How to Achieve the Most Perfect Shave at Home
Once a time-honored ritual performed by our fathers’ barbers, shaving has since transformed into that morning chore that men have become averse to. Yet with the right tools and technique, shaving doesn’t have to suck. Ditch the five-o’clock shadow for your smoothest mug yet, barber’s appointment unnecessary.
1| Before you even pick up the blade, it’s important to prepare the skin. Hop in a hot shower, where the steam will open up the pores and hydrate the facial hairs, creating a smooth surface for the shave. If you’re doing this at night, achieve the same effect by draping a hot towel over your face.
2| After your hot shower or towel, instead of reaching straight for the shaving cream, massage a few drops of pre-shave oil onto your beard. This will quickly improve the quality of your shave: The oil will help the blade glide smoothly through hairs, even those in nooks and crannies, while protecting the skin.
1635 Pre-Shave Barber Oil by VMV Hypoallergenics
3| A good lather from a quality shaving cream already does half the job, but stay away from alcohol-based creams or gels that dry out the skin. Instead look for those with ingredients such as glycerin, which help moisturize the face. Also invest in a good shaving brush, which helps build up the lather and exfoliates the skin for a closer shave.
Maximum Comfort Shave Gel by Lab Series
Plisson for L’Occitane Shaving Brush by L’Occitane
4| Get naked—a naked blade, that is. A naked blade gets you as close as possible to the hairs for a truly clean shave. A straight razor is old-fashioned, luxurious, and also potentially dangerous if not used correctly. For a safer shave, go for a safety razor, which still features an open blade, without the risk of a horrifying Sweeney Todd situation.
Straight Razor by Parker
5| You’d want to go slow and gentle for your first time. We’re talking about the shave, of course. A good and sharp blade shouldn’t need much pressure, and using unhurried and steady strokes prevents that awful razor burn. For the first pass, you’ll want to follow the grain.
Safety Razor by Baxter
6| With your jaw finally hair-free, soothe your raw skin with aftershave to keep that smoothness throughout the day. Veer away from alcohol-based products, which can seriously dry out your skin, and go for those with anti-inflammatory properties such as aloe.
Post-Shave Soother by Clinique for Men