Shaving is one of the first things we learn how to do during our pubescent years, but it has proven to be an art form that’s difficult to master. Generations before us have given us their personal tips, but they might not always be the right ones. If you’re one of the millions around the world who struggles with getting the right shave, here are some tips and techniques for that perfectly smooth look we all want.
Ditch the Shaving Cream
Want to know the secret to a smooth shave? Ditch the shaving cream and switch to something more moisturizing. Try using baby oil, conditioner, shaving lotion, or even a bar of moisturizing soap instead of shaving cream. They’ll be easier to shave with and will give you a nice smooth finish.
Exfoliating your skin prior to shaving will actually help you achieve a more efficient shave and smoother skin when you’re done. Use a moisturizing body, or face scrub on the area you’ll be shaving. Rub it on in a circular motion for about 30-60 seconds, rinse, then continue with your normal shaving routine. The exfoliation will get rid of dead skin and debris, doing wonders for your skin.
It’s important to keep your skin moisturized. Doing so will leave your skin supple and make shaving all that much easier. You can do so by exfoliating the layers of dead skin, using moisturizing products to shave with, and then applying plenty of luscious lotion after you’re done. Next time you shave, your skin will be healthier and better handle the glide of the razor.
Shave With and Against the Grain
I’m sure you’ve seen the internet weigh in on the debate of whether to shave with or against the brain. Which is better for your skin? The answer is both. It’s been said that shaving with the grain and then using short strokes against the grain will give you the best results and the smoothest shave.
Find the Right Razor
Finding the right razor for you is a big deal. Selecting the perfect shaving buddy is a matter of trial and error. Try out different brands and styles of razors, even straight razors if that’s your thing. This will be especially beneficial for people who have acne or other bumps on their skin that need special care during the shaving process. Once you find the razor you’re hooked on, shaving will never be the same again.
Use Hot Water
When shaving, using hot water will make all the difference. Shaving in the shower is the perfect way to produce a hot and steamy environment for a great shave. You’ll get a deeper shave due to the steam opening up your pores. If you prefer not to shave in the shower, cover a towel in warm water, wring it out, then cover the area you’d like to shave with the towel for a couple minutes or so to help open up those pores.
Don’t Shave Too Regularly
One secret to getting a great, smooth shave is to refrain from shaving too often. If you shave every day, you’re more likely to get razor burn and bumps, and you won’t get as deep of a shave. Waiting to shave allows your razor to grip the longer hairs better and pulls them out closer to the follicle.
Tighten the Skin
To prevent cuts and give yourself a smoother shave, try to tighten the skin around the area you’re shaving. If you’re navigating around a sensitive area or an area with a difference in texture, provide pressure above said area and push up on the skin to tighten it for a smoother and safer shave.
The Right Swipe Every Time
While many people can master the technical aspect of shaving, they might end up getting a little bit careless with their equipment. Before each swipe of the razor, it’s important to rinse off your blade for maximum effectiveness. Also, as soon as your blade starts to get dull, replace it as soon as you can. This will allow you to get a nice even shave without worrying about patchiness.
Naturally, when you’re cutting the hairs that grow out of your skin, your skin is going to become a bit more sensitive than usual. With that in mind, shaving makes it so that you’re more susceptible to damage from the sun. Try to stay covered up for about 24 hours after you shave, or use a strong sunscreen (30 SPF or higher) to avoid damage.
With all of this in mind, there’s no exact perfect way to shave that will leave your skin completely smooth for a long period of time without irritating the skin. However, there are plenty of wrong ways, and following these steps will help to avoid those ways.