Shaving may not be something you particularly look forward to, but it’s a must for maintaining a close shave, grooming your facial hair, keeping your head looking silky smooth, and ensuring your manscaped areas make you feel confident and sexy. These do’s and don’ts will help you get your best shave every time.
1. DO Consider Trimming Your Hair First
For a clean, close, and smooth shave shorter hair is better. So, if you have more than a week of growth do a quick trim first. The longer your hair, the more resistance when you shave, especially if your hair is thick or curly. If you are shaving a small area you can use scissors to trim, but they’ll leave a hairy mess to clean up. If you have an electric razor, trim down to a 1 or 2 two first, then shave.
2. DON’T Skip Washing Your Face
Always wash your face, head, back, or body before you shave. This will remove oil, sweat, products, and anything that will prohibit a smooth shave. Washing first will also minimize post-shave acne and irritation because it removes germs and bacteria. Be sure to use a Hair, Beard and Body Wash made with natural ingredients that won’t strip your hair or skin.
3. DO Prep Your Skin First
Washing is the first prep step, but it’s not the last. You should exfoliate your face and body 2 to 3 times per week, so always shave after you exfoliate. Exfoliation sloughs away the dead skin that your body has yet to shed, which prevents you from achieving a smooth and clean shave. Use a loofa, granular exfoliator, or cream exfoliator. Whatever you use, be gentle.
Even if it’s not time to exfoliate, warm your skin before you shave. Warm, but don’t blast scalding hot water as it will irritate and inflame your skin, making your shave anything but comfortable. Instead, warm a damp hand towel in the microwave for 10 to 15 seconds. Place it on your face or shave area for 30 seconds to soften both your hair and skin.
4. DON’T Shave With A Dull Or Dirty Razor
Your razor must always be clean and sharp. Swish it in a small bowl of warm water after you shave to dislodge any hair or skin trapped in the blades. Avoid the temptation to clean with a toothbrush or toothpick. While small enough to remove clumps, they will wear down your blades.
Switch out your razor blade every 2 to 4 weeks, depending on how often you shave. For your face, this should be about every 6 shaves. For larger areas such as your head or back, you’ll need to change your blade more frequently. Finally, dedicate specific razors to each body area—face and neck, head, back, and manscaping.
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5. DO Use A Shave Gel Or Cream
Now that your skin is prepped and your razor is clean, it’s time to apply an easy-glide shave product. Each step in this list will minimize your risk for ingrown hairs and irritation, but when time is tight you might skip a step or two, but never skip applying a shave gel or shave cream.
Your shave product protects your skin and supports your shave process. While foams are a popular shave option, they flatten your hair creating friction when you shave. Foams are also thick making it difficult to see where you are shaving, which is required if you need to create a clean edge.
With a nourishing shave gel or cream, you can create a thin but easy-glide lather. Massage it into your face or shave area, then run your fingers against the grain so that your hair stands up straight or angles to provide for a closer shave.
6. DON’T Shave In Long Strokes
Even when shaving large areas, shave in short strokes, using your fingers or the position of your neck or body to create tension. This will ensure that you maintain a firm and steady pressure while you shave and provides time to rinse the blade clean for the next area.
7. DO Shave With The Grain
It’s a matter of preference for many, but any barber will advise that you shave against the grain. Some believe that if your skin is sensitive or prone to razor burns, bumps, or ingrown hair that you should shave with the grain. Nope! Instead, follow the steps above to prep your skin and hair to minimize post-shave irritation.
8. DON’T Skip Oil Or Balm
Your shave product moisturizes your skin before you shave, but you’ll need an added layer of moisture after you shave. Beard oil can be applied to any clean-shaven areas, and oil or balm should be applied twice daily to mustaches, goatees, and beards—even if you aren’t shaving. Oil is best for short to medium beards and balm is ideal for long hair, curly hair, or unruly hair. Both will nourish and moisturize your hair and the skin underneath. If your skin is ultra-dry, as it may be in the winter months, you can use balm on your face or layer with a facial moisturizer. This should be in addition to conditioning your beard at least twice a week.
9. DO Continue To Explore Your Options
Once you find the perfect razor, trimming tools, or facial hairstyle—continue to explore your options. Pay attention to new products or issue-specific products (such as full-body trimmers) that may work better for you. When it comes to full-body grooming products we invite you to browse Uncle Jimmy’s men’s grooming line which is an easy 3 to 6 step line that you can personalize to your individual needs.
10. DON’T Skip The Barber Or Salon
Even if you love your beard shape and can maintain your body hair at-home, continue to schedule professional services every 6 weeks or so. This will help you maintain a refined look, reshape your hair, and is the time to address any skincare, hair, or grooming issues.
Here’s to a clean and smooth shave every time!
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