The Most Common Mistakes Made When Switching from a Cartridge Razor

For decades we've been told that more blades is better, but men are waking up to the lies that billions of dollars of marketing have paid for. There's been a shift in consumer's mindset and a trend of returning to traditional safety razors. We are proud to be a part of the single blade revolution and love being a part of changing men's lives with their morning routines. 

The first shave with a Single Edge or safety razor may seem intimidating since the idea of one blade seems foreign as opposed to four or five. We've compiled a list of all the mistakes not to make when getting started on your Single Edge journey. Don't worry. They're simple, and you'll be well on your way to effortless shaves and zero irritation in no time.


Mistake #1: Poor Prep

If you've been using lubricant strips or canned shaving cream, you might rethink how you prep for your first shave. Multi-blade razors are designed to cut beneath the surface of the skin, which increases the chance of ingrown hairs and irritation, and the need for lubricant strips in the first place. In contrast, the Single Edge cuts at the surface of the skin, literally sweeping the hair away, minimizing skin irritation or razor bumps.

The best way to prep a beard for the Single Edge is to use a brush and shave cream to build a thick lather. Then, apply it as a nice cushion to your beard, using circular motions. The last part is especially important, because using a shave brush softens beard growth and lifts hair follicles, preparing them for the shave. If you're in the market for a brush or shaving cream, don't sleep on our amazing Silvertip Synthetic Shave Brush and Ultra Lather Shaving Cream


Mistake #2: Ignoring Your Beard Grain

If you haven't mapped your beard grain before, take a minute and visit this blog outlining exactly how to do so before continuing. It's vital you know which direction your beard grows, especially since each man's beard is entirely unique.

Once you're familiar with your beard, lather up thick and take your first shaving pass with the direction of the grain. If you feel there are areas that need a closer shave after your first pass, re-lather those specific areas and take a second pass, this time shaving across the grain in these areas. Once you've tried two passes for a couple of weeks, feel free to add a third pass, as needed, against the grain in areas that do not typically have issues with irritation or ingrown hairs.

A few notes: you will most likely feel stubble remaining after your first pass. This is why you take a second pass with your razor and does not mean you need to add pressure to gain a closer shave. This is a bad habit developed from using multi-blade razors.


Mistake #3: Using Any Pressure

Multi-blade users typically have learned the bad habit of pressing down during a shave, usually in an effort to make a blade last as long as possible due to the high costs of refills. Sound familiar? First, this is very rough on your skin and usually the culprit for razor bumps and skin irritation. 

You should never use pressure with a Single Edge. This is not how it was designed to be used and will result in nicks and cuts during your shave. Don't do it.

We recommend placing the head of the Single Edge against your skin and tilting it down about 15 degrees. Then, take light, short strokes, literally sweeping the hair and shaving cream. It should feel like you are allowing the weight of the solid metal razor do all the work. If for some reason it's not shaving, the issue is more likely with the blade installed in your razor and not the pressure you're using.


Mistake #4: Not Using the Proper Blade Angle

We designed the Single Edge SE in a way that it felt much more intuitive to shave with and find the proper angle. As mentioned, the head of the razor should sit flesh with your face, and then all you need to do is tilt the razor downward 15 degrees to find the right angle.

All you have to do is place the Supply logo on the head of the razor flat against your face. 

If you notice the razor doesn't seem to be shaving as close, experiment with the shallowness of the blade angle until you find one that works for you. Each man is unique and will find what feels comfortable and works for your unique beard and preference.


Let's Shave!

It may sound overwhelming, but once you have a few shaves under your belt, you will get comfortable with the technique and know what to expect. Enjoy the adventure and the experimenting as you start your Single Edge journey.