The Shaving Solution For Sensitive Skin. No More Razor Burn

The Shaving Solution For Sensitive Skin. No More Razor Burn

Posted by Otis Skincare on

A smooth, clean shave has been difficult to achieve ever since man started shaving - about 8,000 years ago!

The challenge has always been to cut the beard as smoothly and closely as possible to the skin - but without causing any irritation.

And because of the nature of beard hair - and male facial skin - it can still be difficult to avoid razor burn today.

But we can help you overcome this challenge!

Below we’ve got the best advice to give you a shave that is smooth and friction-free (and with no risk of razor burn).


The Shaving Solution For Sensitive Skin. No More Razor Burn


Why is Shaving Such a Challenge? 

The goal of shaving is a smooth, clear, soft face – with no rashes or razor burn.

But irritation can be hard to avoid.

The reasons for this include:

  • the nature of male beard hair
  • the sensitivity of facial skin
  • and the mechanics of dragging a blade across your face.

It’s also not helped by the fact that we still don’t really understand beard hair biology.

All of this makes it challenging to shave.

And shaving techniques you might use to overcome these challenges - like using more pressure, and going over the same spot twice – only increase the your chances of skin irritation and razor burn.

You need an understanding of beard hair and male facial skin to see the best way to go.


What is it about beard hair that makes it hard to shave well? 

In general, the nature of beard hair plays an important role in blade shaving and can be the main cause of irritation.

The main properties making it difficult to obtain a clean shave are:

A high density of hair follicles – which means you have to shave over the same spot several times

Hair thickness – beard hair can be twice the diameter of scalp hair, so you need more force to cut them.

Hair stiffness – it’s claimed that beard hair is equivalent to a copper wire in terms of the force needed to cut it

High rates of elliptical shape – beard hair is more variable in shape. And elliptical shapes require more force to cut

Fast growth - beard hair grows fast. With an average growth rate of between 0.3 and 0.5 mm per day

Low emerging angle – these are more challenging for the blade to cut, and one of the main causes of skin irritation and ingrown hairs from shaving

Hairs grow in different directions and in irregular growth patterns

And to add more complication, beard hair is very specific to each individual – and can change over time!

So what works great for one guy may not work for another – and what worked at one time for you may change throughout the seasons and as you get older.


The shaving solution for sensitive skin. No more razor burn


Why is a man’s skin so hard to shave? 

There’s also features of a male facial skin that makes it hard to shave without irritation.

Skin roughness - this roughness varies significantly between different areas of the face, and affects the smoothness of your shave

Skin sensitivity – over 40% of men have sensitive skin. And even in the ones who don’t, shaving can make your facial skin sensitive

Male skin wounds heal slower – this slower wound healing is down to the effects of hormones. So shaving-induced skin irritation, microtrauma, and nicks and cuts from shaving can take longer to repair, especially if you’re shaving over the ‘wound’ every day.

Male skin is prone to post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation – A man’s skin is generally more deeply pigmented than female skin which explains why men can develop dark spots following shaving irritation or ingrown hairs.


The solution 

Despite all the challenges, you can overcome them!

There are things you can do to mitigate these factors to reduce razor burn, shaving rashes and irritation.

  • Shaving technique – learn to shave well. Study the contours of your face and the direction of hair growth, and use light, easy strokes
  • The right tools – this includes a well-balanced razor (with clean sharp blades) as well as the right shaving products
  • Hair softness – hydration can soften beard hair making it much easier to cut with minimal pressure. Whether it’s in the form of steam from the shower, a splash of warm water or a hot towel, you need to make the hair warm and moist to soften it before you shave.
  • Facial hydration – a post-shave moisturizer containing glycerine and hyaluronic acid improves the skin barrier function and stops irritation. Incorporating soothing ingredients like shea butter and Aloe vera will soothe away any inflammation.

Putting all that into action…

Here’s a step-by-step routine to give you a shave that is smooth and friction-free (and with no risk of razor burn).


ACTION PLAN: No More Razor Burn 

Follow this smart shaving routine for a smooth, comfortable shave that will leave your skin looking clear and calm.


Step 1 - Prep your skin well 

A smooth, comfortable shave starts with good preparation.

Splash your face gently with warm (not hot!) water – to soften your beard hair.

A great time to shave is when you’re taking a shower – or just afterwards. Your skin will be warm and moist and your hair will be easier to cut.

It’s the reason that a barber will apply a hot towel to your face when you have a professional shave. You can use the same principal yourself at home. Just use a warm wrung out washcloth to gently heat your skin.

Next apply your shaving cream.

nourishing, protective shave cream is essential for 3 reasons.

  1. It creates a rich barrier between your face and the razor to protect your skin and prevent any razor burn.
  2. It softens the beard hair making it easier to cut and provides lubrication for the shaving process
  3. The cream will lift the hairs up and away from your skin. Allowing you to shave WITH the grain – and still get a super, close shave.

