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The Science of Shaving

10 Key Things to Know:

  1. Shaving can cause stress and trauma to your skin.
  2. 8/10 men complain of skin problems on a daily basis like razor burn, rash, ingrown hairs or sensitive skin.
  3. These can be largely eradicated by
    – using the right products that protect and rebuild the skin,
    – preparing your skin properly for the razor blade to avoid trauma in the first place. (International Dermal institute)
  4. Stubble hair is as strong as copper wire (tensile strength, diameter for diameter).
  5. Shaving with a brush and bowl in The Marram Co Shave is the best way to shave for least irritation and maximum smoothness because it lubricates the skin, softens the stubble and lifts the hairs for cutting. (Journal of the American Medical Association)
  6. Marram Co skincare products are all-natural and protect, nourish and soothe the skin.
  7. Essential oils are naturally occurring, volatile aromatic compounds found in botanical material that have fantastically therapeutic properties for the skin and mood.
  8. We are working with the pioneers of the latest extraction method using CO2 yielding the purest, best quality oils from around the world.
  9. Our clinical formulator has the highest accreditation from The International Dermal Institute and is one of only 50 people in the world (estimated) to be able to formulate clinical products using essential oils in this way.
  10. All our products have been through full product and safety testing.

In more depth:

Dr. Diana Howard, The International Dermal Institute

A survey conducted by The International Dermal Institute indicates that 79 percent of male respondents say they have one or more skin problem(s) that they notice daily from shaving.

Problems Associated with Shaving

We know that the simple act of shaving imposes constant stress on the skin. Shaving is a form of physical exfoliation.

  • Razor bumps, ingrown hairs, razor burn and inflammation are just some of the visible signs of trauma.
  • Shaving can lead to over-exfoliation, as well as a compromised lipid barrier.

How does The Marram Shave help?

Shaving the Marram way focusses specifically on the preparation of the skin and stubble for the razor which helps protect the skin from the trauma from the blade. It can therefore, help to prevent the common skin complaints men report from shaving.

Marram Co champions the brush and bowl method where a thick nourishing lather is whipped up with the brush and an all-natural shaving cream and applied to skin before shaving. This lubricates the skin, softens the stubble and lifts the hairs to be cut at the right angle.

Why badger hair?

Badger hair is the most absorbent of any animal hair. And when it is wet, it remains turgid not flaccid. So, badger hair holds a huge amount of warm water and stands up straight at the same time. Not all hair does this.

Why whip up a lather?


The lather as it is whipped up with the wet brush that has been given a chance to absorb warm water, holds a large amount of warm water itself. Dry stubble hair is as strong as copper diameter for diameter. This facial hair absorbs warm water significantly faster than cold water or a cold chemical foam. And this water weakens and softens the stubble hair by up to 30%. (Think nylon now not copper). Softer stubble is obviously easier to cut so there is less friction on the skin as the blade glides through.


The lather also provides a creamy base on the skin acting as a lubricant allowing the blade to glide over the skin preventing the drag that can damage the lipid barrier.

Why apply with a brush?

Circling the brush over the skin when applying the lather, raises the hairs off the face so that the hair can be cut at a straight angle as close to the skin as possible.

This decreases the likelihood of in-growing hairs and results in the closest shave.

The brush also naturally removes dirt and exfoliates the skin.

Why is the skin’s lipid barrier important?

Our epidermis relies upon the lipid barrier layer for protection. This layer of lipids (fats) keeps moisture in the tissues and controls the entry of external chemicals from getting through to the deeper layers of the skin.

During shaving, the lipid barrier layer can be compromised, especially if the man tends to use alcohol-laden products like aftershave.

Once the lipid barrier layer is damaged, water readily escapes from the underlying tissues, creating a dehydrated skin condition. Chemicals from the environment can now penetrate into the skin, causing irritation and a sensitized skin condition. Once inflamed, anything can irritate the skin, including daily shaving.

How do Marram Co shaving cream products help?

Our skincare products are blended with organic essential oils sourced from 212 farms in the optimal climates around the world. Our products protect and rebuild the dermal layers and soothe the lipid barrier. Some of the essential oils even treat inflammation if the lipid barrier is damaged from previous poor care or cosmetic damage. For instance the carrot seed oil in ‘You’ve Got This’ shaving cream would be great for inflammation.

