Talk to any well-groomed gentleman who uses a straight razor to shave and he’ll tell you that once he chose to go with a straight razor, there was no going back. Aside from a closer shave, the age-old process of lathering up shave cream, wiping off the blade, and working with a potentially lethal tool just has an element of charm that can’t be replicated with a $1 disposable razor.

In this video from master straight razor maker Ali of Ali’s Blades, we get a detailed look at just how much work goes into creating the ultimate tool for the closest shave:

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After discovering the straight razor by chance, Ali became so fascinated by the object and the experience that he decided to turn his newly-found passion into a full-time job.

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After many hours of research, the self-taught bladesmith began his career through restoring vintage straight razors before embarking on a path to create his own original designs.

Ali’s eye for meticulous detail is highlighted in his blade designs and are considered to be among the most well-made straight razors available—with some of his designs fetching over $1,000.

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Curious about straight razor shaving? Have a look at this tutorial from Donnie Hawley of Hawleywood’s Barber Shop and Shave Parlor:

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Simon is a Brooklyn-based industrial designer and Managing Editor of EVD Media. When he finds the time to design, his focus is on helping startups develop branding and design solutions to realize their product design vision. In addition to his work at Nike and various other clients, he is the main reason anything gets done at EvD Media. He once wrestled an Alaskan alligator buzzard to the ground with his bare hands… to rescue Josh.