For trans guys on hormones, one of the most anticipated changes in our transition is growing facial hair.
So now once you have it, it’s time to figure out what to do with it. How do we shave properly? How can we keep our facial hair healthy?
As trans men, many of us have to teach ourselves how to shave and learn through trial and error.
As an experienced beard owner and manufacturer of mens’ shaving products, I’m excited to share a few tips and key practices with you that’ll make all the difference in your grooming routines.
Basic shaving can be quick and easy. Just pick up a razor and drag it across your face until the stubble is gone. JUST KIDDING! A good shave requires a little more effort and bit of know-how.
1. Pick the right razor.
I like to start with a brand-new 5 blade razor. This helps for less pulling of the hair when shaving and is also a personal preference. You can use any razor that works best for you, because it’s the technique that matters most.
- Tools of Men: The Different Types of Razors — A Guide to Decide Which is Best for You!
- Lifehacker: The Five Best Razors
2. Shave in the right direction.
Using a good shaving cream, start by shaving downward for the mustache, cheeks and chin. Then, shave upward for the neck and neckline. Always shave with the grain, which is the direction your hair grows! I know it sounds a little funny but shaving with the grain helps protect the skin from irritation. No one likes razor burn!
If you like the line up or chin strap look, most modern shaving razors have a edging blade or built-in trimmer that can provide a nice, clean line.
Make sure you are washing your face daily to prevent oil build-up and ingrown hairs, which can slow hair growth. If you struggle with acne from testosterone, shaving can be a little more challenging. Take it slow and try not to over work areas. And it’s even more important for you to never use a dull blade, because it can cause damage to the hair as well as further skin irritation.
Keeping Your Beard
If you prefer to keep a beard like I do, here are a few tips on keeping it clean and healthy.
1.Trim regularly and properly.
Always use a good sharp pair of clippers or scissors and take your time. Trimming your beard can help increase new growth. To keep your neck clean, you’ll need to establish your neckline. Imagine a curved line from the back of your earlobe under your jaw to your chin. This line should fall around your Adam’s apple. That’s your neckline, and you can opt to shave everything below that line for a clean look.
- Rugged Fellows Guide: Trimming a Beard Neckline
- Beards.org: Designing a neck line for your full beard
- Mens Hairstylists: The Ultimate Guide on How to Trim a Beard
- Shortlist.com: A Guide to Beard Maintenance
2. Wash daily
Washing your beard and face daily allows growth for new hair. I recommend my Beard & Face Soap because it is rich and creamy providing great lather, which leaves your skin nice and moisturized.
3. Condition & Protect
By conditioning your beard you are protecting it from harsh conditions while also moisturizing the skin beneath. Using some sort of balm or oil helps prevent “beardruff.” Of course, I use my personal brand Mack Soaps Beard Balm and Beard Oil. And if you’re feeling “beard itch,” conditioning will help, as will brushing your hair in the direction of growth.
Everything that I have learned about healthy skin and hair has come from self-educating, research, and of course, trial and error. At the end of the day, my advice is simple. Find a daily regimen that works best for you and stick to it. Every man is different so that means every face is different.