There’s a whisper among the whiskered: the end of the beard may well be upon us. Men have realised the lumberjack look is not nearly as low-maintenance as we’ve been led to believe and a clean-shaven face is now being championed as much on the red carpet as it is in the boardroom.
For that reason, shaving cream is on the rise. Very much in keeping with the trend for a traditional barbershop experience, shaving creams are a good mix of old and new. There’s the old-fashioned feels of knowing your grandad did it this way, while also getting modern, moisturising ingredients for a close shave that won’t leave third-degree razor burns all over your neck.
A-listers don’t need convincing. Dave Franco, the better behaved brother of James who is quietly becoming one of Hollywood’s most stylish men, has long been a champion of the clean-shaven look. It’s no coincidence that he doesn’t appear a day over 25. The same goes for smoothly-does-it actor Armie Hammer or British model Oliver Cheshire.
The Benefits Of Shaving Cream
When it comes to shaving, trends have been moving at pace. It doesn’t seem like such a long time ago that the options were strictly limited to a can of expanding foam from the local drug store. But in the years since beards resprouted on the face of normal men, male grooming has experienced something of a boom. A glance down the shaving aisle throws up a multitude of gels, foams, soaps, clays and serums. So why choose shaving cream?
Is it just a poser thing? A fancy bottle to display on your bathroom shelf? Not so, says barber Richard Tucker, of Ruffians barbershops. “It does more than look appealing or smell nice. It lubricates your skin keeping it moisturised, and actually raises the hair making it easier for a clean shave.”
The benefits of shaving creams are easy to understand. It’s in the name: cream. It sounds gentle and is gentle, which is exactly what you need when you’re scraping a sharp blade around your face.
“Most shave creams contain nutrients, which are great for making your skin feel fresh and look healthy,” Tucker says. “It creates a barrier between the skin and your blade, which helps prevent razor burn or taking a harsh top layer of skin when shaving.”
Anything including essential oils, like sandalwood and eucalyptus, will be gentle on the skin and smell far more pleasant than a chemically enhanced product. It’s also best to consider finding a brand that doesn’t include parabens or glycerine in their ingredients list.
Parabens are basically preservatives – we’re all trying to omit them from our diet, so why smear them on your skin? And glycerine simply dries the skin out – not what you want when there’s a razor blade in the vicinity.
It sounds a bit aggressive, but Bulldog’s bark is much worse than its bite – the company’s products are deceptively sensitive. Packed with natural ingredients, they’re purpose built to tackle the skincare problems that are specific to men, whether that means oily, dry or rough and rugged skin. The brand’s shave cream contains aloe vera, camelina oil and green tea – great for hydrating and helping the razor glide across your face.
The Art of Shaving
The Art of Shaving is all about classic products and shaving techniques for modern men (they even have in-house master barbers who can provide you with a personalised shaving plan). It’s not just about what the product is, but how you use it – and its Unscented Shaving Cream comes with specific instructions on how to achieve the best shave possible.
Made with coconut acid for absolute smoothness, the cream creates a rich foamy lather to hydrate, soften hairs and reduce irritation.
Lab Series has been making dedicated men’s skincare products for over 30 years. Understanding the difference between men’s and women’s skin, it tailors products specifically to men’s skincare needs: anti-ageing, razor burn and sun protection are all covered. The brand also prides itself on combined formulas that tackle more than one skincare problem at once.
Its Cooling Shave Cream has a high-glide, low-impact formula that cushions the skin while ensuring a close, clean shave.