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Close Shave

How to be your own best barber.

By Deanna Pai

Close Shave

By Deanna Pai

Do you always seem to have a few nicks healing? Does the redness along your jawline look like the world’s weirdest sunburn? Is your 5 o’clock shadow setting in by noon? Then you might need to give your shaving routine an upgrade—because simply running a razor blade over your skin doesn’t quite cut it. “The pre- and post-shave [steps] need far more attention,” says Michael Haddad, president and co-founder of Detroit Grooming Co. “They can save you days of suffering and a rough experience.” Here's how to make the most of your shave.

Harbor Springs Shaving Soap

First, Wash Your Face
A razor should never, ever touch dirty skin. “Your face should be clean and free of daily dirt, grime, and debris of any kind,” Haddad says. “A clean slate will guarantee a better experience and end result.” Not only will lingering gunk on your skin cause your shave to be less even, but said gunk can also dirty your razor. Once you wash, lather up with Harbor Springs Shaving Soap. The formula moisturizes skin, allows the razor to glide smoothly, and protects against irritation and everyday grime—so your skin stays cleaner, longer.

The OG Safety Razor

Choose Your Best Blade
You might recognize straight razors from old-school barbershops, but we rarely encounter them in the DIY shave aisle. Here’s why: “A straight razor is a foldable or fixed apparatus that has an exposed blade, meaning there is a level of danger involved,” Haddad explains. But even though a straight razor has a steep learning curve, which is why it’s usually left to professionals, “many shaving enthusiasts have become very successful at using it,” Haddad adds. “Practice makes perfect.”

Still a little too intense for you? Go for a double-edged safety razor instead. “A safety razor cuts only at one angle, making it safer to use than a traditional exposed-blade straight razor,” Haddad says. “You can shave with confidence.” Try one like the OG Safety Razor: The double-edged blade and weighty handle offer more control and a super-close shave, all while putting your usual multi-blade razors to shame.

Manistee Calming Aftershave Lotion

Follow Through with Aftercare
“The aftercare routine is as important as your first step in shaving,” Haddad says. Cleanliness should be top of mind, because in shaving your face, you’re creating tiny nicks and micro-abrasions, which leave skin susceptible to infections. Bumps and burns are what Haddad calls a “bacteria playground”—plus, they make you look like a rookie.

To address both, “use an aftershave lotion or tonic to help begin the process of repairing micro-abrasions you may have exposed on your skin,” Haddad suggests. After rinsing and drying your skin, pat on Manistee Calming Aftershave Lotion, which uses willow bark to clear pores, vitamin E (an antioxidant) to protect and nourish skin, and eucalyptus to help heal bumps and nicks. Now that’s refreshing.