Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Many Ways Men Shave

Back to my blog home page:

I am standing at the sink with an 82 year old gentleman this morning working on ADLs (activities of daily living) , specifically grooming (brushing teeth, combing hair, shaving). Albert starts applying shaving cream to his face with slow, deliberate movements using his right fingertips. During the wait, I watch him as he smears his cheeks, moustache, and chin. Then I notice him turn his right hand over, squeezing Barbasol onto the outer center of his index and middle fingers before bending them to wipe up his neck. Pretty adaptive, since he has trouble bending his head back!

So, this shaving almost 16 years of practice, I have come to find it pretty interesting! Shaving is one of my favorite ADLs. I love to do touch up! I have a firm but gentle hand and know how to pull the neck skin up over the jawline perfectly to get a close shave. Remember, these older gentlemen have loose skin.

'Shaving Cream' (1946) by Singer-Songwriter Benny Bell
(There are over 14,700 YouTube videos on shaving!)

Did you know every man has his own individual method of shaving? Some start with long, strong strokes from the temple to the jawline. Some start the razor blade just under the nose and take short swipes down to the top lip.

Some shave vertically from the lower lip to the chin, using the tongue pushed out to tighten the skin, while others pull their lips into a wide "long e" (as in a,e,i,o,u) and slide the razor horizontally and slightly curved along the lower lip line.

Some shave up the neck; others, down. Some keep the water running; others turn it on and off to tap the razor in the base of the sink.

Albert does something this morning I have never seen. He runs a thin line of water out of the tap, turns the razor sideways under it, then click, click, clicks the end of the razor blade against the top of the faucet...

I realize that I am smiling broadly as I look at him through the mirror.

He looks up into my reflection. "What is it?" he asks.

"I'm just learning from you, Albert. I never realized until this moment that men have so many different ways of shaving..."

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