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Thread: Switching hands with the DE

  1. #1
    The Assyrian Obie's Avatar
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    Default Switching hands with the DE

    Gentlemen,

    I switched hands the first time I took up straight razor shaving. The noble Lynn Abrams had advised me to do so to improve my field of vision, as well as to help with the quality of my shave. I'll always thank my friend for that advice.

    These days, because of problems with my banged-up hands, I mostly use the double edge straights on the weekends and only one or two passes with the grain. The DE is easier on my hands. Years ago I used my dominant hand, the right, for my DE shaving. In recent years I have switched hands with the DE, as well. Perhaps not as much as with the straight razor.

    In the past few months, however, I have switched hands with the DE equally. This is not so much to improve my field of vision, because that problem is minimal with DE shaving. I have found switching hands, especially if age has taken a toll on one's joints, to improve razor angle. That has resulted in better and more comfortable shaves.

    On the neck, for instance, coming in horizontally from the ear to the center of the neck, now I use the left hand. A couple of stubborn bushy spots on the left side of the neck have always given me problems. Now the left hand holding the razor easily solves that problem. On the left cheek, from the mouth to the left ear, now I let the left hand to the job. Bingo! There are other examples.

    The left hand takes practice, both with the straight razor and the double edge, but by using it constantly, especially for the mundane daily chores, helps dexterity. I use the same switching pattern with the Joris open comb, a formidable and aggressive razor.

    Gentlemen, I find switching hands, even with the double edge razor, to help in the shave. Of course, switching hands is not written into law. Using the dominant hand is perfectly sound. If it works for you and you prefer it, that's how it should be. For me, switching hands gives me a better shave. Give it a try. It might work for you, as well.
    jdto and LameBMX like this.

  2. #2
    The Hurdy Gurdy Man thebigspendur's Avatar
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    I've never really given hand switching with a DE any real thought. As a matter of fact until I read this post I wasn't aware I was even doing it. It's really much less an issue with a DE or maybe because I'm left-handed it's much more natural.

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    The Assyrian Obie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thebigspendur View Post
    I've never really given hand switching with a DE any real thought. As a matter of fact until I read this post I wasn't aware I was even doing it. It's really much less an issue with a DE or maybe because I'm left-handed it's much more natural.
    It's more of a personal choice than anything else, really. As I noted in my post, "For me, switching hands gives me a better shave." It might not for you. That's fine. To each his own. Personal choice plays a major part in traditional shaving with the double edge and the straight razor. I noted that in my post: that there are no laws dictating style and technique. Do what works best for you. For me, switching hands in both straight razor and double edge shaving works best.

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    For some reason when I shave with a DE using my dominant hand comes as natural as using both hands with a straight razor, I guess it's just the way that I learned. I suspect there's something subliminal going on, such as associating a DE with a cartridge razor (my previous method of shaving), but I can't say for sure. To be honest I hadn't really given it any thought until I went to a wetshaving get-together two years ago that was populated mostly by DE shavers. Somehow the topic of ambidexterious shaving came up, and almost all the DE users said they used both hands. I was mildly surprised, but confident enough in my own skills that I never tried it. I suppose I'll give it a go one of these days....

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    Obie (05-15-2012)

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    I'm on The Straight Road jdto's Avatar
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    Sometimes, yes. But not nearly as much as with the straight.

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    Obie (05-15-2012)

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