Tawanna08/ShutterstockWho among us hasn’t used a blue razor instead of a pink one? I know I have. Sometimes it’s out of necessity. And other times, you have to wonder about those close-shave ads for men’s razors. Don’t we deserve the same close shave that the guys get? (Watch out for these seven ways you’re probably shaving wrong.)
“Many women assume men’s razor blades are sharper and better than women’s, because men tend to have coarser hair on their face and shave every day,” says Dr. Jody Levine, celebrity dermatologist and director of dermatology at Plastic Surgery & Dermatology of NYC.
Should you use a men’s razor on your legs?
The difference in the razors aren’t about dullness or the ability to cut hair close to the skin for a smoother feel. It’s about the head, handle shape, rotation and how it fits within the contours of the skin, says Levine, also a spokesperson for Gillette and Venus.
Men’s razors vs women’s razors, according to Levine.
“The handle on women’s razors are very different from the handle on a razor for men. When you think about all the ways women have to hold a razor to reach those tricky spots and then add in a shaving gel or soap and water in the shower – things can get slippery. It’s no wonder women need a different kind of handle.”
“The razor blade cartridge shape on women’s razors is typically different from men’s razors. The oval shape suits women’s shaving better than the square head of a men’s razor because it fits better into the curves such as behind the knee and underarms. It helps pull the skin taut, so even areas like underarms get a close, smooth shave. The women’s razor head also pivots with individually adjusting blades that flex, so it’s easy to shave hard-to-reach spots.” (This is why it’s so important to consistently change your razor head.)
“The pivot of the razor head is also designed differently to allow the cartridge to follow the contours of a woman’s body – which are very different in comparison to the contours of a man’s face.”
What about the moisture strip?
And last but not least—the lubricating strip. On men’s razors, there tends to be one moisture strip that goes over the skin after the blade does, says Levine. For women’s razors, we get the blades encased in a head with a solid moisturizer or between two strips. Besides, our skin isn’t as coarse as men’s. We need that extra hydration and soothing so our skin doesn’t become irritated with razor burn—the worst! (Try these tricks to prevent razor burn.)
So if you’ve swapped back to women’s razors and still find your skin gets irritated, Levine suggests you swap soap for shave gel. “It creates a layer between the blade and your skin, allowing your razor to glide easily and help to protect you from nicks, cuts, and razor burn.”