Facial Shaving for Women: Pros and Cons
The fact is, some women do shave and like the results. For others, a bad reaction has sworn them off ever doing it again. Then there’s a third group who reject the very notion altogether.
Do Men Have Better Complexion Than Women?
Men have better complexions than women do, some claim. And that, they say, is because men shave. But are their complexions better? Look at the men you know. The ones who are old enough to have been shaving for a good while. Do any of them make you think, “Now there’s a baby’s-bottom complexion?” Not likely!
There’s another myth that men age more slowly than women, facially, because shaving makes their skin thicker. How can you make skin thicker by scraping it off in micro-layers every day? As with all myths, there’s a kernel of truth here: Men do have thicker skin. But the reason is chemical. Men have thicker, younger-looking skin because male androgens increase skin thickness up to 25%, compared with women.
Men also produce more sebum, the oil that keeps skin moisturized and helps it look more hydrated. They also have more skin collagen than women do, so their skin ages slower. Men and women simply age differently. Shaving daily is just not going to change that for women.
Why do Some Women Like Shaving?
It’s because that was the way they discovered exfoliation. A good shave, any man will tell you, gets rid of hair and of a whole layer of dead skin cells, grease, and goop, leaving a fresh, clean feeling. A smooth, attractive look, too. Exactly what you want from any method of exfoliation!
For women who have some facial fuzz here or there, shaving may be a good option. Two essential pieces of advice…
One… Be careful. It’s very easy to nick facial skin. Many locales on the face are rich in blood vessels. And just as you had to do when learning to shave your legs, do not press too hard, lest you scrape! The redness of razor burn is neither pleasant nor attractive.
Two… A very important point to be concerned about: “razor bumps”—hairs which, when cut, slip inside the follicles and remain there, causing minuscule clogged pores. There is no guarantee you can avoid razor bumps entirely, but shaving in the direction of hair growth can help prevent them.
Will Shaving Make Your Hair Grow Thicker and Faster?
What do I answer when a customer or correspondent asks whether she should shave her face? Well, the answer isn’t unequivocal. If you’re curious, try it out. You may only have to shave once to know whether you like it or not. Don’t worry, it’s a myth that shaving regularly gives you huge, tree trunk facial hairs. Women who stand as proponents of facial shaving say your hair, once you start, won’t grow thicker or faster. Still, there’s the commitment. Once you start shaving regularly, you’re in it for the long haul.
Shaving vr. Dry Brushing
I took a really close gander at my own hubby. I must say, my own complexion looks a lot younger. And he shaves every day. I never have (except for a small patch for the sake of research for this article). But I have been dry brushing my face for years!
When you’ll look at men who shave consistently for many years, and compare where they typically shave their faces and where they do not, you typically can’t see any difference in the quality of their complexion between the two areas. Why? Because shaving doesn’t give enough exfoliation to really combat the aging process even for men.
Shaving does offer exfoliation, that much is true. I’ve seen several videos of women shaving their faces. And, yes, these women’s faces were smooth, with no visible wrinkles. But all of them were young to begin with. And if a woman without wrinkles tries it, and she never tried any other forms of exfoliation, she may be impressed. But try shaving a face with some wrinkles and creases. Exfoliation-wise, the results won’t be very visible.
My skin scraping tool, called Strigil provides exfoliation in a very similar way as shaving, but it will help remove dead skin cells and give your face a healthy glow... at least twice more effectively than shaving!
The bottom line for me is: I’m not shaving. I take a stand against shaving, because it is by far not the best way to exfoliate, and does have the potential drawbacks discussed above.
My unwavering recommendation: exfoliation by means of dry brushing. It will definitely give better results than shaving, if you are young. And if you are over 40, a facial brush will do a much better job getting in between those creases and little wrinkles.
Dry brush the whole face. The lower face—all the places you’d shave. But also forehead. Eyelids. Under the eyes. Do it daily. Faithfully. And you’ll both avoid the perils of shaving and get all the compliments you could ever want!