8 Best Tips on how to Shave with Acne

Acne is not always a problem for teenagers. For males, shaving with acne can be a difficult problem. It’s one thing to get a small nick or cut if you have normal skin, but acne makes shaving even harder. There is the obvious suggestion to make certain you use a sharp razor, but a sharp razor often is not enough. Here are eight effective tips on how to shave with acne.

a young man's face with acne and pimples

#1. Prep Your Skin

The most important step you can take to make shaving with acne easier is to prep your skin. When you think about how to shave with acne, you need to think about the condition of your face before you shave. Skin preparation for shaving with acne is the first step and maybe the most important.

If you shave a dirty face, you will spread bacteria and most likely will only worsen your acne problem. Start by taking a shower, or soaking your face with a warm cloth. This will soften your skin and loosen your pores, making them more receptive to a smooth shave.

#2. Shave with an Electric Razor

The best suggestion for how to shave with acne is to try an electric razor first. Shaving with an electric razor will not provide as close a shave, but it does not cut the skin. When you cut the skin, you stand the risk of spreading the acne. If you have the chance, try an electric razor and give yourself some time to get used to the difference in shave closeness.

#3. Use the Right Gel

Some men like to dry shave or use light and fluffy shaving creams. This is not a good idea if you have an acne problem. One issue is that these over the counter shaving creams will frequently irritate your skin and only make matters worse.

Use an alcohol-free gel or unscented organic cream. This will provide less irritation, plus additives can make your acne worse. Keep it simple when choosing your shaving lubricant and avoid anything with additives.

#4. Map Your Shave

This tip will depend on the severity of your acne problem. If it is a prevalent issue covering most of the shaving area, try to avoid shaving too often. While it may seem like a lot of trouble, a physician should diagnose bad cases of acne before you attempt to shave. If you are able to shave with your acne, map your course.

Try your best to avoid heavy areas and scraping right across visible blemishes. It is best to go around active acne blemishes, if possible. If you use the correct shaving gel or cream, you will find it is easier to shave over active blemishes with less irritation. The best suggestion for how to shave with acne is to make a concerted effort to shave around blemishes.

a young man shaving and looking in a mirror

#5. Mind the Direction

Just like mapping a course around heavy acne blemishes, shaving in the right direction is also critical. Do not ever shave against the grain if you have acne. It’s not even a good idea to shave against the grain if you don’t have acne. This is an unnatural way to shave and actually causes acne-like shaving bumps. One important tip on how to shave with acne is to shave with the grain of your beard using downward strokes.

#6. Consider a Single Edge Razor

Using a sharp razor is obviously good common sense when thinking about how to shave with acne. However, the type of razor is equally important. If you can, use only a single edge razor. The technology of multi-blade razors may sound like a good idea, and commercials will proclaim it’s the only way to shave, but not if you have acne.

When a second, third, or fourth razor blade scrapes over an acne blemish, it magnifies the damage. This totally negates any attempt on your part to avoid acne blemishes. You should stick with a single edge razor, preferably with an easily interchangeable blade, so you can always guarantee a sharp shave.

#7. Remember that Clean Is Critical

Getting started with a clean face is imperative, but so too is keeping your washcloths, towels, and razor clean. If you’ve followed the suggestion to use only a single edge, interchangeable razor blade, keep it clean after every use. While you don’t want to use any alcohol-based products on a face with an acne problem, one suggestion for how to shave with acne is to keep a clean razor.

Soak your razor head, blade and all in a small glass of rubbing alcohol, and then rinse it before shaving. This will kill all bacteria and eliminate spreading your acne problem. Keep towels and washcloths fresh as well. Hang them open, so they dry completely and change them at least once a week.

#8. Finish It Up

The final step in learning how to shave with acne successfully involves finishing up. You need to be positive you have rinsed all leftover residue from shaving gels or creams. No matter how organic your shaving lather is, leaving residue behind will clog your pores, attract dirt, and otherwise make your acne worse.

Wipe your face clean with as hot a washcloth as you can stand. This will completely empty your pores of shaving residue and dirt. You can use acne prevention products at this stage but follow all recommendations.

After you have made sure your face is clean, close your pores back up with a nice cold rinse. This will help close your hair follicles, plus it’s a great way to reduce the blood flow to acne blemishes. If you use an acne medication, wait at least 20 minutes before applying it to your clean-shaven face.

Bottom Line

Only the most sarcastic friend would suggest, “grow a beard,” if you have an acne issue that makes shaving difficult. Don’t worry, if you follow this series of suggestions on how to shave with acne, you’ll find you can tackle the job. If you use acne-sensitive products, follow the shaving directions and keep it clean, you may even find your acne problems improve over time.

Image sources: 1, 2

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