Congratulations! You have just taken your first steps in the fabulous world of traditional shaving.
The old-fashioned shave, also called wet shave or mechanical shave is great, as I can attest to myself, but I can already tell you that it can be a little tricky to know where to start.
Many people have the impression that there are a thousand things you seemingly need to buy; all of them pretend to be different and at the same time all are alike… and you are also afraid of cutting yourself off on your first shave.
Let me reassure you: you are not the only one. We have all been there.
Once you have passed the stage of nervousness and trepidation that marks the beginning of the classic shave, it’s time to build your first shaving kit.
The good news is that you will find a lot of good advice on the internet. I did the same by doing a synthesis to present you with the different elements necessary for the creation of this kit.
I’ll take care of you and, hopefully, by the time you finish reading this article, you’ll know exactly what you need for your first real shave experience.
Shaving Wet (or old-fashioned): What is It?
Before making a list of what you need to create your shaving kit, let’s take a closer look at some of the essentials to understand the basics.
To begin, what is wet-shaving?
In fact, that’s exactly what the name says: it’s a shaving method where your face will remain wet throughout the process and for which you’ll use a single blade safety razor. shaving brush, a glycerin shaving soap, and a shaving bowl to prepare the foam. We will see this point below.
Traditional shaving takes a little longer than your usual shaving routine.
Keep this in mind and plan a little time every day so you do not get late. If your grandfather and great-grandfather arrived there, you can do it too.
Why I Choose Old-fashioned Shaving?
What a good question. There are some interesting benefits in traditional shaving, which will make you feel more comfortable with the initial investment. Here are the main benefits:
Remember how much you paid the last time you bought new blades for your Gillette Mach 3 safety razor. Let me guess it was somewhere around $20 for a dozen blades or so.
No, thanks…! You will also save by buying traditional shaving creams and soaps. The Chemical loaded stuff, called shaving foam, costs around $5 for the cheapest but it doesn’t last all that long and doesn’t provide the best quality shave.
Impact on The Environment
When you choose the old-fashioned shave, you only have one disposable metal razor blade, plus the packaging or container in which you buy the soap.
That’s all you need to get rid of. The use of disposable razors and jelly or canned shaving cream causes much more waste.
A Cleaner, Smoother Shave
There’s nothing like the smooth, even result in you get with mechanical shaving. Low-end electric shavers or disposable models are prone to irritate the skin and may leave you with razor burns, ingrown hairs, and redness.
Not to mention the precision shaving that has nothing to envy to double-edged razors. When you start with the traditional shave, you will notice an immediate change in the appearance of your skin and to the touch.
You’ll really feel like a Boss
You are going to set up a ritual that all the great men of history have known. You’ll shave the old-fashioned way, like your grandfather or great-grandfather, and if by chance you’ve inherited their razor, it’ll be all the more fun.
Get rid of those expensive razor blades and horrible shaving cream filled with chemicals. It is time for me to introduce you to the benefits of old-fashioned shaving and tell you what you will need to build your shave kit in the state of the art.
How to Build a Wet Shave Kit?
Now I’m going to show you how to build your traditional shaving kit in 4 powerful steps
Step 1: Choose your razor
The first thing to do is to choose your safety razor: this will be the cornerstone of your complete kit. This is the tool around which all other items in your gear will spin, except perhaps the blade (but both go together and your first decision will be important).
There are many models from which you will have to choose. Among the best brands: Merkur, Edwin Jagger as well as some older Gillette models.
This is the hardest part. Take the time to make your choice based on price, efficiency, and shaving depth and you’ll be ready to move on.
Step 2: Select your blades
Once you have made your choice for your safety razor, the main element of your shaving kit, it’s time to move to the choice of blades.
There are not as many blade variants as there are different razors. The double-edged razor blades are marketed and designed to fit any type of safety razor.
Nevertheless, there are differences in angle, accuracy, packaging, and price that will lead you to take a closer look at which blades are right for you.
I recommend buying multiple blade samples to try different brands and see which one gives you the greatest satisfaction.
In this way, when you need to order more, you will have a better idea of which one you prefer.
Sincerely, the idea of getting samples is excellent (and very useful when you forget to buy blades). Count about $8 for a pack of about 50 blades of different brands.
Step 3: Choose a Good Shaving Soap
Once you have decided with which tools you will shave the hair on your face, you will have to study carefully to choose the lubricant on which you will drag them.
There are, in fact, two possibilities: shaving soaps and shaving creams.
Shaving creams are the standard products that you probably use to shave right now.
For your wet shaving kit, it is better to opt for a product that doesn’t come out of an aerosol. There is a multitude of shaving creams that work very well and do not need gas to foam – these are simply natural oils and herbal ingredients that will take care of your skin.
As for shaving soaps, they are more traditional and in line with wet shaving, although they should also be lathered.
The shaving soaps are excellent because they allow us to maintain control over the level of foam that suits us and are generally healthier while lubricating the face well and allowing the blade to pass without creating cuts, redness or irritations.
Basically, apart from the difference between soaps and creams, there are unique benefits in each form and you will have to find the one that suits you best.
Step 4: Add the Necessary Accessories
Finally, there is the rest that accompanies your first traditional shaving kit. The most important, probably, after the soap or cream is the shaving brush.
You will have to choose a brush with medium hair (horsehair or badger hair) easy and comfortable to hold in hand so that you feel comfortable using it.
After that, there are all kinds of things like pre-shave lotions and aftershave lotions that will help you keep your face clean and healthy before and after shaving.
Also, there are shaving bowls, specially designed to lather your cream or soap with the badger. You can totally use any container but the shaving bowl offers you a dedicated environment ideal for creating your foam more easily.
Here are my Picks for a Wet Shave Kit:
There are still a lot of things you can invest in if you want your traditional shaving kit to be as complete as possible, but I guarantee you that with these first steps, you will get a basic kit in a very short time.