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10 Quick and Healthy Shaving Tips For Busy People

10 Quick and Healthy Shaving Tips For Busy People

Shaving each day can get a bit annoying. No wonder many guys end up growing a beard. But hey, it could be worse.

Women will often shave their legs and armpits before they leave the house, and guys just have to worry about shaving their faces. OK, so some women might also need to shave their faces, but no judgement.

And OK, some guys might like shaving their legs and armpits, and again, no judgement.

A too-quick shave can be a recipe for disaster, or at least a recipe for a shredded and bloody face. There are quite a few ways to streamline your shaving so that you don’t waste time when you don’t have to, without sacrificing quality.

So what are these amazing healthy shaving tips that are perfect for busy people?

Shower and Shave

Shave, then shower. This is probably the way you do it, right? It shouldn’t be. Hot water softens the hairs of your beard, making them easier to remove with the razor. This is not exactly news. But it’s weird that so many guys shave and then shower, when the heat of the shower makes your facial hair so much softer than hot water from the faucet can.

So take a shower, and then shave. The hairs on your face become about as soft as possible, and your razor can then slice them off like a hot knife through butter. Making the shave as easy as possible reduces the chance of any post-shave redness and irritation, so hopefully you won’t have to clean up any cuts. But just in case…

Bleeding After You Shave

Yeah, it happens no matter how careful you might be. The super-quick shave is never a good idea since you often waste a lot of time tearing off tiny squares of toilet paper and sticking them to your cuts. This method actually works, although only when you don’t need to leave the house anytime soon. If you’re in a hurry, use a small amount of antiperspirant deodorant on your face.

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It sounds weird, but seriously it works.

Antiperspirant deodorants contain aluminium chloride which clogs your pores (which is how it reduces your sweating).

A cut is not a clog, but it has the same general effect and will stop the bleeding much more quickly than an untreated cut. Chapstick/lip balm works, but only those in the waxy tubular form, not the moisturizing gels. The wax forms a small seal over the cut which keeps it clean while the blood forms a clot.

It doesn’t look so pretty, but is efficient for stopping the bleeding.

Post-Shaving Bumps

Sadly, pimples aren’t always a teenage problem. Adult post-shaving bumps or pimples aren’t generally due to excess skin oil combining with dead skin cells and forming a clog, but are more likely to be ingrown hairs. Shaving scrapes a minute amount of surface skin off along with your facial hair, which makes your skin start to heal itself.

Sometimes a freshly cut hair follicle can become trapped under the surface as this healing process takes place. It will begin to curl around and grow inwards, causing that damn annoying shaving bump. You can squeeze it like a pimple, but this is never a good idea.

Remember when you were a teenager and you squeezed your zits? It usually took several days to look OK again. You can gently scrape the skin with a pair of clean tweezers to reveal the hair.

Don’t pull it, as the problem will start all over again.

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Just gently tease it until it’s growing outwards again. You can also just see your pharmacist for some decent anti acne cream, as it will also work on pimples caused by ingrown hairs.

If the bumps are red and irritated, get a topical hydrocortisone cream as this has strong anti-inflammatory properties.

Is Aftershave Necessary?

Well, yes and no. Aftershave splash will clean your skin and reduce the chance of infection, and aftershave balm will soothe your skin to reduce the chance of irritation. You should make use of one or the other, and a balm is best.

It keeps your skin moisturized, so you are less likely to have redness after shaving. Aftershave splashes often dry out your skin and can do more harm than good with prolonged usage.

Coconut Oil: Your New Shaving Buddy

You’re going to find coconut oil in the food section instead of where the grooming products are kept. Try frying with it because it’s amazingly delicious. But use it on your face as well (just so long as your get the virgin coconut oil with no additives). It’s ultra hydrating and so will soften your facial hair surprisingly well. Just use it as you would a standard shaving cream.

It’s somewhat less pliable than cream, but it won’t harden unless you store it in the fridge. Its intensive moisturizing properties means that it works well as an aftershave balm, as well as having anti-aging uses too. So get ready to be well-shaved, look younger, and smell slightly of coconut.

Straighten Up Your Shave

Straight razors seem to have gone the way of the dinosaur and Coldplay’s musical credibility. This is a pity because there’s something undeniably cool about shaving with a straight razor that folds discreetly back into its handle. The protection of the handle keeps the blade clean and sharp, and it’s easy enough to sharpen it, much like you would a knife.

