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What is Stropping? Do You Need It and How Do You Do It?

If you’re new around the world of wet shaving, you for sure have heard  the term “stropping”. We’re going to break down exactly what that is and how to do it, so sit tight. 

Stropping a razor refers to the process that polishes, straightens and readies the blade to be used. This is done usually with a flexible fabric such as cotton, linen, denim, felt or leather. Believe it or not, this process does not actually sharpen the blade, but instead just allows for a closer smoother shave.

How to Strop Your Razor

Although quite simple, the process of stropping needs a soft touch and a little patience. The good news is that no matter what type of strop you have, the technique remains fairly similar. 

  1. With the blade facing away from you, set the razor on the surface of the strop. Softly drag the razor across the surface, leading with the spine. Be sure to use a light touch.
  2. When you reach the end of the strop, turn it so the blade is facing toward you and roll it in the other direction. Be sure to roll the razor flat against the strop instead of on its edge to prevent damage to either item.
  3. For smaller strops, do this process alternatively to ensure the entire blade is taken care of. This stropping method is called the “x stroke”. For a more in depth visual of this technique, watch this video here.


Take your time and go slow. Use very light pressure when dragging your razor. Although you may have seen otherwise in the media, resist the temptation to rapidly strop your razor quickly as it will ruin your strop.

Now that you understand the importance of stropping, it’s time to choose your own strop. The classic choice would be a leather hanging strop. A good quality strop can last you years if properly maintained. Royal Shave Latigo Leather Strop comes with a handle and is 3” wide. It is a high quality leather, that has been cured for the perfect draw and allows the perfect tension while stropping.
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