Multitask to Save Time
If you want to shave a few minutes off your morning routine, don't be afraid to batch up your grooming tasks. Brushing, flossing, shaving, and even nail-clipping can all be done in the shower with no ill effects.
Watch the Temperature
While a piping-hot shower is certainly satisfying, it does come with consequences. Overly hot water strips skin of natural oils, leading to dryness and irritation later, so stick to lukewarm water for best effect. If you really want to rack up the benefits, you can also end your shower with an ice-cold rinse: the temperature will increase blood circulation, and help close hair follicles to minimize frizz.
Scrutinize Your Tools
You may not think that a loofah or washcloth has any problems with cleanliness, but both can be magnets for mold and bacteria. Make sure to change them regularly (replace your loofah once a month, and change your washcloth every few days) and let them dry out completely between each use. Better yet, ditch them altogether and get a Salux cloth instead, which resists holding water and comes with exfoliating properties as well.
Refine Your Shampoo Technique
Every man should decide for himself how often to shampoo, but when you do decide to lather up, make sure you do it right. While many men go for even distribution of suds, you should focus your attention on your scalp and roots, where oil and grime tend to build up. In contrast, avoid washing the ends too much to minimize dryness and split ends.
Don't Overdo It on Conditioner
Most brands recommend letting conditioner sit for a few minutes once you apply, but this is a common misconception. By the time you reach for conditioner, your hairs will be saturated with water molecules, making it impossible for the formula to penetrate very far. Instead, most of the benefits come from coating the surface of hair, so you can rinse soon after application and save a few precious minutes.
Shave at the End
If you do decide to shave in the shower, make it the very last stepor at least wait a minimum of 4-5 minutes. This will give the heat and moisture time to soften up your scruff, making it easier to cut, thus leading to a closer (and less-irritating) shave.
Defog Your Mirror
Perhaps the biggest disadvantage of a shower shave is the fact that it's performed blind. However, if you have a miniature mirror on hand, there's an easy workaround: Just wipe the surface down with shave cream, and it won't fog up once the steam starts to rise.
Dry Your Hair Properly
While it seems fairly natural to rub your hair down with a towel, this isn't always the best approach. A towel can actually draw too much moisture from hair, leading to excess dryness and frizz later on. Instead, pat your hair dry with an old cotton t-shirt: The material will soak up just enough water, and leave your hair feeling soft and smooth.
Moisturize Right After
When it comes to both moisturizer and body lotion, time is of the essence. Apply both as soon as you've finished drying, when your skin is still slightly damp: This will lock in the maximum amount of moisture and help the formulas do their work.
Copywriter, cold brew advocate, purveyor of handcrafted birthday haikus since 2009.