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Thread: Advice on shave technique for neck

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    Default Advice on shave technique for neck

    I'd like some advice on shaving my neck if anyone can help!

    I usually wear a beard, so I am only shaving my neck and cheeks, and I only tend to shave once a week. The neck is really tricky. The grain goes from bottom to top, right up to the jawline, but on the sides of the neck just below the jawline the grain heads off towards the ears, so under the jawline at the sides the grain goes from the centre of the neck towards the ears. Also, the hairs on the neck lay very flat.

    The first WTG pass, from bottom to top, is never very smooth, I guess because the hairs lie so flat. XTG is very tricky, so I don't manage to cover much, and for most of the neck the second pass is ATG, starting under the jawline and shaving downwards. Because there is lots of longish stubble lying against the skin, this is really tricky, and the razor jumps and catches, though I have never cut myself. I tend to shave downwards in very small strips, about 1/4" wide, especially around the adam's apple. On the sections under the jawline towards the ears, I can neither do a WTG or ATG pass, upwards or downwards is XTG.

    Any tips or suggestions? I have a couple of older heavier smiling razors, and they perform MUCH better on the neck shave than a lighter blade.

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    Senior Member blabbermouth Haroldg48's Avatar
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    Smilers work the best on my neck too, and I use them to do what some call a scything stroke, in which I pivot the razor (like a windshield wiper) from the pivot. Try it first on a cheek and take small "swipes". It is almost the only way I can get close on my neck. Stretching is also a key component of the technique. You don't want skin "piling up" in front of the blade. If it does, blood usually follows.
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    I also have a beard and shave only my neck and cheeks and have neck hairs that go every which way. I use my straight razor to set my jaw line and then shave down and then across to my ear. I also use a scything stroke, but still leave a lot of stubble to remove.

    When I really want a close neck shave, I resort to a double edge razor and use short strokes against the grain. This usually results in some irritation, but alum and witch hazel end that.
    David
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    Senior Member blabbermouth Steel's Avatar
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    Very easy. Make sure you have a very keen blade, streeeeetch the skin, and slightly angle your strokes in a slight diagonal stroke (example...NE to SW or SE to NW)
    What a curse be a dull razor; what a prideful comfort a sharp one

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    Senior Member blabbermouth outback's Avatar
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    Like Steel said, that's how I get my smashed wire brush, beard.

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    I've also been at this for over 30 years, so I've become quite comfortable with a straight in my hands.
    Last edited by outback; 08-17-2018 at 04:05 AM.
    Mike

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    Senior Member blabbermouth RezDog's Avatar
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    My neck whiskers are also very flat to my skin. I do my first pass against the grain. I also use Noxema as a preshave and skin stretching for me is paramount. Blade skipping I always associate with pressure. If I keep my hold on my razor more relaxed and not gripping it it helps me keep the pressure low.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haroldg48 View Post
    Stretching is also a key component of the technique.
    Yes, I appreciate this. However, I have not yet found a satisfactory method of stretching the skin on the neck sufficiently to make downward ATG stroke feel like it is over properly taut skin. Any suggestions?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel View Post
    Very easy.
    Hmmm...... not for me!

    I get that a sharp blade is essential, and that is improving all the time. I also get that stretching the skin is key, however, I haven't found the technique that stretches the skin nearly as well as I feel is necessary.

    Diagonal strokes work on some areas of my neck, but I find that they are hampered by the beard line for one, and also, when I really stretch my neck, the sinews mean that cross-ways strokes are going over peaks and troughs in many places, and so are tricky. Same applies to the area around the adam's apple.
    Last edited by Montgomery; 08-17-2018 at 09:01 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by outback View Post
    I've also been at this for over 30 years, so I've become quite comfortable with a straight in my hands.
    I'd be very curious to see your stretching technique. I wear a full set, so would only be able to perform half the length of the strokes you demonstrate. Of course, with the stroke in the first picture, that also leaves a big triangle under the jawline.
    outback likes this.

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    Senior Member blabbermouth
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    As others have said, really stretch your skin. I do this by pointing my chin out and up while at the same time pulling down with my free hand. For the Adams apple area try to pull the skin to one side and then the other.

    I tend to use short strokes especially when going ATG. Also when going ATG I will have the spine of the razor almost touching my face. When shaving your neck you are shaving a curved surface so you will only cut a narrow swath of whiskers. Try and overlap the swaths a bit.

    Make sure your lather is very good in that it has enough water content to give a good glide. If it is too dry/pasty the razor has aa tendency to jump a bit.

    Also like others have said a smiling blade seems to get the hollows better.

    Good luck.

    Bob
    Life is a terminal illness in the end

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