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How to Shave? An Easy Guide for Beginners To Shave Safely

How to Shave? An Easy Guide for Beginners To Shave Safely

Shaving is probably one of the greatest inventions of the human race. I know, it sounds weird to think of shaving as an invention at all. But the plain truth is, like all great inventions, it was born out of a necessity to avoid infections, lice and other forms of microorganisms from growing on the skin under the thick cover of a beard. This was one of the first things our early ancestors adapted to in the process of getting civilized. So, if you’re coming of age and have a growth of hair on your face, it is a good idea to know how to shave, even if you wish to grow a beard in the long run. 

Summary of How to Shave:
1. Everything That You Need
2. Preparation For The Skin
3. Lathering Up With Lubrication
4. Shaving With The Razor
5. Post Shave Care

Step 1: Everything That You Need

shaving kit for men

The first step is to identify and gather all the right tools you’d require to shave. Here’s an easy checklist:

  • Good Quality Razor: As a beginner go for a razor with three basic qualities – multiple blades (it should be a cartridge razor with 3 blades or above), a pivot head (it allows the cartridge to move up and down, making it easier and safer to navigate on the face), and a good lubricating strip (preferably made with skin-friendly natural ingredients like aloe vera, Moroccan Argan oil and Vitamin C)
  • Face Wash: A clean skin is always better prepared to shave 
  • Shaving Cream/Foam: A shaving cream or foam acts as a lubricant on the skin so that the razor can glide smoothly on the face. It also makes the hair strands on the skin soft and hence easier to cut. 
  • Aftershave: No matter what you’ve seen people do, don’t go for alcohol-based aftershave lotions. They are nothing more than colognes and sting on the face upon application. Choose a good post-shave balm that soothes the skin after you’ve freshly shaved it.
  • Soft Towel: Pick a towel that is made of soft cotton for gentle dabbing after rinsing your face post shaving. 

Bonus point: Keep a pre-shave scrub handy if your skin is not sensitive or acne prone. This helps open up the pores of the skin and allows better and softer shaves.

Step 2: Prepare Your Skin

shaving preparation

Directly jumping into the process of shaving is never a good idea. Think of it as a well strategised simulation which will perform as per your preparation. Here’s how to prepare your skin for shaving:

  • Soften The Beard: As an early-shaver your beard may not be as hard as your older counterparts, but its composition is the same. So, the softer the strands, the easier it is to shave. Either take a shower before shaving or use a warm towel to soften your hair.
  • Cleanse The Skin: Use a gentle, preferably charcoal-based, cleanser to wash your face. This helps remove the dirt and oil from your face and hair that can build up on the razor, making it difficult to shave. 
  • Exfoliate (only if you don’t have pimples or acne): Using a pre-shave scrub removes dead skin cells from your face - a process commonly called exfoliation. It also opens up your skin’s pores and exposes more hair than otherwise, ensuring a closer and easier shave. 

Step 3: Lather Up with a Foam or Cream

shaving foam for men

This is the first real step of shaving that involves a lot of lather or foam. The reason I’m listing out these two as two different things is because they really are different from each other. You’ll see how. This step is important because the lather on your face acts as a lubricant that allows the razor to glide smoothly on your face without any friction, hence making the process safer and easier to perform. 

Now, the question is: How is Shaving Foam different from Shaving Cream?  
In short, the purpose of both these products is the same, but the difference in application and usage attributes unique benefits to them.

Shaving Cream: This comes in a typical toothpaste-like tube that contains a concentrated form of the lathering agent. You are required to apply a small quantity of this on the part you wish to shave on your face and then build the lather by using a wet shaving brush. This adds another step of massaging your face to your shaving ritual and the bristles of the brush also help the hair to raise better for a smoother cut. But the flip side is that this is more time taking and can get messy for an untrained hand.

