Shaving can be a real chore, especially for those of us with hair that seems to sprout back within hours (I blame being South Asian). While laser treatments and waxing are usually the preferred options for achieving long-lasting smoothness, they're also pricey and time-consuming. And when it comes to lasers, you still have to shave before your sessions, making the razor you choose a big decision.
Thankfully, razors have come a long way over the years. One notable innovation being weighted razors, which offer a smoother and more comfortable shaving experience. The secret lies in the weighted handle of the razor, so there's no need to apply excessive pressure or force while shaving. This design feature makes the razor much gentler on the skin, reducing the chances of tugging and pulling.
According to board-certified dermatologist, Andrea Hui Austin, MD: “A weighted razor helps prevent ingrown hairs and cuts, while also providing gentle exfoliation for rough skin.” The uniquely weighted handle allows for more precise hand control, especially in curved areas. Additionally, “most weighted razors are single-blade, which prevents pulling of the skin and provides a smoother finish, making them particularly effective in preventing ingrown hairs, especially for individuals with sensitive skin,” says Dr. Austin.
Currently, the leading brand in weighted razors is Hanni, founded by Leslie Tessler with the goal of introducing women to the concept of a “proper shave.” Tessler's inspiration stemmed from observing a stylish Japanese woman receiving a traditional shave in a men's barber shop in Tokyo on a business trip. The woman's face was delicately shaved using soap, a brush, and a single-edged barber's blade. “Mind you, this was before dermaplaning became mainstream, so I had never seen anything like it,” Tessler recalls. “I decided to try it myself, and after experiencing my first shave with a single blade, I was immediately blown away by the incredible exfoliation it provided. From that point on, I never looked back.”
Why weighted razors are the way to go when it comes to hair removal
“So many of us are using plastic razors that just don't cut it, but don't realize there's a better alternative out there,” Tessler says. While metal razors may seem intimidating at first, the learning curve is usually quick, and the benefits of using a weighted razor will make you ditch your plastic razor for good. “Once you switch to a weighted razor, you won't want to go back,” she adds. Besides the environmental benefits of reducing plastic waste, weighted razors offer a superior shaving experience, particularly for individuals who are prone to shaving-related irritation such as razor burn and ingrown hairs.
If you're concerned about whether or not a weighted razor, or any razor for that matter, will affect your hair growth, don’t be! Dr. Austin assures us that "shaving does not impact hair growth." To ensure a comfortable shaving experience, she recommends cleaning and pre-moisturizing the skin with shaving cream.
While weighted razors do decrease the chances of cuts and ingrown hairs compared to regular razors, there is still a small risk involved. The important thing is to avoid applying excessive pressure and to maintain a slower shaving speed. Since these razors have sharp blades, it's best to take your time, use shaving cream, and be mindful of your technique to avoid any mishaps that may require showing up to an event in Band-aids. It's also important to note that weighted razors are best suited for body shaving. Dr. Austin advises, “For gentle facial hair removal, I recommend seeing an esthetician for facial defuzzing.”
When compared to waxing, weighted razors offer a significant reduction in the likelihood of ingrown hairs since they cut the hair at the surface. Laser hair removal is a more permanent solution, but it can be expensive and may have potential side effects like burns or hyperpigmentation. Taking everything into consideration, “weighted razors are a quick, affordable, and safer option to achieve smooth skin,” says Dr. Austin.
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