The Shave

black hair brush beside brown powder in clear glass jar
black hair brush beside brown powder in clear glass jar

Lets get the Shave right

Step 1: Pre-Shave Preparation
black straight razor beside beige ceramic mug and shaving cream brush
black straight razor beside beige ceramic mug and shaving cream brush

At the least begin your shaving routine by thoroughly cleansing your face with warm water. This helps to remove dirt, excess oils, and soften the facial hair, making it easier to shave.

Use a Pre-Shave Oil (optional):

Applying a pre-shave oil before washing your face can provide an additional layer of protection and lubrication. It helps to reduce friction, soften the beard, and improve razor glide.

Product suggestions:

  • The Art of Shaving Pre-Shave Oil: Made with a blend of botanical ingredients to nourish the skin and enhance the shaving experience.

  • Pacific Shaving Company Caffeinated Pre-Shave Oil: Infused with caffeine, it helps to reduce redness and provide a smoother shave.

Steam or Hot Towel (optional):

For an extra pampering step, you can create a steamy environment for your face by either holding a warm towel against your skin or taking a hot shower before shaving. This helps to open up the pores and further soften the facial hair.

Product suggestions:

  • Any clean, soft towel.

  • Conair Facial Sauna System: If you prefer a dedicated steaming device, this product provides a convenient and effective way to steam your face before shaving

By following these pre-shave preparation steps and using the suggested products, you'll ensure that your skin is clean, hydrated, and primed for a comfortable and smooth shaving experience.

Step 2: Exfoliation (optional, but recommended)
a person washing their hands in a sink
a person washing their hands in a sink

Exfoliating your face before shaving helps to remove dead skin cells, unclog pores, and lift the hairs, resulting in a closer and smoother shave. While this step is optional, it can significantly improve the overall quality of your shave.

Choose a Facial Scrub or Exfoliating Brush:

There are two main options for exfoliation – using a facial scrub or an exfoliating brush. Decide which method suits you best based on your skin type and personal preference.

Product suggestions:

  • Jack Black Face Buff Energizing Scrub: A gentle yet effective facial scrub that exfoliates the skin and prepares it for shaving.

  • Clarisonic Mia Men Sonic Facial Cleansing Brush: This oscillating brush provides deep cleansing and exfoliation, removing dead skin cells and promoting a smoother shave.

Apply the Exfoliant:

Wet your face with warm water and apply a small amount of the facial scrub or squeeze a pea-sized amount of the scrub onto the bristles of the exfoliating brush. Gently massage the product onto your face in circular motions, focusing on areas with thicker facial hair or prone to ingrown hairs

Rinse Thoroughly:

After exfoliating, rinse your face thoroughly with warm water to remove the scrub or any residue left behind. Pat your skin dry with a clean towel.

Note: It's important not to over-exfoliate or scrub too aggressively, as it can irritate the skin. If you have sensitive skin, consider exfoliating less frequently or using a milder scrub.

By incorporating exfoliation into your shaving routine with the suggested products, you'll achieve a smoother shave, prevent ingrown hairs, and promote a healthy complexion

Step 3: Apply Shaving Cream or Gel

Using a high-quality shaving cream or gel is essential for lubricating the skin, softening the facial hair, and protecting against razor burn and irritation. Here's how to choose and apply the product effectively

Prepare the Shaving Cream or Gel

Wet your face with warm water to further soften the facial hair and open up the pores. Dispense a small amount of shaving cream or gel onto your fingertips or a shaving brush, depending on your preference.

Product suggestion:

  • Proraso Shaving Cream: A classic Italian brand known for its rich and protective lather. It comes in various formulas, including options for sensitive skin.

  • The Art of Shaving Shaving Cream: Made with high-quality ingredients and available in different scents, this cream creates a thick lather and provides excellent glide

Apply the Product:

If using your fingertips, gently massage the shaving cream or gel onto your damp face using circular motions. If using a shaving brush, wet the brush and swirl it in a circular motion over the shaving cream or gel until it produces a rich lather. Apply the lather to your face, ensuring an even coverage.

Product suggestion:

  • Shaving brush: Omega Professional Boar Bristle Shaving Brush. This brush is made from high-quality boar bristles and provides excellent lather-building capabilities.

Let it Sit (optional):

Allow the shaving cream or gel to sit on your face for a minute or two. This extra time helps to further soften the facial hair, making it easier to shave.

By choosing a suitable shaving cream or gel and applying it properly, you'll create a protective barrier between your skin and the razor, ensuring a smoother and more comfortable shaving experience.

Step 4: Using a Shaving Brush (optional)
makeup brush
makeup brush

Using a shaving brush can help create a rich and luxurious lather, evenly distribute the shaving cream or gel, and lift the facial hair for a closer shave. While optional, many men find that using a shaving brush enhances their shaving routine. Here's how to incorporate it:

Choose a Shaving Brush:

When selecting a shaving brush, consider the type of bristles and the handle material. Brushes with natural bristles, such as boar or badger hair, are generally preferred for their ability to hold water and create a rich lather.

