Men's shaving for sensitive skin - Reducing shave burn, shaving irritation and razor bumps

Shaving bumps, irritation and razor burn in men with sensitive skin can be caused by hair being trapped under the skin. As the hair grows, it is trapped by the skin and grows inwards creating razor bumps, ingrown hairs and shaving irritation. It is common with curly hair. When the hair regrows and breaks the surface, it curls and then grows into the skin. Another reason for getting irritation or razor bumps could be caused by the wrong technique. I hope my solutions below will help in reducing your ingrown hairs, razor bumps when shaving and make for a smooth shave when you have sensitive skin.

Well groomed gentleman - Sensitive skin men's shaving

Your razor bumps or post shave irritation might also be caused by a virus or bacteria, which is more serious. See a dermatologist to make sure you don’t have something more serious or if you have allergies to any of your shaving creams or post shave products.

The most obvious solution would be to stop shaving and grow a beard, however this won’t work for most. Some unhappily use an electric shaver which don’t give you a good shave...

If you don't want a beard or need to shave our #1 recommendation is to switch to a one blade razor also known as a single edge razor, double edge safety razor, DE razor or single edge shaver...they all use one sharp blade. We offer a wide variety of options for skin type but if you don't decide to choose one of ours, then go with some one else. This is the wonderful world of wet shaving. We recommend the double edge safety razor for a number of reasons:

1) A single sharp, clean blade, as opposed to a plastic multiple blade cartridges, will minimize the risk of cutting your facial hair below the skin. This is one of the primary reasons for ingrown hair and shave irritation.

2) One single edge clean, sharp blade will minimize any irritation on the skin. One blade (single edge) or double edge razor blades are a few cents vs a cartridge razor. You will be more inclined to replace a $.10 blade versus an expensive $3+ plastic shaving cartridge.

3) Traditional wet shave products are easier to clean than cartridge razors. Plastic cartridge blades are notorious for trapping dirt, hair, skin and bacteria.

Shaving and sensitive skin - how to reduce razor burn, razor bumps and ingrown hairs

The below tips will help regardless of how you wet shave. We will attempt to provide some solutions and options for you to explore to make your shave an enjoyable irritation free shave. I will provide solutions and make suggestions in 5 sections, shaving preparation, shaving, post shave, hardware and ingredients to consider:


Shaving Preparation:
A few tips you might consider for shaving preperation with sensitive skin include:

1) Moisturize your skin about 10 to 15 minutes prior to shaving, this will help soften and lubricate the skin prior to a shave

2) Use a pre-shave oil (or hair conditioner) prior to applying your shave cream This will give a lot more shaving cream slickness and lubrication for the single edge blade (or cartridge razor) to glide on your skin.

3) Consider a soft scrub prior to shaving, this will help in removing dry, dead skin.

4) Make sure your skin is warm and wet – shave right after or in the shower. This will soften your hair, open your pores, remove dead skin and help to lubricate your skin.

5) Make sure to pick a shaving cream that is slick. You can use a shaving soap or a shaving cream, avoid the canned shaving cream they could dry out your skin.

Sensitive skin in african american - Men reduce razor bumps, men's razor irritation, reduce razor burn with curly hair, reduce ingrown hairs when shaving


Shaving:
The art of shaving, men’s shaving techniques are very much a learned experience, regardless of whether you use plastic disposable razors, plastic multiple blade razors or a double edge safety razor (single edge shaver). Some common tips for men with sensitive skin include, mastering your shaving technique:

1) Slow down your shave, don’t shave quickly. This will reduce nicks and irritation.

2) Avoid going over your skin more than one time with no cream on the face. Apply the lather and take 1 short stroke. When the cream is gone, don’t shave in that area again. Rinse and apply more lather before another pass of your razor, if needed.

3) Use a shaving brush, the brush will help exfoliate, remove dead skin potentially freeing any ingrown hairs. A shaving brush will also raise your hairs in preperation for the blade. We use a synthetic shaving knot however you can also get natural badger hair shaving knots or horse hair shaving brushes.

4) Avoid pulling the skin tight when shaving. This works great if you don’t have sensitive skin but it can cause irritation by causing you to shave too close.

5) Shave in the direction the hair grows, shaving against the grain can irritate the skin. I talk in more detail about learning the grain direction of your hair here. Shaving against the grain will cause more irritation, if you require a second pass to get a closer shave, shave across the grain for a second pass. With sensitive skin you don’t want to shave too close.

