St Johns Blog

Steam, Aftershave, and Other Ways To Master the Ultimate Shave

Shaving is typically part of a man’s daily grooming routine. Regardless of one’s facial hair situation, it’s safe to assume that the goal is to achieve a close, clean, smooth, and painless shave every time. 

Even if you’ve been shaving for decades, now is the time to hone your routine, especially with one that has your skin’s best interests in mind. Thankfully, there are so many techniques and products on the market to help you prepare your skin, shave effectively, and take care of your skin at the end of the process. 

Shaving can actually be a therapeutic experience and is one of the few inexpensive grooming practices a man can treat himself to on a regular basis. 

We’ve compiled a few tips and tricks so that your shaving routine is enjoyable, effective, and reflects the true gentleman that you are.

Get Your Skin Prepped

We realize that mornings may sometimes feel harried, but it’s important to not rush through the shaving process. To avoid irritation and still get a close, clean, and smooth shave, it’s necessary to prep your skin for the razor.

The easiest way to get your skin ready is to take a shower. The steam will open your pores and soften your facial hair for the blade, which means less nicks, bumps, and irritation. It’s likely you’ve seen barbers follow this practice by applying hot towels before shaving their customers.

While in the shower, wash your face with a cleanser that will remove dirt, oil, and other pollutants.

Keep your skin hot and moist, so shaving just after you get out of the shower is ideal. 

Arm Yourself With the Best Shaving Tools

Your skin is steamed, cleaned, and ready to be shaved. Now be sure that you’re equipped with the proper tools to achieve a great shave:

  • Shaving cream or gel: Lather up with shaving cream or gel. Let it sit for 2-3 minutes, as this really softens the hair, making it easier to shave.
  • Shaving brush: Take it one step further by purchasing a high quality shaving brush to lather and apply the shaving cream. A good brush can more effectively lift and coat the facial hair follicles.
  • Razor: Many professionals have commented that multi blade razors (read 6 blades!) are not necessary, as long as the blade is extremely sharp. Dull razors are the #1 culprit for skin irritation, and if you see even the slightest nick in the blade, discard it. If you shave almost daily, change blades every 1-2 weeks.

Go With The Grain

Especially if you have sensitive skin or thick facial hair, it’s important to shave in the downward direction (aka the direction that you can run your hand over the hair smoothly rather than  feeling the friction of resistance), as it protects your face from razor burn, bumps, or ingrown hair. 

While shaving against the grain may get you a closer shave, going against the grain will prove more problematic later on.

Don’t Forgo a Post-Shave Routine

Shaving is extremely hard on your face, as you’re not only removing hair, but peeling off skin with each stroke of the razor. That said, a post-shave routine is just as important as prepping your skin and the shaving process itself.

Step 1: Cold Rinse 

Once you’re done shaving, rinse your face with cold water, which will help close the pores and capillaries on your face. Cold water is actually better at retaining moisture in the skin, so don’t forgo this step!

Step 2: Pat Dry

Pat your skin dry with a soft towel to avoid irritation. 

Step 3: Apply Aftershave

As the final step to your shaving routine, protect your skin by using a high quality aftershave, which countless of benefits such as:

  • Reducing itching, swelling, and inflammation
  • Closing pores to reduce reduce breakouts, razor burn, or razor bumps
  • Helping shaving cuts heal quicker
  • Promoting the regrowth of skin tissue, which will protect your overall skin health
  • Giving a fantastic post-shave smell 

We suggest the bold, spicy, rich, and masculine scent of our original Bay Rum Aftershave. Not only has it been a storied classic for 70+ years, but it contains eucalyptus oil, which has soothing properties to aid in blood vessel dilation and increased blood flow.

How’s that for a post-shave routine?

Up Your Grooming Game

Gentleman, shaving doesn’t have to be a chore. With the right perspective and approach, you’ll come to find that your regular shave can be therapeutic and luxurious.

Remember that while the shaving process is natural and necessary, it leaves the skin vulnerable, which makes it extremely important to take your time, be prepared, and last but not least, incorporate aftershave. 

Here’s to smooth shaves and smelling like a gentleman in the days to come!

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