The foam, the razor, the hot towel (and that stinging, stinging aftershave) – a combination that forms one of man's most satisfying rituals.
And it's a ritual that's been celebrated on screen, too, in iconic or character-defining scenes from some of history's greatest movies (and Crocodile Dundee).
Here, we round up our favourite on-screen shaves, from Charlie Chaplin's exasperating dancing barber in The Great Dictator to the ravings of an underworld maniac in Sexy Beast.
1 | Crocodile Dundee
He wrestles crocodiles, fights kangaroo hunters and kills snakes with his bare hands, but the legendary Crocodile Dundee still relies on a trusty disposable razor to keep his deeply-suntanned jawline looking fresh – that is, until Linda Kozlowski's journalist walks past, causing Dundee to pull out a bloody great hunting knife to finish the job. All together now, "that's not a knife..."
2 | Skyfall
With 2012's Skyfall, director Sam Mendes gave us a Bond bearing scars both pyhsical and mental. Uniquely for a 007 film, there was no "official" Bond girl here, with Judi Dench's M replacing the traditional female sidekick with a more maternal role. What we did get was Naomie Harris' Moneypenny giving a damaged Bond an extremely close shave while helping him regain some of that "00" confidence. Not only a great scene visually, but a tense reconciliation after Moneypenny "killed" Bond's in the opening sequence.
3 | Tootsie
Years before Robin Williams donned drag to spend time with his children, Dustin Hoffman starred in the story of an "difficult" actor dressing up as the fairer sex in order to secure a role on a soap opera. Demonstrating considerable commitment to the deception, Hoffman's character shaves his face, then his entire body before plucking his eyebrows. In preparation for the film Hoffman dressed up in the full outfit and walked the streets of New York, reasoning that if anyone turned their heads, or noticed he was in drag, the film wouldn't work. After all of that Hoffman was disappointed the make-up department was unable to make him "beautiful".
4 | The Untouchables
5 | Sexy Beast
6 | Bram Stoker's Dracula
Keanu Reeves has never been worse and even Gary Oldman couldn't save Francis Ford Coppola's ill-fated Dracula effort. Today, the only scene that stands up is this one of Reeves shaving as Dracula creeps ever closer behind him. Terrifying when you watched it as a child – although laughable now – the scene is guaranteed to make you paranoid next time you tackle that 5 O'clock shadow.
7 | The Royal Tenenbaums
8 | The Great Dictator
One of Chaplin's most iconic roles sees him star as a Jewish barber in the ghetto of a fictional country during a WW2-esque conflict. In this scene we're reminded of Chaplin's true physical genius. The fluidity of movement and sense of rhythm as he nonchalantly delivers one of the closest shaves in history may never be matched.
In terms of the quality of the shave, we recommend the still-bearded, post-shootout Eastwood may want to choose another barber.
Being on the run, on a train, is no excuse for sloppy personal hygiene as Cary Grant's character well knows. Forced to shave with Eva Marie Saint's tiny travel razor, Grant engages in playful bathroom banter with a bemused fellow passenger (the shaving equivalent of "mine's bigger than yours"). The dialogue upon emerging from the bathroom is even better: asked what took him so long Grant replies, "big face, small razor." Unflappable.
Tell us which is your favourite in the comments