Extinguish razor burn

EXTINGUISH RAZOR BURN

Most guys have resigned themselves to the fact that bumps, irritation and redness are simply the price you pay for regular shaving. But that doesn’t have to be the case. Razor burn, ingrown hairs and nicks are often the sign of poor tools coupled with poorer technique. Find out how to treat the most common shaving-related problems.

  1. RAZOR BURN
  2. NICKS & CUTS
  3. INGROWN HAIRS

RAZOR BURN

What:
Looks like a rash and, as the name suggests, comes with a mild scorching sensation.

Causes:
Insufficient lubrication, a blunt blade dragged across the skin with too much pressure or, in some cases, bacteria that’s been festering away on an old razor.

Solutions:
A sharp, new blade coupled with adequate lubrication in the form of a dense shaving cream or gel. Moisturising with an alcohol-free aftershave balm will also calm any irritation.

NICKS & CUTS

What:
Visible incisions or tiny microcuts that can slice through several layers of skin and are prone to bleeding.

Causes:
Shaving against the grain, going over the same area without re-applying a shaving barrier, using too much pressure or a blunt blade.

Solutions:
Always begin by shaving with the grain (i.e. following the direction of hair growth, noting that it can often change direction). Always use gentle strokes with a fresh blade.  Smoothing down the ‘landscape’ of your jaw with a cleanser or an exfoliator before shaving will also help.

INGROWN HAIRS

What:
Inflamed red spots that look a lot like pimples, as they often have a ‘head’.

Causes:
The hair curling back underneath the skin instead of growing straight out.

Solutions:
Regular exfoliation will help release trapped hairs over time. If you can actually see the hair ‘loop’ above the skin’s surface (and you’ve got a steady hand), you can use the slanted edge of a pair of tweezers to flick the hair back out. Do not pluck it!