Don't Shave In The Opposite Direction Of Hair Growth. Here's Why

Trying to get a perfect, smooth shave every time can sometimes seem impossible. You may develop irritated skin, red bumps, or itchy skin after shaving various parts of the body — face, armpits, legs, and bikini area. Then, there's the question of which way to shave. Should you shave in the direction of hair growth or against the grain? How do you even determine which way your hair grows? 

You can figure out the direction of your hair growth by examining it, but it's typically the same for everyone. Per Insider, the hair on your face typically grows downward, while the hair on your neck usually grows upward. Finding the direction of hair growth is vital to a smooth shave without bumps and irritation. Let your hair grow for a couple of days to determine its direction of growth.

Dollar Shave Club recommends sliding your hand across your skin. If it feels rough, you're going against the hair growth or "grain." If it feels soft, you're going with the direction of hair growth. That's the same direction you need to move your razor to prevent razor bumps, skin irritation, pain, and itchiness.

Why you should shave with the grain

Men's Health notes that shaving against the grain is the fastest way to achieve a close shave, but it may give you razor burn and ingrown hairs. Those red bumps that emerge after irritating the skin can stick around for a few days, and if you're constantly shaving against the grain, you're going to keep getting more of them. To avoid the red bumps and all the other unpleasantries, you need to shave in the direction of hair growth.

Other tips for a smooth shave include using a fresh razor, rinsing your blade on the front and back after every stroke with hot water, and using shaving cream or gel that softens your hair and moisturizes your skin. You should also try to use the same amount of pressure throughout each stroke, and of course, shave in the direction of hair growth (via Dollar Shave Club).