Barber shop-style hot towels are ideal for priming your beard, but they’re not practical at home. A hot shower will have a similar effect, opening pores and helping soften the beard.
A face scrub will help lift hairs, making them easier to cut. It will also remove the microscopic dead skin cells and dirt that’s been festering away on your face. By “sanding down” the surface of your skin with these products, you’re reducing the likelihood of razor drag and a bad shave.
Foam, cream or gel. What you choose as your main shaving product is your personal preference.
If you’ve got a really thick beard, find products designed specifically for tough stubble instead of your run-of-the-mill shaving cream or gel. This will add more lubrication, increasing glide and reducing the likelihood of your shave turning into a bloodbath. Using a face scrub before shaving can also make those coarse hairs easier to cut.
To get a close shave, pull a patch of skin tight with one hand and, in one controlled movement, sweep the blade across the area, following the direction of the hair growth. Don’t use small, jerky movements or continually scrape away at the same patch. This will only cause more irritation. If the shave isn’t close enough, re-lather the area and go over it again. This time you can go against the grain if you absolutely have to.
3. AFTER SHAVE CARE
Shaving is a pretty hard on the skin, which makes after shave care just as important as preparation. A lot of guys still use an alcohol-based after shave or fragrance when they’re done. This could be the worst thing you can do because the alcohol in these products dehydrates skin and may increase the chance of post-shaving problems.
After splashing your face with cold water to help close pores, reach for a soothing after shave product. Whether you choose a balm, lotion or gel is up to you – just find something that isn’t mostly alcohol because that’ll dry out the skin. NIVEA MEN Sensitive After Shave Balm has no drying alcohols added. It helps soothe skin and lessen that irritated feeling.