All You Need To Know About Aftershaves

By: Richard Gere

For a man, beginning to shave is almost a rite of passage into adulthood. Fathers teach their sons the art of shaving so that the knowledge can be passed down to their own children. This ordinary grooming process has today spawned an industry that has produced razors with a variety of designs as well as aftershaves made to soothe the skin post-shaving.


While shaving, the pores of the skin open due to the application of water and foam. These pores need to be closed after shaving if you want to prevent them from being clearly seen. While open pores don’t have any health ramifications, they are considered unsightly as they prevent skin from looking and feeling smooth. Aftershaves help close the pores as well as disinfect the skin which can develop small nicks and cuts during shaving.

Modern aftershaves also contain moisturizers that help to combat dry and flaky skin. They’re aromatic too, along the lines of eau de colognes, so buyers get an antiseptic, moisturizer and cologne all in one package.


A lot of the aftershaves sold in the market comprise of certain ingredients which are combined to produce the familiar smells we know and love. The most common are musky, woodsy and fresh. Like perfumes, the fragrance is determined by what ingredients make up the head, heart and base notes.

Note: Head or top notes are those smells that are perceived immediately following a sniff of an aftershave. The scent does not linger but determines whether a person is likely to purchase it since it is the first impression people get. The heart or middle note is the scent that emerges after the top note has faded. The base note is the lingering fragrance of a perfume or aftershave after the top and middle notes have faded.

Aside from the common fragrances, there are three main types of aftershaves – lotion, balm and gel. Lotions don’t suit everybody as those with sensitive skin may find they sting too much. Balms, on the other hand, soothe irritated skin and can be used by almost anyone. The last, gels, are believed to be the best as they can prevent razor burns or, at the very least, relieve the discomfort.

How to purchase

Most aftershaves are purchased based on fragrance. However, it’s important to know a few things about yourself to ensure that the scent you choose is the right one.

•Skin type: Skin type determines how long the fragrance of an aftershave lasts. Oily skin tends to maintain aroma longer while dry skin must be refreshed at least twice a day.

•Diet: What a person eats has a direct bearing on what aftershaves smell like. Hot, spicy foods tend to magnify scents but not in a good way. So, if you have a penchant for chili and other hot food, you might want to skip on the aftershave. At least till you know you won’t be gorging on spicy items.

The don’ts

•A lot of the aftershaves sold today contain alcohol. While people with non-sensitive and oily skin may be okay with applying lotions containing alcohol, experts advise against it as they can dry out the skin and are painful to apply. It’s best to choose one containing aloe vera and vitamin E.

•People suffering from folliculitis barbae or irritation due to shaving are advised against using any aftershave as it can exacerbate the problem. The same goes for lotions and creams post-shaving.

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Choosing the right aftershave is essential and for that you should know few things about yourself to ensure that the scent you choose is the right one. Follow the link to get more information about wet shaving methods and newest modern shaving supplies from Shaving Style.

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