How to Shave Your Head

Head shaving
Photo: Shutterstock
One of the new "classic" looks in men's hair styling is the "bald" or "shaved head" look. The shaved head look gained popularity with the punk subculture movement in the UK in the mid-to-late 70s and was later adopted by various other movements.
What was originally a symbol of "working-class pride" in the 60s soon became associated with other, less desirable groups. The shaved head look or straight razor shave (and those who wore it) were viewed with suspicion.
Today, the shaved head no longer carries as much social stigma and is quickly becoming an iconic look in men's style, similar to the men's ponytail in the 80s. Some men choose the shaved look to cultivate a specific image, while others find it convenient.
Finally, there are those who decide to shave their heads due to extensive (or increasing) hair loss, as a way to embrace what they feel is inevitable, either due to male pattern baldness or illness.
Regardless of the reasons for choosing to shave one's head, there are some things to keep in mind when considering this look:
Head Shape Is Important:
If your goal in shaving your head is aesthetic, you'll want to consider the shape of your head before making such a drastic commitment. To be completely honest, some shaved heads look better than others. For the best result, your head should be symmetrical, with a smooth roundness in the back from the top of the head to the occipital bone.
An angular skull with protrusions or "lumps" (typically found in the parietal ridge and crown areas) will not look as good when shaved. You should also be aware that if you have certain traits like protruding ears or scars on the scalp, they will become more noticeable when you shave your head. However, the ultimate decision is yours, and if you feel strongly about shaving your head, go ahead and do so.
How to Shave Your Head - Stage One:
Alright, so you've made the decision to shave your head, and it's time to put your plan into action. The first step is to get your hair to a length where shaving becomes easier. This means using clippers to give yourself clipper cut. While it's possible to shave your head without shortening the hair first, the process will become very messy and take much longer to complete. If you don't have clippers, you can use a beard trimmer instead.
Man who is clipper cutting his own head
Photo: Shutterstock
Use the clippers to cut the hair by gliding them along the scalp in the opposite direction of hair growth. Depending on the length of your hair, you may need to cut paths that are about half the width of the clipper blades to avoid overburdening the clippers. If your hair is long enough, you can hold the hair being cut taut and away from the scalp to make the process faster. This will also allow you to collect the cut hair and minimize the cleanup needed later.
The goal is to reduce the hair length to about 1/8th of an inch or less. When you finish, double-check to ensure you've covered the entire head and be sure to catch any stray strands that may have escaped being cut.
Stage Two:
The second stage of the process is similar to shaving your face. You want to soften the hair before shaving to make things easier. The simplest way to do this is by wetting a towel with water as hot as you can handle, wringing out the excess water, and wrapping the towel around your head. Let it sit for a few minutes to allow the heat and moisture to penetrate the hair.
Once the hair has been softened, apply a generous amount of shaving cream or gel and let it sit for a moment to penetrate the softened hair and scalp. The shaving cream helps lubricate the skin and prevents razor burn and nicks. Finally, it's time to start shaving.
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