If you commit to using a straight razor, then stropping would be your new religion. The blade that is used in a straight razor is very sharp and is especially cut out for close shaves. It requires stropping before every shave and if you’re a perfectionist who can’t settle for less, then there’s no looking back. We have compiled a handy how-to-use guide that will definitely hone your blade sharp and oh, your skills too.
How to Use a Razor Strop (For Beginners)
Method of Stropping
- You would need a decent quality leather strop. To get one is not fussy at all. Just look for durable leather that would make a perfect partner to your straight razor. Oh, and if you’re stuck on which straight razor to buy, then do check out our reviews here.
- You can start by attaching one side of your strop to a firm object that cannot be easily budged. With its leather side facing up, pull the other end towards yourself. This might sound funny, but it must be done carefully without adding a lot of force.
- I would suggest that you hold your razor from the part between the blade and its handle. This grip makes turning the razor very easy.
- Now all you have to do is just lay the blade flat on the strop and always remember to move the blade towards its neck because moving it from the cutting edge might ruin the leather on your oh-so-precious strop.
- Let the blade be 30 degrees to the surface of the strop. Getting a fixed angle ensures that you are making progress because just running your blade on the leather won’t get you anywhere close.
- After one stroke forth, turn the blade and move it back towards yourself, neck first.
- Unlike honing with a whetstone, this process requires lesser time. It would take you about one to two minutes to achieve the desired cutting edge.
- If you’re good at keeping a count, then do it around 60 times.
- Your blade must be sharp enough by now, tip-top and ready to use.
In a study that we came across recently, it was clearly stated that there is little scientific evidence about stropping. Without the use of abrasives, this kind of stropping remains a mystery. However, the article thoroughly explains its know-how on the basis of physical experiments. Stropping your straight razor might have seemed easy but there are also a few quick tips we’d like you to catch a glimpse of before you take off:
- You must strop only before shaving. This gives your shiny cut throat the efficiency you are looking for.
- You should also be careful with cleaning your blade before stropping if you just honed it. This saves you a lot of unwanted injuries and damages because the metal parts might get stuck to the leather of your strop. Not so cool.
- While you’re stropping, don’t loosen the belt at all. Keep it taut throughout and let the strap work its magic.
- Carelessness might be expensive if you’re stropping. We’re talking about straight razors here; safety and vigilance must be on top of your list.