Product suggestion:

  • Vikings Blade Luxury Shaving Brush: Made with high-density synthetic fibers that mimic the softness and water-retention of natural hair. It is durable and provides excellent lathering performance.

Wet the Shaving Brush:

Before using the brush, soak it in warm water for a few moments to soften the bristles and retain moisture, which helps in creating a better lather.

Prepare the Shaving Cream or Gel

f you're using a shaving cream, dispense a small amount onto a shaving bowl or the palm of your hand. If using a shaving gel, apply it directly to your face.

Lather Up:

Swirl the damp shaving brush in a circular motion over the shaving cream or gel, or directly on your face if using gel. This motion helps to create a rich, creamy lather. Continue swirling until you achieve a thick and velvety consistency.

Apply the Lather:

Once the lather is ready, use the shaving brush to apply it to your face. Work the brush in circular motions to ensure an even and thorough coverage. The brush will help lift the facial hair and create a protective barrier between the razor and your skin.

Product suggestion:

  • Shaving bowl: Captain's Choice Shaving Bowl. This stainless steel bowl is sturdy, easy to hold, and facilitates the lathering process.

Using a shaving brush, along with the suggested products, adds an element of luxury to your shaving routine while ensuring a rich lather and optimal preparation for a smooth shave.

By incorporating exfoliation into your shaving routine with the suggested products, you'll achieve a smoother shave, prevent ingrown hairs, and promote a healthy complexion

Step 5: Shave with the Grain
man shaving himself
man shaving himself

Shaving with the grain refers to the direction in which your facial hair naturally grows. It's an important step to minimize irritation, razor burn, and ingrown hairs. Here's how to shave with the grain effectively

Identify the Grain:

Take a moment to observe the direction in which your facial hair grows. It can vary across different areas of your face, so pay attention to the pattern. The grain typically follows the natural growth direction of the hair.

Start with Light Strokes:

Begin shaving in the direction of the grain using light and gentle strokes. Applying too much pressure can cause irritation and increase the likelihood of nicks or cuts. Let the weight of the razor do the work.

Maintain a Steady Angle:

Hold the razor at a consistent angle, usually around 30 degrees, against your skin. This angle allows for efficient cutting while minimising the risk of scraping or dragging the blade across the skin.

Rinse the Blade Frequently:

Rinse the razor blade under warm water after each stroke to remove hair and shaving cream buildup. A clean blade ensures a smoother shaving experience and prevents clogging.

Stretch the Skin:

Use your free hand to stretch the skin taut in the area you are shaving. This helps to create a flat surface for the razor to glide smoothly, reducing the chances of cuts or uneven results.

Shave in Small Sections:

Divide your face into manageable sections and shave each area systematically. This approach ensures thorough coverage and allows you to maintain control over the shaving process.

Take Your Time:

Shaving should be done patiently and with care. Rushing through the process increases the risk of cuts, missed spots, and skin irritation. Allow yourself enough time for a relaxed and precise shave.

By shaving with the grain and following these detailed steps, you'll achieve a comfortable and efficient shave while minimizing skin irritation and other potential issues.

Step 6: After Shave
a shaving brush, soap dispenser, and soap dispense
a shaving brush, soap dispenser, and soap dispense

After shaving, it's essential to take care of your skin to soothe, hydrate, and protect it from potential irritation. Here are some essential steps for effective after-shave care

Rinse with Cold Water:

After shaving, splash your face with cold water. The cold water helps to close the pores, soothe the skin, and reduce any redness or inflammation caused by shaving.

Pat Dry with Clean Towel:

Gently pat your face dry with a clean, soft towel. Avoid rubbing, as it can irritate the skin. Patting allows you to remove excess water while still leaving a bit of moisture on the skin.

Apply an Aftershave Product:

Applying an aftershave product helps to soothe the skin, prevent irritation, and provide hydration. Choose a product that suits your skin type and preferences:

  • Aftershave Splash: A classic choice, aftershave splashes typically contain alcohol, which acts as an antiseptic to disinfect any small nicks or cuts. Look for alcohol-free options if you have sensitive skin.

  • Aftershave Balm: Aftershave balms provide hydration and soothing properties, making them ideal for sensitive or dry skin. They typically have a thicker, lotion-like consistency.

  • Aftershave Lotion: A lighter alternative to balms, aftershave lotions provide a refreshing and moisturising effect without feeling greasy.

Product suggestions:

  • Aftershave Splash: Pinaud Clubman Classic Aftershave Lotion or Proraso After Shave Lotion.

  • Aftershave Balm: Nivea Men Sensitive Post Shave Balm or Baxter of California After Shave Balm.

  • Aftershave Lotion: L'Occitane Cade After Shave Balm or Lab Series 3-in-1 Post-Shave.


Once the aftershave product has absorbed into your skin, follow up with a moisturizer to provide further hydration and nourishment. Choose a moisturizer that suits your skin type, preferably one that is non-greasy and quickly absorbed.

By following these after-shave care steps and using the suggested products, you'll help soothe your skin, prevent irritation, and keep it well-hydrated after shaving. This promotes healthy and comfortable skin while reducing the chances of post-shave issues