Many words have been written about a manly shaving routine, here are mine.
There are the usual guides on the internet, that are about some fictitious manly archetype, that ramble on about some specific manly products, about scents, and using a single razor, or some classic shaving apparatus. Or that try to guide you towards unnecessarily expensive products in order to drive the writers affiliate commissions up.
You will find none of the above here.
My routine is a simple no frills shaving routine, that includes some necessary products that are in no way expensive or unattainable. They will serve their purpose, and they will serve you a long time.
First of all, why shave at all? It is 2019 for gods sake, nobody cares if you are shaved or not, we live in times where everything goes. So shaving is not part of my daily routine. I do it only, when I feel the time has come again, and I happen to have some “me-time” available. So shaving is for me to celebrate myself, to have some for taking care for myself, and for my body. So I usually not only shave, but I take a bath or a shover before or after, however I see fit. Taking a bath or a shower is not only a physical cleansing for me, it is also a mental cleansing, I do it to draw a barrier maybe between a stressful day of work or travel, to mark the transition into a more tranquil phase of my day, where I relax and feel good, and have a good time.
So my shaving ritual usually starts with me undressing. I do not undress in the bathroom, but rather somewhere else in my momentary living quarters. Undressed then, I take a look around, maybe bring order in some things, taking an inventory of my surroundings.
Then I go for the bathroom, where I usually keep all my shaving equipment and get to work.
As I said, I do not shave every day, so usually I have a bit of a stubble. When I am in a hurry, I just shave anyways, but when I do feel I have the time to take care slowly, I have an electric long-hair cutter. And here is the first piece of advice: I got the cheapest possible version available, from some random supermarket, probably 10+ years ago. It cost me 20 € and basically served me all my adult life long. It used to be rechargeable, but probably the batteries are so worn down by now, it does not charge anymore, I have to keep it plugged in all the time, while using. Well, big deal, it does not matter, I need light and a mirror anyways to shave, and an electric outlet is near by. By now it is also totally clogged up by hair residue, that sometimes it does not even move. Well, I shake it a bit, and gently knock it on the sink, gets it going every time.
So, after I used this cutter to get the stubble into manageable length, and after trimming my beard, I get out the big guns. Well, not so much. I use shaving cream form a tube. And this is an important detail, nothing sucks more than shaving cream from some compressed canister. First of all, canisters with a compressed air or some gas, are an unnecessary waste, the gas involved used to poison the atmosphere, (not so much anymore these days, but hey, Karma!) and they are bulky and a waste of space.
Usually I get a brand of shaving cream in a tube called “Palmolive Rasiercreme Classic“. The reason why I chose this brand is simple, it is the only brand that is available in a tube. Everything else comes in a container, so its out. Here in Germany, it is basically available at every streetcorner, and usually cheaper than on amazon, so don’t waste your money ordering stuff on the internet. I usually buy two tubes, when I see them, so when one runs out, I already have a spare. Although it never runs out. I only use a tiny itsi-bitsi bump of shaving cream, and I shave so seldom, this stuff basically lasts for ages.
To apply it, I use a basic shaving brush. Don’t bother going for expensive materials and brands, I got mine from a random supermarket a few years ago, and I still use it, even though it is already starting to crack and might fall apart anytime soon, … well it hasn’t happened yet, so I stick with it.
Other than that you need something like a plate or cup to stir the shaving cream with your brush. Don’t go all rocket science here, and scout out specialty shops, get a saucer or cup from the kitchen and use that. I have plastic bowl, that I got with another brand of shaving creme some years ago, and this is serving me well here. At one point in time there was a brand of shaving soap that was sold in a plastic bowl as a solid piece of soup, you just had to stick your brush on. Well, I prefer the tube these days, but the bowl still comes in handy to beat the bush so to say.
Also, applying shaving creme, and stirring the foam. I keep it simple and suggest to not overthink it, I don’t waste time stirring to perfect consistency, I just do a few stroke with the brush until its evenly spread and then I start to apply it.
Next up is the razor, and here again, keep it simple, use an effective tool, nothing fancy, but also don’t go all neanderthal on yourself here, hear me? When I was a bit younger and more pretentious I felt like I had to use an elegant tool from a more civilized age (The single blade classic Saftey Razor patented from Gilette in 1901/1904). But these days I simple go for the Wilkinson Sword Quadro, a simple yet effective design, and not expensive at all. Any other brand would probably serve this purpose as well.
And here is also they only luxury that I indulge into, when it comes to my shaving routine. I used to wear out a razor blade until it was barely cutting at all anymore, but these days, I prefer a sharp edge. So I decided to set up the regular order plan on amazon, to ship me a new XXL Pack of Wilkinson Quadro Blades every six months. This means I never run out of blades, and I can generously appoint myself a fresh blade whenever I feel like I want one. As I said, I don’t shave very often, so a new shipment every six months is plenty of blades for me.
And basically then I am done, I do not use any aftershave or other product after the blade, I simple splash water into my face, and wipe it of with a towel, preferable not a white on.
I do not use an Aftershave or any other “smelling” body product, like deodorant or such, because, the whole idea that the human body has any smell that needs to be painted over, is a myth perpetuated by the advertising industry, to make you feel ashamed and insecure, and waste money on their “cure”. Well not for me, for sure, don’t buy into that bullshit.