Can You Shave Without Shaving Cream?

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Can You Shave Without Shaving Cream

You don’t have any shaving foam at hand and want to know if you can shave without shaving cream? In this article I want to show you alternatives that allow you to shave without shaving cream. You will also find out what the foam is actually good for and why you should use it for a real wet shave.

What do you actually need shaving cream for?

Shaving foam should protect your skin from shaving burns and redness. This is primarily achieved by:

  • Softening of the beard hairs: After applying and working in the foam, your beard hairs become softer and can therefore be better absorbed by the blades of the wet razor.
  • Increased sliding of the blades over the skin
  • Whiskers and stubble are erected and are therefore better captured
  • Caring and soothing ingredients

Foam can either be whipped from shaving cream or shaving soap with a good shaving brush or obtained from the can by applying pressure. The first two methods should definitely be preferred to shaving foam in a can for a really perfect shave.

Why shaving without shaving cream is not a good idea

I have already explained the advantages in the previous section. Now I would like to show you why it is not a good idea to do without lather when shaving and what you can do if there is really no other way.

Probably you know the following situation: You have to shave urgently, but you forgot to buy a new jar of shaving soap or tube of shaving cream. You ask yourself briefly what can happen if you shave without shaving cream, and then you go for it. A few hours later you regret your blind actionism. Your face burns everywhere, itching and skin irritations haunt you for several days afterwards.

The reason is that a wet shave without foam does not leave a protective film between the blade and the skin. The razor does not glide over the skin as usual, but gets caught on the hair, which can lead to nasty cuts. In short: the friction between the razor and the skin surface is at a maximum, the pressure exerted on your skin is too great.

To avoid this, you can use the following shaving foam alternatives:

Shaving Foam Alternatives

When you have no shaving cream or shaving soap you can use these alternatives which are more (alternative 3) or less (alternative 1) good.

Alternative 1: The McGyver home remedy method

Now the emergency home remedies are used, one of which you are guaranteed to have in your bathroom. In principle, anything that can be whipped into a more or less resistant foam is suitable. This includes shampoo, conditioner, shower gel or a special washing gel for the face.

If you mix these care products with a small amount of water and blend them in your hands, you will get a soapy foam which you can then spread on your face. The consistency is of course quite different, so don’t wait too long before applying, otherwise there will be nothing left of the foam. It’s best to use a little less water to get a firmer and more durable foam. Conditioner in particular is not so badly suited due to its softening properties.

In the best case, use body care products without additives and perfumes to take into account the more sensitive facial skin.

Alternative 2: Carrier Oils

Carrier oils such as jojoba, almond or olive oil soften your beard and help you to glide more easily over the skin with the razor. The carrier oils also reduce the risk of razor burn.

Baby oil is also suitable for this purpose. Women often use it to shave their legs, so why not use it for your face? The disadvantage of the oils is that the beard hair residue makes it easier for the blades of your razor to clog and stick together.

Alternative 3: Non-foaming shaving cream

This non-foaming shaving cream is especially suitable for men with very dry and sensitive skin and is a good substitute for shaving foam. The moisturising creams moisturise the skin and prevent the beard hairs from drying out. Except for the absence of foam, this is also the biggest difference to its foaming counterpart.

Before applying non-foaming shaving cream, make sure that your face has been sufficiently washed and cleansed. If you allow the cream to work a little after applying it, your razor blade will glide through your whiskers without resistance. Just as you would normally do with a lathered shave.


You can shave without shaving cream but you should definitely avoid it if you can. This is the only way to effectively avoid skin irritations, injuries and shaving burns. Foams of shampoo and other soap- or oil-based care products or non-foaming shaving cream are a substitute.

Of course, all this only applies to wet shaving. With electric razors you don’t have to worry about anything.

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