5 Tips to a Better Shave

It’s bad enough that we have to take up valuable shower time shaving our legs, armpits, and beyond. But then you’ve got all those shaving mishaps: razor burn, nicks, and the ultimate bad guy—ingrown hairs. That's why we asked Diane Wood, master barber and self-proclaimed Queen of Shaving, how we can have a more copacetic relationship with our razor.

Step Away From the Body Wash

We’re guilty of using hair conditioner or body gel to shave, but Wood says those products can clog razors and dry out skin. Opt for a specialty formula loaded with natural hydrators. We like whish’s Shave Crave, with shea butter, green tea, and coconut oil. For sensitive skin, Wood swears by pure grapeseed oil, which is proven to rejuvenate and revive skin through its antioxidant and anti-aging powers. It also improves elasticity and flexibility to keep skin healthy. Pick Your Tools Wisely

Try a lady-friendly design like Schick’s Hydro Silk Razor, which bends to wrap around tough spots like your knees. Avoid nicks and cuts behind the ankle by flexing your heel to stretch the skin while shaving.

Take Your Time

Here’s your excuse to hang out in the shower a few extra minutes: warm, thoroughly wet stubble is three times easier to shave. Woods likes to wait at least three minutes before breaking out the razor (plenty of time to shampoo, condition, and belt out a Justin Bieber tune). Once you’re done, wait an hour to allow your pores to close before applying deodorant or fragrance. If you have sensitive skin, try using an unscented body lotion.

Beat Razor Burn

Place a damp chamomile tea bag in the refrigerator and allow it to chill. When it’s nice and cool, apply directly on the affected areas. Leave the tea bag on for about 15 minutes. The cold constricts blood vessels to calm swelling and the tea bag is easier on the skin than an ice cube. Alternatively, reach for Mylanta. “Milky antacids do the same externally that the do internally: soothe and coat,” says Woods. “Simply pour a bit on a cotton pad and hold it on the razor burn for five minutes.” …And Inflammation

Aspirin is a potent anti-inflammatory when applied topically—it works to soothe redness and eliminate irritating bumps,” says Woods. For a post-shave soother, she suggests combining two crushed aspirin, one tablespoon of water, and one teaspoon of liquid glycerin (available at drugstores). When the aspirin has dissolved completely, swipe the mixture over just shaved areas.

DIY Ingrown Hair Buster

Woods clears away ingrown hairs with an easy DIY exfoliator. Her recipe: Mix honey with olive oil and blend together, then add granulated sugar until you form a paste. She says, “The sugar provides the exfoliation, the olive oil helps moisturize, and the honey (which has other great beauty qualities) makes this mix taste yummy!”

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