There are lots of reasons to swap your disposable plastic razors for an electric razor. For starters, it’s a really easy way to make your grooming routine greener. Shaving with a high-quality electric razor is a convenient way to cut down on plastic waste without compromising on comfort or smoothness. Plus, you’re guaranteed a much better shave as, being multi-use tools, electric razors are designed to cut over and over to the same standard every time.
Today, it’s still more common for men to own an electric razor than women despite the fact women shave just as regularly. However, as interest in eco-friendly lifestyles grows, more women are ditching their disposables and learning how to shave their legs with electric razor style products. In an even bigger cultural shift, a recent survey revealed almost 50% of men in the west now trim or completely shave their pins.
So let’s learn how to get flawlessly smooth legs together. In this article, we discuss the best techniques for shaving with an electric razor and answer your burning questions about the benefits of ditching disposables.
Dry Shaving vs. Wet Shaving
A lot of people avoid dry shaving even when it’s more convenient for their routine because they’ve heard warnings about itchy skin and ingrown hairs. While dry shaving can result in irritation if it’s done incorrectly, it can be just as smooth as a wet shave if you slow down and apply gentle, even strokes. It also means you don’t have to jump in the shower every time you’re racing the clock to get ready.
Wet shaving is the preferred method of leg shaving for most people. Water means lots of lubrication so less chance of snags, nicks and burns. Though even wet shaving can be uncomfortable if you don’t know how to handle an electric razor correctly. Let’s take a closer look at both methods and learn how to get silky smooth legs whether wet or dry shaving.
How to Dry Shave Your Legs with an Electric Razor
1 – Rub Your Legs with a Soft Towel
First, use a clean towel to gently rub the skin on your legs. A slightly warm towel is best because heat opens the pores and prepares the skin for a smooth, snag-free shave. This is especially important when you’re not using water to lubricate any little lumps and bumps. Remember to rub around your ankles if you’re planning to use your electric razor on this area.
2 – Pick a Direction and Stick with It
The key thing to remember when electric shaving – wet or dry – is to move in one direction. Because you’re not using any water with this method, we strongly recommend you move ‘with the grain’ in the same direction your hairs are growing. You’ll get a shave that’s slightly less close but there’s also less chance of nicks and ingrown hairs.
If you feel the shave isn’t close enough, try holding the electric razor at a slight right angle on every downward stroke. Also, make sure your razor is fully charged before you start so that it performs at maximum capacity.
3 – Moisturize the Skin Immediately
When you’re done dry shaving, cover your newly shorn legs with a generous layer of moisturizer. It’s a good idea to do this whether you’re dry or wet shaving but it’s particularly important after a dry shave. The skin on your legs will be tender and vulnerable so help your pores recover by giving them a protective, hydrating barrier.
How to Wet Shave Your Legs with an Electric Razor
1 – Prepare Your Cordless Shaver
Needless to say, you shouldn’t use corded devices too close to water as there’s a danger of electrocution. Cordless razors are designed to be waterproof so you can submerge them without causing any damage. Make sure your electric razor is fully charged before you start shaving and have it clean and ready on the side of the tub or shower pan.
2 – Moisturize the Skin on Your Legs
This is much easier to do when you’re wet which is why wet shaving is the recommended method for smooth legs. Some people like to apply an additional lubricant such as shaving lotion, body wash or even shampoo before they start but plain water is fine. If you’re not applying any of these products, give your legs time to soak and soften before you fire the electric razor up.
3 – Pick a Direction and Stick with It
The same rule applies here as it does to dry shaving. Whatever direction you move in (with or against the grain), stick with it. Shaving in the same direction as the hairs is still the recommended method for comfort but being in water means you’re less likely to get nicks and burns even if you do go against the grain.
Electric razors tend to have broader, fatter heads than disposable razors. This can make it awkward to shave around bumpy bits like the ankles (though it’s worth noting some newer devices come with pressure-sensitive blades that mold around curves and protrusions). If you’re not confident with your electric razor, start at the ankle and use short, precise strokes to shave around the area before moving up the leg.
Again, whether you’re shaving upward or downward, maintain one single direction. Where possible, use long strokes that shave an entire section of hair from knee to ankle. The fewer strokes the less chance of skin irritation and ingrown hairs. Plus, it’s easier to keep track of where you have and haven’t shaved if you move around the leg in even sections.
4 – Moisturize the Skin Again
Even though you’ve had a wet shave, it’s still smart to finish up with moisturizer. Before you apply the moisturizer, splash your shaved legs with cold water to close the pores and towel them dry. Cover the skin with your chosen product and give it time to absorb before you get dressed. This is the easiest way to avoid inflamed skin and an itch that prickles all day.
Frequently Asked Questions About Electric Razors
Q – What are some benefits of shaving with an electric razor?
- Much greener as you’re not buying hundreds of disposable razors that will end up in landfill
- Significantly cheaper over time because an electric razor has one price whereas disposable razors need to be bought regularly
- Delivers a faster, more convenient shave (takes 2 – 3 mins per shave where manual razors take closer to 8 – 10 mins per shave)
- Protective skin guard means less chance of nicks and stinging cuts
- Much smaller learning curve for those who are new to shaving such as teenagers and men who are grooming their legs for the first time
Q – Which is the right direction to shave in when using an electric razor?
The answer to this question is the same whether you’re using electric or manual razors. For comfort, always shave with the direction of the hairs. For a shave that’s as close to the skin as possible, move against the grain. There’s nothing wrong with shaving against the grain but there’s a much higher likelihood of injuring your skin. So it really depends on what’s most important to you, comfort or precision.
Electric razors are much less likely than manual ones to cut the skin so it’s safer to move against the grain when using an electric device. It’s also safer to shave against the grain when wet shaving than it is dry shaving. Take these factors into account when deciding which direction is right for your legs.
Q – Can you use shaving cream with an electric razor?
Yes, you can use shaving cream with an electric razor but use smaller amounts. The more product you apply, the more chance there is of the blades getting clogged. Steer clear of very thick foams or try to apply only a thin layer. Remember there isn’t as much need for shaving foam when you’re using an electric razor.
Q – What techniques can I use to get a smoother, silkier shave?
- Make sure your razor is fully charged before use so that it cuts on full power and performs with maximum efficiency
- Replace the blades on your electric razor once every twelve months or as regularly as the manufacturer recommends
- Don’t press down too hard on the skin. It won’t cut any cleaner but it will increase your risk of nicks and stinging razor burns.
- If you’re having trouble shaving with the grain, use one hand to pull the skin flatter and tauter while the other applies strokes with the razor.
- Always apply a hydrating layer of moisturizer to the legs whether wet or dry shaving. Give it time to soak into the skin before you put your clothes on top.
Shaving with an electric razor is no more difficult than shaving with a manual razor but it can produce a softer, silkier effect. The truth is manual shavers do provide a closer shave but because they so often lead to irritated skin, the legs can end up feeling rougher and less maintained than they would if you used an electric device.