Considering that most men shave almost every day, it’s surprising how many don’t really know what they’re doing. Irritated red skin, razor burn, breakouts, ingrown hairs and itching from shaving can all be avoided with the use of proper products and a few easy lessons in proper shaving technique. Follow these simple steps and you’ll be on your way to becoming a true master shaver!
1: It’s NOT About The Razor
We’ve all seen the adverts but regardless of how cool they make it seem the “new power-ultra-control-astronaut razor with 15 blades” isn’t actually the key to a good shave. In fact, most professional barbers use regular safety razors with 1 blade, or even old-timey straight razors that are essentially knives. The reason for this is simple. When it comes to shaving it’s all about sharpness. The sharper the blade the better the shave. Aside from being harder to use, multi-blades need replacing more often and cost well more than your average single blade safety razor to replace. If you shave most days, just get a single blade razor, replace the blade every week or two and you’re sorted. Electric shavers are great for regular maintenance, but can cause a lot of skin irritation.
2. Gather Your Lather
Most of us probably just throw any old can of shaving foam or gel in the shopping cart occasionally, not worrying too much about the particulars. It’s all just the same stuff, right? Nope. Cheap supermarket foam will dry out your sensitive face skin, bro! And trust me, dry skin will make for a nightmarish shave. Clear gels are brilliant for maintaining the edges of a moustache or one of those really complicated beards, but not for much else.
If you’re serious about shaving, try a good shaving cream or a more exclusive shaving foam, perhaps this great-smelling Terre d’Hermes concoction? These lubricate the skin without drying it out or clogging the pores and prime the stubble for shaving. Shaving cream is best when used with a proper shaving brush. The brush makes it so much easier to lather up and helps lift the hairs and coat them with a healthy layer of cream. Also, your morning routine get way less messy and makes you feel like proper gentleman!
3. Hold On A Minute!
This is a really important step for an well executed shave and also one that we think a lot of guys get wrong. To be honest, It took me a long time to realize. When you’ve lathered up with your choice of cream or foam make sure to hang back for a minute or two, the longer the better. Pro tip: lather up, brush your teeth and then shave. Letting the cream sit on your skin for a while really softens up your stubble and lets you get all the hair in one go.
4. Shave Away
Easy now! You probably already know about going with the grain of the hair already. If you do the opposite, prepare for skin irritation and ingrown hairs. Work your way across on the face with downward strokes. Another thing that really facilitates a shave is heat. This keeps your pores open, your stubble soft and your skin moistened. Shave just after you get out of the shower and the bathroom’s still steamy and you’ll find you get done a lot faster.
5. The Grand Finale
One of the most important parts of a successful shave is the finish. Washing your face with cold water afterwards is a simple way to avoid inflamed skin. A nice aftershave doesn’t just smell and feel good, the alcohol and natural ingredients inside reduce skin irritation and actually prevent inflammation of any cuts. Despite the name, an aftershave lotion is the classic liquid form while an aftershave balm is a thicker solution you massage into the skin. Before you go, allow us to suggest some great aftershaves!
Acqua Di Gio Aftershave – An immortal all-rounder aftershave with an aquatic vibe. Refreshes and calms the skin.
Terre D’Hermes Aftershave Lotion – this fantastic scent is inspired by earth, air and water and starts off fresh only to go into a crisp, smoky earthiness as it develops on the skin. A real journey of an aftershave that goes well with the shaving foam recommended above.
Tom Ford Noir Aftershave 75ml Balm – Tom Ford’s products are always loaded with cool and this excellent aftershave balm feels great on the skin and smells of warm spices, patchouli and pepper.