Ladies, here’s a 10-step guide to shaving your legs without getting nicks or razor burn
Is there a right way to shave your legs? Yes – because if done wrong, you’ll end up with dry and bumpy skin, ingrown hair and more.
Wouldn’t you want legs that feel smooth to the touch? The good old fashion method of shaving is one way to get there.
But shaving isn’t a mindless job that only involves the simple act of putting a blade up against the skin. If done wrong, you’re likely to end up with unsightly nicks, a painful razor burn, ingrown hairs and bumpy skin that feels as dry as the Sahara desert.
So how can we shave our legs the right way? Here’s CNA Lifestyle’s definitive, step-by-step guide to achieving hairless legs that feel smooth as silk.
1. GETTING STARTED FOR THE FIRST TIME
Have a vacuum cleaner handy before you begin. Use a hair trimmer to remove as much hair as possible – otherwise your poor razor blade will have to work doubly hard. Pick up the hair with the vacuum cleaner, instead of washing it down the shower drainage.
2. SHAVE AFTER, NOT BEFORE, YOU SHOWER
Never be so lazy and in such a rush as to dry shave as you’re more likely to nick yourself, and miss spots, if your skin isn’t wet. Take your time. Lather up your body, then rinse everything off. This time in the shower helps ensure your skin is thoroughly wet, and also helps soften up your hair. Softer hair and opened-up follicles allow for a closer, more comfortable shave, while helping your razor blades remain sharper longer. A 15-minute wait is best; any longer and your skin may wrinkle and swell, making it harder to get a close shave.
3. EXFOLIATE BEFORE SHAVING
This will help remove the layer of dead skin cells, so you get a cleaner, deeper shave. It also prevents those dead skin cells from clogging up your razor blade, which can cause razor burn. Use a body scrub and not a loofah as the latter tends to trap dirt and bacteria.
4. APPLY SHAVING CREAM
The foam helps condition your skin and soften hair, and allows the razor to glide smoothly over skin, reducing the chances of skin irritation and nicks. Squirt a dollop of shaving cream into your hand and spread a thin, even layer over your legs. If you really hate cluttering up your bathroom with too many different products, hair conditioner makes a good substitute. Try not to use soap or body wash as these can be too drying on the skin.
5. USE A CLEAN, SHARP, DRY MULTI-BLADE RAZOR
Dull blades tend to lead to nicks and cuts; rusty blades may lead to tetanus; blades that have not been allowed to dry out properly in between uses can be a breeding ground for bacteria and fungus.
Your blade should be changed after five to 10 shaves. Once you get an idea of what the frequency for changing razors should be, put a recurring alarm in your phone’s calendar as a reminder.
It’s worth it to invest in a four- or five-blade razor as it provides the smoothest results, letting you navigate tricky areas like the knees and ankles. Single-blade razors are likelier to drag against the skin and get duller faster.
6. SHAVE AGAINST THE DIRECTION OF HAIR GROWTH
Begin at the ankle and carefully shave upwards. Don’t press too hard or you’ll get nicks and missed spots. It helps to have something to prop your foot up against for support.
7. RINSE YOUR RAZOR WHILE SHAVING
Rinse the blade after every few strokes to remove the shaving cream and hair that are clogging up your razor by running it under the faucet or swishing it in a tub of clean water. Don’t knock it against the bathtub or shower stall wall as you might cause the blade to lose its sharpness faster. Dry the blade before starting on a new spot.
8. DO A CHECK
Rinse your legs and run your hands all over to see if you’ve missed any spots. If there are any missed spots, reapply shaving cream to them, and repeat the shaving process. Then rinse your skin again.
9. MOISTURISE, MOISTURISE, MOISTURISE
Dry off and apply lotion or body oil onto your legs. This helps prevent the little red “strawberry” bumps that can appear after shaving.
10. STORE YOUR RAZOR PROPERLY BETWEEN USES
Rinse your razor under clean running water, and let it dry out properly before you put the blade protector on. Store it in a clean, dry place – not in the shower stall – to reduce the likelihood of rust or of any lingering bacteria or fungus on the blades.