Shaving is the curse of man. It means sensitive skin, ingrowing hairs, spots, cuts and a generally annoying activity that must take place every few days to stop yourself looking untidy. Many more men would have beards and moustaches if it wasn’t for nagging girlfriends and wives who complain that it irritates their face and other more sensitive areas. Imagine the days when there was no Gillette or Wilkinson Sword to help you out, how did cavemen get a trim? Did they rip it out?
There is, however, more than one way to ease the burden of shaving, and make your skin look as smooth as a baby’s bottom. Here is the best way to shave…
Make sure you wash your face thoroughly before shaving. Use an exfoliator and get right in between the hairs. This practice opens up the pores and makes for a smother blade run. It also cleanses the skin, preventing any cuts getting infected by lurking bacteria.
Squirt out a ball of shaving gel – about an inch and a half high – onto your hand. Work the shaving gel into your beard in a circular motion starting at the base of the neck and working upwards. Never use soap or facial wash. This will make for a painful and rough shave.
Make sure you rinse your blade in warm water between every stroke. Blades easily become clogged with hair, affecting their ability to cut hair smoothly.
Shave downwards from the top section of your beard to your jawline. Use consistent, controlled strokes. When shaving under your neck and chin, go with the grain by using upward strokes. This will prevent those annoying ingrowing hairs.
To make shaving around the moustache area easier, fold your top lip over your bottom lip to pull the skin taut.
Note: For an all round easier shave you can pull the skin taut with your other hand while you apply strokes. This will also reduce the chance of cutting yourself.
Rinse off excess shaving cream with warm water and analyse your skin for areas you may have missed. Shave these sections softly after rinsing your blade in warm water.
Use a high quality after-shave balm like L’Occitane, which blends shea butter and birchwood sap to reduce redness, razor burn and nourish the skin. Where possible choose natural ingredients, avoiding alcohol based creams that dry out the skin and make that “after shaving” sensation even more uncomfortable.
Further Shaving Tips:
– Blades last a lot longer than they used to, and companies say keep using them until the blue line starts to fade on the padded area. But going over 8 shaves with one blade seriously increases your chances of damaging your skin. The blades get blunter and you will find yourself back tracking over the skin, making it sore and prone to irritation. Nothing like the feeling of a fresh blade shave.
– If you leave your blade in the bathroom make sure it is covered. The sink area harbours bacteria transported from the toilet, the shower, the floor, people’s toothbrushes and sponges. When bacteria gets on your blade the chances of you getting spots or a rash is exponentially increased.