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  #1  
Old 08 November 2010, 05:29 AM
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Ponder Sharpen razor blades on arm hair

Comment: By rubbing your razor blade backwards up your arm hair keeps your
razor sharp. Just wondering how this could be true - and why I have
bumped into the rumor so many places.
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  #2  
Old 16 December 2010, 04:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
Comment: By rubbing your razor blade backwards up your arm hair keeps your
razor sharp. Just wondering how this could be true - and why I have
bumped into the rumor so many places.

Here's an eHow article that describes the arm hair technique for resharpening razor blades:
http://www.ehow.com/how_6138208_shar...ety-razor.html

Here's a video on it:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ADaRIqy0Dc

The guy in the video makes an interesting point: we used to sharpen straight razors on leather strops and the skin on your arm is leathery so it probably works the same way. Whether your arm is hairy or not probably doesn't make a difference.
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  #3  
Old 17 December 2010, 12:40 AM
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Usually a strop is used with an abrasive. The common method for carving tools (which are best if they are razor sharp) is to use a piece of leather with automotive rubbing compound worked into it. Leather all by itself is not a great strop.
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Old 17 December 2010, 12:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmy101_again View Post
Usually a strop is used with an abrasive. The common method for carving tools (which are best if they are razor sharp) is to use a piece of leather with automotive rubbing compound worked into it. Leather all by itself is not a great strop.
For a straight razor, though, stropping without an abrasive is a common finishing technique. It's not supposed to be an abrasive in this case, but just a way of lining the burr back up to allow smoother shaving. How well it actually works is debatable- I've only ever seen marginal gains.
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  #5  
Old 19 December 2010, 04:04 AM
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The blades in disposable razors are even thinner than straight razor blades so running them backwards over your skin might well reline the burr.

I use disposable razors so I'm giving it a shot, but I only shave once or twice a week so my razors usually last a while anyway.
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  #6  
Old 01 February 2011, 05:56 PM
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Update: it's working extremely well, I'm still using that same disposable razor that I started using in December.
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  #7  
Old 02 February 2011, 08:13 AM
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How often do you shave?
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  #8  
Old 02 February 2011, 09:17 AM
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From his photo, I'd say he'd have to shave fairly often.
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  #9  
Old 02 February 2011, 10:37 AM
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I just did my sums and so far it's lasted 3 times as long as it usually would and still feels as sharp as when I started using it.
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  #10  
Old 02 February 2011, 01:15 PM
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I just tried to sharpen one using my pubes, but I think I've dislocated my wrist.
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  #11  
Old 02 June 2011, 06:55 PM
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I noticed my razor was 'pulling' a little today so I might start a new one. For the record, I've been sharpening the same disposable razor on my arm before using it for 5.5 months and it's only now starting to give a slightly worse shave than when it was brand new.
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  #12  
Old 02 June 2011, 08:45 PM
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Blimey, when I still used a razor, in the dark days before epilators I never used a disposable razor more than half a dozen times, absolute max before I binned it. No matter how hard I rinsed them they always had old hairs stuck in, which I didn't much like.
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  #13  
Old 02 June 2011, 09:43 PM
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I found that stropping the razor on my arm also dragged out most of the hairs stuck between the blades.
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  #14  
Old 02 June 2011, 10:03 PM
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I think it's the hairs between the blades that make a lot of difference, as GutterMonkey said.

At the moment I shave about once a week, or possibly once every week-and-a-half, and by that time my stubble's tough enough that I can only use disposable razors about twice each. Although I do buy pretty cheap ones... supermarket brand with two blades and a "strip", that's it. I don't really see how rubbing them on my arm would help. I rub them against my thumb while I shave, but that's mostly to remove the hairs rather than sharpen them - presumably it would have a similar effect, though. I don't see why the pad of my thumb would be fundamentally different from my arm.
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  #15  
Old 03 June 2011, 11:59 AM
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It's definately the hair between the blades, and for those single bladed disposable (if you can find them) the thickness and coarseness of the hair to be shaved.

I shave every two days and should shave every day and I haven't found any reliable way to get a razor 1, 2, 3 or more blades to shave me right more than once or twice...

(and no, i'm not as hairy as a monkey, i just have a really thick beard, when i let it grow)
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