Marram Co Shaving Creams contain only the best, natural ingredients. We are free from harmful chemicals which can sting sensitive skin. It is also important to remember that anything that you put on your skin will be in your bloodstream in 26seconds.

And we do not contain microbead plastics either that are so damaging for the environment.

Our Clinical Formulator has been awarded all of the skincare qualifications from The Dermal Institute including their highest diploma accreditation.

What are essential oils?

If you have ever smelled a flower, you’ve experienced the aromatic qualities of essential oils. These naturally occurring, volatile aromatic compounds (change state from a liquid to a gas very quickly) are found in the seeds, bark, stems, roots, flowers and other parts of plants.

Essential oils give plants their distinctive smells.

They also protect plants from

  1. insects and predators (e.g. insects are rarely found on a peppermint plant)
  2. as well as act as antimicrobial, antifungal, and antibacterial agents against a wide range of organisms that may threaten the survival of the plants.

They also play a role in plant pollination.

In addition to their intrinsic benefits to plants and their beautiful fragrance, essential oils have long been used for food preparation, beauty treatments and health-care practices in plant medicine.

Each oil has different functional applications for the skin from anti-inflammatory to antibacterial to healing to stimulating cell turnover.  But they also smell incredible having an ‘aromatherapeutic’ effect on your mood from calming to empowering to uplifting to soothing and many more.

How are they extracted from the plant?

The most favoured method for extracting essential oils has been to use steam distillation.

Marram Co is working with the pioneers of a fairly new method of extraction using hypercritical CO2 resulting in better quality, purer oils with more powerful aromas.

This is because

  1. the process can be completed at relatively low heat – 33 degrees Celsius – essential oils can be compromised at heat of over 40 degrees.
  2. It happens almost instantaneously
  3. carbon dioxide is inert and therefore does not chemically interact with the essence that is being extracted. To remove the carbon dioxide solvent, you simply need to remove the pressure under which it is kept.

Are your skincare products safe for my skin?

All of our skincare products have been through 12 weeks of cosmetic compliance testing – a safety assessment and cosmetic challenge testing.

Cosmetic Challenge Test (CCT) is an essential test, related to the product robustness against microbiological contamination. The results are crucial for the cosmetic product safety assessment, in line with the requirements of the Cosmetics Regulation (EC) No 1223/2009.

A safety assessment makes it legal to sell a product in the EU market. But more than that, it gives us piece of mind that it is safe so that you can feel confident to use it.  

Because they only contain natural ingredients with no harmful chemicals, they are suitable for even the most sensitive skin.

How do I shave with a safety razor?

Take care

It is a skill that needs to be learnt. There are no springs in this blade that adapt to the contours of your face so you need to change the angle of the blade yourself. 

They key things are:

  1. holding the blade at 30 degrees to your face and
  2. take lots of short, sharp strokes. 

Invest in the right razor

A good safety razor should last a lifetime, so don’t be scared to invest in quality. The Marram Co safety razor fits well in your hand, has a nice grip, and feels heavy.

“You rely on the weight of the razor to guide your shave, you don’t press into skin,” says Hugo Hernandez, Hugo the Barber.

Prep Your Skin

Wait until after you’ve showered. Soak your badger brush in warm water while you are in the shower and then use it to apply one of our all-natural shaving creams that whip up into a fantastic lather and smell incredible.

The Shave Technique

There is a definite learning curve with this type of razor. You may have small nicks (like tiny paper cuts) as you begin to get used to it. Don’t try this for the first time on the morning of your wedding, before a job interview, or in a hurry.

Pull skin taut in the opposite direction of the blade and hold the razor at about thirty degrees. Remember not to apply any pressure, and use short, even strokes, going with the grain of your hair.

Replacing the Blades

Different blades have a different feel, so experiment to find the one you like best.

OUR BLADES ARE PLATINUM coated DOUBLE SIDED super STAINLESS STEEL known to be long lasting and extremely sharp.

You’ll know it’s time to change your blade when it starts to tug or pull on the first couples of strokes. (But don’t forget to use both sides of the blade for more mileage.) Depending on your beard thickness, that could be every other day or once a week.

Have your shaving tools been tested for safety?  

Yes, they have all been through quality control to ensure that each component meets our strict design and functionality standards.

Each tool has also been through independent product performance assessment to ensure that they are compatible with our skincare products as well independent safety testing to ensure they meet International safety regulations.