Face Shaving Tips

Shaving with Acne: What You Need to Know

Shaving with Acne: What You Need to Know

Acne can be tough to deal with. It’s bad enough breaking out in angry-looking red spots all over your face, but when throw facial hair into the mix, you need to know the best way to trim and shave it without aggravating your spots.

Shaving acne doesn’t have to be painful. Once you find the right technique, and start using the best shaving products, you can take care of your skin when shaving, and transform your grooming routine into a pain-free experience.

What is Acne?

It’s normal to get more spots on your face when you hit puberty, but acne is more than just a few pimples. Acne is actually a chronic skin condition, and it typically affects males in their late teens, before usually clearing up by the time you’ve reached your mid-20s.

Oily skin is common in puberty as your body starts to produce more sebum, which is supposed to keep your face naturally moisturised. However, your hormones can be all over the place when your body is going through so much growth and change, and some of this sebum can end up blocking your hair follicles.

Acne is caused by oily skin and blocked hair follicles, which both make shaving with acne more difficult.

Blocked follicles can look red, inflamed and irritated on the surface of your skin. If you’re still producing a lot of sebum and aren’t keeping your skin properly cleansed and hydrated, you could end up with spots on top of these infected hair follicles.

There’s also a type of bacteria called Propionibacterium acnes (or P. acnes) that’s usually harmless, but can occasionally block hair follicles, making them look inflamed.

Acne can’t be cured, but it can be controlled, and how you shave can play a big part in stopping it from getting worse.

How to Tell if You Have Acne

If you think you have acne, you should speak to a dermatologist who will be able to advise you on the best way to manage your skin to keep it as clear as possible.

Signs of acne can include:

  • Blackheads
  • Whiteheads
  • Spots filled with pus
  • Cysts
  • Feeling as though you have spots on spots
  • Spots that are painful to touch
  • Pain when you shave

6 Acne Shaving Tips

Here are our top tips for making shaving with acne more comfortable:

1. Always Cleanse Your Skin First

Acne-prone skin needs to be kept clean and free from excess oil where possible. However, washing your face more than twice a day can strip it of the oils it needs, so it’s important to strike the right balance. You don’t want to be leaving your pores open to attract too much oil and bacteria, as this could lead to more spots.

Wash your face using warm water before shaving, and finish your shaving routine by quickly splashing your face with cold water to lock in the nourishing moisture you’ve just added – that’s all it needs.

2. Use a Clean Blade

Use a fresh, clean blade for shaving acne. You don’t want to be dragging excess oil and bacteria that may have built up on a blade across your face, infecting your hair follicles all over again.

Gillette SkinGuard Sensitive Blades are specially designed to minimise direct contact with your skin to shield it against irritation. Choose our SkinGuard Sensitive Razor when you sign up to the Gillette shave club and make sure you’ve always got a clean blade handy.

3. Look for Alcohol-Free Shaving Products

You should always apply a shaving gel or foam to your face before shaving to hydrate both your facial hair and your skin, but make sure you’re using shaving products that don’t contain alcohol, as this can irritate your skin further.

Our SkinGuard Men’s Sensitive Shaving Gel and SkinGuard Men’s Sensitive Shaving Foam are good options, as they contain no alcohol and no dyes, but do include a touch of aloe to soothe your skin after you’ve shaved, which could be just what your acne needs.

4. Let Your Razor Do the Work

Making gentle strokes with your razor will stop you from using too much pressure when you’re shaving acne – it should be your razor doing most of the work, not your hand.

The handle of our SkinGuard Sensitive Razor is specially designed to absorb some of the pressure from your hand while you shave, meaning you’ll be able to tread lightly over patches of acne.

5. Shave with the Grain

Shaving with the grain means following the direction of your facial hair growth with your razor. Shave downwards and you’ll be less likely to irritate your acne further.

6. Adopt a Post-Shave Routine

Continue taking care of your skin after shaving by following a post-shave routine. Use warm water to wash away excess shaving foam and hair, then splash your face with cold water to close your pores, before applying a moisturiser.

Our Gillette Aftershave Moisturiser is designed to soothe and hydrate your skin. If your acne is caused by sebum getting trapped in your hair follicles, the naturally-moisturising oils that your face produces aren’t going to be able to do their job as well as they should, so applying a moisturiser could help.

Before you go to bed each night, exfoliate your face using a gentle scrub to remove excess oil, dirt and bacteria to try to keep on top of your acne.

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Gillette Editor

Gillette Editor

Writer and expert


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