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Please see the new Men's Sexuality exchange. It is suggested that this exchange be geared to men's health issues.
shaving tips
shortman_eric posted:
So I'm just really starting to need to shave my face, and my dad is not the type to really offer advice for such things. What are some tips you guys have for me then. Do you shave with the grain of the hair, against it, across it? I've tried against which gets the hair the most, but leaves some irritation and can cause my acne to flare a bit.
mark_daniel responded:
hey eric,

the first question I thought of, is whether you've decided to use an electric shaver or a straight razor? there are pros and cons to each.

a good electric shaver can be expensive, but you only have to buy it once and it should last a while. it's generally neater and faster too.

a straight razor isn't as expensive, but you will need to buy replacement cartridges, and shaving cream but that is not expensive. the cartridges can be used multiple times though. don't go for the really cheap disposables, they don't give you a good shave and are a waste of money. it's a bit messier with the shaving cream or gel but you get a much closer and cleaner shave.

i originally tried shaving with an electric for a while, but it started to irritate my skin, so i changed over to using a straight razor and have been using that ever since. if you shave after your regular shower, your pores will be opened up from the steam and hot water and it makes for a much closer and smoother shave.

you're right, shave against the grain to keep from irritating your skin. so that probably means shaving in downward strokes on your face, and upward strokes on your neck.

hope that helps!
HEADER_72 responded:
Hi Eric

Always, and I do mean always shave with the grain of your hair.
I've used electric razors... and I have found they just don't shave as close as a straight razor. The electric razor irritated my skin really bad. Myself, I always shave in the shower. The beard/hair is so much softer and easier to cut.

Of course, what works for me, might not work for you.
If I were you... I would try some of those disposable razors. They have several blades (at least most of them do) and they give a really close, smooth shave.

Hope this helps, Buddy
mark_daniel responded:
i also just noticed this new article here on webMD that might be useful for you.
shortman_eric responded:
Thanks guys. I should have said that I'm using a blade razor and not electric. I tried to shave with the grain yesterday and it worked fine, but I didn't get that close of a shave. Like I still felt some stubble pretty quickly after, where I can normally go a day after shaving before I really feel stubble.
zoom1969 responded:
For some reason I have been blessed with really good skin! I only have to shave every other day. I just use disposable razors and body wash type soap. I use shaving cream if I skip several days of shaving like when I am on vacation or off from work for several days. I usually do downward strokes on my face and downward and upward strokes on my neck. Sometimes I do get some irritation once in awhile on my neck if my shirt collar rubs against it! So I always make sure I shave closely on my neck. Def hate electric razors. Seems they always pinch my skin when using them them!
mark_daniel replied to shortman_eric's response:
how many blades are on the razor you've been using?

some guys will shave twice to get a really close shave, shaving the first time with the grain, the second time carefully shaving against the grain. i would wait a while until after your skin is used to shaving with a blade before trying this though, as it seems like it can easily irritate your skin if you go too fast.
HEADER_72 responded:

I would suggest you experiment with your shaving techniques.
If really want a baby's-butt smooth shave... you will have to shave against the grain. It may not bother your skin.
I will shave against the grain if I have late evening plans. It is definitely a closer shave. But I don't do it often.

Good luck.
HEADER_72 replied to zoom1969's response:
Hey Zoom,

I wish I only had to shave every other day!
You truly are blessed...
shortman_eric replied to mark_daniel's response:
Thanks everyone for their replies. Definitely helped out. Mark, I tried the double shaving and I really like it, giving me a nice close shave like I wanted and hardly any irritation at all. Also swapped out my blades which I'm sure helped as well.
Paulnewyork replied to shortman_eric's response:
i hated shaving...well, still do mostly...and am lucky to shave only every other day. But one year for Christmas, after a really rough year, my wife bought me a nickel shaving set from The Art of Shaving. It changed my life. No this is NOT a commercial. while I still don't like is better with this stuff. Also, there are good tips on the best shave in the world. Shave once with the grain...second time either across the grain or against it. It is not really as metrosexual as it sounds. It is more like a return to shaving our grandfathers knew. Take a look at your pennies...when you have a special occasion, treat yourself. it will last a lifetime.

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