Most of us don’t bartend at a whisky dive, cut hair at a trendy barber shop, or play bass for a promising local indie band. That is to say, the whole woodsman beard look isn’t going to cut it for dudes like us.
So we must drag a sharp object across our beautiful faces on a daily basis. Well, at least five days a week. Lurking behind every shave is the risk of nasty razor bumps. These happen when a rogue facial hair takes the event personally and decides to curl and grow the other way instead, into your face. And sometimes, due to the increased bacteria in clogged ingrown pores, they bring their friends.
If you suffer from razor bumps, please accept our sincerest condolences, know that you're not alone and that this is help in the form of these 9 easy steps.
Step 1: Use a Sharp Blade
A dull razor is more likely to tear your skin, giving bacteria more opportunities to do damage. Grab a sharp, quality razor from the drawer. Razor companies go nuts with three, four, five blades — but these can be too strong. A simple single or double blade can get the job done and reduce the bump risk.
Step 2: Clean Your Blade
You wouldn't eat off a plate with dried tomato sauce on it, right? The blade you used yesterday is teeming with bacteria, blood, dead skin cells and hair. Clean your blade with rubbing alcohol to rid any bacteria that is hiding in plain sight.
Step 3: Use Cold Water
That's right, cold water. Hot water opens up the pores and if you have a few days growth, the steam will soften up those facial hairs, making your skin baggier and the hairs more difficult to cut. You want the opposite. Tighten up that skin, shrink those pores and stiffen up that scruff by splashing cold water on your face or applying a cold cloth to your skin. Keep your blade cool by rinsing it under cold water.
Step 4: Get a Good Lather Going
Lather up heavy with a shaving cream — using your hands, like God meant. You wouldn't dry shave your balls, so don't even think of doing it with your face. The idea here is lubrication. And with all due respect to GQ, do we really need a brush? Make sure after each razor stroke you rinse the shaving cream off the blades, again with cold water, because the razor can get clogged and make for an unclean cut resulting in more nicks and more opportunities for the enemy, bacteria.
Step 5: Shave with the Grain
(this guy is doing it WRONG)
This ain’t no Easter roast, so don’t go cutting against the grain like your sous chef buddy taught you to cut meat. Using light, short strokes shave with the grain even though it might mean you take a second pass after. The alternative is the risk of ingrown hairs, and ingrown hairs lead to razor bumps, prevention of which, if you're just joining us, is the entire point of this article.
Step 6: Cold Water Pt. 2
Finish like a boss. Soak a cloth in cold water and press it against your face to help further close your pores. Skip your grandpa’s habit of blasting your mug with alcoholic aftershave, that stuff is straight-up poison for your skin.
Step 7: Dry Your Blade
Take a moment to dry your blade with a towel. You don’t want to be buying good quality blades all the time and a wet blade will eventually rust, not to mention it being a breeding ground for bacteria.
Step 8: Treat Your Bumps
(Oh look, that's some of our extra effective product)
Extremely important: Use a razor bump treatment that is safe to use daily. While many treatments are too harsh to use everyday, keeping your bumps at bay is primarily a game of consistently removing the dead skin cells and bacteria that cause them. Our soothing razor bump cream not only soothes the initial inflammation from your blade work with a cucumber extract, but it also gently exfoliates with salicylic acid and fights off bacteria and fungus with an anti-microbial coconut extract we call Lykos AF. Consistency is the key. Over time, you’ll start winning the war.
Step 9: Use an Oil-free Moisturizer
(this guy is only 26 years old, but he refuses to use a moisturizer so…)
A moisturizer always goes on last. Using an oil-free moisturizing gel like ours that doesn't penetrate the pore lining forms a protective barrier limiting your skin's exposure to bacteria and reducing the likelihood of future razor bumps. A don’t be a morning-only moisturizer either. Moisturize your face throughout the day and night, and especially after you shave.
Black Wolf is an extra effective skincare line for guys, without the extra. We only make premium products that solve common men’s skincare issues like razor bumps and oily skin, and we only make them available at reasonable prices so guys like us can afford them. Check our line out here.