Best place not to get nicked (2008)

The Art of Shaving

To many Americans, beardy equals weirdy at best; at worst, beards equal something truly heinous, such as "terrorist," "revolutionary," "hippie," "radical," "anarchist," "redneck," or "rocker." And despite a fairly game—if ultimately pointless—effort by Al Gore to revalidate facial fur prior to the 2004 election, the U.S. hasn't had a bearded chief executive since the administration of Benjamin Harrison (1889—93), though presidents Cleveland, Roosevelt, and Taft all sported excellent mustaches. Sadly, with the exception of those whose faith (Hasidim, Sikhs) or culture (grad students, emo guys, gay male "bears," and gender-blurring transmen) mandate the growing of beards of differing sorts, a denuded face is currently the fashion. So if shave you must, then do so with the proper tools hawked by those professional pogonophobes at the highly successful, New York-based franchise The Art of Shaving. In addition to excellent pre-shave oils, aftershave, creams and soaps, straight-edge and safety razors, and shaving sets of swanky chrome and real horn, they offer such esoterica as alum blocks and the elusive strop and strop paste. The Manhattan flagship location also boasts something called a Barber Spa, which lists shaves both "Traditional" and "Royal" among its depilating services.


All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >