The Men's Room

Is Shaving Making Your Skin Darker?


A good shave can reveal a lot. A clean face, the shape of your jaw… and darkened skin? If you have noticed darker skin on your face from shaving it isn’t just the lighting… it is indeed a “real thing” that may actually be happening to you!

First of all, don’t be alarmed. You aren’t alone and it can be avoided.

Let’s start with why it is happening:

The aggressive nature of shaving, whether it’s with a razor or an electric shaver, can cause skin discoloration. The rubbing or scraping action of the blades can cause minor cuts to the skin, causing hyperpigmentation“, which is the skin’s way of replacing color to the damaged area.

So, how do you avoid unnecessary darkening of these shaved areas?

  1. Prep well –  Whether it’s a wet-shave or an electric shave, make sure you follow the necessary steps to prepare the skin for shaving. This will reduce any nicks that may result. (See: Electric Shaving con’t…(tricks for a better electric shave) or my Quick & Classic Shaving Tips).
  2. Avoid shaving against the grain – This practice can not only cause irritation, but in some cases nicks to the skin, which result in the hair being pulled and snagged instead of cut.
  3. Avoid rubbing alcohol or aftershave products that contain alcohol – Alcohol can dry, harden and even darken the skin. Stick with aftershave balms that do not contain the ingredient alcohol.

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