How to Use a Knife Sharpener

A knife sharpener is a tool that often comes with your knife set.

Knife sharpeners are also known as steels.Knife sharpeners are also known as steels.
Most are long, metal rods attached to a handle with a protective butt to keep your hand from being cut while you sharpen. Using a knife sharpener is an straightforward process and can prevent injuries associated with trying to use blunt blades. Sharpen your knives before each use for the best cuts.

Place a dish towel on the kitchen countertop. Place the tip of the knife sharpener on the towel.

Hold the sharpener in one hand, keeping your fingers behind the protective butt of the handle. Grip the handle firmly.

Hold the knife in the other hand and press the heel of the blade against the steel above the butt of the sharpener.

Drag the edge of the knife down the sharpener as you pull it across at the same time. Drag the blade across and down the sharpener at a 10-degree angle.

Place the knife underneath the sharpener, and press the heel of the knife against the steel just above the butt of the sharpener.

Pull the knife down and across the sharpener in the same fashion to sharpen the opposite side of the knife.

Continue switching sides, sharpening each side of the knife 10 times.

Things You Will Need

  • Dish towel

About the Author

Based in Richmond, Va., Dawn Gibbs writes about topics such as history, fashion, literature, crafts, alternative medicine and healthy living. Her work has appeared on and several style websites. Gibbs holds a Bachelor of Arts in history from Virginia Commonwealth University.