This means that a good-quality straight razor can last you for years. It takes a bit of effort to learn how to do it, so you should carefully read the instructions and watch a few online training videos.

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Also be prepared for a not-so-close shave the first few times as you get used to using the blade at the correct 30-degree angle.

Are You with Us or Against Us?

Yeah, shaving with the grain (the direction the hair grows in) is best. The hair comes off way more easily, and this generally results in less irritation. But for a super-close shave you can easily shave against the grain without troubling your skin too much. Just shave as you normally would (with the grain), and then repeat the operation while shaving against the grain.

The vast majority of the hair is already gone, so you’re slicing off the minute amount that remains. If you shave with the grain, and then against it, you will get a brilliantly close shave without irritation.

Having said that, a super-close shave makes it more likely that you will get ingrown hairs.

So be sure to exfoliate your face using a cream designed for the purpose, and don’t shave against the grain too often.

Do You Even Need Shaving Cream?

Shaving with a disposable safety razor or a straight razor? Then yes, you need shaving cream (or some kind of lubrication, but more about that shortly). A dry shave with a manual razor just isn’t worth the effort.

The only safe dry shave is using an electric razor, and this really is a matter of personal preference. You can get some types of waterproof electric razors that allow you to shave with shaving cream, but this really is overkill.

Banish Post-Shaving Irritation

A little bit of redness can be expected, particularly when you shave in a hurry. So you need to get rid of it in a hurry! A warm compress will quickly banish that redness, so just use a washcloth that has been soaked in hot water (not too hot). Wring it out and hold it against your skin for 30 seconds or so. Tea tree oil is also great.

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It can tingle a little, so if this is annoying to you just dilute it with a little water.

It has antiseptic properties too so it will keep your skin clean. Allow enough time for it to be absorbed into your skin before you leave the house, otherwise you might look a little bit shiny. A tiny amount of that coconut oil will also do wonders when it comes to getting rid of post-shaving irritation.

For When You Don’t Have (or Want) Shaving Cream

It’s not like shaving creams and gels are some sort of scam, but it’s not as though you need them. They’re just the easiest option.

You do need some sort of lubricant when you use a manual razor, so try using coconut oil, olive oil, vegetable oil, baby oil, hair conditioner, shea butter, moisturizing body lotion, or aloe vera gel.

When using oils or gels, you usually only need a tiny amount. Don’t go overboard as your skin will become slippery and it’s easier to cut yourself.

Featured photo credit: http://stokpic.com/ via stokpic.com

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Last Updated on September 28, 2020

The Pros and Cons of Working from Home

The Pros and Cons of Working from Home

At the start of the year, if you had asked anyone if they could do their work from home, many would have said no. They would have cited the need for team meetings, a place to be able to sit down and get on with their work, the camaraderie of the office, and being able to meet customers and clients face to face.

Almost ten months later, most of us have learned that we can do our work from home and in many ways, we have discovered working from home is a lot better than doing our work in a busy, bustling office environment where we are inundated with distractions and noise.

One of the things the 2020 pandemic has reminded us is we humans are incredibly adaptable. It is one of the strengths of our kind. Yet we have been unknowingly practicing this for years. When we move house we go through enormous upheaval.

When we change jobs, we not only change our work environment but we also change the surrounding people. Humans are adaptable and this adaptability gives us strength.

So, what are the pros and cons of working from home? Below I will share some things I have discovered since I made the change to being predominantly a person who works from home.

Pro #1: A More Relaxed Start to the Day

This one I love. When I had to be at a place of work in the past, I would always set my alarm to give me just enough time to make coffee, take a shower, and change. Mornings always felt like a rush.

Now, I can wake up a little later, make coffee and instead of rushing to get out of the door at a specific time, I can spend ten minutes writing in my journal, reviewing my plan for the day, and start the day in a more relaxed frame of mind.

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When you start the day in a relaxed state, you begin more positively. You find you have more clarity and more focus and you are not wasting energy worrying about whether you will be late.

Pro #2: More Quiet, Focused Time = Increased Productivity

One of the biggest difficulties of working in an office is the noise and distractions. If a colleague or boss can see you sat at your desk, you are more approachable. It is easier for them to ask you questions or engage you in meaningless conversations.

