Best Shaving Cream for Sensitive Skin
Sensitive skin is common. Your skin is the largest organ of your body, and it has a tough job. It keeps your body safe from pollutants and irritants, but exposure to these things might take its toll. If you find that your skin easily becomes red or irritated, it’s important to treat it with kindness.
This isn’t just for your aesthetic (although no one is fond of the way it looks and feels to have irritated skin), it’s also for your health.
If you find that your skin is irritated after you shave, there are a number of contributing factors. It could be a dull or inefficient razor. It could be improper shaving technique. It could also be the ingredients in your shaving cream that are drying and irritating your skin with every swipe of your razor.
Switching to higher quality products can help to moisturize and protect your skin, reducing the potential for irritation and leaving your face fresh and smooth after every shave.
Shaving Cream is Important
Shaving cream is the first and only line of defense between your skin and your razor. Your razor should be very sharp to closely and effectively cut your hair, but every time it cuts that hair, it’s dragging across your skin.
Without shaving cream, your skin would be covered in thousands of tiny cuts and scrapes after every shave.
Even with shaving cream, your skin may not be adequately protected. Lower quality shaving creams exist to serve as a buffer, and they won’t do much outside of that intended purpose. They don’t nourish or moisturize your skin. They may not provide the extra slip that your sensitive skin needs to avoid irritation from your razor.
Shaving cream is more than just a utility tool. It should be a skincare product. Whether or not you have sensitive skin, you should still be using a product that’s formulated to address your skin’s needs. The stuff in the metal can just doesn’t cut it.
People With Sensitive Skin Should Avoid Irritants
Many shaving creams are loaded with irritants. These ingredients are cheaper and produce a lather that people are familiar with. Fragrances and colors might contribute to the experience, but they aren’t doing anything to protect the sensitive skin of your face. They may be making the problem worse.
If you look at the ingredient labels on your shaving products, you’re going to see all kinds of things that you would rationally know offhand probably aren’t great for your skin. You’ll see alcohol, perfumes, dyes, sulfates, and even butane. Yes, butane. Like lighter fluid.
Understanding the roles of these ingredients will help you avoid shaving creams that are more harmful than helpful.
Alcohol is sometimes found in shaving creams, shaving lotions, and aftershave products. The theory behind using alcohol isn’t completely flawed. You’re putting something sharp to your skin, and it’s better to avoid situations where germs living on the surface of your skin could be introduced to an open wound.
The problem with alcohol is that it’s harsh and drying. It will kill germs, but it will also diminish your skin’s natural lipid barrier. This oily, fatty layer that your skin secretes locks in moisture and protects your skin. When you remove it, your skin has nothing left to keep itself safe.
When your skin is sensitive, you need a shaving cream that contributes to your exterior moisture barrier. The last thing you want to do is destroy your skin’s natural balance. Your face is trying its best to keep itself healthy, and your body is remarkably resilient unless you disarm its defenses.
Artificial Colors and Fragrances
Artificial colors are prominent in shave gels that dispense blue or green from the can, only to turn to a foamy white when you lather them up. The experience of a blue gel doesn’t do anything to improve the quality of your shave. It’s only the addition of an artificial dye that your body neither wants nor appreciates.
Fragrances can enhance the shaving experience. You’re taking the time to groom yourself. You want to look good and smell good when you’re done. It’s only natural to gravitate towards a shaving cream with a pleasant aroma.
The unfortunate reality of fragrances, especially those that aren’t naturally derived, is that they have a tendency to irritate the skin. You’re better off sticking to unscented or naturally fragranced shaving creams for your skin. If you want to smell good at the end of your grooming routine, a gentle spritz of fragrance on your clothes is the better route. You want to minimize skin contact with fragranced products. Your shirt can carry the fragrance for you.
Sulfates, particularly sodium lauryl sulfate, are known irritants. SLS was tested for safety and approved, but the conditions under which it was tested and approved don’t mimic the contexts under which we use the ingredient in modern times.
SLS is the ingredient that makes every product in your bathroom (including your shaving cream) lather up when you massage the product onto your hair or skin. This lather doesn’t have a meaningful purpose. It’s designed to make the product feel better to use.
People feel satisfied when their product lathers, as it gives them the impression that the product is working better.
Sodium lauryl sulfate strips your skin’s natural oils, just like alcohol. The product was deemed safe for brief exposure if it were to be effectively washed off after a few moments. If you’re taking your time shaving, the product will be sitting on your face for several minutes. You showered with a bunch of SLS just before that.
This constant exposure to a known irritant is likely to exacerbate your sensitive skin.
The Best Shaving Cream for Sensitive Skin
LTHR set out to create the best shaving cream for sensitive skin. Our shaving cream is formulated without harsh chemicals, sulfates, gluten, paraben, phthalates, and fragrances. We use naturally coconut oil, soothing aloe vera, and moisture enhancing glycerin to protect and nourish your face with every shave.
Part of the magic LTHR imparts comes from our hot lather machine.
The machine warms the shaving cream before every shave, dispensing a hot foam. The warmth from your shaving cream will help the moisture penetrate your hair shafts and stimulate your skin. The hairs swell and perk up, making it easy to shave them closely in just a few passes. The coconut oil and glycerin can leave behind some long-lasting moisture to leave your sensitive skin feeling smooth for the rest of the day.
LTHR will give you the best shave you’ve ever had. It’s one of the most important tools to turn your bathroom counter into a barber shop experience. Take your time shaving. Relax. Enjoy your self-care ritual. And most importantly, be kind to your sensitive skin.
Stratum Corneum Lipids: Their Role for the Skin Barrier Function in Healthy Subjects and Atopic Dermatitis Patients | Karger
What kind of skin problems are known to be caused by fragrance ingredients? | European Commission
What is sodium lauryl sulfate and is it safe to use? | University of Queensland