There’s nothing worse than when you reach down to your legs expecting to feel your smooth and silky skin and instead you see red, bumpy, and painful blotches! No matter how long you’ve been shaving for, getting 100% razor burn-free skin 100% of the time is almost an impossible feat. That’s why we’ve compiled these tips to keep your skin happy, comfortable, and beautiful!
First of all, don’t forget to prep your skin. Once in the shower, exfoliate gently over the area you’re going to shave with a loofah, exfoliating scrub, or mitt. Also make sure you are using a new, or at least clean, razor. Razors provide a very comfortable environment for bacteria, and a dull razor will irritate your skin. Throw out your razors or replace your blade about every five uses, and make sure you rinse and even dip the razor into rubbing alcohol after every use to keep it clean. And of course, make sure you’re using shaving cream. Shaving dry is a sure way to saddle yourself with razor burn!
Your technique can be just as important as your blade! Use small strokes as opposed to long ones and make sure you’re not pressing too hard on your skin. It’s also said that going with the grain of the hair, as opposed to going against it will help prevent razor burn (if you shave from your ankle up to your knee, you’re going against the grain). However, going with the grain doesn’t give as close of a shave, but if you’re prone to razor burn, it might be worth that small sacrifice. At the very least, if you have to go over a spot twice when shaving against the grain, make sure you go with the grain on the second pass.
Once you’re done shaving, you’re not done yet if you really want to prevent razor burn! When you step out of the shower, make sure you pat the skin dry as opposed to rubbing it. The friction from the rub will only irritate your skin. Also make sure you’re putting something on your skin afterward and before lotion. Oatmeal has always been a go-to product for any kind of skin condition, so get yourself an oatmeal rub to help alleviate irritation. Aloe vera is also a good product to alleviate inflammation. Apply it to your skin and let it set for 5 to 10 minutes before rinsing it off. Coconut oil is also highly recommended, as it both hydrates the skin and calms the skin thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties. Moisturizing with a product containing cocoa butter, or unrefined cocoa butter will also assist in keeping your skin smooth.
It’s also important not to over-shave. Try waiting every other day between shaves, or every third day would be even better. This is especially important if you’re already sporting some nasty bumps—shaving over the bumps will only tear them open and irritate the skin even more. If it still persists, consider shaving alternatives such as hair removal cream, waxing, sugaring, or laser hair removal—which isn’t quite as expensive as you might think!