Shaving is a delicate art that commands finesse and the right products. But it doesn’t always go to plan.
Sometimes, no matter what you try, you end up with an uneven shave or blotchy skin that looks like an aggressive chicken’s neck. Enter shaving oil.
Oh yeah, the best pre-shave oil acts as a lubricant while creating a lavish barrier of smoothness on the skin. Not only does this reduce irritation and itchiness, but it creates a silky canvas that makes it less likely for you to make a mistake while shaving (no more plugging up those wounds with TP).
But while this elixir can work wonders for your skin, some shaving oils are better than others. Not all pre-shaving oils deliver the goods—and not all products suit certain skin types. Fear not our facial mane-taming warrior because we’ve got your back (or face). Here we’re going to show you a collection of the best pre-shave oil for men.
Take a look at our top picks, and you’ll find a product that will make your skin glow brighter than a disco ball at a techno rave.
Coupled with the right razor, a pre-shave oil will transform your grooming regime from average to astounding. Check out our selection of the best pre-shave oil for men and find a perfect product to level up your shaving efforts.
Scent: Sandalwood | Skin Type: All | Size: 2oz
This is our best pre-shaving oil because it offers a little something for every face-grooming gentleman. Its moreish sandalwood scent isn’t overbearing, and its melting pot of seven organic oils suits pretty much every skin type imaginable.
It protects against skin rash and creates a surface that allows every type of razor to glide over the skin. A beautifully balanced allrounder that always goes the extra mile.
- The allround shaving-enhancing power
- The striking yet subtle scent
- If you have very sensitive skin, you might need something a little more specialist
Scent: Mint | Skin Type: Sensitive Skin | Size: 2oz
A robust macho shaving oil with a lavish texture, this popular product provides a solid barrier for a safe and silky shave. The most striking thing about this oil is its head-turning bourbon scent. Strong yet sweet, this decidedly masculine fragrance is a treat for the nostrils and will make your skin come alive.
- The striking bourbon scent
- The lavish and silky feel
- Bourbon isn’t for everyone
Scent: Tea Tree Oil | Skin Type: All | Size: 2.08oz
The best shaving oil for blokes on a budget, this perky little number is like a cooling hug for the face.
Made with olive and castor oil, a few drops of this fresh tea tree-scented oil will make your shave effortless while softening the skin and reducing the risks of dreaded razor burn. A lavish yet well-priced product that’s suitable for every skin type. Nice.
- The sweet price-to-quality ratio
- The skin-soothing oil blend
- Not everyone is a fan of tea tree oil (it’s a little like Marmite)
Scent: Botanical | Skin Type: Sensitive | Size: 2oz
If your skin winces at the mere sight of a razor blade, THRIVE is the oil for you. Made from a friendly blend of regenerative plants, this epic pre-shave oil is designed to calm and protect ultra-sensitive skin while cleansing facial hair follicles.
Oh, and the best thing about this botanical bad boy is that it’s 100% cruelty-free. By buying a bottle, you’re supporting Costa Rican farmers.
- The cruelty-free products and powerful plant-based properties
- The fresh yet subtle botanical scent
- Some fellas might prefer something with a little more bite
Scent: Botanical | Skin Type: Normal to Sensitive | Size: 3.44oz
If you’re a bald-headed gent looking for that smooth ‘Uncle Fester on a great day’ look, you need a drop or two of Groomie in your shaving routine.
Sporting a nostril-tingling lemongrass scent, this beautifully balanced oil contains antioxidant milk thistle seed for a smooth, protective shave. It also has vitamins in it that will make your head glow.
- The anti-oxidizing ingredients
- The infusion of fatty oils and vitamins
- Some guys may find the lemongrass tang a little too strong
Scent: ‘Original Scent’ | Skin Type: Normal | Size: 3.2oz
The best pre-shave oil if you like to use an electric razor, the consistency of American Shave Co’s face-taming elixir will help guide the blades over your skin effortlessly.
Its fresh and manly scent will make your cheeks smell epic, while its cool blend of quality ingredients will leave your skin feeling silky smooth for hours after shaving. The bottle fits neatly inside a travel bag, too.
