Your son’s growing up. His body is changing, his voice may be cracking, and all sorts of physical and physiological developments are gradually — and sometimes, rapidly — taking place. One big milestone that might occur at any time is your teen growing facial hair.
So, when should you teach your teenage boy to shave? Typically, boys experience some stubble a little later in their teenage years. Some tweens may get a stray fuzz or two (a subtle mustache, some sideburns, or a few chin strands) earlier.
Many boys are excited about this rite of passage. But some others; not so much. Either way, you’ll want to be involved in their learning about grooming, hygiene, and facial hair removal. Have you already hit that stage? Here is how you can help your teenage boy shave the right way.
Electric razors can eliminate the risk of nicks and cuts — so if your child is nervous about cutting himself, this could be the way to go. Of course, these can be a bit more expensive. If he’d rather actively shave his face with a razor and cream, consider opting for a high-quality or disposable option with multiple blades. These will provide a soft, fresh finish without the use of too much pressure — reducing the risk of cuts and accidents.
Step 1: Pick out a good beginner razor. There are three options here: An electric razor, a high-quality razor with replaceable blades, or disposables.
Step 2: Let your son check out each style and find the one that he feels most comfortable with. You may wind up trying every kind, but that's OK.
If your son is also experiencing puberty-related acne, shaving can be even more challenging — so taking care of the skin before, during, and after is extra important.
Step 1: Before you have your son begin shaving, have him wash his face with a gentle cleanser. This smoothens the skin and softens the facial hair.
Step 2: Look for cleansers without fragrances or alcohol, and those with plant-based ingredients and moisturizers.
Shaving should never be a rush job, especially when you are just starting out. Make sure your son understands that you have to prepare the skin first.
Step 1: Hydrate with warm water and some shave gel or foam.
Step 2: Smooth it out over the face evenly and generously. This will help your kiddo get a better shave and prevent injury.
Step 1: Before you hand over a sharp blade, have your son practice the shave stroke with a clean toothbrush.
Step 2: Instruct him to move with short strokes in the direction of the hair growth, which keeps it simple and predictable, while also preventing nicks.
Step 1: After a practice period, have your son move on to using the actual blade on his face.
Step 2: Once he gets the hang of it and feels more confident and comfortable (it might not be during his first or second shave), have him glide the blade against the grain. This will give him a smoother and closer shave.
Your son should learn to rinse and gently tap excess hair and shaving cream off the blade every few strokes.
Using a moisturizer is always a good idea, but make sure it’s formulated with sensitive ingredients that take any skin issues into account. Moreover, tread lightly. Aftershave and other products can irritate skin that’s new to shaving — less (product) is more.
Step 1: Instruct him to rinse his face with warm to cool water.
Step 2: Pat the face dry with a clean towel.
Step 3: Apply a moisturizer as needed.
Step 1: Once your son is done shaving, teach him to give the razor a proper and thorough rinse; he can gently pat it but should not rub it against a towel.
Step 2: Make sure he understands how to properly and safely store it away so it’s ready for next time.
Here are a few more things to take into consideration while helping your son master the art of shaving:
Step 1: Have your son shave in front of the mirror so he can see his brushstrokes and take note of key spots.
Once he becomes more comfortable, suggest he try shaving in the shower, as the moist air helps improve the experience and outcome.
Step 2: Get your son to relax, hold the razor gently, and let it do its thing.
Boys might be nervous about shaving the first few times. As a result, they may use excessive pressure on their face and cause irritation.
Step 3: Talk about hygiene.
Make sure he’s aware that he should never give his razor to a friend or borrow someone else’s — this is a personal item. Sharing razors results in cross-contamination, infection, and other issues.
Step 4: Have your son start slow.
He might be eager and excited about this new routine, but it shouldn’t be an everyday affair. He should only shave as needed. Remember, teenage skin is fickle, and he doesn’t want to risk irritation or outbreaks.
Step 5: Make sure your son keeps track of how often he’s used a disposable razor before moving on to the next one.
Overuse can dull out the blade, resulting in a rougher shave, and it can increase the risk of injury.
There is a learning curve to shaving — and for that matter, for growing up and going through puberty altogether. It’ll take time for your son to get the hang of it, but eventually, he’ll be a shaving pro. In the meantime, with your support and savvy tips and techniques, you'll help him get through this stage mostly unscathed.
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