How should an adjustable safety razor be used?
It might sound like the answer is obvious. Pick your shave level and... shave. But there are actually a few strategies to using an adjustable safety razor. Like everything with an adjustable razor, it's all about adapting it to your style. Here are some ideas to make an adjustable razor like the Osprey work as part of your routine.
One level all the time
It's pretty simple. You try a few levels at first and determine which one is your favorite. Then you just stick with that shave level. Maybe you change your mind later on, but for the most part you're happy with using the same shave level every day. With this option, it's not about adjustability. It's about adaptability. The adjustable nature of the razor just guarantees that there will be a setting that adapts to your preferred style.
Different levels for different days
With this option, your adjustable razor is like using a different razor for any given day to meet your needs. Maybe it's Monday morning and you haven't shaved since Thursday so you crank up your Osprey to Level 8 and mow that growth down. Then on Tuesday you dial it back to Level 4 because you barely have stubble. Or maybe on another day you have a bit of irritation so you stick to Level 2 since you know how forgiving it is. It's like having a drawer full of razors all in one.
A shave level for each pass
If you're a multiple-pass shaver, you know that your needs on the first pass are different than they are on the second or third pass. The idea here is that you change to a different shave level between passes to get the perfect results.
The most common method is to start with a higher level and end with a lower one. This is especially good if you do a standard with-the-grain, across-the-grain, and against-the-grain shave structure. You start with a high level for WTG to get rid of the big growth, then move to something mid-level for the XTG pass, then you balance against the risk of irritation with ATG by using a nice low shave level. This approach is all about reducing the risk of irritation while still pursuing a close shave. Just adjust the razor for that spot and then set it back for the rest.
Changing on the fly
This approach is about adjusting your shave level mid-pass. The idea here is that not all parts of your skin behave the same way. Everyone has that trouble spot which needs special treatment. Say your chin is a tough area that does best with a mild shave while the rest of your face is leather-tough and can stand up to high efficiency. An adjustable razor lets you dial in the right shave level for your chin while getting the efficiency you need everywhere else. This style is also helpful if part of your face is irritated or if you're experience acne.
Whatever option you choose, make sure you have the right gear. With the fully machined Osprey adjustable razor, you have an endlessly versatile and adaptable razor. How you use it is up to you!