Men have been shaving for thousands of years, using everything from seashells, to sharpened rocks, and eventually metal tools. These metal tools changed many times over, but the modern Double Edge (DE or Safety) Razor was developed and introduced to the market by King Camp Gillette in 1901. Before this, there had been various attempts at alternatives to the straight razor, but they were largely unsuccessful. Until the cartridge razors of the 1970s, Gillette’s razor was the gold standard, and while most men now use either a cartridge razor (Mach 3, Fusion, etc.) or dare I say it…an electric shaver, a man by the name of Charles Roberts is trying to take us back to a golden age of shaving, but with quite a few improvements.
Over the last few years, I personally have used most of the major brands of shaving cremes, various pre and post shave treatments, and have been a Fusion, Mach 3 and DE shaver at times, but nothing comes close to Mr. Roberts’ “Method Shaving.” Now, it is a bit daunting to get in to, but I have been Method shaving for over a month now, and can safely say I can’t imagine ever going back. Bear with me, there are quite a few concepts involve (yes, I’m still talking about shaving here):
First, and foremost, is the idea of “cutting forms.” Instead of cutting with, across, or against the grain of one’s beard, there is a standard set of three forms one cuts with their DE razor, regardless of the direction the hairs are growing in. The first is essentially top to bottom, the second cutting on a downward diagonal to the center of the face, and the final form cuts from the outside up to the center line. Try this with a traditional creme and you will end up in ribbons.
That brings us to the method shaving products, bottled by Mr. Roberts’ under the “Hydrolast” label. There are quite a few steps involved in the process, and you can find all of the information on Mr. Roberts’ website www.enchanteonline.com, but I will give you a brief overview here. Essentially though, you use a combination of proprietary blends of oils and emollients to create a “shaving mix” (the term shaving creme is anathema to Mr. Roberts’) that is 90% water, which allows you to hyper-hydrate the face and cut repeatedly with little to no resistance. The result is a shave so close and comfortable that it is called “Gloss” in Method Shaving terminology. You finish up with a two step series of aftershave balm and a spray on tonic that cools the face down and leaves it feeling like a cool, lightly fragrant sheet of glass.
The advantages are obvious: closer shave, less irritation, and products that are caringly hand blended, with all natural pure fragrance oils personally added at your request.