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Thread: Just Discovered Palm Stropping

  1. #11
    Senior Member
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    Mar 2014
    Dubai, Vancouver, Hamburg
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    I do it when I need to insert a new blade into my Feather AC razor that I take with me on those trips where a classic straight razor is impractical.

    Once I tried it; I found there is reallly not much to it and it is one way to tame the initial harshness out of fresh Feather AC blades.

    For shaving with my "real" straights, I use it only rarely.

    ScoutHikerDad likes this.

  2. #12
    Senior Member easyace's Avatar
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    Jun 2011
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    Great idea, it's up there with shaving your privates, with a straight razor.

  3. #13
    Senior Member Wayne1963's Avatar
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    Feb 2013
    South Carolina, USA
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    I use palm stropping, and yes, I picked it up from that same video. Would I recommend others do the same thing? Absolutely not. As a 2 pass shaver, I only do it for the second pass. I don't think anything beats linen and leather, which I use just prior to the first pass. During my early days of straight shaving, when I did cut myself, it was almost always on the second pass. When I began palm stropping, those cuts all but went away. I don't know that palm stropping refines the edge any, but it does bring a sharper focus to my sense of touch.
    JeffR and neehooya like this.

  4. #14
    Senior Member blabbermouth
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    Diamond Bar, CA
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    I first saw my barber do it when he was teaching me to hone.

    I too do it when honing.

    it also is a good travel strop, in a pinch. Just go slow and pay attention.

  5. #15
    Member IrishShaver's Avatar
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    Jun 2016
    Dublin, Ireland
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    In a world where the government would have us shaving with a wet sponge for health and safety concerns, I love it because as it works for me. Just be careful.
    "My wife said she'd leave me if I bought another razor, I'm sure gonna miss her."

  6. #16
    Senior Member Butzy's Avatar
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    May 2017
    Blue Springs, MO
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    Just lather them fingers down with some chromium oxide and you're off to the races!
    Marshal and neehooya like this.

  7. #17
    Senior Member ZipZop's Avatar
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    Jun 2017
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    Yikes. Not for me. I don't know anyone that palm strops, and personally, I'd never consider it. I let the leather strop do that risky work. I can appreciate how when traveling, palm stropping may be "handy" so to speak, but I have a travel strop (leather), and I'm sticking with that. There are probably guys that probably even "Thigh Strop", although avoiding the femoral artery when you thigh strop is paramount.

    And like someone posted earlier, I can just hear the ER conversation.

    Doctor: "How did you cut your hand so severely?"
    Patient: "I was stropping my Razor"
    Doctor: "You were what?"
    Patient: "You know, like when Barbers used to sharpen straight razors with a leather strap?"
    Doctor: "Oh, I see. And you slipped and caught your hand somehow?"
    Patient: "No, I was using my hand as the strop."
    Doctor: "Ummmmm, right. OK, well, I'm just an ER Physician. You need a Psychiatrist."

    Hats off to you brave gents that palm strop. I'll leave it to you. I'm sticking with leather.


    Last edited by ZipZop; 06-08-2017 at 10:45 PM.
    "I get some lather and lather-up, then I get my razor and shave! Zip Zop, see that? My face Is ripped to shreads!" - Bill Cosby on Shaving

  8. #18
    Senior Member Longhaultanker's Avatar
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    Aug 2015
    Houston, TX
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    I just found this recent thread when searching on hand / Palm stropping. I too am intrigued by Mastro Livi's use of the technique. Lately I've been using it after the shave cleaning up before returning to the truck. I use it as a method of cleaning the residue off the blade. Once back in the truck I do a full clean, web / leather stropping, and baby oil.

    I was struck by how much pressure M. Livi actually uses. Anyone else notice how the blade pops off his hand? I'm doing much the same, doing about 15-20 laps. Gotta remember, spine leading.
    Last edited by Longhaultanker; 08-21-2017 at 10:56 PM.
    A little advice: Don't impede an 80,000 lbs. 18 wheeler tanker carrying hazardous chemicals.

  9. #19
    Sharp Minded Citizen
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    Oct 2013
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    I can get why this practice was used by oldschool barbers but for the love of god i can't see the science behind it.

    We use hides from grass eating animals to make strops because the high silicate concentration in the 3-rd layer of the skin bound in a dense colagen matrix (a consequence of their diet of grass)...this layer is exposed by taning and mecanicaly removing the superficial layers of the skin that re mostly glands and epitelial cells.....this translates to extremly fine abrasion from the silicates and friction burnishing effect from the colagen fibers.
    ...and i can get how that can hlp an edge.

    but i can't see how our own skin that has realy lower content of silicatesand the colagen fibers are not exposed due to the fact that we are not taned )...

    I realy cant see what this does to the edge other then cleaning...

    But if it works for you...hell...why looks cool...and gets the blod flowing for sure.

  10. #20
    Senior Member jmabuse's Avatar
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    Nov 2016
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    After watching those Mastro Livi videos and seeing him demonstrate how cutting cloth dulls an edge, I stopped wiping the lather off my razor on a towel and started wiping it onto my palm, which I then wipe on the towel. I also palm strop a couple of times during a shave. But I always use a leather strop before shaving.

    I do think some combination of not wiping my razor on the towel and palm stropping really improved the quality of my shaves. Not sure which one counted more though.
    Longhaultanker likes this.

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