- The epically fresh masculine scent
- The oil’s skin smoothing qualities
- Fellas with sensitive skin might benefit from something a little lighter
Scent: Fragrance free | Skin Type: Normal to sensitive | Size: 3.35oz
Made with totally natural vegan ingredients, this paraben-free potion works in harmony with safety razors. Its super silky texture and bold blend of ingredients (that are also designed to reduce ingrown hairs) allow safety blades to glide across the face effortlessly.
Made in bonny England, Seven Potions contains a mix of natural oils, including almond, olive, and evening primrose (the holy shaving trinity). It also comes in an epic display bottle with a dispensing pipette.
- The epic oil blend and vegan ingredients
- The cool dispensing pipette
- If you’re searching for something scented, look elsewhere
Scent: Mint | Skin Type: All | Size: 2oz
A fine addition to our best pre-shave oil hitlist, Bricknell’s Hybrid Glide is as slick as the Fonz on an ice rink and boasts a striking minty bite.
Fresh to the touch and tantalizing to the nostrils, this punchy little product is made with a range of natural oils (including jojoba, coconut, and hazelnut) as well as soothing algae extract. An irritation-free potion that will make your skin feel like a million bucks.
- The skin-protecting blend of oils
- The pure skin tingling freshness
- Some gents might find this a little too fresh to handle
What To Look For When Searching For The Best Pre-Shave Oil
You know all about the best pre-shave oil for men that money can buy—now we’re going to tell you what to look for in your perfect product.
These days, pre-shave oils come in a variety of nose-tingling scents (some are even unscented). Before you press the ‘buy’ button, you should take a look at a pre-shave oil’s scent or fragrance to see if it’s the one for you.
Some are earthy and spicy, while others are light and fruity. Your choice will come down to personal preference—so think about what smells make you tick and choose accordingly.
When choosing your best shaving oil, size matters. The size of the bottle you commit to should depend on how often you’re likely to use your pre-shave oil.
If you’re a daily shaver, you should get a bigger bottle, and if you shave a couple of times a week, a smaller dose will do. Also, the size of your shaving oil will depend on how much you use per shave. If you’re going to use shaving cream in addition to your oil, a petit bottle will most likely go a long way.
A pre-shave oil’s ingredients are also an important thing to consider. Not only do a shave oil’s ingredients dictate the overall scent, but they will also work in different ways (some are more hydrating while others are more protective, for instance).
The best pre-shave oil for men contains a balanced blend of mainly natural or organic ingredients. So check the bottle before you buy to pick an oil that suits your needs.
Last but not least, you should consider your skin type. Again, this (for the most part) comes down to your potential pre-shave oil ingredients.
If you’ve got really sensitive skin, you should go for an oil with soothing botanicals, and if your skin is dry or coarse, a product with hydrating properties will do the trick. Do a little research, read the label carefully, and you can’t go wrong.
Whoever you are and whatever your grooming goals, a solid pre-shave oil will transform your shaving regime from average to amazing.
The best pre-shave oil on our list, Lather & Wood (in addition to the others), will not only make your shaving experience a joy, but it will help to soothe and protect your skin throughout the day. It’s a real double threat.
P.S. if you’re in the beginning stages of growing a man mane, read our ultimate men’s beard guide.
For the best results, you should always apply your pre-shave oil with a clean face. A solid shaving soap will create the best base for your shaving oil and leave you with a stunning end result.
Once your face is cleaner than a scuba diver’s butt, you should take these steps to ensure shaving excellence:
1.Drop a few drops (three or four max) into your palm and rub your hands together
2. Massage the oil into your face evenly, working from the chin to the cheeks
3. Leave the oil to absorb into your skin for a few minutes and wash your hands in the meantime
4. Apply your shaving cream (optional) and go for gold
If you want a shaving experience that is smoother and more seamless, a pre-shaving oil is necessary.
A few drops of pre-shave oil will create a protective layer that will reduce the risk of shaving mishaps while tackling dryness, itchiness, and irritation.
If you’re a fella with dry or sensitive skin, the best shaving oil, or oils, will make your grooming routine a million times better.
While they do cross over a little, the main difference between pre-shave oil and cream is down to conditioning.
A pre-shave cream is good at making the skin soft and silky for a smoother shaving experience (it also helps to hydrate the face).
The best pre-shave oil for men nourishes and protects the skin deep into the pores or follicles, making it especially powerful for guys with particularly dry or sensitive skin.