A Haircut and a Shave – Stephen’s Grooming Expenses

I am reading David McCoullough'sThe Greater Journey, Americans in Paris.  Napoleon III sports a goatee and waxed handlebar mustache during the 1870s. The same style is popular among men in the United States. And, so are longer hair and bushy side-whiskers or a full beard such as worn by Ulysses S. Grant.

Yet, Stephen appears clean-shaven with shorter hair in photos from 1870. The diary notes several haircuts and shaves during that school year. His appearance is important enough to visit the barber about once a month.

How does a right handed person, avowed in the Left Handed Penmanship Competition, shave with a straight razor?