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It’s no secret that summertime is approaching, and it’s a good time to hone in your at-home shaving routine. To start thinking strategically about shaving, first identify the areas you’ll be removing hair from (like your bikini area, your face and your legs). Next, it’s imperative to have a sharp blade. A classic manual women’s razor works great for all over as does an electric shaver for women. If you’re shaving the bikini areas, there are specific bikini trimmers you should look for. One thing you’ll need for sure is a great shaving cream.
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What to look for in the best women’s shaving cream
Soothing ingredients: “Shaving cream is a moisturizing barrier between your skin and your razor meant to soften the hair before shaving,” explains celeb groomer Kindra Mann who works with Mandy Moore and Renee Zellweger. That’s why most formulas are made with hydrating ingredients. “When looking for a women’s shaving cream, you want to look for a formulation containing soothing yet moisturizing ingredients such as jojoba oil, vitamin E and aloe vera,” notes celebrity esthetician Celeste Rodrigues (who works with Jada Pinkett Smith and Normani).
Sensitive skin formulas: A lot of formulas out there are specifically made with sensitive skin in mind. “If you have sensitive skin, you’ll want to stay away from fragrance, sulfates, ethanolamines and parabens,” Rodrigues says. Most sensitive skin formulas will mention the formula is free of irritants on the front of the bottle, but you can always read the ingredients list to spot ensure they’re absent. Another tip is that you can look for natural formulas. Those tend to be friendlier for all skin types.
The different types of shaving cream formulas
Not all shaving creams have the same consistency. There are a few different popular formulas to note:
Cream: These tend to be thicker (more like a face wash), and you have to really work up a lather. They’re often good for drier skin types, as they can double as an in-shower moisturizer. You can use this everywhere, from your legs all the way up to your face.
Gel: Gels tend to be tackier in texture and often transform into a foam when lathered. This is the most traditional type of formula that stays put until you shave it off. It’s ideal for thicker hair, like along the bikini line.
Foam: These usually come in a spray canister and immediately turn to a rich foam. The lightweight, often white, product expands as it’s rubbed in. This formula is most popular for the legs or bikini area.
For your best shave ever, make sure your skin is damp. “It shouldn’t be sopping wet, or the shaving cream of choice can just wash right off and not adhere to the skin,” describes Rodrigues. You also want to apply the product generously “so you don’t irritate the skin with the razor and be sure you work up a good lather,” Mann says.
Sometimes, you’re in a situation where you won’t have shaving cream on hand. “I’ve personally used a hair conditioner when I was in a pickle and it worked just fine,” Rodrigues mentions. Mann has a few other recommendations. “You can use coconut oil and even mix it with aloe for a more creamy consistency (Epicuren has an amazing aloe gel I use) or a moisturizing bar of soap,” she says. And don’t forget to lather up after your shower or bath. “Apply a soothing moisturizer or body oil,” she says. “Saint Jane has an amazing body version with CBD in it to calm the skin.”
To shop the 15 best shaving creams for women, keep scrolling.
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Top Shaving Creams for Women
Now Solutions Nutri-Shave Shave Cream
Best Shaving Cream for Women Overall
Size: 8 oz
Key Ingredients: Coconut oil, panthenol, aloe vera, and olive oil
Now Solutions’ affordable product lathers nicely, has a good slickness, rinses well and leaves the skin lightly moisturized without irritation. “It’s thick and goes on almost opaque, so you know what areas are covered,” notes another buyer, who adds that “the fresh, light citrus scent is a delicious.” Many others note that it’s the best shave cream they’ve ever tried.
Eos Shea Better Shaving Cream
One of the most raved about formulas on the Internet, this 24-hour shea butter formula by eos is an Amazon best seller with over 20,000 glowing reviews. It’s made from sustainably sourced, natural shea butter and is Leaping bunny certified. Additionally, it comes in an array of scents, like Raspberry Pomegranate and Vanilla Bliss. “This stuff smells absolutely fantastic and goes on so smooth and creamy, like yogurt for the skin,” describes one customer.
