Harry’s products taught me shaving doesn’t have to be so bad


In April 2012, I shaved my beard for the first time in over a decade. I can’t remember what I used. It was probably some kind of electric trimmer at first to cut it down to a stubble, then I guess I used whatever plastic razor my wife had in the shower. I’m sure there was blood.

During my time with a beard, I had gone all out on beard products: oils, shampoos, little combs, and conditioners. Anything you and/or new direct-to-consumer men’s grooming brands could think of – I wanted it all. I used a batch of new products for a few days or weeks, then systematically replaced them with new ones, relegating the old ones to an increasingly crowded hallway closet. It was stupid, sure, but it gave me a lot of joy.

What, as a freshly shaved man, can I replace my expensive and time-consuming beard care routine with? Well, an expensive and time-consuming shaving routine, of course.

I quickly turned my attention to the art of wet shaving, using a double-edged safety razor, which lived in a fancy little hanger on my sink, next to a badger-hair shaving brush pulled out of a horrible fever dream of Don Draper. There were pre-shave oils, after-shave balms and splashes. And there was shaving cream, of course. So much shaving cream.

Shaving was an ordeal, to say the least. Even a new razor blade would take multiple passes to get anything resembling a close shave, which I convinced myself was absolutely fine because I enjoyed the ritual, okay?

by Harry

I shaved this way for years until a few months ago when I found myself moving into a new house just a day early, surrounded by unpacked boxes and with a formal event to go to the following night. I couldn’t, in my entire life, find the box (boxes?) that held my stupid shaving products, so I went to the local chain pharmacy and bought a Winston razor handle and a Harry’s blaze combo, plus a tube of Harry’s shaving cream (and Harry’s deodorant now that I think about it; I always like design continuity in my grooming products).

And, reader, it changed my life.

It might be common knowledge for everyday people who don’t insist on constantly having old-fashioned boring assignments and obsessions, but it turns out that shaving doesn’t have to take up your entire morning. The shaving cream, which has a pleasant mild eucalyptus and mint scent, goes on easily and doesn’t foam to the unnecessary, cartoonish degree that others do. The Winston handle is die-cast zinc with a rubberized grip. It feels substantial in the hand, but not like the murder weapons I’d grown accustomed to over the years. And the blade… while I don’t claim to know what that means it’s ‘German engineered’, I will say it effortlessly delivers a closer shave than anything I’ve experienced in almost any my adult life. One pass, maybe two and a half minutes in total, and I’m done. As smooth as possible. And as I alluded to earlier, things look great too. Clean design, simple and coordinated color palettes and modern yet familiar form factors. You can even get a fancy razor stand if you’re so inclined.


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