It’s probably fair to say that many of have shaved at some point in our lives. Whether we choose to still shave is a matter of preference and I’m not here to tell you do shave, that is your own choice. I’m here to help you IF you choose to shave to ensure you do it the best way possible to avoid irritation, ingrown hairs, or nicks to the skin.
There seem to be a consensus among razor brands and “experts” in shaving that there are six steps to ensure you have a smooth shave and very little irritation. So, let’s start at the beginning.
- STEP 1: Soften the Skin
- This could be a short 10-minute soak in a warm tub, it could be simply putting a warm towel on the area for a few minutes. It’s important to soften the skin so that the hair releases easier.
- STEP 1.5: Exfoliate the area to be shaved. Whether you are shaving your legs, underarms, face, bikini line or anywhere else, take a moment to exfoliate. It helps remove any dead skin cells that would prevent you from making a clean shave.
- STEP 2: Coat Skin with Shaving Cream
- I’m a little less apt to use an expensive shaving cream only because it’s in a pink cannister and marketed towards women. Men have a shaving cream that not only works just as well but is a lot cheaper. And they do come in options for sensitive skin and scent free. There are options for shaving gels, oils, or soaps, but the important thing is that you use something to help the razor glide across the skin and prevent irritation.
- STEP 3: Reach for a Fresh Razor
- I agree that having a fresh razor is nice, but for the price of those razor blades and the fact that razor companies want to make money, it seems ridiculous to change it each time you shave. As long as the blade is not scratching your skin, or pulling at the hairs when you shave, then you should be fine with changing out the blade after shaving 3-4 times, depending on your preference.
- STEP 4: Go with the Grain
- Here is the big one that was an eye opener for me. As with most women, when we shave, we start at the bottom of our leg or underarm and stroke up with the razor. But here’s where experts and other beauty companies differ…they suggest that you shave the opposite way. Go with the grain of the hair. If it grows downwards then you shave downwards. The claim is that it prevents in-grown hairs and it’s less pulling. Let me know if you do this and if you find it to be true.
- STEP 5: Take It Slow
- When shaving we are not in a race to finish in less time than it takes the microwave to make us popcorn. Take your time. Shave in small areas at a time and don’t rush, or you will have tiny nicks all over your skin. If it takes you thirty minutes to complete the shaving challenge that we women face, then so be it. Just know that the fastest time doesn’t always mean that it is the best.
- STEP 6: Always Moisturize Afterwards
- After shaving, any part of your body, be sure to moisturize afterwards. You have just exfoliated and removed more protection of your skin, and you need to add some of that back. It takes only a few extra minutes to put on a nice body butter or even a comforting cucumber lotion. Whatever you choose to apply be sure it is appropriate for your skin, so you don’t get a rash on that soft smooth skin.
Be strong, be beautiful, be you