If you choose to shave your body hair, you know what a pain in the butt it can be. Even though the feel of silky smooth skin is so rewarding, the process of shaving and trying to keep regrowth at bay for more than 12 hours is a hassle. Cuts and nicks, razor cartridges, shaving cream, lotion, razor bumps, ingrown hairs—the list of shaving frustrations goes on.
Shaving requires more maintenance and upkeep than waxing, epilating, or laser hair removal, but it is the easiest method to do at home and is the most cost effective. If you’ve tried everything, like we have, you’ll know all the tips and tricks to get the closest and longest-lasting shave possible.
Exfoliating is key when it comes to a close shave. Whether you’re shaving your legs, your underarms, or even your face, exfoliating the area before going in with a razor is important. Why? Because exfoliation gets rid of oils, debris, dead skin and more. These things all get caught in razor blades and clog the razor, which makes it more prone to snag.
A clogged razor leads to cuts, kicks, ingrown hairs, razor burn, and more irritation. When you exfoliate before shaving, you are presenting a smooth canvas so the razor can glide across your skin without catching and while cutting the hairs as close as possible.
- Use a safety razor
The biggest upgrade to our shaving game was tossing the drugstore plastic razor in exchange for a stainless steel safety razor. With a safety razor, there is no plastic waste, the blades are less than 50% of the cost, and you get a closer and more gentle shave.
A safety razor uses one two-sided blade rather than multiple smaller blades. Conventional shaving marketing tells us more blades equals a closer shave, which could not be further from the truth. More blades create more irritation. Shaving with a safety razor takes a bit of getting used to—the head doesn’t pivot and you have to move slowly—but the overall effect is a longer-lasting smooth shave.
Our pick? The Albatross SHAVES the World from Plastic Razor – ($24.99 – Click here). And a 10 pack of replacement blades is only $2.50!
- Lather up
The more slip the better. Never, ever shave dry. That is one of the worst things you can do for your skin.
Shaving in the shower or bath softens the skin and the hair to make the shaving process smoother and less irritating. A thick body wash, shaving cream, or even a moisturizing soap lessens the chance of cutting yourself. You want the razor to glide over your skin, not get stuck on a dry patch.
- Lotion is your friend
Not applying lotion after shaving is a mistake that’s all too easy to make. You step out of the shower feeling hydrated and smooth, but as soon as your skin dries it will crave some serious moisture. Try a simple and soothing lotion with aloe, shea butter, or even oatmeal to calm the skin and seal in the moisture. Avoid heavily perfumed lotions, as heavy fragrance can irritate your skin.
- Replace your blades
Razor cartridges can be expensive, so it’s tempting to hold onto the same blades as long as possible. If you reuse them too much, however, they will become dull, causing dreaded ingrown hairs, razor bumps, and more.