beauty

Here’s How To Make Your Own All-Natural, Luxurious Shaving Cream With Just 2 Ingredients

by Kim Wong-Shing

Most store-bought shaving creams leave much to be desired. The cheap ones are drying, and the expensive ones are way too expensive. That explains why I haven’t paid for shaving cream in approximately 10 years.

Ever since I started shaving as a pubescent preteen, it’s been a hassle. When I was young, I’d always end up with burning red bumps all over my legs. When I was older, I discovered that a special, pricey type of razor helped improve things. I had no irritation at all, but you know what? It cost too much money, and it was a pain in the butt.

So I gave up. Now I use a bar of soap, along with the cheapest razors that I can find. I’ve discovered that, as long as I shave carefully and often, I no longer end up with bumps or burns.

Unfortunately, the bar of soap method leaves my legs feeling like alligator skin. I end up having to slather coconut oil on my skin after I shower, lest I scare innocent people on the street with my dry, ashy legs.

But recently I decided: no more! There’s got to be another option aside from crappy shaving cream, overpriced razors, and horror-movie legs. And in fact, there is! It’s DIY shaving cream, and it’s neither expensive nor drying.

I was hopeful about making my own shaving cream, because most homemade recipes use both coconut oil and shea butter. Imagine using the same thing that I use to moisturize my skin — while I shave! Genius.

You might assume that making your own shaving cream is way too difficult for regular, non-expert folks, but I’m here to tell you that you’re wrong. There are only two ingredients in a basic DIY shaving cream recipe, and you only need one semi-fancy kitchen tool (a hand mixer or stand-up mixer).

If I can do it, anyone can do it.

The Ingredients

The Ingredients
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To make this shaving cream, you need two ingredients: shea butter and coconut oil.

Coconut oil is definitely the cheapest of the two; I had some on hand, but I usually buy mine for $5. I look for virgin to extra-virgin, unrefined coconut oil when possible. Organic is always nice.

As for the shea butter, I bought an 11-ounce jar of Alaffia unscented shea butter for $12.99. It wasn’t the cheapest option at Whole Foods, but it’s made with ethically produced, fair trade shea butter, so I went for this brand. However, if you’re on a budget, you can absolutely buy a big tub of regular shea butter for around $10.

We’re using only 4 ounces of shea butter for this recipe, which makes a full jar of shaving cream, so one tub will last you for a while.

The Supplies

The Supplies
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Now you need something to whip the ingredients together. While you could technically whip them by hand, it would take forever, and your arm would fall off. I used a regular hand mixer, because I don’t have a stand-up mixer.

I’ve never used a hand mixer before — I don’t bake, can you tell? — so I was pretty excited.

You also need a medium-sized mixing bowl and a measuring cup.

Time to get started.

Step 1: Combine Ingredients

Step 1: Combine Ingredients
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First, I measured 1/4 cup shea butter and 1/4 cup coconut oil. I combined both in a mixing bowl and did some quick stirring before turning on the hand mixer. I was pretty scared of accidentally flinging butter and oil all over the kitchen.

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Then I put on my brave face and went in with the hand mixer.

Step 2: Mix, Mix, Mix

Step 2: Mix, Mix, Mix
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It was going OK! No splatter so far, but the mixture was pretty liquidy and wasn’t becoming fluffy — even after 10 minutes. My arm was getting tired. I began to wish that I’d gotten married at some point, so that I could have asked for a stand-up mixer as a wedding gift (I think this is the only way people come to own stand-up mixers). 

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Also, by this point, I had splattered cream all over the kitchen. This is not because of any fault of the recipe, though — I’m just totally incompetent in the kitchen.

On the plus side, I used the excess cream to moisturize my skin. It was getting really soft.

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I did some quick Googling to troubleshoot and decided that my mixture was too warm. I put it in the freezer for a few minutes at a time, mixing in between, to firm it up. It worked!

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Finally, it seemed fully whipped. And my skin AND kitchen surfaces were fully moisturized.

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But it filled my jar only halfway. The perfectionist in me really wanted the jar to be full.

So I made ANOTHER batch, using the same measurements.

That brings us to 1/2 cup coconut oil and 1/2 cup shea butter, total.

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Now that I knew what I was doing, though, it went a lot faster.

Pretty soon, I had a finished product in front of me. Wow!

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Not only did I semi-successfully use a hand mixer, but I also made a bunch of shaving cream!

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Now it was time to test it out.

The Test Run

The Test Run
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I went to the tub and generously applied the cream to my wet, stubbly legs.

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To my surprise, it worked pretty well!

This DIY shaving cream is dense. It’s definitely more like a cream than a whip. But it didn’t clog up my cheap razor, nor did the thick oils clog the drain.

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It doesn’t foam up like a regular shaving cream, but that’s to be expected.

The only slight downside is that my legs were REALLY oily after I was finished.

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Even after I dried them with a towel, plenty of oiliness remained. I had to rub it in a lot, and that’s not my favorite feeling. I might have applied too much shaving cream.

After it finally dried fully, though? My legs were so soft. Soooooo soft.

This shaving cream is a DEFINITE step up from a bar of soap. It leaves my legs feeling smooth and supple, rather than like an alligator’s skin.

Another plus: You can use this cream for more than just shaving. It works as a skin moisturizer and hair treatment, too.

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However, I could see this cream being too dense or oily for some people, depending on your skin and hair type. In that case, there are plenty of variations on the recipe that result in a lighter and/or foamier consistency. You can replace some or all of the coconut oil with a lighter oil, like jojoba or olive, which results in a lighter whip. You can add some Castile soap for a little foaminess. Some people add baking soda or honey. It all depends on your needs!