- “You should be neat, clean, and presentable at all times…. Beards are not permitted except when medically authorized, and then only until the problem clears up. If you wear a mustache, keep it trimmed and neat. Don’t grow your mustache below the top line of your upper lip and do not allow it to extend more than 1/4 inch beyond the corners of your mouth.”—Excerpt from Blue Jacket Manual, distributed at US Navy Reserves Bootcamp
For men of color, who are prone to razor bumps, the above grooming mandate is an especially challenging requirement. Whether they are on US soil in bootcamp or deployed overseas, many men in the military are left without the proper tools and resources they need to shave without causing extreme irritation.
We caught up with Naji H. Kelley and Eric Ward, two men in the Navy reserves to discuss their shaving challenges while on duty and how they used Bevel to maintain their close, clean shave.
Before the Navy, neither Naji nor Eric was very into shaving, preferring to wear beards as their method of avoiding razor bumps. “Before I went in, I had a Rick Ross beard. A beard is comfortable,” Naji explained. Both of their first serious experiences with taking a blade to their skin was in US Navy Bootcamp. “I prepped with a shave and kept a mustache, but the officers told me to take it off and all they had was a Gillette, which didn’t work for me,” he continues. “If that shave is not thorough, they will tell you to turn around and go shave again.”
Without the proper tools, such as a double edge safety razor, many men are forced into using multi-blade razors, which leave their skin with bumps and irritation. Many men apply for what’s called a “no shave kit”, an exception to the shaving regulations. “I tried to get a no shave kit, but they told me my bumps weren’t bad enough. They don’t really understand and just brush it off like it’s no big deal. Overseas, it’s $15 for a three-blade razor. So when you spend that kind of money and still get bumps, it’s frustrating because it’s clear that it wasn’t meant for me,” Eric says.
One day when roaming around Twitter while stationed in Bahrain, Naji came across Bevel. “When I saw the single blade, it was a no brainer,” he says. “When you see a product that’s catered to us, to have another option that works better for us, it just makes sense.”
When you spend that kind of money and still get bumps, it’s frustrating because it’s clear that it wasn’t meant for me
Bevel ships overseas to AFO, FPO, DPO military addresses so Naji ordered a kit for himself and two extras to share with others who were also stationed with him, one lucky recipient was Eric. “I remember the first night I used it, I wasn’t used to it. Bevel takes time at first, but once you get used it it, it does the work on its own,” Eric explains. “It’s a more grown man way of using a razor than what I was doing before. You can tell there’s pride in this product.” Naji nods in agreement: “It was the first time we learned the proper way to shave for our skin.”
Bevel salutes our active and veteran military personnel. In appreciation of your outstanding service and commitment, Bevel extends a 15% discount to all active duty military personnel, reservists, and retired or disabled veterans. Order your Bevel Shaving System today.