Wet Shaving Products For Men
Wet shaving is essential for men. There are tons of products that you can choose. When I started this website and in the beginning of my wet shaving journey, I was overwhelmed by the huge selections that I can choose. I am going to give you the best wet shaving products for men.
Wet Shaving Products For Men: Safety Razors
This is the reason why I changed my way of wet shaving. I used to grab a multiblade safety razor. I thought it worked just fine. My whiskers were gone and I have a “clean” shaven face. Later I found out that my face was too “clean”. That was why every time I used an aftershave, my face felt the stingiest burn. The term for that is razor burn.
Another problem for a multiblade safety razor is it cuts the hair until below the skin. It makes what we called razor bumps.These painful bumps and pustules occur when hairs curl back into the skin causing your body to perceive them as “foreign” (like a splinter) and produce an inflammatory.
Hence, I converted myself to a traditional wet shaving. A single blade safety razor. These are my recommendations:
- Gillette Slim Safety Razor.
This razor is my daily go to razor. I started with a number 3 on the dial. It feels a little bit too mild. So I changed it to the number 4. I did three passes using this setting. I ended up having a mild razor burn.
Last week, I changed the setting to number 9. The most aggressive setting. I love this setting. I only need to do 1 pass and some touch ups. No razor burn at all unless I pay no attention to the pressure that I use. With this aggressive setting, you should use NO PRESSURE at all. Let the razor glides. It will do the job nicely without you helping it with some pressure.
Learn why no pressure here. You can get this classic Gillette slim safety razor at eBay. The price is between $5-$15. Depends on the condition.
- Merkur Futur
I have to recommend another aggressive razor. It is my preference so far. A mild razor tends to leave tiny stubbles. It makes me want to do repeated touch ups. I usually ended up with razor burns when I used a mild razor.
Merkur Futur is crowned as the most aggressive safety razor for this modern era. This aggressiveness is based on its blade gap. The more the gap is the more exposed the blade is. You can argue that blade gap is different with aggressiveness. For me, exposed blade is like using a straight razor. We will talk about straight razor below.
You can buy new Merkur Futur here.
Wet Shaving Products For Men: Double Edge Safety Razor Blades
A safety razor without a proper double edge blade is nothing. This is what makes wet shaving has a lot of variety. You can take a mild safety razor and put an aggressive blade and have an amazing shave. But it is not exactly vice versa. You may try taking an aggressive safety razor and put a mild blade. I bet you will have a different result from the previous set up.
I will say that I prefer a smooth blade. A blade that doesn’t feel harsh on my skin. For me, I will recommend Gillette Wilkinson Sword.
The reason for choosing Gillette Wilkinson Sword is stated here.
Wet Shaving Products For Men: Straight Razors
This is the holiest weapon in the traditional wet shaving. You may want to learn the almost lost art of this beautifully made man’s invention.
You need to take time when you are using a straight razor. You may want to lock your bathroom. No distraction at all. Maybe because of this, I always found that shaving with a straight razor is a zen time for me.
It is always very calming and soothing. It feels like I’m in another place. A place where everything is warm and welcoming. But you need to stay alerted. After all, you are handling a very sharp knife. It is called a cut throat razor not for nothing.
I got my straight razor from James, a master of straight razor honing in Asia. Do you know it is so difficult to find a straight razor honing service in Asia? James currently resides in Taiwan. You can reach him here.
This is my recommendation for a straight razor:
This is a 5/8″ Straight Razor Full Hollow. The round point helps you to avoid stabbing yourself unintentionally.
There are too many beautifully designed straight razors to be mentioned here. The most important thing to have in the straight razor is the quality of the steel. Solingen, Germany and Sheffield, United Kingdom have been known to produce top quality straight razors.
Anything under $50 should be avoided. You can’t bargain quality. A good quality steel can last a life time, even more!
Wet Shaving Products For Men: Straight Razor Strop
You should get one beginner’s strop. Especially, if you are a beginner. Stropping will destroy your strop eventually. Sooner if you are starting to learn straight razor shaving. That’s why you need to hold back a little when it comes to strop.
Expensive strops have no different in purpose compared to beginner’s strop. Again, you can argue with me about this. A cow’s skin is definitely different than a horse’s skin. A synthetic skin will give you a different result, too. But the purpose of stropping is to align the blade which can be achieved with a beginner’s strop.
Get your strop!
Wet Shaving Products For Men: Shaving Soaps and Creams
Shaving soaps and creams play a big part for my conversion to a traditional wet shaving. I was let down by a shaving gel that comes in a can. It produces an empty foam. A foam that does nothing except gives you a temporary Santa look.
One brand that I can recommend in Proraso Red shaving soap. Of course, my soap performs better. (Bias to the max!) You can read my review on Proraso Red in this article.
People choose a shaving soap with this kind of characteristics:
- Slickness. It has to be slick. You want to glide the razor. You do not want your razor to get stuck into your face.
- Stability. You want to have a lather that stays long enough for the entire shaving session.
- Protection. A good cushion can protect your skin against the sharp edge of the blade. This will prevent razor burn.
- Smell. This definitely is subjective. I love sandalwood scent. What about you?
Get your Proraso Red!
Wet Shaving Products For Men: Shaving Brushes
It is not complete if you do not have a shaving brush or brushes. How can you make a lather without one?
Like everything else in wet shaving arsenals, shaving brushes come in many forms. Usually, people only ask what kind of hair does the shaving brush have. You can have boar, badger, horse or synthetic hairs.
Each hair has their own characteristics. I own two badger hair shaving brushes, one boar, and one synthetic.
I found that boar hair is too coarse for me, badger hair is too soft, and the synthetic one is about right. That’s why the synthetic hair is the most used amongst all. I rotate my shaving brushes, though.
Some aspects that you want to consider when you choose your shaving brush (besides the hair type):
- How big is the knot? This is to tell you how much hair your brush have. The bigger the knot, the more hair it contains.
- How big is the handle? If you have a small hand, you may consider a smaller handle. Likewise, if you have a big palm, you want to choose a thicker and longer handle.
- Can it retain enough water to build a good lather? Synthetic brush retains less water than animal hairs. I always add drops of water when I build my lather with it. There are times that I put too much water and I have to re-do the lather all over.
- What material the handle is made of. Resin, wood, or metal? I have seen beautifully crafted shaving brushes. I want them all.
You can read my article on choosing your first shaving brush in here.
I will recommend you to get this beautiful Parker badger shaving brush. Its extra dense best badger hair will help you generate a great lather. It comes with a stand for proper brush drying, too. It will ensure years of use.
Wet Shaving Products For Men: After Shaves and Pre Shaves
These products are the most overlook products. People tend to think preshaves and aftershaves are just “cosmetics”. They are not.
You should read the benefit of aftershaves in this article.
As for preshaves, they will help you prepare your skin and hairs for the battle ahead. The battle against a sharp edge. Your whiskers will need softening. This will help your blade to cut them smoothly.
In simpler terms: Pre-Shave helps you prepare, Aftershave helps your skin to heal.
This pre-shave oil comes from Taylor of Old Bond Street. This brand is one of the well-known brands amongst wet shaving communities. Their products always show up on most of the best shaving products for men list.
For choosing an aftershave, please pay attention if it is really an aftershave or just cologne. I know that there are people that use both of them alternately.
My classic aftershaves recommendation is here. I know that you want to find the right aftershave for you. I will point out that you may want to choose an aftershave that has witch hazel in its ingredient list.
Majestic Pure Aftershave Splash with Organic Aloe, Witch Hazel, White Willow, and Tea Tree, 8 Fluid Ounce.
This product is not a major player in the shaving communities but it does a good job. It has a good combination of witch hazel, aloe vera, tea tree essential oil and white willow bark extract.
What I love the most from this product, besides all the ingredients, is its pump. You tend to over-pour your aftershave. Not with this pump. You just need to pump 1-2 times. No more overpouring accidents.
These are all the basic wet shaving products for men. You need your shaving razor. Start with a safety razor but please learn how to handle a straight razor. Prepare your whiskers with a good pre-shave product. Use a proper shaving soap (get mine!). A shaving brush will definitely help you build a good lather. Finish your shaving with an aftershave. All these things will give you a peace of mind ritual.
What are your shaving gears? Can you share them with me? What will you buy to complete your set?