For hundreds of people all over the country, joining St. Patrick’s Day festivities means more than indulging their inner leprechauns. It’s also a great opportunity to give back to charity, except that in this case, they’re shaving off their hair to raise funds for cancer research and treatment.
This modern day tradition first started in 1999 when three guys shaved their heads on St. Patrick’s Day to raise funds for kids with cancer. Since then, the activity has become an annual event and the St. Baldrick’s Foundation was established to sustain this volunteer-driven initiative.
Now if you’re just a wee bit sad that you’re losing your thick crop of hair (never mind that it’s going to grow back anyway), here’s some good news to perk you up.
Going bald may actually boost the public’s perception of your personality. According to research, people tend to view bald men as more dominant, more taller and more stronger than men with hair. So if you’re looking to build up your credibility, shaving your head is the way to go.
Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, you’re ready for shaving your head. But unless you’ve done this before, you might be a bit worried on how to do it. After all, shaving your beard and shaving your hair are two different things.
Don’t worry, though, we’ve got you covered. Here at Naked Armor, we’re going to show you how to make yourself bald just in time for St. Paddy’s. Here’s how to shave your head with a straight razor:
1. Cut Your Hair Down to Stubble
2. Get into a Hot Shower to Prep the Hair
3. Put some Pre-Shaving Oil on It
4. Put Some Shaving Lather on Your Hair
5. Hold the Razor at the Correct Angle and Shave Along the Grain
6. Rinse Your Head to Wash off the Lather
7. Apply an Aftershave
Grab a sharp pair of stainless steel scissors and cut your hair down to a stubble. Don’t even try shaving off your full head of a hair. Not only would it be a waste of lather, it’ll be an accident waiting to happen.
Cutting it down to a stubble makes the shaving easier and manageable. You won’t have your scalp cut into shreds and you’ll lessen the irritation.
You can use an electric razor, if you want to. Just take off its guard to allow it to cut really close to the scalp.
Hot water makes the hair soft and pliable. The heat and moisture reduces the hair’s strength by 80% so that makes it easier to shave off. The warmth also opens the pores and gets rid of the dead skin and oil so that shaving will be more comfortable.
Just don’t go overboard with the heat and remember to keep it short. Long, hot showers can strip off the body’s natural oils, leaving the skin dry and prone to damage.
Pre-shaving oil works to prepare your scalp and hair for shaving.
Rubbing it into your scalp restores the skin’s natural moisture which was stripped away by the hot shower. It also serves as protective barrier against razor blade’s friction. Having less friction reduces the risk of skin irritation or what is known as razor burn.
It also softens the hair, while lifting it up to make it easy for the razor to shave it off.
Most pre-shave oils also contain Vitamin A and E essential oils which add nourishment to both hair and skin. But if you don’t want to spend for a pre-shaving oil, you can always make one yourself.
Make lather like you would whip cream. Take your shaving brush and swirl it on the shave soap in order to load up the brush with soap. If you’re using our Noah’s Organic Shave Soap which comes in a shave tin, you don’t need to whip it in a separate scuttle. Just build the lather straight from the tin can.
Apply it on your scalp generously. A good lather also functions as a buffer against the blade friction, allowing the razor to slide easily while shaving. Coat your stubble completely with lather as it will help the hair stand up, allowing for a closer shave.
Here’s a tip from us: use warm lather. For that, you will need a scuttle. Not only will it allow you to keep your lather warm for a longer period, it’ll also give you an easier time of getting more lather from your soap.
There’s a reason why we recommend a straight razor when shaving. Its sharp and single blade offers maximum contact with the skin. You only need a single pass in order to get it right the first time.
That being said, you should first learn to hold a straight razor before using it. In unskilled hands, it’s an accident waiting to happen. So if you haven’t tried straight razor shaving yet, ask someone skilled to do the shaving for you. Or if you really insist on doing it yourself, practice shaving on your chin first before attempting to shave your head.
Shaving experts recommend using the straight razor at a 30 degree angle. Any lower, it will tear the stubble; any higher, it will cut the skin.
Always shave along the grain. It makes shaving easier as the stubble will offer the least resistance to the blade. By now you should know the grain of your hair: the direction you comb your hair is the direction of the grain. Shave lightly and slowly; hold the razor firmly and use its weight to guide you in shaving off your hair.
And remember to use a hand mirror when shaving the back part of your head. You need to see where the blade is going!
After shaving, rinse your head to wash off the remaining lather. Use cold water to close off the pores. After rinsing and patting your newly shaven head dry, you can wrap a cold towel on it just to soothe the freshly naked scalp. It’ll also reduce the risk of skin irritation.
While your scalp is wrapped comfortably in a cold towel, rinse your straight razor with running tap water too. Cleaning the blade after every shave not only keeps the blade sharper for a longer while, but it also washes off any exfoliated skin cells or bacteria from the metal. Wipe the blade dry with a clean towel before storing it properly away from moisture.
Lastly, like your usual beard shaving routine, you need to apply an aftershave to your freshly mown scalp.
An aftershave will provide additional protection to your head since it will rehydrate your skin. Some barbers will recommend an aftershave balm or lotion instead of the usual aftershave splash. This is because a balm is more gentle and easier to apply on the skin.
Always remember that the scalp is more sensitive than the rest of our skin so avoid aftershaves with alcohol. They will dry up the scalp and it wouldn’t look good. To keep it shiny and smooth, use an aftershave balm that has natural oils like jojoba, argan, and witch hazel oil. They’ll nourish the scalp while protecting it from inflammation.
Whether you’re shaving to raise funds on St. Paddy’s Day or simply because you revel in the freedom of being hair-free, shaving your hair off isn’t difficult as long as you’re using the right high-quality tools.
Here at Naked Armor, we’ve created world-class safety and straight razors that provide you a luxurious shaving experience while giving you the closest shave ever.
Our razors are made from Japanese steel and valuable sandalwood so not only do they last long, but they also acquire additional value over the years. They become valuable heirloom pieces that you can pass on to your family’s generations.
Check out our stuff here.