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  1. #1
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    Default NEVER AGAINST THE GRAIN!?

    I recently met a woman who owns a full servise shave shop. She used to work for the royal family as a barber. I explained to her that I am very interested in a new way of shaving.. ie, Straight razors to get the closest possible shave and to reduce razor burn and ingrown hairs. She said that under no circumstances should you EVER shave against the grain of growth. She suggested shaving down, and across only. She said the trick is to "train" your facial hair to grow straight out instead of downward. She intructed me on how to "train" my hair to do this and recommended certain products, the same products recommended in these forums. Does this make sense to anyone? can I train my hair to grow straight out? She runs a store called Shaving Gallery in Cartersville, Ga. www.ShavingGallery.com

  2. #2
    Face nicker RichZ's Avatar
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    Sounds a bit funky to me but what do I know I shave with a str8 razor. I do however shave against the grain. That gives me my closest shave.

  3. #3
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    I shave against the grain with a DE and get ingrown hairs. I have just recently switched to different products. I dont think using a straight opposed to a DE will make the difference in ingrown hairs. Im really not sure though, I have never used a straight razor. i just bought a Revisor set from "Uthed" and will try it as soon as I get it. Hopefuly a straight razor gives me the close shave I am looking for without the ingrowns.

  4. #4
    Shaving Traditionalist fdoosey's Avatar
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    I guess it depends on where you go against the grain, and how prone you are to ingrowns. I tried to do it on my upper lip and all I did was pull skin - not fun. I seem to need to hit my neck at a variety of angles to get the assorted growth, and I still miss spots.

    However, I sent Lynn email of praise today, as I FINALLY watched his shaving video, and tried out the essential skin-stretching techniques, which did make a ton of difference with the upper lip and the jawline. I still have to go against the grain but it is far easier when the stubble remaining is shorter.

    The one thing I want to do but am too afraid (or new) is to try to get the hair at the back of my neck. I tried it once and felt like my skin was on fire. I'm tempted to teach the wife to do it for me, but I don't need any hospital visits in the name of education.

  5. #5
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    Training facial hair? -- I don't think so!

    Myth no. 2 -- don't shave against the grain. You'll never have a really close shave unless you do.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Joe Lerch's Avatar
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    I can't get my closest shave unless I go against the grain.

    About a month ago there were several threads on shavemyface.com about ingrowns. The story is that you supposedly get it from shaving too close, but the posters seemed to do better consistently with a str8 than a DE. They also said that the shave with a str8 was closer.

    So, who knows what t believe. I'm not even sure anyone really knows why people get ingrowns. The only consistent information I've heard is that guys with curly hair are moe prone to it because the hair curls under the skin.

  7. #7
    Robert Williams Custom Razors PapaBull's Avatar
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    Keep a razor in tip-top condition and light, easy strokes against the grain give a very close shave. I agree that it's another baffling myth that shaving against the grain is somehow "wrong". Training the hair on the face was an interesting piece of questionable wisdom, too.

    You can't get a truly close shave unless you shave against the grain - usually best done in a second pass. It doesn't matter what kind of razor you use, shaving only with the grain, the razor grabs higher on the stubble and leaves a higher "stump". Shaving against the grain, the razor contacts the hair as close to the skin as possible and cuts the hair more cleanly in a cross-section instead of at an angle.

  8. #8
    Senior Member sensei_kyle's Avatar
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    Shaving first pass with the grain, the second pass against provides me a nice, close, comfortable shave. I haven't had any ingrown hairs in the 9+ months of shaving with a straight.

    I've tried across the grain shaving, especially on the chin, and it just doesn't measure up to a nice against the grain finish.

    Try it all -- with, across, against, angled, etc. Find what works for you. We're all a little different, and what works great for me may not work for you and vice versa. When you find what works, make sure to share with everyone else!

  9. #9
    Senior Member halwilson's Avatar
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    Well, I had a few nasty ingrown hairs when I started out using straight razors. Whether or not you shave with, against , or across the grain, it all gets down to how keen your razor is. If it's not hair-popping-sharp, you're going to have problems, be it skin irritation or ingrown hairs.

    My own difficulties arose because, although my razors seemed shavable, they were not keen enough (certainly not keen enough for shaving against the grain). If you try to shave without a really keen blade, it will pull the whisker before it cuts it. That cut whisker will now be shorter than it need be, resting further down inside the hair follicle. If you have a curly tough beard, this is where the ingrowing hair problems begin. I hadn't realized this until I got some expertly honed razors from Lynn.

    For newcomers, I highly recommend getting a shave ready sharp razor from one of the experienced members of the club. The expertly honed razors I got from Lynn and John Crowley were very instructive and also a pleasure to use.

    Hal

  10. #10
    Senior Member Howard's Avatar
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    Default Against the grain, I'm older now but still shaving against..

    I shave with the grain first and then against the grain. It doesn't matter what I've used in my life (shaving for 40 years), I've always had to shave against the grain to get a close shave. If I'm in a hurry and don't care, I just go with the grain but I may as well be using a Mach 3 as it's about the same quality shave.

    I've talked to my facial hair and offered it treats as well as strong admonitions but haven't been able to train it to do what I want yet. Best of all would be for me to utter a power word and have it just fall off.

    Howard
    P.S. I also shave against the grain on my upper lip which I've also read is a no-no. Just be careful.

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