Shaving Foam: This has gained maximum popularity in the last decade as it saves time, is less messy and is a quick solution to shaving without using any extra tool like a shaving brush or cup to mix create lather. All you need to do is shake the shaving foam can well and spray the desired amount of foam in your hand. This is followed by directly applying the foam on your moist face, while massaging it briskly. 

Step 4: Shave With The Razor

how to shave for men

I haven’t forgotten my grammar lessons, and there’s a reason why the headline says ‘the’ razor instead of ‘a’. Just because you’ve prepped up well doesn’t mean you can get away with using any razor available. After all, this is the most important step in the whole process of shaving and you need to give it maximum thought.

This is how to pick the right razor:

  • Make sure that the blades are sharp. Dull blades can actually make you prone to getting nicks and cuts, while you can also experience tugging and pulling of the hair when you glide the razor on your face. So, use a fresh razor and not someone else’s used razor.
  • Make sure your razor has a lubricating strip. A lubricating strip is the rubber-like strip sitting at the top of your razor cartridge. Its sole purpose is to provide an extra cushion to your skin as it goes under sharp blades. Additionally, it also lubricates the skin so your skin doesn’t dry out with the removal of essential oils while shaving. Look for ingredients like Aloe Vera, Moroccan Argan Oil and Vitamin E in the lubricating strip to add a skincare benefit to shaving.
  • Make sure your razor has a pivot head. This is extremely important for beginners, as you have not yet developed a method to shave your face. So, every time you glide the razor on the contours of your face, the razor will also move up and down along, making it safer.

Once you’ve got the right razor, shaving is not a rocket science limited for a chosen few. With patience in the beginning, you can master the art of using a razor in just a couple of times. 


  • Hold the razor firmly in your primary hand, with the blades facing outwards
  • Now put the razor on one side of the cheek and make a long, smooth glide in the direction of your beard growth
  • Rinse the razor under water after every glide or two
  • Continue on the other side
  • Be extra careful while gliding around the chin as the beard growth is the most dense here, compared to the rest of your face
  • Lift your chin up to continue shaving your neck area, all this while not losing the visuals on a mirror
  • You can go back to a spot if you feel you missed some hair there
  • Rinse your face with regular water

There are a few things you should keep in mind while shaving in order to avoid cutting yourself and not getting lost in the way.

  • Do not put too much foam on the face. Applying too much shaving foam on face will clog your razor, so the gaps between the blades will be full of foam instead of the hair it’s supposed to gather
  • Rinse the razor after every glide or two. You need to get rid of all the foam, hair and skin debris (dead skin) caught in the process of shaving, so don’t wait for one side to finish before you rinse. 

  • Do not rush. Gliding the razor on your face too fast may end up hurting your skin, causing redness, irritation and even a cut.

  • Do not move or lose focus. With the first few slides when you see that it’s actually very easy to shave, don’t let yourself flow in confidence and take things casually. The cheeks are the easiest to shave, and by the time you reach the more difficult parts like the chin or the jawline or the neck, you don’t want to lower your guard and lose focus.

Step 5: Post-Shave Pampering

how to shave for men

After you’re done shaving your face, wash your face with regular cold water. You may be tempted to do it with warm water if the temperature outside is still chilly but it’s never a good idea to leave your skin pores open after shaving. Cold water closes the pores and keeps all the dust, dirt and impurities outside. Dab your face dry with a soft cotton face towel and proceed to the next step - post-shave pampering.

This includes moisturising your face with a post-shave balm. Shaving as a process is bound to dry your skin out as the top most layer is worked upon by a razor that removes all the lose dead skin cells. This step ensures that all the lost moisture is replenished and you don’t feel any tightness due to dehydration. A good post shave balm also disinfects the skin and soothes it with natural ingredients like witch hazel and aloe vera. Gently apply the gel on your face and dab it dry till it gets soaked into the skin on its own. 


With a little practice and taking care of all the basic check boxes you can master the art of shaving pretty soon. Just do everything with the right tools and confidence, and figuring out how to shave will prove to be the best discovery you’ve made after puberty. Happy shaving!

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