In the big world of beauty and self-care products, one I simply don't get excited about is shaving gel. Since I first started shaving my legs in the sixth grade (which at the time seemed devastatingly late), I've been using the exact same brand of shaving gel: the industry standard, Skintimate. For almost two decades it felt like the only option and in many ways, it was marketed as such. I didn't question it, I never considered switching brands, and I accepted it as fact that it's what I'd add to my cart every time.
For the record, I have no qualms with Skintimate and have always found it got the job done. I'm not big into fragrance, so I didn't love its array of fruity scents, but besides that, I never had much to complain about. I have sensitive skin, scar easily, but I had eventually accepted that post-shave bumps and burns were a reality for me that I couldn't correct.
It wasn't until a few months ago when I bought the starter pack of a relatively new shaving brand that everything changed. I admit that I made the switch not because I read reviews or had the impression this new formulation might be better for my skin. I bought it simply because I loved the brand's minimal, modern packaging—and cheeky name. Flamingo, pegged as "body care for women with hair," immediately caught my eye with its attractive branding and fair price point. At $5 a pop, its shaving gel is a tad steeper than its competitors, but not enough to dissuade a first-timer.
It only took a couple of shaves to realize that this shaving gel was just the thing for my sensitive, overreactive skin, and definitely worth the slightly steeper price point. The foam has an extra rich texture that seems to protect that skin as you shave, keeping every stroke smooth and balanced. Unlike the fruity scents that plagued my younger years, this product boasts subtle and sophisticated notes of Sicilian lemon, iris, and suede. The formula also features aloe vera, which is probably to thank for the fact I don't end up with bumps or burns post-shaving. Especially in cold-weather months, I tend to get rashes and dry patches on my skin. Flamingo has made my legs look worlds better, reducing redness and irritation and leaving me with a super-smooth and moisturized close shave.
Now here's how to shave your legs—the right way.