How To Shave Without Destroying Your Damn Face

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Credit: Jon Feingersh/Getty Images

A smooth shave is the hallmark of good grooming and style. No wonder guys spend a huge chunk of our lives shaving, thinking about shaving, dreading shaving… oh yeah, watching commercials for new shaving products, experimenting with new shaving products and complaining about new shaving products.

For dudes with sensitive skin, every morning presents a choice between the lesser of two evils: Shaggy stubble or unbearable agony? Nobody wants to slice a goiter in half or lance a pustule, but the longer you wait, the more it’s gonna hurt. Unless you want to grow a Civil War neck beard, here’s five ways to minimize the burn…

1. Get Your Ass In The Shower

The steam and warmth will soften your facial hair, which makes for an easier, smoother shave. Invest in a mirror so you don’t leave a gnarly landing strip just under your chin.

2. Use A Single Blade (Not Dozens)

Despite all the hype about the stacked-blade bad boys, try an old-school razor like your grandpappy used. It can help in areas vulnerable to irritation. Sometimes less is more.

3. Use Ladies’ Shaving Cream

Just own it. Those extra moisturizers will do you good. They come unscented, though a little scent never killed anybody.

4. Don’t Shave Against The Grain

Or else you risk ingrown hairs, razor bumps, infection… basically, your face will look like a murder scene, which is pretty much the opposite of “kissable.”

5. It’s All About The Aftershave

A shave doesn’t end when you wash those tiny hairs off the razor. You’ve gotta apply a topical cream here, a warm washcloth there and–if you’re lucky–not a bunch of bandages everywhere.

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Michael McGrath (@marcomcgrath) is a freelance writer living in Connecticut.