Oui the People Moisturizing Shave Gel-to-Milk
Best Lightweight Shaving Cream
Size: 5 oz
Key Ingredients: Dandelion root extract, aloe vera, argan, grapeseed, marula, and sunflower oils
“This Oui the People option is a great moisturizing shave gel-to-milk formula,” Rodrigues says. It’s definitely not your average consistency. “It comes out of the pump as a thick, hair gel texture,” notes one buyer. “Immediately after contact with wet skin, it transforms into a milky, runny substance you can coat your entire leg in,” A blend of argan, grapeseed, marula and sunflower oils allow for your closest shave ever. It’s packed with aloe vera leaf extract (which is high in antioxidants, minerals, amino acids and vitamins E and C) and smells like Jasmine Absolute, grapefruit, orange blossom and neroli.
Lather Almond Shave Crème
Best Shaving Cream for Sensitive Skin
Lather’s non-foaming cream guarantees a close shave every time, as “smooth-as-a-baby’s-bottom,” describes one buyer. That’s because it’s formulated with glycerin to moisturize and almond oil to reduce irritation. Another user who’s been a loyal fan since the ‘90s says you can’t beat the delicious almond smell. Another raves about the all-natural ingredients that prevent irritation.
Shaveworks Pearl Soufflé Shaving Cream for Women
Best Shaving Cream for Razor Burn
This luxurious Shaveworks formula exfoliates, moisturizes and soothes skin all at once. “This stuff is great,” notes one buyer. “Love how soft it makes my skin feel and definitely helps with razor burn.” It also helps prevent ingrown hairs thanks to phytic and glycolic acids. Additionally, it slows the growth of new hair with Capislow extract (also a plant). “It’s lavender infused, which makes it soothe the skin and smell wonderful,” Mann adds.
Ursa Major Stellar Shave Cream
This concentrated, non-lathering shave cream by Ursa Major is ultra-hydrating. It minimizes nicks and cushions against razor burn. “I love this shave cream!” writes one reviewer. “My legs feel soft for days — plus, it’s free of chemicals.” Key ingredients include aloe vera, sunflower seed oil and willow bark extract (which has natural cleansing antimicrobial properties). To use, apply a dollop to clean wet skin and massage in before using a razor.
Gillette Satin Care Ultra Sensitive Shave Gel
Best Drugstore Shaving Cream for Women
This Amazon best seller is a classic. Gilette’s Satin shave cream has been around for years because it’s reliable. The sensitive skin formula is dye and fragrance-free and provides incredible razor glide to help protect the skin. “When I applied this product while shaving my upper/ inner thighs, I didn’t experience any of the skin irritations that usually occur immediately or days later,” raves one buyer. Available in a pack of two for just $6, these can’t be beat price-wise.
fur Shave Cream
Size: 5 oz
Key Ingredients: olive extracts, vitamin E, tea tree oil, lavender oil
This popular shaving cream from fur is both dermatologist and gynecologist tested. It’s fragrance-free and paraben free, “with super hydrating and non-irritating ingredients,” Rodrigues mentions. The whipped, featherlight texture is formulated with olive extracts (rich in fatty acids), Vitamin E (a powerful antioxidant) and antimicrobial tea tree oil to eliminate excess sebum. Lavender oil adds a soothing touch and helps to regulate sebum production. As one reviewer notes, “It’s moisturizing and helps prevent bumps.”
Hanni Shave Pillow Moisturizing Body Gel
Hanni’s innovative Shave Pillow was made to be used without water (yes, you read that right). The hydrating, travel-friendly gel stick preps skin for shaving and doubles as an on-the-go moisturizer, making it especially ideal for those busy gals who often forget to shave while in the shower. Many reviewers agree that the glycerin and cactus water formula makes shaving feel like less of a chore, too.
