Any noticeable improvements in closeness and comfort are more than welcome for anyone using an electric shaver. Pre shave products promise just that and many men seem to swear by them.
In this article we’ll take a look at how they work, the different types of products and if they really make a difference and are worth buying.
How do electric pre shaves work?
When using an electric razor for dry shaving, there a few factors that can make this task even more difficult and unpleasant: the moisture and oils of the skin, flat lying hairs, flaky skin—to name just a few.
To make matters worse, dry shaving involves constantly running a piece of metal over your skin that can also get hot and cause painful razor burn. A pre electric shave is designed to address these issues and therefore provide a more comfortable and close shave.
Ideally, this type of products works by providing a layer of lubrication, absorbing the moisture, toning the skin and causing the hairs to stand straight up, making it easier for the shaver to cut them. The end result is a closer shave, with less irritation and razor burn.
The different types of pre electric shave products
The most popular ones come in the form of a lotion/splash, gel or powder, each with its own pros and cons. As it’s the case with most products in the personal care field, choosing one over another is mostly a matter of personal preference.
Powder or talc
A powder/talc pre shave provides the most lubrication of all three, allowing the shaver to glide over the skin with less friction. It is also very efficient at dealing with oily skin and absorbing any kind of moisture. Since it doesn’t contain alcohol, it doesn’t sting and it’s perfectly suitable for sensitive skin.
A downside of this type of products is that they can be a little messy to apply compared to a gel or lotion. On the bright side, a pre shave talc stick will last for months, offering great value for money.
An excellent pre shave powder is Remington Face Saver; manufactured in Switzerland, it has been around for a few decades and has gained a great reputation among electric shaving enthusiasts. To apply, you just rub the stick across your face and work it with your fingers into the hair.
Lotions and gels
A pre electric lotion or gel will usually include alcohol in the ingredient list, so you should definitely take this into consideration if you have very sensitive skin or suffer from any type of irritation.
Other than that, it does a great job of lifting the hair, prepping the skin and providing a protective layer of lubrication. After the shave, make sure to rinse your face and also thoroughly clean your razor; using a pre electric lotion or gel tends to make the hairs stick to the cutters.
Williams Lectric Shave is a very popular electric pre shave lotion. It improves the closeness of the shave and reduces irritation, especially on sensitive areas like the neck. Be careful when applying though; being very runny, it tends to slip between your fingers if you are a bit heavy handed when applying.
Another excellent option is a pre electric shave gel like Afta by Mennen. It’s very easy to apply due to its thick consistency, it dries the moisture, improves the glide of the razor over the skin and causes the hairs to stand up. The result is a smoother and closer shave.
Should you use a pre electric shave product?
In my opinion, you should at least give it a try. Including an electric pre shave lotion or powder is, at least in theory, one of the simplest ways to significantly improve your dry shaving experience.
Having said that, the improvement will vary and you may not see a noticeable difference, especially if you’re not affected by some of the issues described in this article. If that’s the case, you can probably skip buying one.
However, most men seem to benefit from using one and lots of the pre electric products are reasonably priced and will also last for a long time. Including one as part of your pre shave routine can have a major impact on the overall shaving experience.