Shaving is often considered quick and easy—-just pick up a razor and drag it across your face until the beard is gone. Back in the day, this was considered a “rite” of passage and was a ritual handed down from father to son. Still, with the recent surge in commercialized shaving creams and different types of razors, the shift in terms of information has moved from apprenticeship to a quick google search.
The truth is that regardless of whether you’ve been shaving for years or not, there are crucial tips when it comes to shaving that we overlook. So, if you are not getting a good shave, consider these five shaving tips you probably didn’t know.
The key to a good shave is the preparation beforehand. The razor blades not only work more efficiently when the skin is cleaner, but you also avoid razor bumps often caused by drying and lack of proper stubble softening. So, remember to keep the skin hot and moist.
Experts recommend prepping the skin with lots of warm water and mild cleansers. Assuming you are shaving your face, make sure not to forget the neck.
2. Proper Lubrication
Over the years, you may have seen your father or any other man in your life shave, which inevitably means you might have adopted a few of the practices they had going on. But, when it comes to lubrication, it is not a one-size-fits-all, and what works for them may not necessarily work for you. Your skin needs lubrication to help the razor glide across the skin, and there are countless options, from shaving foams to gels and oils. Please make sure you lather it up and spread it across your face to ensure your skin is moisturized and your hair has been well softened before you begin to shave.
3. Do Not Go Against the Grain.
Essentially, this means not going in the opposite direction your hair is growing. Although you may get a cleaner shave doing this, you leave yourself susceptible to razor bumps and ingrown hairs. If you touch your stubble, you will notice some directions feel smoother than the rest—this is your “grain.” Therefore, it is key to always shave with the grain, but if you are using a single-blade razor, you may be able to cheat your way and go against it. Just make sure to use sharp razor blades and avoid going over an area more than twice, as this can irritate your skin.
4. Do Not Press Too Hard
It may seem like the best way to get a cleaner shave is to press on the razor blade, but what it earns you are small cuts and bumps. So, take your time and (assuming you have properly prepped) let the blade do all the work for you. If you feel you are struggling with trying to keep a smooth flow, it’s probably time to ditch that razor and get a new one. Remember to clean your razor blades and occasionally rinse them to avoid hair build-ups.
5. TLC doesn’t stop at the end of the shave
You may have been accustomed to quickly rinsing, wiping with your towel, and going about the rest of your day, but it doesn’t stop once you’ve put your razor blades down. It is crucial to properly treat your skin after you’ve shaved to keep it healthy and smooth. After you have rinsed your face with cool water, pat it dry immediately after and proceed to apply your aftershaves or moisturizers to provide your skin with irritation relief.
Remember, aftershaves and moisturizers are not the same. A moisturizer is usually a lot thicker in consistency. It relieves irritation and moisturizes the skin after shaving, while an aftershave is often used as an added layer to protect the skin. You can, of course, use them both concurrently. Just make sure you check your ingredients and avoid skin-drying products. Steer clear from products with alcohol as their primary ingredient.
Shaving doesn’t have to be frustrating or feel like a chore. When done properly, it can be (dare I say) fun. I hope these 5 tips offered some insights on practices you were never taught or never got the chance to pick up on.