Your Top Shaving Questions Answered
Shaving has perplexed man since…well…since it has been around. With so many products, tools and techniques available, it’s no wonder the questions abound.
In an effort to provide some guidance, we decided to take some of the most commonly asked shaving questions we get and shed some light on the subject. How do you avoid razor burn? What causes ingrown hairs? What’s the best technique to use? How do you get a more comfortable and even shave? Read on. We’ll answer them all.
How do I prevent razor burn and bumping?
To avoid razor burn and bumping (this also helps with ingrown hairs), the goal is to soften the beard and the skin, expand the pores and relax facial muscles. Prior to shaving gently cleanse the skin, using warm water to rinse. Follow with a warm, damp cloth placed over the face. The steam from a warm shower can also do the trick. Now you’re ready to shave.
Use a combination of Shave Oil (applied first) and Shave Gel (layered over the oil and applied with a badger brush). This prevents tugging by providing optimal lubrication for the skin. Use a clean, sharp razor (we like the double-edge razor) and rinse under warm water as needed. Finish up with a splash of cool water, a skin-strengthening toner like Stone Power, and avoid cologne on the freshly shaven area.
Is it best to shave against the grain or with it?
Shaving against the grain can actually lead to razor bumps (ingrown hairs) and skin irritation. Shave with the grain for a more comfortable shave and to prevent ingrown hairs and razor burn. You might also try shaving across the grain for a closer shave.
Is there a way to prolong shaves or the time between shaves?
The trick here is to soften the hair and the skin (much like the routine suggested for preventing razor burn). To do that, start with a gentle cleanse using warm water then apply a warm, damp cloth to your face. You might also try shaving just after your shower. The steam from the warm shower will help soften the beard and skin, open pores and relax facial muscles allowing for a closer shave, which will help prolong the time between shaves.
Is there a difference between shaving cream vs. shaving gel applied with a brush?
There is a very noticeable difference, not only in the overall enjoyment factor, but also in the skin’s appearance. Using a badger brush to apply shave gel produces a richer lather, loosens the beard, stimulates circulation, and just feels good. To boot, since it loosens the beard and softens the skin, it helps prevent razor burn and ingrown hairs.
I get a lot of nicks when I shave. Is there a way to avoid this?
It’s all about the proper preparation. Again, you will want to start with a gentle cleanse using warm water and a warm, damp cloth. Steam from a warm shower can also achieve this. After you’ve soften the hair and skin, opened the pores and relaxed the facial muscles, apply shave oil followed by shave gel (applied with a badger brush to further help open pores and soften the skin). The shave oil and gel combination will increase “razor slip,” which will help prevent nicks.
Hope this brief Q&A helps with your next shave. Next week I’ll delve further into the shave tools that make for a great shave (and possibly even reduce the amount you have to shave!).