Not only the appearance, but of more importance, the general health and vigor of the lawn is contingent on a good mowing routine. Only a sharp, properly adjusted mower set to the minimum of 2 1/4" in height should be used.
Rotary mowers are the most common mowers for homeowners. It is important to keep the mower blades sharp so that the grass blades are cut cleanly. Too often this is overlooked, causing the blades to tear and rip causing "white tipping."
Change the direction and pattern each time you mow. If you mow repeatedly in the same direction, the mower tends to push the grass over rather than cut it cleanly. Eventually the grass begins to lean in the direction mowed.