Nicks, redness and — especially in that pre-morning coffee stupor — cuts can all be the facial landmines of an improper shave.
“Shaving can be a real problem,” says Rick Ricci, who owns Toronto’s Truefitt and Hill, a barbershop in the city’s financial district where many of his customers are CEOs, stockbrokers and lawyers.
“Shaving is a dinosaur, so we brought it to a new level,” he says. “I don’t see a lot of bad shaves here, but I think there are a lot of shavers who irritate the skin, and scrape along the skin so they break out and have full irritation.”
In the business for nearly 30 years, he knows how to prevent facial butchering; that red, raw and irritated skin you can get after a bad or rushed shave.
“(Schick) did a Canadian survey, and one of the biggest turnoffs for women is skin irritation,” Ricci said, referring to a poll done by the shaving company.
Schick recently released the HYDRO 5 — a five-blade razor with a hydrating gel reservoir to help reduce irritation — which Ricci is helping to promote. The company is not alone in trying to get a cut of the male grooming industry, with Gillette recently releasing the ProGlide — a five-blade razor with a precision trimmer and microcomb to guide stubble.
While pulling the skin to ensure a smooth surface, and shaving with — and not against — the hair are among Ricci’s shaving essentials, here are a few of his other tips:
OPEN THE PORES
If you want to get a close shave, you need to open your skin’s pores so “you can get right down there into the root of that hair,” says Ricci. If you don’t shave in the shower, apply a wet, hot cloth to the face before starting, and use a good shaving cream to help keep your skin moisturized.
AVOID BLADE FATIGUE
“Know when to throw your blade out,” he says. “If you are trying to get seven, eight, nine shaves out of one blade; throw it out.” Different beards can dull a blade faster then others, depending on thickness, he adds.
Keep your skin moisturized during and after you shave to avoid irritation and redness. “Your face is going to feel great,” Ricci says. “There is no reason for not having a good shave.”