“Why is it I always get my best ideas while shaving?” – Albert Einstein
Shaving has been man’s ritual since the dawn of time. There is much tradition, nostalgia, and some odd sense of comfort attached to shaving, practiced by billions of men around the world. But though men do it as a part of their daily routines, few do it properly. Getting the best shave requires more than good technique and your basic razor and gel – what you need for a good shave is a good shave kit, with all the best shaving supplies for men.
Best Shaving Supplies for Men
Every man who cares about his face has a selection of shaving supplies for men that he uses on a weekly basis. This is called a shaving kit. A shaving kit is a set of products that work together to achieve the smoothest shave possible. You can assemble your own shaving kit or purchase a pre-assembled one. Here are the quintessential men’s shaving supplies and what to look for in each:
- Preshave. While not included in all shave kits, it is a great addition to your routine. Usually in the form of an oil, lotion, or cream, preshaves will prepare your skin for shaving, reducing irritation later. Many preshaves contain naturally soothing ingredients such as essential oils that smoothen and nourish the skin.
- A good soap or face wash. This will help remove the dirt and dead skin from your face, opening up your pores and allowing for a closer, cleaner shave and smoother skin afterwards.
- Shaving brush. Besides your razor, your shaving brush is the #1 tool in your shaving kit. While there is no “one size fits all” shaving brush, there are a few things to look out for. Aim for something that’s weighty and won’t take water damage at the handle. Bristles made out of synthetic fiber are cheap, prickly and ineffective. Select a badger hair brush, for optimum softness and water retention.
- Lathering products. There are lots of options for this step, including shaving gels, foams, creams, lotions, and gels. What you pick is up to personal preference, but keep in mind that you want whatever you get to lather up into a thick enough foam for your face. To that end, creams and gels tend to be the best options for beginners.
- Aftershave. Every shaving kit worth its salt includes an aftershave. Aftershaves are applied immediately after shaving to provide relief to the skin as well as to moisturize it. Aftershaves can be divided into two major categories: balms and splashes. Balms are heavier and more moisturizing, ideal for dry skin or cold climates. An aftershave splash is more of a liquid toner that both cleanses and provides antibacterial protection.
- Styptic stick. If there’s something to include in your shaving kit, it’s this. A styptic stick is an antihemorrhagic agent–i.e. It stops bleeding instantly. A styptic stick is a great investment that will last you ages. Simply wet the end of the stick, dab it on your shaving wound, wait a few seconds, and viola! you’ll be good as new. Unfortunately, styptic sticks are not a feature of most common shaving kits, but some shaving kits for wet shaving do have them. Additionally, you can find styptic sticks in most drugstores and online from brands such as Glyder and others.