It has been calculated that over the course of his life a man will spend over 6 months with a razor in his hand in an attempt to keep his facial hair trimmed. Spend this time wisely by learning the tips and tricks of the trade to get the perfect close shave each and every morning. It may take a little longer than your normal morning scraping but times will improve as you become accustomed to your new regimen.
As with anything in life, if you fail to prepare then you are preparing to fail. Before you even pick up that shaving foam or razor you should determine your skin type to best ascertain what type of product works best for you. Dry skin will require you a shaving oil whilst oily or greasy skin is better suited to foam, cream or soap. Whichever you use, exfoliating before shaving will avoid those horrible in-growing hairs that can occur as well as removing bacteria and excess oil from your skin.
Before you apply your choice of shaving agent to your face open your pores and soften the whiskers by applying a hot, damp towel to your face for around 60 seconds. Now apply your cream or oil to your face with a brush or by the use of rubbing in with your fingertips which raises the hair follicles and makes it easier to shave closer.
Your choice of razor is an important one and can really only be decided by your preference. A straight razor provides a cleaner and more precise cut, but can be a little unnerving for those unused to the shape and handling. A heavy handled manual razor can produce excellent results and is easily used and manipulated across the skin, and of course there are always electric razors for those that cannot handle a fixed metal blade. One style to avoid in electric razors are those that shave using rotary heads due to the fact that the way these shave in all directions means that they are more prone to creating in-growing hairs.
Whichever style you use don’t make the mistake of applying too much pressure or your face will end up looking like you have fallen into a tiger’s enclosure at the zoo. You should shave with your grain and pull the skin tight with your fingers whilst passing your razor in a fluid and steady motion over your face. If you need a finer shave then repeat the process and if you feel your blade catching or snagging then it is time to change your blade.
Finalise your morning routine by splashing your face with cold, even icy water to close your pores and remove any oil or cream left behind. Pat your face dry with a soft towel; never rub and never use alcohol based products as it promotes dryness and wrinkles. Now moisturise; there are many products available to suit your skin type. Vitamin E is always a favourite as it can prevent and repair skin damage, or you could use Shea butter, said to protect your skin, chamomile to speed up skin recovery or even a caffeine based moisturiser to reduce any redness or rashes caused by your shaving.
If you must use aftershave or cologne, and this stands against everything that you have probably thought about their use, avoid splashing it on the shaved areas of skin. Instead dab spots on your earlobes or the sides of your neck to smell great. Remember that most of the time when it comes to cologne that less is more.