Getting a great shave is not very difficult—if you know the right tricks, of course.
Avoiding blemishes like razor burn, ingrown hairs, and cuts is easy when you understand the right (and wrong) ways to shave and how to properly care for your skin.
Many people use their own tricks for getting a great shave. However, keep in mind that everyone’s skin is different. So, the skin care routine that works for your buddy may not necessarily work for you.
With that being said, there are also some universal best practices for shaving, which we will review below.
There are several basic wet shaving practices everyone should know, such as using warm water to open the pores, washing before you shave, shaving with the grain, and so on. Ensuring that these are a part of your shaving routine helps keep skin healthy, nourished, and blemish free.
Furthermore, rather than hacking away at the hair while you shave, using a good razor will cut the hair properly and safely. This significantly reduces shaving blemishes and breakouts.
Better Shaving Tips
Mastering shaving basics can also keep your face smooth and healthy. Some shavers use a few shaving tricks to help them get an unbelievable shave; others use all of them.
Here are eight ways that are proven to give you a better shave:
- Ignore Hair Growth Myths: Many shavers swear that the more you shave, the thicker hair grows back. This is purely a myth. In order for hair to grow back thicker, the hair shaft would have to expand. Shave as often as you feel necessary; your hair will retain its thickness.
- Protect Your Skin: Use sunscreen. Every day. Even if you aren’t spending the day out on the beach, the sun’s rays are still harmful and can do damage even during your 5-minute walk to work. Sunburns strip the skin of its natural lubricants, leaving skin dry and dehydrated.
Furthermore, without sufficient moisture in the skin, the blade of your razor will not glide as easily along the face, causing increased friction. Increased blade friction results in blemishes. Do your skin a favor and use sunscreen. Choose a sunscreen that is at least 25 SPF for optimal protection.
- Shower First: Showering opens the pores and softens skin. If you are under a time crunch, then wash your face with warm water. However, the time spent in the shower combined with the indirect exposure of warm water to your face is the best way to optimize your shave.
- No Sting: So, you’ve finished your shave and you are looking pretty good. Next, you apply aftershave and then notice red, blotchy blemishes. What gives? It’s the alcohol. Alcohol is responsible for the sting and it also dries out your skin. Use a nourishing post-shave balm instead.
- Take Your Time: If you rush, you’ll get cut. It’s that simple. Rushing encourages longer passes with the razor. These passes accumulate debris on the blade. Debris creates an uneven shave and increases the risks for shaving cuts and nicks. Take your time, and use short and steady passes to shave.
- Start Warm, Finish Cold: We are referring to water temperature here… Everyone knows you need to use warm water to shave. However, some argue that cold water rinsing is better. Both are correct here, but it’s the order that matters most.Start off with warm water, then finish your shave off with cold water. Cold water reduces skin inflammation the same way icing an injury keeps it from swelling.
- The Lip Trick: The worst place to cut yourself is your lips. The skin on your lips is incredibly thin, and when they are cut, they seem to bleed forever. An easy to trick is to puff up your cheeks with air and glide the blade around your lips. This makes the hair stand up and reduces cuts.
- Leave the Neck for Last: The neck is a common shaving problem area that results in skin irritation. Leave shaving your neck for last. This allows sufficient time for the shaving cream and warm water to open the pores with greater efficacy.
Tricks of the Shaving Trade
Every shaver has his own shaving tricks they abide by. As you experiment with your own shaving tricks and techniques, play close attention to how your skin looks and feels after you shave. Over time you will find what works best for you.