Razor burn: This helps against skin irritations

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What is razor burn and how does it develop?

When the skin starts to burn or glow like a fire extinguisher after shaving, this is called razor burn. Often blunt blades or the renunciation of shaving foam are to blame. If the beard is insufficiently prepared, or the blade dull, the razor glides only with pressure through the hair. The pulling can lead to inflammation at the root of the hair – the so-called razor burn.

The skin reaction usually subsides again within a day. Sometimes, however, a real rash develops, which can last for days. The razor burn is usually most severe on the neck. Because here the skin is particularly sensitive and is irritated and injured even more quickly by the blade. Who shaves again, although the skin already burns, makes it even worse. It is very easy to avoid razor burn and also mitigate when it is already too late. These 7 tips against razor burn are guaranteed to help.

How to avoid razor burn?

1. Heat prepares the skin for shaving

Wash your face with the hottest water possible before shaving. This softens rough beard hairs, making them easier to trim. Anyone who has ever had a shave in a professional barber store will know this home remedy for razor burn: After cleansing, place a damp, warm towel on the skin for 1 to 2 minutes. By the way: If you are actually tired of shaving, you can find the best beard hairstyles here. Razor burn is then no longer an issue for you!

2. Well soaped, is half shaved

…it has always been said among barbers. Therefore, you should now lather the skin and stubble thoroughly. Best with shaving cream and brush – and this at least for 2 to 3 minutes. Yes, it’s long, but it’s worth it. “Studies have shown that massaging the foam into the skin straightens the beard hair, significantly reducing the risk of ingrown hairs,” explains Kristina Vanoosthuyze, scientific expert at Gillette. If a hair does get stuck, you can read about what helps against ingrown hairs at the following link.

3. Shave gently and with the stroke

Shaving in the direction of hair growth (at first) protects the skin. The expert recommends to let the razor glide over the skin without pressing on it. The result is not smooth enough for you? Then you can shave against the grain once again. Because the stubble is now ultra-short, it can no longer pull. Important: With the first shaving stroke you have already scraped the foam from the skin. If you now shave over the area again, it can irritate the skin. It is therefore advisable to distribute foam on the skin again before each additional stroke.

4. Starting at the neck alleviates the risk of razor burn

“Start shaving on the cheeks. There the hairs are finer and do not need so long to soften,” recommends the shaving expert. The hairs on the chin and upper lip are particularly thick. You should soak these areas longer and shave them at the end.

5. Pay attention to sharp, clean blades

Change the attachment regularly – usually after every tenth shave. “Blunt rather than sharp blades irritate the skin more and are more likely to cause injury,” says the expert. Dirt is also an issue. Impurities on old blades cause inflammation and thus also generate razor burn. Our tip: Rinse the blades several times with warm water during shaving so they don’t get clogged and catch as many hairs as possible in the first stroke.

6. Cold water extinguishes razor burn

Now you need to rinse off the foam residues with cold water. This not only refreshes, but also astringents the skin (means: closes the pores). Dry your face afterwards with a fresh, soft towel. If the towel is already used, bacteria can penetrate micro-injuries of the skin and cause inflammation.

7. The right care after shaving

Hands off alcohol-containing after-shaves. This only makes the skin burn more. Better: an after-shave cream or a moisturizer for sensitive skin. “Both relax the skin from the stress of shaving. Products like a shaving balm with aloe vera moisturize and moisturize the skin,” says Vanoosthuyze.

And what to do if your skin burns despite our tips? For bad cases of razor burn, there are also anti-razor burn gels that soothe the skin with calendula, urea and vitamin E. By the way: If it’s not a burning sensation, but rather an itch, these anti-itching tips will help you.

How you can prevent razor burn, you now know. And even if facial hair removal takes much longer than usual, it’s worth investing the time. Because what are 10 minutes more in the morning compared to burning skin all day long? 

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