel the weight of it before you even think of shaving. Never let it fall down.
No need to say much, but be aware that in a moment of unaware movements,You can easily hurt yourself or others.
It will stay between the blade and the scales and causes corrosion. Maximum wash the blade and dry it afterwards.
Place a wet towel or cloth on the side of the wash basin to wipe off the hair from the blade while shaving.
After the shave clean and dry it with a wet cloth. Use oil or Vaseline to protect the blade against corrosion.
First corrosion will start at the tip of the edge and dull it. Please read the article by Robert E. Martin.
Straight razor stropping
To strop your razor hang the strop on appropriate hook or a door handle and tighten it. Do not let it hang, do not rip it off. Gentle tension as if you would tighten your belt.See More
Place the razor gently on the strop. There is almost no pressure needed between strop and blade. Only the weight of the razor it self is enough pressure. If you make that the strop looks like hanging, it is too much pressure. Ask another person to check from the side or observe in mirror.See More
Ensure full contact between razor’s blade and the leather. Pull the razor over the strop. Start to place the razor on the near end of the strop - the sharp side of blade pointing towards you/ the back of the blade towards the wall. Extend your arm and pull it the razor towards the distant end of the strop.See More
When you reach the distant end of the strop, roll the razor over the back, so that the sharp side of the blade now points away from you. Now pull the razor back to the near end and roll over the back again to change the direction.See More
Since most of the strops are not as wide as a razor long you need to pull the razor over the strop in an X-Movement. This helps to cover all regions of the blade. Start on the shoulder side when start to move and end with the point of the blade short before the end.See More
Straight razor shaving 101
While doing that, wash your beard intensive.
The whiskers can so absorb better a lot of water. Do not towel dry your face to keep the moist where it’s needed. Combining this with the use of hair conditioner on your beard during the shower might have an extra good effect.
The oil has the main effect that the blade glides easier. But there is more to consider: when the beard is once covered with oil water will not absorbed anymore, or the other way round: is the hair wet, the oil may cover it and keep it moist. Using too much might also destroy your brush.
One of my favorite additional beard softener is the hot towel treatment. Use a soft cotton towel and soak it in hot water, wrap it around your face and leave it for some minutes. It feels already good in that moment and there must be a reason, why you get it at every barber shop.