It’s always shorts and skirts weather in Singapore’s climate and for some people, it means regular removal of leg hair. While some of us opt for waxing, shaving is a convenient and fast way of getting rid of body hair when you’re pressed for time. But are you doing it the right way to ensure you have the smoothest, softest gams? Follow these tips and you won’t have to worry about razor burn or ingrown hair again.
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Images: Unsplash, 123RF.com
Always shave in the shower
Resist the urge to shave your legs “dry” and always do it while you’re having a shower. Give your legs at least 15 minutes under warm water before you take the razor to them. This helps soften the hair and also opens up follicles allowing for a closer shave.
Prep before shaving
To get the closest, smoothest shave, it’s best to exfoliate your legs before you start. Using a scrub like the Botanist Botanical Sugar & Butter Scrub (Cassis & Rose), $23 which is packed with three types of sugars, plant-derived extracts as well as ceramides, will slough off dead skin without stripping away natural oils. Not only will this reduce your chances of getting ingrown hair, it also makes it easier for the blade to cut closest to the skin.
Don’t forget to lube up
You need enough lubrication so that it’s easy for the blade to glide over your skin. Using a shaving foam with hydrating ingredients is one way to go. You could also use your hair conditioner—those things always last longer than your shampoo anyway. We also like Aveeno Dermexa Emollient Body Wash, $19.90 that keeps skin hydrated and soft while creating enough slip for the razor.
Pay attention to the direction you shave
Shaving in the direction of the hair growth (downwards) might seem counterintuitive when you want a close shave, but it could be key to avoiding razor burn and even ingrown hair. Once you’ve gone over the leg this way, re-lather and then go against the grain (upwards). Avoid pressing down too hard as this could also lead to ingrown hair. Also, keep in mind to rinse the razor each time you finish a section of your leg. Use a cold compress if you notice any angry red bumps or razor burn appear.
Change your razor regularly
Needless to say, a clean, sharp, rust-free razor will give you the cleanest, closest shave. Dull blades can lead to nicks and cuts. A general rule of thumb is to change your razor every five to 10 shaves. Most women’s razors also have a moisture indicator strip, which is another good measure of when you need to replace it: as soon as it fades off or you feel it dragging against your skin. Another reason to avoid using a rusty razor: it can cause infection.
Hydrate and protect
Once you’re done shaving your legs, gently dab them dry and immediately apply a moisturiser like The Body Shop British Rose Body Yoghurt, $20 which is light weight and absorbs quickly, but keeps skin hydrated for up to 48 hours. Gently massage it in in the direction of the hair growth (downwards). This will help replenish moisture, keep the skin on your legs soft and help ease any itching due to razor burn. Before leaving the house, always remember to use sunscreen to prevent damage from the sun’s rays and further drying out the skin.