Sensitive Skin Shaving: How To Avoid Irritation

in The MadeMan Blog

Learning how to take care of your skin is not always an easy process, especially for men who were not provided with the knowledge necessary to do so while growing up. 

For so long, skincare has been deemed a topic exclusive to women. In actuality, everyone faces difficulties when it comes to their skin. MadeMan is determined to help men eager to better themselves by educating them on caring for their skin. 

One of the most important things to learn about taking care of your skin is that everyone has a different skin type and, therefore, has different needs that will influence what products and methods you use on your face and body.

There are five different skin types. Yours is determined by genetics. You either have normal, dry, oily, combination, or sensitive skin. As aforementioned, learning to care for your skin can be difficult, and it can be even trickier if your skin type is sensitive.

Sensitive skin is the most vulnerable type of skin that a person can have. It will often appear red and be accompanied by an itching or burning sensation. What makes sensitive skin challenging to navigate is that it is more often negatively affected by different fragrances, dyes, materials, and ingredients than any other skin type.

It is often necessary for men with sensitive skin to adjust even the simplest actions concerning their skin, like washing up and moisturizing, but taking the time to learn how to do so safely will provide you with a handsome, healthy complexion.

Today we will be discussing shaving for sensitive skin. You have probably experienced irritation like ingrown hairs and razor burns following a shave if you have sensitive skin. Here are ways for you to avoid irritation when shaving with sensitive skin.

Exfoliate

One way to prep sensitive skin for a shave is to exfoliate beforehand.

Exfoliating is the process of removing dead skin cells, sebum, dirt, and bacteria from the surface of your skin. This process is meant to strengthen your skin and prevent it from developing acne and ingrown hairs. Sensitive skin, which is prone to irritation, will benefit from safe exfoliation and the healthy, regenerated skin that the procedure will provide it with. In order for sensitive skin to be helped and not harmed, you need to select the proper method by the process of exfoliation. 

Methods of Exfoliation

There are two methods of exfoliation: mechanical and chemical.

Mechanical exfoliation is when you use tools to remove dead skin from your epidermis. Specially made sponges, brushes, and gloves can be used to buff away the unwanted substances on your face.

Sponges and brushes are the more popular options for exfoliating the face. Some of these tools can be directly applied to the skin, while others are made to be accompanied by a face scrub.

Mechanical exfoliation is widely regarded as the stronger exfoliating option. It is typically used to break through multiple layers of buildup making it ideal for those with the oily skin type. However, sensitive skin may be too strong and is more likely to spread bacteria. 

While it is entirely up to you to select a method of exfoliation, it is recommended that those with sensitive skin avoid mechanical exfoliation and opt for chemical exfoliation instead.

Chemical exfoliation does not use tools to remove dead skin cells but rather a chemical solution containing an acidic component. When applied to your face, these solutions are meant to dissolve unwanted substances from the surface of your skin. 

A mild chemical exfoliant is the safest exfoliating option for those with sensitive skin. There are two types of chemical exfoliants to select from alpha hydroxy acids and beta hydroxy acids. 

To best prepare your sensitive skin for a successful shave, try using an exfoliator with glycolic or salicylic acid since these are known to increase cell turnover and, in turn, combat the growth of ingrown hairs.

Cleanse

Before shaving your skin, it is necessary that you wash your face. Providing your razor with a clean palette will assist with avoiding irritation.

To avoid rubbing dirt into your skin, first wash your hands. Next, wash your face with a good, quality cleanser that will remove all dirt and bacteria gathered throughout the day. We recommend using The Resetter

The Resetter is a water-based cleanser that contains all-natural ingredients like glycerin-infused coconut oil and quillaja soap bark extract. This formula offers men a deep but gentle cleanse that eliminates impurities from pores, helps reduce fine lines and wrinkles, and leaves you feeling fresh.

Part of what separates The Resetter from its competition is that it not only functions as a cleanser but doubles as a shaving gel. This makes it an even better option for washing your face before beginning to shave.

One of the best ways to make the shaving process easier on your skin is to soak your facial hair with warm water and your shaving gel before applying a blade to your skin. Men will commonly place a wet washcloth over your facial hair to achieve this, but using The Resetter will save you time and trouble. 

