3 Best Shaving Creams for Men With Acne or Sensitive Skin
Shaving with acne is a minefield of potential cuts, infections, irritated skin, and over time, unsightly scars.
I know, I've been there a few years ago, so I know exactly how you feel.
As all men with acne know, sometimes the right—or wrong—shaving cream can make a BIG difference when it comes to aggravating your acne or making shaving possible. The razor you're using can also have a big effect, but I'll talk about it later on.
In this article, I’ll describe the challenges of shaving with acne, how your shaving cream can work for or against you, and wrap up with a few reviews of shaving creams which claim to be helpful for shaving with acne.
Top 3 Picks - Shaving Creams
Why Shaving With Acne Is Tough?
You probably already know why shaving with acne is tough: pimples act as barriers to your razor blade, causing constant cutting and preventing a close shave.
As if cutting wasn’t a big enough problem, razor blades tend to irritate skin,this is especially true with cartridge razors.
Why is that you ask?
Multi-blade razors are designed to work like this: the first blade lifts the hair, the second and third blades cut the hair (sometimes it's even more).
This gives you a close shave but, at the same time the blades usually cut the hair under your skin and not above and this may cause a lot of problems, such as razor burn, ingrown hair and more. You definitely don't want that especially with acne. To avoid that you should use a safety razor, which will give you a very close shave and won't irritate your skin.
Ok let's go back to the shaving cream.
There are a few strategies which can make shaving with acne easier, but the bottom line is that you’ll need to get control of your facial oils by using the right shaving cream.
The shaving cream and razor have a major effect when shaving with acne or a sensitive skin, you should pick the right ones for the job.
What to Look for When Buying A Shaving Cream For Use With Acne?
How do we solve the difficulties we mentioned above with a shaving cream?
First, you want to make sure that your shaving cream isn’t going to contribute to acne in the future.
Next, you'll want to look for a shaving cream that won’t inflame the acne that’s already there by irritating the skin.
Finally, you’ll want a shaving cream which leaves the hair roots supple, preventing ingrown hairs and further irritation and acne.
Later in this section, we’ll explore how these features are very closely related. But let's start with what you should look for in your shaving cream:
Removes Dirt And Oils
Removing the dirt and oils from our skin is one of the main functions of shaving cream. If your shaving cream for use with acne isn’t helping to flush out dirt and excess oil, it may be trapping them inside your pores and causing your acne to get worse.
Dirt contains bacteria, which can lead to infections and inflammation of your acne. Oil, on the other hand, is gross and can cause new acne to form. A frequent advisory to those with acne is to wash their face with soap to remove dirt and oils, which is exactly what a good shaving cream helps you do.
But removing dirt and oils from your face if you have acne isn’t as simple as it may seem at first.
To remove dirt and oil, your shaving cream needs to contain a surfactant— just like soap. The catch is that surfactants in cosmetic products can strip out too much of your skin’s natural oils, leaving it extremely dry and irritated.
To shave with acne, you’ll need a shaving cream which hits the Goldilocks zone of removing your skin’s oils—not too much, not too little, but just the right amount. Most shaving creams tend to remove far too much oil, or even introduce oils of their own.
Not Too Oily
Shaving creams contain oils and fats which are necessary to carry the other ingredients in the cream, namely the surfactants and the water. Fats also help to lubricate the movement of the razor across your skin, so they’re necessary to avoid irritation. But if your shaving cream is extremely fatty and oily on its own, it’s unlikely to wash off as efficiently.
Once again, this is an issue of reaching the correct amount of oil remaining on your skin after shaving.
Given that many shaving creams advertise themselves as types of “butter,” you’ll need to be extra careful to find a shaving cream that only contains the bare minimum of fats and oils to carry the other components of the cream. Avoid shaving with olive oil until your acne has subsided.
Don’t pick a shaving cream that is heavy on oils.
Shaving creams that foam while being slathered are superior to other kinds of shaving cream for use while shaving with acne, according to dermatological authorities. These shaving creams moisturize the skin and hair root more effectively than others, leading to decreased irritation and decreased bacterial growth.
Too much foam indicates that the active ingredients in your shaving cream are too high in proportion to the total volume. A good shaving cream for use with acne won’t be heavier on bubble-forming surfactants and fats than is necessary.
