The Daily Telegraph - Saturday
Why modern men are less irritated than their fathers
Imastered shaving by watching my father: a splash of water to wake up the face, then a deluge of aerosol foam before taking up the blade. Nowadays we have better ways to soften the stubble and help the razor to glide, from vitamin-rich creams to transparent gels and pre-shave oils.
Shaving creams, in my opinion, should come in tubes – pots can be a breeding ground for germs – and contain natural soothing and calming ingredients. British brand Heath’s includes calming tea tree, US brand Harry’s contains aloe vera and Kiehl’s is another safe bet. Oils are the most hydrating and good for sensitive skin. Murdock, Pasta & Love by Davines and Charles + Lee all make very good oils, but Aesop’s Moroccan Neroli Shaving Serum takes it to another level. Lab Series has a clever three-in-one shave oil, beard oil and skin moisturiser.
Finally, transparent gels allow for greater visibility and precision. Accessibly-priced French brand Horace’s silicone-free gel is infused with invigorating menthol, while Baxter of California’s Beard Line-Up gel and the transparent gel from Gillette’s heritage range King C Gillette are perfect for tidying up facial hair. What do I use? ESPA’s Shave Mud. Infused with sweet almond oil and shea butter, it doubles as a face mask if I leave it on for a few minutes before taking to it with the razor.