Welcome to a new feature on Blinging Beauty — Manly Man. Here you will find professional advice on grooming for the man in your life. Or if you are one of my male readers, this is for you!
Our first installment is by Kathryn Khadija Leverette, owner of Urban Skin Solutions in Oakland, CA.
I turn to Kat when I’m having issues…
Shaving Dos and Don’ts
Do use a clean disposable single-edge blade with a fragrance-free shaving cream, gel or soap in directions of hair growth. Use disposable razors once.
Don’t attempt to take a blade to your face for the very first time until you understand how to shave and what to shave with. You must be using the appropriate products and shaving correctly to discourage shaving bumps.
Don’t attempt to use those double, triple, four or five-blade “closer-shaving” razors if you’re bump-prone. The first blade stretches the skin, while the other blades shave too close, cutting the hair off below the skin line. When the skin “bounces back”, those hairs are set up to be trapped repeatedly under the skin every time you shave that way.
Do consider switching to a non–rotary liner or clippers, and practice sanitation.
Don’t even think about trying a rotary shaver. Circular blade motion cuts the hair in every imaginable direction. Count on major trouble if you’re even slightly bump-prone.
Don’t forget to spray clipper disinfectant on razors, clipper and/or liner blades, guards and attachments before and after shaving to kill bacteria and prolong the life of the blades. Don’t forget to take it with you to the barbershop. Do watch for barbershop sanitation (or lack of it).
Don’t try to use the same clipper and liner blades for the rest of your life. Do change your clipper, trimmer and liner blades every three to four months. Take them with you to the beauty supply to make sure you purchase the right blades.
Don’t share your clippers, trimmers or liners with anyone….ever.
Don’t stretch your skin and shave upward, against the grain, or go back and forth over the same spots trying to get a closer shave. The built-in trade-off is shaving less close, more often, for 100% clearer skin.
Don’t post up in that mirror and pick at your bumps or tamper with your skin. This introduces secondary bacteria, leading to inflammation, delayed healing, larger dark blemishes and scarring.
Don’t tweeze your ingrowns and don’t let anyone else do it for you. Stop waxing if you’re bump-prone. Tweezing and waxing are not permanent hair removal. When these hairs regrow in two weeks, they get trapped in the curved hair follicle below the skin line. Those areas become “hot spots” of chronic ingrowns, thickened skin and scarring.
Black Opal Razor Bump Solution Shave System $21.95
She has stayed on the cutting edge in the area of ethnic skin care since the late 80s, and owns and operates Urban Skin Solutions, formerly known as Solutions Center, in Oakland, California, and urbanskin.com. Leverette’s clientele is 85% African-American, 40% of which are men, with a 15% mix of African, Hispanic, Caucasian, Asian, West Indian, Asian Indian, Pacific Islander and Native American clients.
Leverette is best known in the industry for developing the first internationally-recognized program to successfully treat razor bumps and acne keloidalis (scalp bumps and scars). She was one of the first skin care professionals to use and write about the alpha hydroxy acids in the late 1980s, and the very first to introduce the use of glycolic acid in Europe.
Her clientele includes Danny Glover, Laurence Fishburne, Angela Bofill, Pete Escovedo and professional athletes including Tim Brown, Ray Lewis, Anthony Dorsett, Zack Crockett and Rickey Henderson.
Leverette is an advocate for burn survivors and donates her time to perform free scar reduction procedures in the community. She is has developed effective non-invasive scar reduction techniques for third degree burns, keloid scarring and acne keloidalis, a disfiguring scalp disorder afflicting black men.
She resides Oakland, California and enjoys world travel, especially Africa and the Caribbean, and designing Africa-inspired jewelry.