Minimal foaming doesn’t make for an attractive looking figure while you’re shaving, but creams which don’t foam much are creams with high water content.
Having a high water content in your shaving cream means that you’re probably not introducing extra oils or removing too many from your skin.
Are There Alternatives?
Why not use a dry shave method instead of wet shaving with a shaving cream, then?
Many people advocate using an electric razor when shaving with acne, as the electric razor is less likely to cause cuts. Electric razors have a barrier which prevents acne from passing through to the razors, but longer hairs can pass through and get cut just fine. There’s an issue with using electric razors when you have acne, though.
According to Acne.org, electric razors are extremely irritating to your skin by default. You may not be getting cut, and you may be able to trim your hairs, but you’ll be left with a very dry and abraded skin.
This very dry and abraded skin reacts by producing sebaceous oils, which will worsen your acne whether or not your sebaceous glands are already prone to secreting too much oil.
In light of this, there aren’t too many alternatives to shaving with a wet foam and razor if your acne is a serious issue. If you only have a few spots with unsightly hairs, it may be possible to tweeze them out—but that’s a far cry from shaving, and not viable for most men.
Dry shaving with electric razors will make your acne worse. Wet shave is a better option.
3 Best Shaving Cream Reviews
Now that you know the features to look for in your shaving cream let’s explore three products and see how they stack up.
The Kiss My Face Moisture Shave Shaving Cream is a unique product which combines vegetable oils with aloe and herbal products to provide a smooth glide while gently cleaning your skin. It doesn't contain parabens and it's cruelty free which is a BIG plus. The size of the package is 11 oz.
This shaving cream is more like a shaving lotion, but the general procedure is the same. Squirt a little bit onto your hand, lather onto your face, and then shave away.
WHO IS IT BEST FOR?
Though the product is targeted at females, males with acne will do very well if they shave with it. Be sure to check the ingredients list, as there are some common allergens—like coconut—which crops up in this shaving gel that wouldn’t be in others.
Users with sensitive or oily skin will do well using this shaving cream. For users with dry skin, there are probably better options out there.
The Kiss My Face Moisture Shave Shaving Cream is a great product to try if you’re struggling with shaving with acne. This cream is on the gentler side, won’t leave you oily, and even somewhat moisturizes your skin via aloe.
The Skin Clearing Shave Cream For Men from Neutrogena is a bit pricey, but an effective shaving cream which is ideal for users suffering from especially oily and dirty skin. The size of the package is 5 oz.
This shaving cream will cut the dirt and oil from your skin very easily once you slather it on. After shaving, you should be sure to wash your face with water a couple of times and fully dry your skin with a towel.
This shaving cream is super effective against dirt and oils because it has a higher percentage of surfactant, which may irritate your skin if you let it linger.
WHO IS IT BEST FOR?
Users with excessive oiliness may find relief using this shaving cream. Users without excessive oiliness will probably have their skin dried out or irritated when they use this cream. Likewise, users with sensitive skin will probably encounter skin irritation if they use this cream.
The Skin Clearing Shave Cream For Men is a great tool to have in your acne-fighting and shaving toolkit. If you suffer from excessive oiliness intermittently or regularly, using this cream can restore your skin to a manageable moisture. If your skin is dry or sensitive, you should probably look for another cream.
Rugged & Dapper’s Shaving Cream For Men – Moisture Shield Hydrating Formula For High Precision Smooth Shave provides a nonfoaming and moisturizing shaving experience that’s ideal for those with sensitive or dry skin. The size of the package is 6 oz.
This cream doesn’t foam up or lather, so you won’t need to do that after squirting some out of the tube. Make sure not to use too much—only use enough to coat your skin before shaving.
Leave the cream to soak into your skin for a couple of minutes before shaving and washing.
WHO IS IT BEST FOR?
This cream is good for those with dry skin because of its excellent moisturizing features. It’s also good for sensitive skin because of its heavy lubrication and gentleness.
If you have extremely oily skin, you probably won’t get the relief you need from this cream because of how gentle it is.
If you have very dry skin or sensitive skin, this cream can give you relief and prevent shaving from irritating your face any more than necessary.
Ihope that you’ve enjoyed the discussion of shaving with acne and the reviews of these shaving creams. Because each person’s skin is different, you should be ready to try multiple creams before you find the one that’s right for you. Use your knowledge of your skin and what features to look for to find the ideal cream.