In the ever-evolving landscape of personal grooming, one trend has been making significant waves–men shaving their legs. While shaving leg hair was once primarily associated with women, a growing number of men are embracing the practice of leg shaving for a neater look and other reasons.
In this comprehensive guide, we'll delve into the reasons behind this shift and provide a step-by-step guide on how to shave your legs, and recommend the best razors for the job.
Here's what you'll learn:
Top Reasons Why Men Are Shaving Legs
In recent years, the popularity of body hair removal among men has skyrocketed. Surveys reveal that a remarkable 46% of men removed body hair in 2018, a significant increase from just 36% in 2016.1 The changing attitudes towards grooming have played a pivotal role in this transformation.
Here are the top reasons as to why men would want to shave their leg hair:
- Sports Performance: Male athletes, in particular, have adopted leg shaving as part of their routine.2 Swimmers, for example, benefit from reduced drag, which enhances their aerodynamic profile in the water.3 Bodybuilders shave to accentuate muscular development and definition with totally smooth legs.
- Personal Preferences: Many men simply prefer the clean-shaven or neater look. The absence of body hair provides a sense of cleanliness and confidence, aligning with the modern notion of metrosexuality.
- Hygiene: Body hair can trap sweat and dead skin cells, potentially becoming breeding grounds for harmful bacteria or insects.4 Shaving or removing leg hair can reduce the risk of infection, especially when dealing with wounds or injuries.
The Right Way To Shave Leg Hair
Today's technology has advanced the hair removal process for both men and women. You can opt for the contemporary laser hair removal when trying to get rid of leg hairs or stick with a more manly way, a traditional wet shave with a straight razor or a safety razor. Using disposable razors is not advisable, but if you don't have a choice, just make sure to use fresh razor blades.
Tools You'll Need
Before you begin, gather the necessary tools:
- A high-quality straight razor for precision and a close shave.
- Shaving soap, scuttle, and shaving brush for a rich lather and smooth application.
- Warm or hot water for soaking your legs.
- Cold water for rinsing.
- Aftercare products like aftershave to nourish and soothe the skin.
How to Shave Your Legs with a Straight Razor
Once you get your tools ready, you can start shaving your legs. Remember that this may be a little bit out of your comfort zone. So, to ensure a smooth shave, here's the proper way to shave your legs:
1. Trim Longer Hairs
Give your leg hair a slight trim. The efficiency of your razor blade is at its best when you are shaving hair at the right length since the razor's edge can easily lay at skin-level without extra effort.
2. Soak Your Legs
Make your skin ready by soaking your legs in hot water, taking a warm bath, or taking a warm shower. The warm water softens the hair skin and the hair follicles, making it easier to shave.
3. Exfoliate Dead Skin Cells
Cleanse your skin with a body wash that has glycolic acid5 or use a body scrub on the area you'll shave to remove the dead skin cells, leaving your skin smooth and ready for shaving.
4. Prepare Your Lather
Create a rich, creamy lather using your shaving soap, scuttle, and shaving brush. If you don't have access to these traditional tools, you can always use a shave gel or a shaving cream. Don't use hair conditioner or body wash as they don't make a good lather.
5. Apply the lather
Do this evenly to your legs using a shave brush or your hands. Lather from a shaving gel, soap, or cream provides lubrication for the razor to prevent ingrown hairs and razor bumps.6
6. Light Pressure
Start shaving holding the straight razor lightly with steady strokes following the direction where your leg hair grows. This helps you avoid nicks and cuts while achieving the closest shave.
7. Bend a Knee
When shaving the knee area, slightly bend your knee. This helps in pulling the skin smooth, tight, and flat, making it easier to see where the hairs grow for smooth shaving. Continue with slow, deliberate strokes while facing the edge of your razor upwards.
8. Short Strokes
Use short, controlled strokes when shaving your legs. Shave in the direction of hair growth then the other way for a smoother result.
As you finish each section, rinse your legs thoroughly with cold water to help close the pores or soothe any irritations and stop minor bleeding for small nicks.
10. Nourishing the Skin
After your shave, apply an aftershave product to nourish and soothe the skin. Gently massage these products into your legs for the best results.
Avoid shaving legs dry, especially if you have sensitive skin or dry skin. Dry shaving causes skin irritation and itchy legs, which defeats the purpose of your grooming session. Also, make sure to use a clean razor with a sharp razor blade to avoid unnecessary mishaps.
Whether for sports, personal preference, or hygiene, your groomed legs reflect your dedication to self-care and confidence. Explore our recommended straight razors for an even more luxurious grooming experience.
The Best Razors For Leg Shaving
For the ultimate leg-shaving experience, the Mador Straight Razor Kit is the best razor for leg shaving and other manscaping routines. This kit comes equipped with a shave-ready straight razor featuring a single-edge blade that effortlessly bevels on the skin, ensuring the perfect shaving angle for the best and closest shave.
What sets this kit apart is the included shaving soap tin and brush, which allow you to create a rich lather sufficient for shaving both legs. This luxurious lather not only softens both the hair and the skin but also ensures the straight razor glides effortlessly, resulting in a smooth, irritation-free shave. Bid farewell to razor burn, shaving nicks, and ingrown hairs, and say hello to the ultimate leg-shaving experience with the Mador Straight Razor Kit.
More Naked Armor Reads:
- Advantages & Disadvantages of Wet & Dry Shaving
- Is Shaving Against the Grain Bad?
- Should You Manscape? Your Guide to Manscaping
- S. Capecchi. Smooth operator: Hair removal among young British males is on the rise. Mintel. https://www.mintel.com/press-centre/beauty-and-personal-care/smooth-operator-hair-removal-among-young-british-males-is-on-the-rise
- P. Patel. Why Do Athletes Like Cyclists And Swimmers Shave Their Legs? Science ABC. https://www.scienceabc.com/sports/athletes-like-cyclists-swimmers-shave-legs.html
- A. Bonaguro. Should Men Shave Their Legs? The Surprising Results of Our Poll. Men’s Health. https://www.menshealth.com/style/a19535084/should-men-shave-their-legs/
- Shaving your legs to deter ticks. Colin Purrington. https://colinpurrington.com/2017/07/shaving-legs-deter-ticks/
- Glycolic Acid - Uses, Side Effects, and More. WebMD. https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-1685/glycolic-acid
- Shaving Soap Or Shaving Cream? That Is The Question. Grown Man Shave. https://grownmanshave.com/blogs/grown-man-shave-society-articles/shaving-soap-vs-shaving-cream