Best Shave Cream to Avoid Razor Burn




Our Protective Shave Cream is enriched with:

We explain here why it's the best shaving product around: "Shave Cream vs Shave Gel vs Shaving Foam: Which is better?"


Step 2 - Always shave WITH the grain 

Shaving is a skill, and it’s one that's worth perfecting to avoid razor burn.

The most important thing to remember - always shave WITH the grain.

It’s tempting, we know, to shave against the direction of hair growth. It seems to give you a closer shave. But really it’s not worth the razor burn! 

Shaving against the grain will aggravate your skin and it can distort the hair follicles causing ingrown hairs to form.


Step 3 - Use light, easy strokes 

Try to apply minimal pressure. Hold your razor at the very end of the handle, gripping it lightly. Then let the razor do the work. The only pressure applied should come from the weight of the razor.

Use short, confident shaving strokes. And try to avoid going over the same spot several times as this will result in severe irritation.

It’s the hardest shaving skill to master but cutting every hair without having to repeat a spot is how you avoid cuts, scrapes, and razor rash.

Whatever type of razor you prefer, remember to change the blades often. The dull, damaged edge of an over-used razor blade will pull against your skin, causing painful redness and razor burn.

Swapping out your blades every 3-4 shaves will ensure an effortless, pain-free cut.


Step 4 – Gently pat dry 

Treat your face very gently after shaving. Your skin is still traumatized, so no rubbing or pulling.

Try to use a soft, clean towel that you keep only for you to use (and only on your face!)


Step 5 – Moisturize afterwards  

It can take up to 48 hours for your freshly-shaved face to fully heal, and keeping your skin well hydrated during that time is the best defence against irritation and dryness.

While most creams will immediately hydrate your skin, you can up the ante by using a moisturizer that will soothe, relieve and repair your post-shave skin at the same time.

Look for healing ingredients like Aloe VeraAllantoin and D-Panthenol.

They are all excellent natural ingredients that will soothe your skin and restore the hydrolipidic protective barrier.

In fact, to nourish and repair your skin after shaving, our Hydrating Daily Moisturizer is one of the best moisturizers out there! 


Best Face Moisturizer for Post-Shave Skin 




One of the keys to reducing sensitivity in your skin is to keep it well-hydrated. So try to moisturize your face every morning and night. As well as after your shave.

Our Hydrating Daily Moisturizer contains Hyaluronic Acid (the gold standard of moisturizing agents) to provide long-term hydration and keep your freshly-shaved skin smooth and supple.

It also reduces fine lines and wrinkles, restores elasticity and improves skin texture. 

More to read:



Why does razor burn happen?

Razor burn is an irritated redness, accompanied by a stinging sensation, that you can get after shaving your face.
The irritation is caused by skin being pulled during shaving, and the hair follicles being tugged by the scraping action of the razor blade.

Using a good Protective Shave Cream will lubricate your skin and protect from the irritation caused by the blade – ensuring you have a friction-free shave.


Why am I getting razor burn all of a sudden?

The specific nature of beard hair and the features of a man’s facial skin can make it hard to shave without irritation.

And to add more complication, beard hair can change over time!

So what worked great for you during summer, may not be so good when the weather gets colder. As you get older changes to your skin and hair can also affect how comfortable your shave is.


Why do I get razor burn only on my neck?

Shaving can cause irritation to all parts of your face, but your neck is a particularly delicate area - and the most likely to show signs of redness and irritation.

  • Your neck is a surface of curves and angles making it hard to shave smoothly.
  • Beard hair on your neck protrudes at a low-emerging angle making it hard for the blade to cut smoothly and evenly.
  • Neck hair tends to grow in a lot of different directions, so it’s tricky to catch all the hairs in a single stroke of the razor. You have to make several passes – with more chance of irritation at each additional stroke.

Couple that with the fact that the skin on your neck is very sensitive, and you can see why this area can be a problem to shave. 

We’ve got some good advice to help you here:


The Takeaway

Cutting beard hair as closely as possible to the skin - without razor burn - is a challenge!

And to get a smooth, comfortable shave requires an understanding of beard hair and male facial skin.

But despite all the challenges, you can overcome them!

Keep in mind the following to make sure your post-shave skin is smooth, calm and free from razor burn.

  • Good shaving technique
  • Use the right tools and products
  • Soften the hair before you shave
  • Keep your face hydrated



Maurer M, Rietzler M, Burghardt R, Siebenhaar F. The male beard hair and facial skin - challenges for shaving. Int J Cosmet Sci. 2016 Jun;38 Suppl 1:3-9. doi: 10.1111/ics.12328. PMID: 27212465.

Draelos ZD. Male skin and ingredients relevant to male skin care. Br J Dermatol. 2012 Mar;166 Suppl 1:13-6. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2133.2011.10784.x. PMID: 22385030.

Cowley K, Vanoosthuyze K. The biomechanics of blade shaving. Int J Cosmet Sci. 2016 Jun;38 Suppl 1:17-23. doi: 10.1111/ics.12330. PMID: 27212467.


All you need to stay looking handsome. 





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