To many, shaving creams and gels might seem like unnecessary add-ons to an already tedious hair removal routine, however, skin-care experts beg to differ. “Nature didn’t intend for us to shave — we developed that social construct — so it’s logical that the process ‘pisses the hair off,'” explains Connecticut-based board-certified dermatologist Mona Gohara MD. “Shaving cream provides a lubricant to cushion the blow of removing hair.”

Finding the right shaving cream for you can be the key to a faultless shaving experience. Just take it from Dendy Engelman MD, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City. “The important thing about finding a shaving cream is to identify an emollient-based shaving cream that, when applied to the skin, softens the hair and follicles so that when a razor goes across the skin, there is less irritation,” she says. (Emollients, by the way, are the ingredients that make beauty products lather and foam.)

Even a quick trip down a drugstore shaving aisle will bombard you with countless cream and gel options, so we’ve asked Dr. Engelman and other board-certified dermatologists to narrow them down to the very best of the best. There are options for every budget, lifestyle, and skin type from brands such as Flamingo, Billie, and Eos. Just make sure to exfoliate beforehand and moisturize afterward, per Dr. Engelman’s advice.

All products featured on Allure are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

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