Straight Razor Head Shaving Tips For a Beginner

A few days ago on my youtube channel I had someone ask me for some beginner tips for shaving their head with a straight edge.  After thinking about it for awhile I made a short video about it which I’ve embedded above.  In case you’re the reading type or it takes too long to play, I’ve included a synopsis of my tips below.

1) Learn How To Shave Your Face With a Straight Razor First

I recommend that anyone looking to shave their head with a straight razor should learn how to shave their face with a straight razor first.  The reason is pretty simple and straight forward:  you become comfortable holding a straight razor in your hands.

Shaving your head can be awkward at first.  Holding a straight razor can be awkward at first.  Combining the two can be a recipe for lots of nicks and cuts.

If you just shave your face with a straight razor for 7-10 shaves you’ll be much more at ease, when it comes to shave your head.

Now don’t get me wrong, shaving your head is completely different than shaving your face.  The angles are a lot different.  However, practicing on your face will ease the transition to your head.

2) Start With a Sharp Straight Razor

When you buy a straight razor online from a website, a lot of them only come factory honed.  This can be hit or miss on whether you will be able to get a good shave out of it.

You will want to be sure that the straight razor you buy either was honed by someone who knows how to hone straight razors or you send it out to be honed before you use it.

This will ensure that your razor is sharp.  This way if you aren’t getting a good shave, you know it’s your technique and not your razor.

An alternative to this is using a Dovo Shavette.  These use replaceable blades, so all you have to do is put a new blade in and you’re ready to go.  The downfall to this is the blades tend to be really sharp.  I find it easier to nick myself with a shavette than a straight razor so be careful.

3) Start With The Front and Sides

The front of your head and the sides of your head are the easiest areas to learn how to shave.  Start out with these areas and if you are comfortable shaving these areas, continue to shaving the back of your head.

4) Use A Hand Mirror When Shaving The Back of Your Head

The back of your head can be extremely challenging to shave since it has some curves.  This requires some minute adjustments to the angle you are holding the razor to your skin.  In order to see what you are doing, I always recommend that you use a hand mirror at first.  This will help you minimize the number of nicks and cuts you get.

There is a bit of a learning curve when you are looking into a mirror at another mirror.  It is probably going to take a little bit to coordinate your hand movements and make it move the way you want it to.  With time and practice this will become second nature.

5) If You’re Not Comfortable Stop

Shaving your head with a straight razor is tough.  It’s something you’re not going to master overnight.  If there is an area that you can’t get with your straight razor, there is no shame in using your cartridge razor to finish the job.

Same thing goes if you are getting frustrated because you are nicking yourself a lot.  Just finish the job with a cartridge razor and give it a shot another day.

If you are not comfortable shaving a particular area then don’t force yourself to shave that area.  Just shave as much as you are comfortable with.  Over time you will become better and better and you will find yourself easily shaving areas that you once thought were impossible to shave with a straight razor.

6) Start Out At a Shallow Angle

If you start out at a shallow angle you will be less likely to nick yourself.  There is a possibility where you will be too shallow and not be able to cut hair, but at that point it’s a simple matter of slowly increasing the angle until the razor is cutting through your hair.

If you start out too steep, you will be more likely to cut yourself.

I hope you find these tips useful.  If you have any tips of your own, please share them below.  If you have any questions, post them below and I’ll get back to you.  🙂

Meet the Author

Thomas got into wet shaving in 2010 when he bought a Dovo Shavette and would go on to buy a straight razor four months later. Since then he has purchased many other types of razors including feather and safety razors. He reviews their performance on this blog.

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