How to shave with sensitive skin - Know how your hair growsPhoto above shows the direction my hair grows

After Shave or post shave:
The strategy of a post shave routine is to reduce irritation, this is an important step. A few tips that might help include:

1) Rinse well after each pass of your razor. Rinse after the shave with warm water and then finish up with a cold water splash to close the pores. Rinse thoroughly as you want to remove all the debris including bits of hair and dead skin.

2) Pad dry your skin with a soft towel, do not rub.

3) Use a lotion or aftershave balm, this will soften the skin. If it burns, then you need to reevaluate your prior steps. You want a soothing after shave feel.

4) Avoid shaving every day.

5) Don’t pluck hairs, this can cause infections!

After shave and shaving balm for sensitive skin

 

Check out this video by KenSurfs youtube channel, take a look at his technique and routine, he uses a lot of these best practices in this video:



Hardware (What shaver is the best?):

1) Choosing your men’s shaving and grooming kit is important, pick a safety razor with small blade exposure. We offer 4 different types of precision machined base plates to customize your shave. We talk about the design of our different 316L stainless steel base plates here. Based on what my customers have said, the mild, the + or maybe the ++ plate would be your best choice. The Original has the most blade exposure…not for sensitive skin. If you need to shave every day choose the mild, if you shave every 2-3 days, the + might be a better choice. The ++ with a Nacet blade, if you shave once a week…

Best base plate and razor for sensitive skin

2) Change your blade often. The price of single edge blades is very inexpensive, we are talking pennies. Usually I can do 3-4 shaves with a blade, unless my wife borrows it! My best shave is usually from a second time use blade…

3) Keep your hardware dry, if you shave in the shower keep your shaver out of the shower, if you can. A damp razor can grow bacteria and other molds.

4) The same for your shaving brush, keep it dry and clean.

5) Choose a razor with a high polish if you have sensitive skin. All our razors come with a polished surface which minimizes cracks and crevices where bacterial can collect. The polished surface also allows it to be easily cleaned. Another benefit of a smooth surface is it will have a slicker surface to minimize drag on your face. More about safety razor finishes and metal surfaces here.

6) Blade choice will swing the experience regardless of what double edge safety razor you use. We have found Gillette Blue, Gillette Nacet feel milder…the Kai or the Feather blade are sharp and prone to irritation. You can buy sampler pack of blades online. It’s a fun part of the wet shaving journey…

  7) Consider a light weight titanium razor, the low weight will naturally make you use less pressure when shaving.

Close-up view: Smooth polished surface safety razor - one blade razor - single edge shaver

Ingredients to consider:

Creams ointments and treatments for sensitive skin including razor burn, ingrown hairs and razor bumps

Your dermatologist can help more but here are some ingredients you might avoid in your men's shaving soaps, shaving creams, aftershave and after shave balm as they could be irritants:


Cinnamin
Triethanolamine (TEA) ...
Parfum (fragrance) ...
Polyethylene Glycol or PEG. ...
Palmitic Acid. ...
Isopentane. ...
Sulfates. ...
Polytetrafluoroethylene.

You should check with your dermatologists but some men’s shaving irritation treatments and possible men's shaving rash cures and treatments to consider:


Salicylic acid
Glycolic acid
benzoyl peroxides
Witch hazel
Coconut oil
Aloe vera
Tea tree oil

Light weight titanium for sensitive skin


We would love to hear from you if you find other solutions...comment on the blog below if you have any other suggestions or questions. Feel free to reach out to us anytime here, we love to talk all things shaving. We think we have a solution for you...

 

 

 

 

 

Misc. At CarbonShavingCo notes: Wet shaving is a bit of an artistic form. It is personal to your skin type, which dictates the type of soap and shaving brush you will be using. Opting between a straight razor or safety razor (disposable razors won't be the best of experiences at all). Use of some hot water to open up your pores and soften the facial hair is a good thing. When it comes to the skin condition, such as sensitive skin, razor bumps and at times hair growth in multiple directions extra care and consideration must be taken to avoid razor burn caused by dry shaving, lack of lubrication, wrong direction, etc.. At CarbonShavingCo, our construction of our razors aim to be bacteria-free as much as possible to help avoid allergic reactions by being polished with easy to clean surface, the design maximizes flow of debri, the pinch design reduces gaps for collection of debri and germs, we aim to help people with sensitive skin and prevent razor burn and ingrown hairs. and irritation caused by shaving. We believe that wet shaving is the best approach with a good shaving soap as opposed to using men's disposable razors. Keeping your gear clean is so important if you are sensitive. Join the community of wet shavers today to learn more so you can enjoy your personal spa experience.

 


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