Men's Classic Shaving

Anyone who has purchased a package of Mache3 razors or similar, knows something about modern shaving: It's a racket!

Throw an aloe strip, some low quality steel blade like things and a bit of plastic together with some new fangled gimmick and you've got a great revenue stream, and a terrible shaving experience. 

But that's now how it has to be, nor is that how it has always been.  Shaving is one of the only self-care rituals that Men get an opportunity for, and that's where Classic Shaving comes in. Classic shaving is about beautiful, hand crafted products that take care of your skin, are built to last, and make a chore into an opportunity to take care with a moment of your day. 

At North of West in the heart of downtown Portland, OR, we have curated a fine selection of classic Men's shaving products that are hard to find anywhere on the West Coast.  

How to Shave With a Double Edged Razor

There is no avoiding the fact that some folks take their shaving VERY seriously.  For the ultimate resource, just stop by and you can also get a sense of how passionate some folks are about their shaving. 

However, getting started shaving with a double-edged razor isn't nearly as daunting a task as it can seem. There are a couple of simple pieces that you'll need to have to get the best shave of your life.

1: A razor

 Razors come in all kinds of shapes and sizes, but they all achieve the same task: Hold the blade. Every razor does this a little differently -- varying the amount of the blade that protrudes, the degree of curve of the blade, the angle of the blade to the handle etc.  In the end, it's a matter of personal preference, so don't get too caught up in the "Best razor" conversation too deeply. The best razor is the one you prefer the most! 

2: A Blade

There are hundreds of different blade brands, but they all achieve the same basic task. Cut hairs! Blades are standardized shape so any blade will pretty much fit in any razor. When you tighten a blade into a razor, the blade is bent and tensioned and curved to be perfectly in line with the head of the razor. A springy, high quality steel is used in razor blades, and they will un-spring when you loosen the blade again. Blades are thinner than a piece of paper, and are very very very sharp. The idea of a razor blade is to cleanly slice every hair. It's hard to believe, but different blades have distinctly different 'feels'. Some blades are incredibly sharp (such as Feather), others are a little more forgiving (like Astra). They all have a commonality though -- They're cheap! A blade can cost as little as ¢10, as opposed to the ¢250 of a Mach3 cartridge at Walgreens. 

We suggest you get a selection of different blades to see which you like best, and to start with more forgiving blades, such as Gilette 7'Oclock or Astra until you're comfortable shaving. You'll have an easier time learning if you're not afraid of your razor. 

3: Soap

Soaps for classic shaving are very different from a Gillette gel or Barbasol.  Those aren't truely soaps. They're basically foamy alcohol, used as an astringent / antiseptic. Lame! A true shaving soap's primary task is as a lubricant, which helps the hair stand up and the razor glide smoothly along your skin. 

 There are many great shaving soaps but one of our favorite is Speick. Speick has a classic, masculine scents, that are backed up with soothing and nourishing botanicals that are wonderful for your skin. They also have the added bonus of being sustainable, modestly priced, and manufactured in house by this family business for 80+ years. 

4: Brush

 If you are going to use brushed soap, you'll need a brush. A brush helps create a luxurious lather, while also exfoliating gently and raising your hairs to prepare them for slicing. 

Quality brushes are generally made from B