Shaving A Beard

Shaving A Beard

Movember is just two weeks away and men across the country are planning on going clean shaved for the 1st of November in preparation. The best way to shave off thick stubble or a beard isn't a plastic razor: it will get royally clogged up. Usually you'll have to use electric clippers first, which is a bit of a bore.

But you're using a double edge razor, the experience suddenly becomes much simpler and more pleasant. 

So, how do you shave a beard with a double edge razor?


The Thomas Clipper Travel Razor


A think beard shave requires preparation.

Normally we recommend Shark for sensitive skin. But when you're dispatching a beard we recommend Feather blades. These blades are exceptionally sharp, which is brilliant for the job in hand.

Put on some music and fill up the sink with piping hot water. Wet your flannel and hold it to your face to really get your skin warmed up, then rub to exfoliate. NB always shower before you shave, not after - this gives your face even longer to prep for the upcoming de-bearding.

How to insert blade into double edge safety razor

Insert the blade carefully

Showering before shaving is key

Shower first, then exfoliate with a cotton flannel


Be generous this time, you're beard's worth it.

If you're using our organic frankincense shave oil we usually only recommend a drop or two.

But for your de-bearding, around five or six drops is going to be necessary. The purpose of the oil is to add a very thin base of lubrication.

You'll have a lot of hair to get through, so you'll want to make sure that the oil makes its way all the way down to your skin. Our oil also includes an active ingredient to reduce razor rash which works when it's in direct contact with the skin - all the more reason for a good thorough application.

Organic shave oil from Thomas Clipper

Our organic oil has a clinically proven anti-rash ingredient


Synthetic is best.

As a small aside, there is no such thing as responsibly sourced badger - use synthetic, it's better for the badgers, and better for your beard as the bristles don't fall out or smell odd.

Roll the tip of your moist (but not soaking) brush on your shaving soap using a circular motion: when it's fully loaded up you can lather in a bowl. Apply to your face gently until you've got a good amount of lather deeply into your beard.

You might want to brush gently against the grain to lift your beard up and expose as much skin as possible to the exfoliation and lubrication that a good lathering provides.

How to lather a natural shaving soap

Our shaving bowls and brushes are animal friendly and handmade in the UK from British wood

How to apply a shaving lather

How to apply a shaving lather

You'll want to take a moment to say goodbye to your beard now.

Take your time.


First passes

It's hard to find the grain when you've got a beard, but for the first half of the shave this shouldn't be a problem: the goal is to remove the first layer of your beard but not necessarily even get down to the skin. So start at your sideburns and work down gently.

Make sure to take a couple short strokes and then wash out your razor head early and often. This prevents most clogging even when shaving a beard off, but if you do get some then simply loosen the head slightly and give it a vigorous shake in the water.

Rinse your razor often to prevent clogging

Rinse your razor with hot water to prevent clogging

Make sure you let the razor do the hard work. After every stroke or two pop the blade back into the water to clean and wet it. You should also spin the razor 180 degrees after every couple strokes to use both sides of the blade.

Final passes

As you begin to get closer to skin level, feel your stubble to get an idea of the direction of least resistance - make sure the final strokes you make are in that direction, this is called 'shaving with the grain'.

Shaving with the grain

When shaving a beard we recommend going with the grain

End game

Finally, give your face a good splash when you think you're finished and inspect your handiwork. Odds are there are a few patches that you need to clean up - do so by preparing with a hot flannel and some oil first: this end game is the most dangerous part of the shave because you're in a rush to get finished and show the world your new un-bearded face in all its glory...

Going from full beard to clean shaved

There's little better than a post-beard clean shave feel


Before showing off your new face, take a moment...

After you’re thoroughly de-bearded it’s time to clean your gear.

Wash your brush and bowl thoroughly in cold water and stand them out to dry. Usually you'll get 5 or 6 shaves out of a good blade, but I wouldn't count on it after a beard shave. Likely you can do some stubble cleanup work with the blade, but I'd suggest just popping the blade out for recycling and washing out your razor.

Next splash some cold water on your face to get rid of the soap and close up your pores.

A cold wash at the end of the shave is refreshing and cleansing

Prepare to show off your new un-bearded face...

Apply a drop or two drop of TC shave oil - we developed this as a pre-shave oil, but because of the anti razor-rash active ingredient, it’s actually brilliant as an aftershave oil too, and the oil helps to keep moisture in.

Recommended for those with normal or dry skin - if yours is already a little oily give this step a miss and replace with your moisturiser of choice.

Browse our shaving products here:



Smell as fantastic as you look.

Try our award winning tailor-made cologne, blended by you. Finish off the job smelling as fantastic as you look...

Unite Cologne Collection from Thomas Clipper

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