Razor burn is never fun. Doubt it? Ask the guy who was glad he had a shave in the morning only to feel the terrible, ominous itch – not to mention the accompanying redness and splotches of rash – in his armpit or on his jawline a few hours later when he is at work. Alternatively, ask the chick whose privates suddenly start itching and burning few hours after shaving.
For the uninitiated, a razor burn can feel terrible – and that is putting it mildly. You are not having a bad day yet until you have a razor burn to deal with. Not just that, left untreated or unattended, they can develop into full razor bumps – an unsightly and uncomfortable pimple-like swelling that itches like hell. The best way to tackle a razor burn is to prevent it in the first place. How do you do that?
Start by Making the Hair Soft
There are many ways to do this. However, we have found that if you shave after taking a long hot shower, the hairs on your body will often be robust and softened to the point where shaving will require less effort.
An extra tip you might want to try is the use of hair conditioners before having your bath if you are shaving your beard. Apply the hair conditioner to your beard for about 5-10 minutes before having your bath for maximum results. If you cannot do that, use some water on your beard, followed by a warm, wet towel for 5-10 minutes and then shave.
Exfoliate Your Skin
Who said exfoliation was only great for the girls! It is great for guys too. If you’ve had some serious razor burns, you might want to try exfoliating your skin. This will help eliminate dead skin cells and release deeply burrowed hairs that would have been impossible to access otherwise. A good, inexpensive product to use for this is the St. Ives Apricot Scrub.
Use the Brush Very Frequently
A badger brush in particular is most useful for preventing razor burn. However, if you do not have that, you can go with just your regular hair brush. Use this to get the lather to all parts of your beard, armpit and pubic hair. This helps the soapy lather or shaving cream get maximum reach. The result is often an ultra-smooth, razor-burn free shave.
Always Use Sharp Safety Razors
This is common sense, but many guys and gals still make the mistake of shaving using dull blades or those that have been used to the point where they are not as useful as they initially were. Some guys also say that they get some great results from the 5-blade razors. If that works for you, by all means use it. However, if using that means a shave that isn’t that smooth or one that gives you razor burns, just use sharp safety razors. The same applies to chicks. These are simple, effective and easy to use. More importantly, they do not leave your face, armpit, legs or bikini line with cuts.
Go With the Grain
While we all love the smooth results of a face, leg or “coochie” shaved by going against the grain, the truth is that shaving against the grain will most likely give you razor burns, result in cuts, ingrown hairs and – heaven forbid – razor bumps. Instead, go with the grain. This is less likely to cause any of those things. If you do not get everything the first time, lather up again and go another round until you are satisfied with your shave.
Clean the Blades Frequently
As soon as you are done, clean the blades with some alcohol. Most people rinse off with water. While this gets some of the skin cells, hair and oil out, it does not really get to the difficult places. Soaking and rinsing off in alcohol will get the job done faster and better.
Lastly, once done, make sure to wash those parts with cold water, dab with some towel and apply some moisturizing cream. This will soothe the skin and help get it rejuvenated.
Oscar King is a freelance writer who is currently studying pre-med at the University of Florida. He uses his writing to help supplement his education and pay for food, as well as finance personal relationships. When shopping around for something nice for his girlfriend, he shops online at www.brazilian-bikinis.org. You can learn more about Oscar by visiting his Google+.