Working from home allows you to shut the door and get on with an hour or two of quiet focused work. If you close down your Slack and Email, you avoid the risk of being disturbed and it is amazing how much work you can get done.

An experiment conducted in 2012 found that working from home increased a person’s productivity by 13%, and more recent studies also find significant increases in productivity.[1]

When our productivity increases, the amount of time we need to perform our work decreases, and this means we can spend more time on activities that can bring us closer to our family and friends as well as improve our mental health.

Pro #3: More Control Over Your Day

Without bosses and colleagues watching over us all day, we have a lot more control over what we do. While some work will inevitably be more urgent than others, we still get a lot more choice about what we work on.

We also get more control over where we work. I remember when working in an office, we were given a fixed workstation. Some of these workstations were pleasant with a lot of natural sunlight, but other areas were less pleasant. It was often the luck of the draw whether we find ourselves in a good place to work or not.

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By working from home we can choose what work to work on and whether we want to face a window or not. We can get up and move to another place, and we can move from room to room. And if you have a garden, on nice days you could spend a few hours working outside.

Pro #4: You Get to Choose Your Office Environment

While many companies will provide you with a laptop or other equipment to do your work, others will give you an allowance to purchase your equipment. But with furniture such as your chair and desk, you have a lot of freedom.

I have seen a lot of amazing home working spaces with wonderful sets up—better chairs, laptop stands that make working from a laptop much more ergonomic and therefore, better for your neck.

You can also choose your wall art and the little nick-nacks on your desk or table. With all this freedom, you can create a very personal and excellent working environment that is a pleasure to work in. When you are happy doing your work, you will inevitably do better work.

Con #1: We Move a Lot Less

When we commute to a place of work, there is movement involved. Many people commute using public transport, which means walking to the bus stop or train station. Then, there is the movement at lunchtime when we go out to buy our lunch. Working in a place of work requires us to move more.

Unfortunately, working from home naturally causes us to move less and this means we are not burning as many calories as we need to.

Moving is essential to our health and if you are working from home you need to become much more aware of your movement. To ensure you are moving enough, make sure you take your lunch breaks. Get up from your desk and move. Go outside, if you can, and take a walk. And, of course, refrain from regular trips to the refrigerator.

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Con #2: Less Human Interaction

One of the nicest things about bringing a group of people together to work is the camaraderie and relationships that are built over time. Working from home takes us away from that human interaction and for many, this can cause a feeling of loss.

Humans are a social species—we need to be with other people. Without that connection, we start to feel lonely and that can lead to mental health issues.

Zoom and Microsoft Teams meeting cannot replace that interaction. Often, the interactions we get at our workplaces are spontaneous. But with video calls, there is nothing spontaneous—most of these calls are prearranged and that’s not spontaneous.

This lack of spontaneous interaction can also reduce a team’s ability to develop creative solutions—there’s just something about a group of incredibly creative people coming together in a room to thrash out ideas together that lends itself to creativity.

While video calls can be useful, they don’t match the connection between a group of people working on a solution together.

Con #3: The Cost of Buying Home Office Equipment

Not all companies are going to provide you with a nice allowance to buy expensive home office equipment. 100% remote companies such as Doist (the creators of Todoist and Twist) provide a $2,000 allowance to all their staff every two years to buy office equipment. Others are not so generous.

This can prove to be expensive for many people to create their ideal work-from-home workspace. Many people must make do with what they already have, and that could mean unsuitable chairs that damage backs and necks.

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For a future that will likely involve more flexible working arrangements, companies will need to support their staff in ways that will add additional costs to an already reduced bottom line.

Con #4: Unique Distractions

Not all people have the benefit of being able to afford childcare for young children, and this means they need to balance working and taking care of their kids.

For many parents, being able to go to a workplace gives them time away from the noise and demands of a young family, so they could get on with their work. Working from home removes this and can make doing video calls almost impossible.

To overcome this, where possible, you need to set some boundaries. I know this is not always possible, but it is something you need to try. You should do whatever you can to make sure you have some boundaries between your work life and home life.

Final Thoughts

Working from home can be hugely beneficial for many people, but it can also bring serious challenges to others.

We are moving towards a new way of working. Therefore, companies need to look at both the pros and cons of working from home and be prepared to support their staff in making this transition. It will not be impossible, but a lot of thought will need to go into it.

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Featured photo credit: Standsome Worklifestyle via unsplash.com

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