You might think that all razors are created equally, and each one will give you the perfect shave, but that’s where you would be wrong and there can be huge differences between them. Given that, how do you choose which one is best for you, and how do you use it properly?
First off, you need to appreciate that not only are faces all different shapes, but the hair or stubble that you are going to be hacking at is going to have different properties too, with red-heads having a greater density of hair per se, compared to blondes. Add all of these factors together and you have a situation that isn’t quite as clear-cut as you might have first thought.
Back in 1901, King Gillette created the safety razor with a blade encapsulated in a metal frame to expose only its small cutting edge, forever changing the, um, face of shaving forever. Things remained pretty constant for the next seventy years until the same company decided to add another blade, too. While it might have seemed a bit of a marketing ploy, there was actually a strong technical reason behind the design.
Multi-blade razors are designed to do a number of functions, and they generally leave a much smoother-feeling shave. In a three-bladed system;
- The first blade cuts the top of the hair but also hooks the hair follicle, pulling it up and exposing more of the hair from underneath the skin,
- The second blade slices through more of the exposed hair, and,
- The third blade acts as a backup, ensuring nothing is missed.
Once the blade has cut the follicle, the hair springs back under the skin, leaving your face feeling extra soft and smooth. However, multi-blade razors can also have a few issues too, and can contribute to razor burn general skin irritation, skin nicks, and in-growing hairs, all things you definitely want to avoid.
Generally speaking, a multi-blade razor will give you a better shave but it might be at the cost of damaging your skin. This is where having the right shaving cream comes in. Always try to use a shaving cream that lathers up well, and contains natural ingredients to help protect your skin against the ravages of shaving. However, you can also help protect your skin by following these simple rules:
- Wash your face and stubble first. Use a good quality facewash and make sure that you get rid of any dirt build-up.
- Always go for a high-quality blade. This usually means spending a little bit more but a cheaper blade will blunt quickly, and a dull blade will rub against the skin causing irritation and causing nicks.
- Go carefully. Everyone’s face is a slightly different shape and razor manufacturers can only do so much to make a razor fit it properly. Therefore, when you shave, take it slow. It is always best to go slowly and firmly so that toy get everything the first cut and don’t have to keep going over the same spot multiple times – that’s how shaving rash starts.
And final, finish off with a little something to sooth your skin. An aftershave balm, or a good quality moisturiser is going to go a long way to soothing irritated skin and help cut down on nicks and dragging the next shave.