What Is A Straight Razor

Shaving has always been a essential part of personal grooming. We’ve seen some of the most beautiful inventions from razors with a single blade to modern electric shavers. However, one of the oldest and most classic ways of shaving is still practiced and loved to this day - straight razor shaving.

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A straight razor is a handheld shaving tool with a longer sharp blade that folds into the handle on both sides. Known as an “open razor,” the blade is sharpened on both sides and must be handled carefully. Straight razors are usually made from special steel like carbon or stainless steel, which requires regular maintenance and care. The length of the blade can vary from 3-8 inches, while the handle can be made up of various materials like plastic, bone, horn, or even wood.

Why Are Straight Razors So Popular?

Straight razor shaving has been around for generations, yet it’s still popular, especially in the men’s grooming world. The reason is simple - those who use a straight razor feel closer to the act of shaving and appreciate the sharpness and precision of the blade. The feel of the traditional razor on the skin is entirely different from multiple-blade razors or electric shavers, leading to a cleaner, smoother look.

Incorporating a Straight Razor into Your Shaving Routine

Using a straight razor is not an easy skill to master, but once you’ve learned it, it’s incomparable. Here are some steps you can follow:

  1. Wet the face and lather up some good quality shaving cream.
  2. Take the straight razor and put it under hot, running water to warm the blade.
  3. Take the blade and hold it from the shank - the part that faces the handle.
  4. Stretch the skin with one hand and shave carefully and slowly.
  5. Rinse the blade after every shave stroke and then wipe it with a towel.

For that closer shave experience, it’s highly recommended to shave along with the grain, which requires less pressure and can reduce any chance of cuts and nicks.

Straight Razor Maintenance & Care

Straight razors need to be well taken care of, or they can rust, become dull, or can even damage. Here are some pointers for maintaining a straight razor:

  • Use a dry towel or cloth to clean the blade after every use.
  • Apply some light oil to the blade to protect it from rusting.
  • Store the razor in a dry environment, away from dampness or humidity, to prevent microbial growth.
  • Sharpen the blade with a sharpening stone after every two to three months or when the blade feels dull.

Different Types Of Straight Razors

Straight razors come in a fascinating variety catering to different preferences and needs. Let's explore some of them:

  • Hollow Ground Straight Razors: These are the most common type and feature a hollow grind that creates a sharp edge. The blade tapers from the spine to the cutting edge, resulting in a lightweight razor that gives a smooth shave.
  • Round Point Straight Razors: The tip of this razor is rounded, reducing the possibility of accidental nicks or cuts. It's an ideal choice for beginners who are just getting used to a straight razor.
  • Barber's Notch Razors: Recognizable by a small notch on the nose of the razor, these are preferred by professional barbers for their ease of handling.
  • Square Point Straight Razors: They have a straight point profile, providing precision for detailing work, but they require a steady hand and experience to prevent cuts.
  • Spanish Point Razors: These razors feature a concave arch ending in a point, creating a unique profile that allows precise detailing.
  • Spike or Sharp Point Razors: These razors have a sharp point as their name suggests, offering maximum precision for detailing, but they should be handled with caution.

Remember, no matter what type of straight razor you choose, always prioritize quality and ensure you maintain it properly for a long-lasting shaving experience. The Classic Edge Shaving Store carries a wide range of straight razors for your wet shaving collection. Shop our current selection online and discover everything you need in one place!