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The 5 best shaving creams for men

By Marissa DeSantis

Whether shaving is a daily habit or you only occasionally break out your razor, nicks, ingrown hairs, and red bumps are an all-too-common struggle for many. And while using the right razor is key, finding the best shaving cream for men is also essential to getting a close, clean shave without the irritation.

Since shaving can strip moisture from your skin, you'll want to make sure to choose a shaving cream that says it's hydrating or moisturizing; this will also help keep bumps and burn at bay, and your skin will feel more comfortable afterwards. If your skin is on the sensitive side, you'll want to avoid products that contain fragrance, dye, or alcohol, as these can all cause irritation.

Of course, a lackluster (or worse: painful) shave could also come down to not following a few key steps. If you're in need of a quick refresher, always remember to start by using warm water on your face to help soften your skin and hair (shaving right after a shower is best). Once you apply your shaving cream to your face, you'll want to let it sit for a few minutes before going in with your razor because it allows the formula to soften your hair even further for an easier shave. Then, be sure to shave in the direction your hair grows, and rinse off your razor after every swipe to minimize irritation. And, don't forget to change out your razor with regularity (every 5 to 10 shaves, according to Men's Health).

To help get you started, here are five of the best shaving creams available on Amazon.

1. The overall best shaving cream for men, according to Amazon

Italian brand Proraso has earned itself a cult-following for creating a line of barber-quality shaving creams that can be used at home. The classic "refreshing and toning" formula is made using a hot soap process, which creates a rich soap that works into an incomparably thick and creamy lather, making it easy to achieve a close, comfortable shave. Ingredients-wise, coconut oil and glycerin allow your razor to glide through the shaving cream seamlessly while keeping your skin moisturized and soft. The brand also added camphor, menthol, and eucalyptus oil to the formula, which work together to soothe irritation, prevent itching, and hit skin with a light cooling sensation. Keep in mind this shaving cream does include a hint of fragrance, which can irritate some particularly sensitive skin types; however, it's listed last on the ingredients list, meaning it only contains a minimal dose.

This shaving cream is also a top pick on Amazon, with over 1,800 five-star reviews. Proraso also makes several other top-quality shaving creams, including moisturizing and nourishing, sensitive skin, and protective and moisturizing formulas.

2. The best shaving cream for dry skin

This three-in-one option can be used as a pre-shave oil, shaving cream, and after-shave conditioner. No matter how you use it, the Jack Black Beard Lube Conditioning Shave is a surprisingly nourishing on skin, given how lightweight the formula is. Rather than creating a foamy lather, this Jack Black product is a clear oil that lets you see exactly where you're shaving, and it also helps soften your hair (and skin) to reduce the risk of irritation. Ingredients like macadamia nut oil, jojoba oil, and glycerin lock in moisture, while menthol, peppermint, and eucalyptus oils provide a cooling sensation and antibacterial benefits. It also checks all of the boxes when on the hunt for something that's sensitive skin-friendly, as it's free of fragrance, alcohol, and dyes, in addition to being vegan/cruelty-free and gluten-free.

3. The best value

If you prefer to buy in bulk, this six-pack of Nivea Men Sensitive Shaving Foam basically guarantees you won't have to stop by the drugstore for more anytime soon. Formulated without alcohol, which can dry out skin and cause burning, Nivea uses the brand's own Skin Guard Technology to keep your face protected. The shaving cream does contain fragrance (which, as mentioned previously, can be a potential irritant for some), but it also contains vitamin E to leave skin smoother, plus chamomile and witch hazel extracts, which have anti-inflammatory properties that help soothe skin.

4. The best shaving cream for your head

The shaving cream you use on your beard isn't necessarily going to cut it if you're trying to shave your whole head. That's where this HeadBlade HeadSlick Shave Cream comes in. While you can absolutely use it on your face, too, HeadBlade developed this formula to allow you to shave your head easily and without any irritation. First, there's the bottle's larger 8-ounce size, and a cream that was designed to work effectively by using just a small amount. HeadSlick is formulated with special lubricants that allow your blade to glide along skin smoothly, but it's also water-soluble, so you don't have to worry about it clogging up the blade. The cream is also free of perfumes and dyes to minimize irritation; plus, it's cruelty-free.

5. The best splurge

If you want to elevate your shaving experience, it doesn't get more luxurious than this L’Occitane Cade Shaving Cream. The French brand strives for sustainability and fair trade practices, partnering with local farmers whenever possible to ensure high-quality and ethically-sourced ingredients. When it comes to L'Occitane's shaving cream, all of those values translate into a formula that feels creamy on skin and delivers a close, comfortable shave without causing irritation. Vegetable-based glycerin and shea butter help protect and moisturize skin, while organic cade essential oil gives the rich formula a refreshing scent. Despite its high price tag, almost every Amazon reviewer noted that the shaving cream will last you ages, since it only takes a small amount to work into a thick lather.

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