Razor and Razor Refill BladesA razor is a bladed tool primarily used in the removal of unwanted body hair through the act of shaving. Kinds of razors include straight razors, Disposable razor and electric razors. A razor is the most popular tool for hair removal. Over the past decade razors have really stepped up their game, but does it matter how many blades are on your razor? Some razors manufacturers boast about having not one, two, three or even four, but five blades on one hand razor. So what's the purpose of all those blades?
Hair removal experts say that that people who use razors for hair removal all wish to shave less often. The multi-blade razors are marketed to these people who want a clean shave that last and doesn't cause irritation, but there is little proof that more blades work to achieve these results.
Shaving is not as easy as some people assume. There are curves and valleys that need to be shorn and are not easy to reach. Another issue encountered when removing hair by shaving is the direction in which the hair grows which varies greatly. Shaving in the direction of hair growth lessens the likelihood of irritation but that is not always possible.
Multiple blade razors are great for getting a smooth finish. The razors are designed so that the first blade grabs the hair over the skin's surface and the second blade clips it as close to the skin as possible (this is dependent on the pressure you apply). The theory on adding even more blades is that this process is repeated for a second or third time leaving the user with the closest shave possible. Some dermatologist warn their patients not to use razors with more than two blades because the shave becomes too close causing more nicks and irritation. Another problem with razors with more than two blades is how wide the surface of the razor is. Wide razors are less nimble and you could find it hard to reach hair in the crevasses of your skin.
If you suffer from frequent razor burn, the multi-blade razor is not the likely culprit. It is more likely that the razor burn is caused by user error. When you are removing hair from your body using a razor with too much pressure, or a razor that has been used more than 8 times the blades are no longer sharp enough to slice through the hair and instead start to scrape off the surface of the skin. Another cause of razor burn is hair that hasn't been soften before you begin shaving. You should soften your hair using warm water and shaving gel before using a razor.
Here is a quick overview of the different kinds of razors you can choose from.
1. Straight Razor
The straight razor was the typical shaving tool used by barbers in the 1700s and 1800s. These sharp blades provide a very close shave; however, they are sometimes called "cut throat razors" for a reason. They require a lot of skill to use and so, as safer blades entered the market, most men made the switch. Recently, though, the straight equipment has become more popular again as men start to turn back to the traditional form of wet shaving and the tradition of barbershops. Straight razors usually tuck into a handle made of wood, metal, or even bone. They can be a bit pricey, but they will last forever. Simply maintain the razor by stropping and honing it to keep the edge sharp.
2. Safety Razor
Safety razors entered the shaving market in the late 1800s and became popular for obvious reasons. Only the tip of the sharp, double-edged blade is allowed to touch the skin, and thus, people are less prone to injury when they use one of these. Safety razors are sharp, and so only a slight pressure is required to achieve a close shave. Men can still use the safety razor as part of their wet shave routine and achieve good results. The handle will last forever, but the blade will need to be changed frequently.
3. Cartridge Razor
Cartridge razors usually contain multiple blades. The idea is that men will achieve a closer shave more quickly because there are more blades gliding across the skin in one swipe. Like the safety razor, these cartridges need to be replaced frequently. Disposable razors are also quite common today. Instead of changing the blade, people just toss the whole razor and use a new one.
4. Electric Razor
Finally, electric razors provide a quick shave for men on the go. Some suggest that, compared to other men's razor blades, the electric razor doesn't provide as close of a shave and may cause some skin irritation.
Ways to Get a Perfect Shave
The first step in having a good shave is to ready the surface of the skin. The objective of skillful shaving is removing the hair while preserving the integrity of the skin. Take your time to massage in the cream or shaving soap, as it plumps up the muscle called the erector pili, which pushes the hair up. This activity also releases skin-softening oils from beneath the skin. The end result is hair that is soft and pushed up, and thus cuts off easily and from the base.
A common mistake is not following instructions on creams or soaps. Alternately, some creams and soaps may not even have adequate instructions. We advise, splash your face generously with hot water, or place a hot, wet towel over your face for a few minutes. Then using circular motions, massage the soap into your skin. A gel often works better than shaving cream. Properly performed preliminaries are often the key to a perfect shave for men.
Shaving tips for black men dictate the use of special shaving creams, as their hair is curlier and more coiled. If hair of this texture is pulled up with the razor, but slips beneath the skin again, it may not find its way out of the follicle, resulting in ingrown hair. About 50% of African-American men use electric razors, which may help combat the problem.
To use or not to use a shaving brush? A badger-hair brush is popularly used to lather up the cream and spread it around. This one is left up to individual preference, with no confirmed advantages. Thus, if it doesn't hurt and improves your shave, go ahead and use it. And remember to replace it every now and then, for you don't want it to become a host for bacteria.
Men with sensitive skin are advised to use single-edged blades. Sensitive skin may be irritated with double and triple-edged razors. A prepared skin is what helps in getting a close shave for men, not the number of blades on the razor. Use a good quality razor, preferably with a moisturizing strip, and ensure that you replace it at the first sign of bluntness. A good thumb rule to follow is that, if you need to use pressure, it's time to replace it.
A shaving tip that may surprise many, is the suggestion of shaving in the direction in which the hair is growing for the first one or two passes. This method is gentle on the skin, and a close shave is achieved through the last pass done against the grain. While doing this, check the direction of growth by running your hand over your face and neck. Hair grows in different directions on different parts of the face.
Body shaving tips are the same as the ones we've already discussed. In addition to them, men are advised to trim the body hair they wish to shave, as long strands of hair will clog up the razor and make shaving difficult. In addition to all of these, men should remember that while shaving their legs, it must be done against the grain. A good way to wrap up shave, is by rinsing the area off with cool water and patting it dry, with a towel. Skin is extra sensitive after shaving as it takes off the outermost layer, in addition to hair. Treat it to a men's balm-like moisturizer instead of a perfumed alcohol-toner kind of aftershave.
Shaving Tips for Men
• Before you begin shaving, ensure that you have allowed the hair on the face to soften. Dampen your face with water, using a face cloth. This way you will be able to get a closer shave.
• Apply a pre-shave oil or lotion for the purpose of keeping the skin moisturized and to avoid a razor burn. Choose from emu oil, or a lotion that has a high amount of aloe in it. Following a regular exfoliation routine to eliminate dead cells is also essential for a good shave.
• Whatever shaving gel or cream you use, apply it with the help of a shaving brush. A small amount on the center of the brush will help you work up a good lather and give you a clean shave.
• Start the process by running your shaving brush around your face in a circular motion. Ensure you have covered all the areas. Wet the brush a little and continue rubbing it in a circular motion, if you run out of lather.
• Always use a sharp razor blade, as a dull one will require more pressure to get rid of facial hair, and ultimately may result in cuts and burns.
• Now, use the razor to remove all the hair, in slow motions, and run the razor in the direction of the hair growth and not against it. If you go against it, it can result in ingrown hair, razor bumps, and cuts.
• However, a second round of shaving, with the razor going against the hair growth can really help reduce the necessity to shave everyday. Just reapply the lather with the shaving brush, and shave so that the razor goes against the direction of hair growth. If possible, use a new blade for this round.
• After every stroke of the razor, keep rinsing it to remove the collected lather and hair. This ensures that the hair on your face is evenly removed.
• Wash all the excess lather from your face, and wipe it clean. Then, apply some moisturizer to soothe the skin. Usually shaving creams have a lot of alcohol content that can irritate the skin. Using a moisturizer will reduce this irritation.
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