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A Quick Guide to Traditional Shaving

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A Quick Guide to Traditional Shaving:

  1. Soak the razor in warm tap water.
  2. Wash your face with warm water. A sauna or a hot shower also helps to open the skin's pores.
  3. Rub in 8-10 drops of pre-shave oil or a thumb-sized dab of pre-shave cream on the area to be shaved. You can further promote skin suppleness by massaging it with a warm towel. Not too hot to avoid burning your face.
  4. Take the shaving brush out of the water and shake off the excess water.
  5. Load the brush with soap by swirling it around for about 30 seconds on the shaving soap and continue to lather in a bowl or directly on your face. After about a minute of whipping, the lather is ready. Apply it using a back-and-forth brushing motion to the area to be shaved.
  6. On the first pass, shave long hair. Shave the beard along the grain (usually downward). You can learn the direction of hair growth by feeling it.
  7. Rinse your face with warm water and lather up again.
  8. The second pass shaves the hair more precisely; shave the side hair (towards the chin).
  9. If the shave is still not precise enough, rinse your face and lather up again.
  10. Shave the beard to the side hair (towards the nose).
  11. If you want an even cleaner shave, you can still shave in the opposite direction. (Recommended for more advanced users.)
  12. Rinse your face and neck and rub with an alum block. Alum treats the skin by closing cuts and nicks and protects and disinfects. Rinse and finally dry the stone. Note that alum can also be used as an unscented deodorant stick or for mosquito bites and other skin irritations.
  13. After using the alum, apply aftershave balm to the shaved area. Wash the brush and let it dry with the bristles facing down. If you use a natural hair brush, its characteristic smell can be improved by first washing it a few times with regular shampoo.
  14. The razor blade does not need to be removed except when changing blades, i.e., after about five to seven shaves. After use, just rinse the razor and let it dry by itself somewhere out of reach of children.

For example, here are the tools you can use to start traditional shaving:

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