Movember is nearing its close. So for those looking to lose that mo grow’ meet your new secret weapon to a smoother shave: shaving oil. If you’re prone to razor burn – which for Latino men with thick stubborn hair, that means most of you – shaving oils help moisturize and protect skin, and prevent nicks and cuts. Their clear formula also makes it easy to navigate around facial topiary for good, clean lines. Here’s why and how to get the most out of shaving oils.
Oil vs. Cream
Previously, shaving oils were used to prep the skin before lathering up with cream. Now, newer oils are formulated to go solo. Specifically they add more moisture and lubrication making the skin softer and easier to shave even more than some shaving creams.
Men benefit from using something on their skin whether it is a gel, foam or shaving oil. “It is particularly important that men with course hair use some sort of shaving lubricant, to avoid irritation around the hair follicles, which can occur when there is too much friction while shaving,” says Eric Schweiger, M.D., a New York City-based dermatologist and founder of Schwieger Dermatology. “The advantage of shaving oils is that they allow men to visualize the skin as they are shaving and provide moisture to the skin…so that a razor glides smoothly across and does not pull at the individual hairs, which can cause inflammation around the hair follicles.”
How to Use
Thoroughly rinse your face with warm water. Use the oil sparingly — just a few a drops is all you need for perfect results. Place 2-3 drops in the palms of your hands, rub together and gently massage onto the skin in circular motions to apply a thin, evenly distributed layer on the shaving area. Allow the oil to set for a minute or two so it can soak in and soften hair. For extra stubborn stubble, leave it on a little longer.
What to Look For
Look for products that are all natural with ingredients that come from plants or trees (like sunflowers, coconuts, olives) and that include antibacterial agents (like tea tree oil). Ingredients like these help prevent breakouts, cuts and irritation. Choose a shaving oil that is moisturizing and formulated for the face, and that “it is non-comedogenic or non-acegenic (meaning won’t cause acne),” recommends Dr. Schweiger.
Shaving Oils to Try
For All Skin Types
Anthony Pre-Shave & Conditioning Beard Oil, $26. This go-to skin essential has peppermint, eucalyptus and rosemary. It’s perfect for the man who takes his maintenance seriously. The light-weight antidote allows for a strong face prep. Plus a portion of sales goes to prostate cancer research. It’s a win win!
For Extra Coarse/Dry Hair
The Gentlemen’s Beard Premium Beard Oil Leave-In Conditioner and Softener, $18.97. This oil softens dry facial hair using natural ingredients like Vitamin E and Evening Primrose Oil while it conditions the skin to reduce post-shave itchiness and irritation. Since it’s fragrance free it battles “bearddruff” so you don’t have to.
For Sensitive Skin
Port Products Conditioning Beard Absolute, $20. The award-winning ointment works just as powerfully as it sounds. Tapping into the hydrating benefits of argan and grapeseed oil, this product revitalizes hair and skin without clogging pores, leaving behind a light sandlewood scent.