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Joe Brummell #12 – Fop Gear

The first known razor was found in Egypt, and dates to around 3500 BC. Yep, that’s the Bronze Age. Imagine for a second what a bronze razor would do to your skin. Recent trends for everything from traditional brogues to tweed suits have rekindled the modern man’s desire for more gentlemanly pursuits. From elegant dress to moustaches, the modern man has more in common with his ancestors now, than ever before. But has this translated to the world of grooming? Barbershops have given way to hairdressers and proper razors have given way to electric beard trimmers. But lets stop for a second and ponder the appeal of an old-fashioned razor. Even on a purely aesthetic level they are more attractive than the latest disposable blade or rechargeable trimmer. Of course the modern age does have its advantages, no one likes razor burn or a bleeding face first thing in the morning, but don’t fear. Most traditional companies are making razors and shaving kits that are fully compatible with modern disposable blades – so there really is no excuse.

Truefitt & Hill: In 1805, William Francis Truefitt opened his first Gentlemen’s Barber Shop at 2 Cross-Lane, Long Acre London. In 1811 he moved the business to 40 Old Bond Street and established himself as “Court Hair Cutter” and “Court Head Dresser” where he was soon to become wigmaker, by Royal Appointment to His Majesty, King George III. Now, I’m not recommending wigs but I will say Truefitt & Hill make some of the most regal shaving kits around. This sterling silver shaving set has a silvertip badger hair shaving brush, Mach3 compatible razor and hefty price tag to match.

Murdock: On a more modest budget Murdock’s barbershops don’t just offer grooming services, you can also pick up a razor to take home too. If you’re feeling brave they have cut throat straight razors, and really what’s more manly than something that looks more like a weapon than a bathroom accessory? Made in England by highly skilled craftsmen the Murdock’s straight razor is the ultimate traditional shaving device. Perfect for any budding Sweeney Todd types.

Edwin Jagger: If the idea of stocking your bathroom up with new grooming accessories fills you with joy, then you might want to consider a full four piece shaving kit. If you’re going to do it, then you should really do it. I mean what fun will it be without shaving soap, a shaving bowl and a shiny stand to keep them all in? Edwin Jagger offer an imitation Ivory set that takes a whole range of modern disposable blades. In fact I’m thinking of shaving my beard off just so I’ll have an excuse to use it.

- Warren Beckett

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