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Shaving creams are a routine cosmetic product that is widely used by both genders. Various types of shaving creams are readily available on the market, all of which are supposed to help soften the hair for easy removal.
However, most of the commercially available shaving creams are laden with chemicals such as parabens that can irritate the skin and cause damage in the long run.
Therefore, it is best to prepare your own shaving cream using natural ingredients that are easily found in your kitchen. These DIY shaving creams are not only gentle on the skin but may also have additional benefits.
Know Your Ingredients
You can prepare shaving creams at home using the following ingredients:
1. Shea butter
Shea butter is an excellent source of skin-moisturizing natural fatty acids, including stearic, oleic, palmitic, and linoleic acids.
Shea butter also contains various active compounds that exhibit anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties and help boost skin repair. (1)
2. Plant oils
Similar to shea butter, plant oils are rich in fatty acids that moisturize the skin. They also contain antioxidant, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory properties. The fatty acids, especially linoleic and oleic acids, also promote skin repair. (2)
These different properties of plant oils are also useful in preventing skin problems such as dermatitis.
Coconut, jojoba, olive, and vitamin E-rich oils such as almond oil are most commonly used in DIY shaving cream recipes.
3. Aloe vera gel
Aloe vera gel is highly popular for its many dermatological benefits. It contains several bioactive compounds such as humectant polysaccharides, salicylic acid, antiseptic sulfur, urea nitrogen, and cinnamic acid. (3)
4. Essential oils
Most of the marketed shaving creams give out a soothing fragrance. However, they contain harmful artificial perfuming agents such as parabens.
Homemade shaving creams, on the other hand, use essential oils such as peppermint, lavender, lemon, and frankincense oils for the fragrance. These essential oils also possess skin benefits as they act as anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial agents. (4)(5)
Therefore, adding essential oils to your shaving creams can help prevent infections in case of razor cuts.
5. Baking soda
Additionally, the alkaline nature of baking soda makes it a potent antiseptic that is useful in managing skin irritation caused by washes and cuts. Baking soda can also mildly exfoliate the skin.
How to Make Shaving Creams at Home
You can try the following recipes to make your own shaving creams:
Disclaimer: Since your facial skin is extremely thin and delicate, it can get easily irritated by any new topical ingredient. So, to avoid adverse skin reactions such as burns and rashes, first perform a patch test of the shaving cream on the underside of your arm. If irritation occurs, avoid its use. Needless to say, people who are allergic to any of the ingredients in the remedy should not use it.
1. Shaving cream using shea butter and plant oils
- Pour ⅓ cup of extra virgin coconut oil into a microwave-safe bowl.
- Add in ⅓ cup of shea butter into the bowl.
- Microwave the mixture until it melts.
- Mix in ¼ cup of extra virgin olive oil.
- Add 4–5 drops of lavender or peppermint essential oil and mix well.
- Refrigerate the mixture for about 2 hours or until it solidifies.
- Take out the bowl and allow it to stand at room temperature for 15 minutes.
- Use a hand whisk to whip the mixture for about 5 minutes to obtain a light and fluffy shaving cream.
2. Shaving cream with the goodness of aloe vera
- Add ½ cup of coconut oil and ½ cup of shea butter into a bowl.
- Mix the ingredients well and microwave until melted.
- Add 7–10 drops of any essential oil to the bowl and mix well.
- Refrigerate the bowl and allow the contents to solidify.
- Allow the mixture to stand at room temperature for 10 minutes.
- Add 2 tbsp of aloe vera gel to the mixture, and whip it using a hand whisk until creamy and smooth.
3. Shaving lotion using baking soda
- Melt ½ cup of shea butter and whisk it.
- Add ½ cup coconut oil and 5–7 drops of any essential oil and mix well.
- Add ½ tbsp of baking soda to the mixture.
- Transfer the lotion into a clean squirt bottle.
Note: You can use other plant-based oils in place of coconut or olive oil. You can also substitute shea butter with cocoa butter and essential oils with natural vanilla extract. Always store the creams and lotions in an airtight container in a cool, dark place. Since these DIY shaving creams do not foam up, you can mix in 2 tbsp of Castile soap to produce lather.
How to Use DIY Shaving Creams
Enjoy the maximum benefits of your DIY shaving creams by following these steps:
- Wash your skin with warm water and do not wipe it.
- Apply a thin layer of the cream or lotion on the areas you want to shave.
- Always use a sharp razor to shave.
- Keep rinsing the razor blade at intervals while shaving.
- Wash your skin gently with water after shaving, and apply an after-shave lotion.
- Apply sunscreen after shaving to protect your skin from sun sensitivity.
As shaving creams are a regularly used product, a wide variety of shaving products exist in the market. But such shaving creams come with chemicals that can harm your skin in the long run.
The DIY shaving creams and lotions mentioned in this article are skin-friendly alternatives. They are not only chemical-free, but they also possess different dermatological benefits and are easy to make.