Barber’s Grooming Tips
Pre-shave oils are not a necessity, but there are some benefits to them. When massaged into the beard, the oil penetrates the skin it becomes better moisturized and very supple, making the skin more pliable. Pliability will reduce cuts and irritation because your skin will “give” to the blade and conform to the blades contours, eliminating the “drag” that may happen on dry, less supple skin. Contrary to what you may think, shave oils are not used to provide lubrication.
Your lather is something that could make or break your shave. A bad soap/cream could render all of your previous prep worthless, so a good quality product is essential (read through the shaving forums that are out there, they are helpful in deciding what is good and bad). USE A SHAVING BRUSH! They hold in necessary moisture and lathering with one will properly lift the beard in preparation for the blade.
A new/clean blade will keep your shave comfortable and prevent dreaded post shave irritation. Shave with a “proper” razor, Safety Razor (Double-Edge Razor) or Straight Razor shaving will give you a shave that is far superior to that of a Cartridge Razor. Want an explanation why? Click Here and read! If you are prone to razor bumps and ingrown hairs, shaving with the grain is a surefire way to prevent them, study your beard and feel for the direction of growth and shave WITH it. Use light pressure and let your razor do the work, and don’t forget to take your time.
After a close shave, your face is very vulnerable, the pores are wide open and susceptible to clogging if not properly closed. Rinse with COLD water, it may be shocking at first but fight through it and don’t be a baby! You cold also soak that face cloth in cold water and apply it the same way you did the hot one. Be gentle and pat-dry your face, wiping aggressively may irritate areas like under your neck.
After Shave or Balm?
A splash of your favorite aftershave will help seal up those pores and have you smelling fresh. If you have dry skin, opt out of the aftershave splash and use an aftershave balm instead, this with help replenish moisture and refresh your skin.