What type of Aftershave is the Best Aftershave for You?

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aftershaveWith such a variety of men’s skincare products on the market today, it’s easy to become overwhelmed with choices and nowhere is this more so than when it comes to aftershave.

However, the key to finding the best aftershave for you really lies in paying close attention to your own skin.

Examine your complexion and your current skincare products, if any. If you notice that you suffer from razor burn, dryness and irritations more often than not, your aftershave, or even lack thereof, may be to blame.

Is Aftershave Really That Important?

You might feel as though you don’t have time to apply aftershave, or you’re just not sure of the real importance of this step in your skincare routine.

Some men believe that aftershave for men is simply another marketing ploy to get unsuspecting guys to purchase more skin care products.

However, have you ever noticed that after you shave, your skin sometimes appears dry or that you have developed ingrown hairs? This is because, as you drag the razor across your face, it cuts off the top layer of skin cells, leaving your face vulnerable and susceptible to nicks and burns.

And this is where aftershave can assist.

What is Aftershave?

Traditional aftershave (usually in quite a runny liquid form) works to condition your skin post shave, closing pores and helping keep your face looking its best so that your other associated grooming efforts aren’t wasted.

However, aftershave can give you a stinging or strong tingling sensation on application that a lot of men don’t like.

Also due to its alcoholic content aftershave can have quite a drying effect on your skin but particularly for those of us with already drier natured skin.

What is Aftershave Balm?

Aftershave balm on the other hand is much gentler on the skin than aftershave.

It normally comes in a lotion type form (as opposed to the runny liquid that typifies aftershave) and is really focused first and foremost on soothing the skin.

In fact any form of aftershave that comes as a lotion, cream or cooling gel is probably best described as an ‘aftershave balm’ in comparison to the runny alcohol based ‘aftershave’.

If you start to use an aftershave and you find that your face is becoming dryer and more dehydrated, consider purchasing a face balm and apply it immediately after your aftershave or even experiment with using your aftershave balm in place of your aftershave altogether.

Also, men with particularly sensitive skin that is easily irritated may benefit the most from a specific aftershave balm in gel form which is specially designed to cool and soothe the painful bumps and irritations that often happen after shaving.


Although it can take a bit of experimenting to find the best aftershave or best aftershave balm (or even mix thereof) for your skin, it can really be worth the effort.

Once you nail this key post shave part of your daily face care regime you can see quite noticeable benefits in your complexion.

Getting this step right can also really set up your face for the rest of the day as given its one of the last steps in a good morning skin care regime for a man, if you blow this part, all your prior steps such as using a good cleanser as well as an appropriate toner or astringent, can be seriously undermined.

Product Reviews

Neutrogena Men Razor Defense Post Shave Lotion

This lotion contains no oils or dyes and can help to not only heal and moisturize dry skin but also soothe those pesky and sometimes painful red bumps and irritations that you can be left with after shaving. This shave focused lotion also definitely helps make facial hair more manageable and easier to shave. A very highly recommended product!

Clubman Pinaud After Shave Lotion, 6 Ounce

This product is alcohol-based and is guaranteed give you a refreshing wake you up in the morning. The classic fragrance although not necessarily for everyone definitely has a sense of the iconic ‘old school’ men’s face products about it.  This lotion will leave your face feeling soothed and smoothed while helping to heal razor burns and nicks.

Nivea for Men Sensitive Post Shave Balm

Made in Germany and containing no alcohol, this balm is specifically intended for those with sensitive skin. Natural ingredients such as vitamin E and chamomile aid in providing a moisturized and smoothed complexion as this balm works to hydrate the skin after shaving. Users of this balm also agree that they notice an improvement in their overall skin texture with long-term use. Just one thing to be aware of however is that some men do find the scent of this product a bit on the strong side.

The Art of Shaving After-Shave Balm

The Art of Shaving’s line of after shave balms work to refresh, regenerate and sooth the skin after you shave. This particular aftershave balm is great for dry, sensitive and normal skin types, and also doesn’t contain alcohol and antiseptic. Instead, it is formulated with vitamin C and shea butter as well as grape seed and algae extracts to more naturally moisturize and revitalize the skin.

L’Oreal Paris Men’s Expert Comfort Max After-Shave Balm

If you want to hydrate your skin, soothe any shaving related irritations or just protect your face from the harsh weather conditions of the outdoors, then this is the product for you. Not only do those using this balm attest to the way it hydrates and helps to repair their skin, but many also particularly comment on the added benefits that the sunscreen and UV protection properties of this balm provide. In fact, because of its ‘outdoor’ related benefits many users note they use the balm on their neck and around their face as well.

Aftershave is Worth it!

Although aftershave and aftershave balms are one of the most common steps in a man’s skincare routine that gets left out or over looked in the everyday rush of life, once you start to use these prodcuts you’ll quickly realise what you’ve been missing!

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    • David says

      Hi Vipul,

      Thanks for your query. When we talk about experimenting we really just mean perhaps trying out a couple of different options (for example maybe more of an aftershave balm as well as a more traditional and more alcohol based aftershave) to see which you feel gives you the best feeling and looking skin. You can even take this ‘experimenting’ one step further and maybe look at trialling different aftershave products in conjunction with some other types of skin care products that you also use (for example trying some different shaving gels or creams or even trialling using some different astringents or toners). It really depends on how far you want to take things. Hope that helps!

      David – Skin Care For Men Explained

  1. Ray. says

    How do you feel about Dove’s after shave products. I’ve notice that their shaving gel doesn’t well for me. But I don’t really know have any aftershave to compare their balm to bc I’ve only ever used Gillette, which I know isn’t the best product out there.

    • David says

      I actually really like the Dove aftershave products myself. I haven’t included it on the list above as I know it’s a men’s product that really tends to divide people. I used Dove for a long time and it never really gave me a reason to change other than I got interested in experimenting to see what some different products would do and how they’d compare. Apart from that I’d probably most likely still be using Dove today! Some people though just don’t’ rate it. It’s interesting though when you push them on why that a lot of this actually just has to do with the brand perception (e.g. older guys who remember when Dove was not a man’s brand at all).

      If you’re interested I’d say definitely give it a try. Also its really interesting how different products can work differently for different people. It will also depend on what other skin care products (before and after shave) you might be using as this can impact on the overall result as well. Doesn’t hurt to mix things up from time to time I say, just give your skin time to accustomise to any changes before you make a decision as to whether the change is better or not.

      Hope that helps!

      David – Skin Care For Men Explained

    • David says

      Hi Alex,

      Thanks for your query! I’d say you can absolutely do that. You might even like to try leaving the toner out of the routine and just see how your skin reacts to that. The alum and the toner could be a bit of double up but this would really depend on the type of alum and toner you use. Just be warned that once you start using alum a lot of people NEVER go back :-)

      Hope that helps!

      David – Skin Care For Men Explained

  2. vikas says

    How to use aftershave in combination with perfume? I mean after having a bath, shave and then use aftershave and then perfume?

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