This article is a summary of the results of four years of investigation on the subject of shaving conducted at Mellon Institute. Our purpose in the study was to ascertain the factors that are involved in obtaining a satisfactory shave, to learn their relative importance and to find such additional information, either in the preparation of the face or in the design of razors, that would lead to improvement in the technic of this daily task.
It is said that it was Scipio the younger1 who introduced shaving as a daily procedure among the Romans. But of course pogonotomy,2 or shaving, is a much older art. Archeological excavations have uncovered objects in most ancient civilizations, including Egypt and Babylonia,3 which today are regarded as razors. The Bible4 contains decrees regarding shaving. Barbers were a distinct group of artisans as early as 400 B. C. in Greece.