When washing your face in preparation for your shave, use warm water to open up your hair follicles. This works without removing natural oils and lathering The Resetter into your facial hair and allows it to sit for a few moments to reduce the chances of your beard or mustache growing back with sharp edges and ingrown hairs.

The Resetter is designed to leave your skin and facial hair feeling soft, smooth, and well hydrated. The shaving gel is made to repair your ingrown hairs and razor burn, making it ideal for preventing the irritation of sensitive skin and healing it.

Minimize Mistakes

While you are shaving, there are several minor adjustments that you can make to minimize making mistakes that may lead to irritation. You may not even realize that you are making a mistake, to begin with.

For example, when it comes time to shave, many men will go straight to using their razors when, in actuality, you should be using your scissors first.

Whether clippers or shears are your trimmers of choice, you must trim your beard down as close to your skin as is safely possible before shaving so that your razor can effectively reach your skin.

If your facial hair is too long or too thick, the blade may not be able to reach your skin, in turn forcing you to shave over the same area more than once. Shaving the same spot multiple times increases the chances of your skin becoming irritated.

Another way to avoid shaving over your skin to remove your hair repeatedly is to rinse your razor between every stroke. As you glide your razor across your skin, some of your now-shaven hair will gather in the blade. 

If left there, this hair will cause the blade to be dull. A dull razor will not remove your hair effectively and will, once again, require you to shave over the same area twice.

Use The Right Tools 

Another way to avoid irritating your sensitive skin is to select the right tool for the job. While manual razors are believed to provide you with a closer shave, they are also known to cause razor burn. Instead of a manual razor, try using an electric one instead. An electric razor will minimize the chances of cutting your skin, shaving over the same spot twice, and developing ingrown hairs. 

Try shaving in the direction your hair naturally grows for further protection against irritation. If it is absolutely necessary for you to shave against the grain, we advise you to first shave in the direction of your hair, let the area soak once more, and then shave in the opposite direction. 

Moisturize

Your skin is most vulnerable after it has been shaved. Hair has been removed from your face and, even after a careful job, there may be micro cuts on the skin that are not visible to the naked eye. 

To prevent your sensitive skin from becoming irritated, you need to moisturize your skin after a shave. In addition to moisturizers, some men will also opt to use aftershave.

Aftershave is an alcohol-based liquid made to be applied to your skin after shaving to halt any bleeding from cuts on the skin and to reduce the risk of infection. The direct benefits of your aftershave will depend on its formula. 

For example, if your aftershave is alcohol-based, it will eliminate bacteria left on your skin that could potentially infect your pores. If your aftershave is antiseptic, it should slow the development of acne. If your aftershave is moisture-based, it is meant to retain your skin’s moisture and protect against bacteria.

General benefits of aftershave include preventing redness and swelling of your hair follicles, closing up your open pores, and reducing itching and swelling. After applying your aftershave, you must use a moisturizer in order to prevent your sensitive skin from drying out and to reinforce your skin’s protective barrier.

It is natural for your skin to lose moisture after shaving. You can restore your skin’s hydration levels by applying a healthy and soothing moisturizer. 

We suggest using MadeMan’s The Refresher.

Just like our cleanser and shaving gel, The Refresher is water-based and uses all-natural ingredients. This all-in-one moisturizer balances the natural oils in your skin and provides you with maximum hydration. 

Applying our moisturizer to your skin after a shave will restore your sensitive skin with an antioxidant blend that will promote its natural repair process, reduce redness, and boost natural collagen production. Your skin is bound to look even fresher than before you shaved.

Conclusion

Shaving successfully and safely with sensitive skin requires self-discipline, but it is in no way impossible. By taking the time to apply healthy self-care habits like exfoliating, cleansing, and moisturizing when removing your facial hair, you can experience having a clean, blemish-free, shaven face.

 

Sources:

Skin hydration: a review on its molecular mechanisms | PubMed

Male skin and ingredients relevant to male skincare | PubMed

How to safely exfoliate at home | AAD