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Best aftershave balm

Which aftershave balms are best?

Shaving leaves your face looking clean and smooth, but unfortunately, it also has the unpleasant effect of drying out the skin. Luckily, there’s a simple solution for rehydrating your face after a clean shave.

Aftershave balm works wonders in moisturizing the skin, and while there are many low-cost options available, you don’t want to skimp on aftershave. You want a product made with high-grade ingredients, like the Chanel Bleu De Chanel Aftershave Balm, an ointment that’s safe, effective and has a subtle but delightful fragrance.

What to know before you buy an aftershave balm

What it does

Aftershave balm has two main effects: It rehydrates the skin and helps kill bacteria. Since shaving opens pores, it means germs can enter easily. Most aftershave balms contain antibacterial and astringent substances, which are crucial in preventing infections.

Is it necessary?

Applying an aftershave treatment isn’t necessary, but if you suffer from skin irritations like razor-burn, it’s a good idea to use it. Razor-burn is common for many and is an unpleasant sensation that can linger for several hours if left untreated. Most aftershave balms contain soothing agents that help alleviate irritated skin effectively and quickly.

Balms vs. lotions

Aftershave balms and lotions work similarly, but the main difference is that lotions contain alcohol, making them more effective at killing bacteria. However, alcohol-based creams can actually irritate the skin further, which is why balms are preferable. Balms are thicker in texture and are more effective at moisturizing the skin.

What to look for in a quality aftershave balm


The best aftershave balms contain ingredients known for their soothing properties. The most common botanicals and ingredients found in balms are aloe vera, tea tree oil, allantoin, menthol, shea butter and witch hazel. Balms also incorporate small traces of other minerals, natural oils and extracts to create an effective treatment formula.


Besides leaving your skin refreshed, some balms are scented and leave behind a fragrance that can last several hours. It has no bearing on a balm’s effectiveness at soothing irritated skin and is merely a matter of preference. Balms with fragrances can be used as a cologne substitute or a complementary scent. However, those with sensitive skin often find that they irritate the skin further.

Cooling effect

Most aftershave balms have a cooling effect that relieves razor burn and leaves the skin rehydrated and good as new. Balms containing menthol have a strong cooling effect that many find pleasant. However, if you don’t enjoy the cooling sensation some balms provide, look for one that doesn’t have any alcohol.

How to use an aftershave balm

  1. After shaving, wash your face with water and gently pat it dry with a towel.
  2. Use your hands to create a thin spread of the balm.
  3. Gently rub your hands over the affected areas of your face.
  4. Leave it on your face so it can work its magic and rehydrate your skin.

How much you can expect to spend on aftershave balm

You don’t have to pay top dollar for a quality aftershave balm, as some cost as low as $5. However, treatments produced by designer brands or those containing high-grade botanicals and extracts can cost up to $60 or more.

Aftershave balm FAQ

Are alcohol-based balms better than those that don’t contain any alcohol?

A. Alcohol-based balms are arguably more effective at preventing bacterial infections, but many find that they don’t effectively moisturize dried skin caused by shaving. Many alcohol-based balms do rehydrate to some degree, but there is a strong focus on antiseptic effects and properties in those types of products.

Can aftershave balm be used if you’re not freshly shaved?

A. Yes. Even if you haven’t recently shaved, balms can be applied to dry skin to moisturize it.

What’s the best aftershave balm to buy?

Top aftershave balm

Chanel Bleu De Chanel After Shave Balm

What you need to know: It’s made using high-grade botanicals and provides instant relief after shaving. It is excellent for all skin types.

What you’ll love: This aftershave balm combines distinct aromatic notes like grapefruit and lemon to create a subtle fragrance that smells fantastic and won’t irritate sensitive skin. Its aroma is gentle and doesn’t last long, making it an appealing option for those who don’t want a balm with a strong scent.

What you should consider: It’s expensive since a designer brand produces it, and there are effective balms available at cheaper price points.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top aftershave balm for the money

Cremo Cooling Formula Post Shave Balm

What you need to know: This aftershave is inexpensive, but it’s excellent for sensitive skin types who need a fast-acting relief following a close shave.

What you’ll love: It features a blend of moisturizing and soothing ingredients like tea tree oil and menthol to create a powerful but pleasant cooling effect. It has an inoffensive mint scent and helps treat dry skin and other irritations caused by shaving, like razor burn.

What you should consider: Some customers reported that it left behind a streaky film on their skin.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and iHerb

Worth checking out

Duke Cannon Supply Co. After Shave Balm

What you need to know: This balm is perfect for those who want inexpensive post-shave treatment made with high-quality natural ingredients.

What you’ll love: Its cooling effect is driven by menthol, while its skin treatment effects are powered by a blend of aloe, shea butter and allantoin. They work together to create a hydrating formula that helps negate the uncomfortable sensation caused by razor-burn.

What you should consider: The scent lingers for longer than some may find desirable.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Kevin Luna writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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