If teen rom-coms have taught us anything, it’s that every seminal encounter between a heroine and her love interest starts from the ankles and pans up (Christian meeting Cher in Clueless, Laney Boggs’ makeover debut in She’s All That, Amanda Beckett’s—aka Jennifer Love Hewitt's—first day of school in Can’t Hardly Wait, etc). But what exactly are directors telling us? That a woman’s legs, rather than her face, are the real focus of a first impression? Between the beach weekends, pool parties, and denim cut-offs that round out a summer, our gams will do a hefty amount of parading in the coming months—suffice it to say we’re not taking any chances. So, heeding Hollywood's advice (never an amazing idea, but stay with us), we’ve been treating our legs as we would our face by shaving them like one. And who knows how to shave a face better than dudes (and dads)? Here are the products we’re borrowing from ours:
For a hydrating shaving cream that isn’t accompanied by a father-like fragrance—or that of a middle school girl, for that matter—we prefer the unscented, sensitive-skin friendly Aveeno Therapeutic Shave Gel. At $4.29 a pop, it’s surprisingly not bottom shelf, comes in a non-offensive navy and beige can, and is marketed to men (though it was shelved in a gender gray-area at the drugstore). Let it be known that Aveeno is not overselling this product when it says it will work into a “rich” lather. Its frothy white foam is thick enough to reveal where you’ve already shaved, and what you’ve missed, without suffocating your pores. Added bonuses? It boasts the ability to soothe razor bumps and features oatmeal...making it the ideal segue to breakfast? While this shave gel certainly doesn’t hydrate as well as a lotion, it did mean that our legs weren't screaming for after-shower moisturizing...but if Arianna Huffington has time to moisturize, I guess we do, too.
But when it comes to smooth legs—or smooth anything you want/need to shave, who are we to judge—everything hangs on the razor. And as far as the Gloffice is concerned, NYC-based startup e-tailer Harry’s makes the best we’ve come across (with a price tag that won’t burn your retinas). We’re partial to the Winston (yes, that’s Harry’s Winston, and we’re beginning to think the allusion to the legendary jeweler is intentional). The German-engineered razor’s chrome handle feels as aristocratic in your hand as it looks in your shower, and that slight curve at the joint where the handle meets the razor (the thinnest we've seen) makes said razor just glide along your skin. This sucker gives an extremely close shave. It’s priced at $20, and refill blades will run you $15 for a pack of eight, but this is money well-spent. Harry's products are also for men, but, like we said, they use it on their faces. So they're definitely fit for your stems.
Look, we can’t promise that this one-two punch will turn your life into a romantic comedy with a beautiful yet quirky female lead, but the signs are kind of everywhere—even Rachel Kushner’s latest novel, The Flamethrowers, likens calves to “large, blank faces"—and you certainly won’t regret treating your legs with a little respect. And with Father's Day right around the corner, it's likely that few things will make your dad happier than knowing he finally taught you how to do something right (even if you can’t change a flat tire).
Illustrations by Karleigh Sherman.