Omorovicza Soothing Shave
According to Mann, this is the most luxe option out there. “Omorovicza’s Soothing shave cream is an amazing choice if you want to splurge on a luxurious shaving experience,” explains the pro. It’s made with anti-inflammatory Hungarian minerals that calm minor irritations, exotic fruit extracts that enzymatically clear dead skin cells and plum almond, apricot kernel oil, and vitamin E to soften, restore elasticity and boost collagen production. It also has cooling ingredients like camphor and menthol. According to luxury retailer Violet Grey, “fans of this mineral-infused cream say the shave is so close, they can go a day or two longer without shaving again.”
Aveeno Therapeutic Shave Gel
Best Shaving Cream for Acne-Prone Skin
This beloved drugstore find is perfect for irritated skin, particularly in the bikini area. Aveeno’s therapeutic formula is made with oat and Vitamin E to help hydrate and protect skin against pesky razor bumps. “I like that it foams up very well and aids in a close shave, plus leaves some moisture. It has a neutral scent and a non-irritating product,” explains one buyer. The dermatologist-tested formula is also non-comedogenic, so it won’t clog pores if you’re prone to breakouts.
Billie Whipped Shave Cream
Best Scent Options
Size: 6.5 oz
Key Ingredients: Shea butter, coconut oil, sage, and aloe vera
This cushiony shave cream from Billie is infused with shea butter, coconut oil, sage and aloe vera to lock in moisture and soothe skin. “Almost like butter, so soft and smooth,” describes one buyer of the whipped texture. “Such a smooth shave,” writes another. It comes in your pick of two fresh scents: lavender and bergamot or fresh-squeezed grapefruit.
The Skinny Confidential The Hot Shave Cream
Best for Facial Shaving
Size: 6 oz
Key Ingredients: shea butter, vitamin E, aloe, and olive oil
Leave it to lifestyle blogger Lauryn Bosstick to introduce the world to the first ever women’s facial shaving cream. The Skinny Confidential buttery formula is made with a rich blend of nourishing emollients like shea butter, vitamin E, aloe and olive oil. It’s meant to provide a smooth glide and help prevent nicks or cuts. “If you don’t use a shave cream, welcome to a whole new world of smooth, silky skin after shaving,” says one buyer. “Trust me, you’ll be obsessed.”
The Organic Pharmacy Men Shaving Cream
Best Shaving Cream for Ingrown Hairs
If you’ve got sensitive skin, consider this shaving cream from The Organic Pharmacy a top pick. While the formula was technically made for men, it works wonders for women, too. “I love this formula because it helps to reduce ingrown hairs and provides excellent lubrication to ensure a better shave,” Mann says. It’s made with ingredients like aloe, jojoba oil and calendula, all sourced from organic farming.
Schaf Shave Cream
Best Natural Shaving Cream
Schaf’s nature-derived cream is formulated with a soothing blend of coconut oil and plant-based emollients. Ingredients like aloe help soothe irritation, while hyaluronic acid hydrates dry skin. “This doesn’t foam quite the way a traditional shave cream does, but it’s very soothing and moisturizing and works perfectly,” explains one user. Bonus: It’s fragrance-free and soap-free, so it’s ideal for those with super sensitive skin.
Meet the author
Taylor Jean Stephan was previously the beauty and style editor title at E! News for five years, where she oversaw the shopping vertical and appeared as an on-air correspondent. Her writing can be found in The Zoe Report, Bustle, Cosmopolitan, Elle, Oprah, Shape, Women’s Health and more.
Meet the experts
Celeste Rodrigues is a Beverly Hills-based medical aesthetician that specializes in corrective skin treatments. She’s worked with a variety of A-list celebrities including Jada Pinkett Smith and Normani.
Kindra Mann is a celebrity makeup artist and groomer. Her emphasis is on enhancing one’s natural beauty and her attention to detail has made her one of the industry’s most sought after makeup artists.Her list of clientele include Reneé Zellweger, Mandy Moore, Maisie Williams, Jessica Biel and Busy Philipps.