Shave your way out of a double-chin
The neck. It’s one of those tricky areas that even daily shavers have yet to master. A properly maintained neckline can take your chiseled jaw-line to new heights or further define your jaw to get you out of the At-Risk-Chin Club. The skin on your neck is sensitive; it has lines and curves that don’t exist anywhere else on your body. It’s the protector of your Adam’s apple, the home of some vital pipes and tubes and stuff. At Shave Talks, we clearly know more about shaving than anatomy, and have gathered some tips on how to clean up a neck beard. Treat it well and follow these careful steps on how to properly shave that deceptively difficult neckline.
Map It out and Learn Your Patterns
Before even turning on the tap, you’ll want to map out the dimensions of your neckline. We promise this sounds a lot more complicated than it actually is. First, imagine a slightly curved line that travels from your earlobe to under your jaw line. Then push your chin to your neck to create a mild double-chin effect. You may look ridiculous, but the natural fold you create will show where the underside of your chin meets the top of your neck. The line will be just above your Adam’s apple.
Next, examine your neck-beard to differentiate the different growth patterns. It’s helpful to have let your beard grow a few days before this. Run a hand along the hairs and feel-out any changes in direction or pattern so you can always make sure to be shaving with the grain to avoid irritation. When your hair feels smoother, you’re moving with the grain. When it feels rougher, you’re moving against, which you’ll want to avoid. We know that shaving against the grain has been touted as the best method to achieve that baby-soft feel, but by doing so you’ll encourage ingrown hair and excess friction to your skin. With a few adjustments towards the end, shaving with the grain will get the job done just fine.
These two steps are important. They may seem extraneous now but they’ll save you from a sloppy neckline and painful irritation down the road.
Prepare with a Gentle Wash
Prep with warm water and a gentle face wash to start with a clean surface. Most men skip their neck entirely when washing or even rinsing their face, but it’s important you cleanse your neck as well to wash away any impurities before going in with a razor. Most importantly, washing will also prep your skin and hair, making your razor’s job a lot easier. At the very least, shave after you shower to take advantage of the built-up steam or rinse with a lot of warm water.
Make sure to use a gentle face cleanser and save the body wash for the shower. Body wash is too harsh and could strip away too much of your skin’s natural oils.
Lather Bigger and Better
Stay away from the canned foam and create your own lather. The ingredients in canned foam will dry out your skin so stick to the squeeze-tube variety that you can lather yourself. You’ll want to go big here and create an extra thick layer of lather to protect the skin on your neck. Get a shaving brush if you don’t have one. A shaving brush will prep your neck even further by lifting the hairs and covering every individual strand with lather.
Before you go in with your razor, shave your face first and leave your neck for last. The product will have time to absorb into the stubble and skin to give you an easier shave.
Consider the Amount of Pressure
Your neck’s terrain is sensitive and curved, which means you should be extra aware of the amount of pressure you’re using to avoid nicks. Most razors are designed to combat some of the unnecessary pressure but to be careful, try holding the razor at its center-of-gravity, or at the very end of the handle. This will make sure that the razor’s contact against your skin is just enough to shave the hairs. If you feel like you really need to exert force to shave, you most likely need to start with a fresh blade cartridge.
As you shave, use careful, light strokes that overlap only slightly. If you’ve missed spots when you’ve finished, you can re-lather and go in again. But more on that later.
Flatten the Skin
Most shavers believe the key to a successful neck shave is to stretch the skin smooth. But over-stretching can allow for ingrown hair and razor burn. Be careful to only tilt your head up only slightly, or hold your chin to your neck to flatten the sides of your neck that way.
When it comes to your Adam’s apple, use short, controlled strokes. Be careful here and pay extra attention to the curved surface.
If you missed a few spots, re-lather and then shave across the grain rather than with the grain. This should give you a closer shave without the extra irritation. If the area still isn’t smooth enough, try shaving against the grain again but in the other direction. And if the area still isn’t smooth enough, relax. Others won’t know your neck isn’t perfectly satin-smooth and it’s most likely not worth the potential irritation of going over the area a fourth time.
Rinse the cream and debris away and pat on a hydrating toner if you have it. Just make sure it doesn’t contain alcohol. The last thing you want to do to a freshly-shaved area is slap on some alcohol. Then make sure to use an after-shave balm or a daily moisturizer to replenish and protect your skin. And there you have it. A perfectly shaped-up neckline to help you contour your way out of a weak chin or strengthen an already chiseled jaw line. If you’re in the market for a new razor or want to learn how to optimize your shave routine, take a look at Dorco’s Pace 6 Plus. The six blades create a close, comfortable shave and are perfectly angulated for easy rinsing between swipes. Plus, the angulated blade head pivots easily to glide over every curve—perfect for reaching sensitive areas. And at 35% less than the cost of leading brands you’ll have saved enough to buy a new tie to adorn that freshly shorn neck. Maybe even a bowtie if you’re feeling extra confident.