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What to Use Instead of Shaving Creams: Our 9 Favorite Alternatives

Is it possible to shave without shaving cream? Yes, you absolutely can.

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We're here to tell you what you can use instead. Below, we explore seven fantastic alternatives that can step in and save the day when your supply runs dry –  and you can rest assured that we have scoured the shelves (and the internet) to bring you the best options available.

What To Use Instead of Shaving Creams: Our Favorite Alternatives

Nutiva Virgin Coconut Oil

Best for All-Natural, Organic Sources

Nutiva's Organic Coconut Oil is a wonderful alternative to cream due to its natural moisturizing properties and creamy texture, providing a smooth surface for your razor.

If you do not have this in your kitchen already, get some. It fits the description of a fully natural shaving oil to perfection.

PROS: Vegan, organic product.

CONS: Strong coconut scent is not for everyone.

  • Key Ingredients: 100% organic, unrefined, cold-pressed, virgin coconut oil.
  • Value: 15 fl oz
  • Star Rating: 4.7/5
  • Price: $-$$

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Being Naturals Aloe Vera Gel

Best for Soothing

If you are in a bind and do not have the time to buy more shaving cream, aloe vera gel is a great alternative. Being Natural's Aloe Vera Gel is a solid choice if you do not have one already.

Known for its cooling properties, aloe vera gel can help calm any irritation or razor burn that may occur during shaving.

PROS: One of the best alternatives to shaving cream for sensitive skin.

CONS: Cooling effect can be startling for some gentlemen.

  • Key Ingredients: Aloe vera.
  • Value: 4 oz
  • Star Rating: 4.5/5
  • Price: $$

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DANI Natural Nourishing Conditioner

Best for In-Shower Use

If you happen to run dry while in the middle of your shave in the shower, a hair conditioner like DANI's Natural Nourishing Conditioner can be a convenient alternative knowing that it is already meant for hydrating and softening your hair.

We would strongly advise you to choose one with all-natural ingredients to avoid irritating your skin. This product fits the bill and can be a lifesaver.

PROS: Made with skin-safe ingredients.

CONS: Not the best lather.

  • Key Ingredients: Aloe vera, glycerin, and shea butter.
  • Value: 12 fl oz
  • Star Rating: 4.⅕
  • Price: $$

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Aroma Depot African Shea Butter

Best for Skin Hydration

A lotion is purpose-built to offer hydration, meaning it can be utilized to lubricate your skin during the shaving process. Raw Shea Butter from Aroma Depot can help you steer clear of irritation.

It is important to apply it lightly and avoid excessive rubbing to ensure a protective barrier remains between your skin and the razor.

PROS: Smooths your skin.

CONS: Some may find the smell intense.

  • Key Ingredients: Shea butter.
  • Value: 8 oz
  • Star Rating: 4.5/5
  • Price: $

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OGX Extra Creamy + Coconut Miracle Oil Body Wash

Best for a Great Scent

Aside from hydrating and smoothing properties, any alternative to your traditional shaving cream has got to smell pleasant, which is where OGX's Extra Creamy Body Wash comes into the picture. 

Offering a delightful fragrance, moisturizing benefits, convenience, and a smooth shaving experience, it is a fine selection for gentlemen who are fans of vanilla-scented washes.

PROS: A lovely smell.

CONS: Can be irritating for those with sensitive skin.

  • Key Ingredients: Coconut oil and vanilla bean extract.
  • Value: 19.5 fl oz
  • Star Rating: 4.6/5
  • Price: $

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Filippo Berio Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Best for Non-Bathroom Products

The next time you are all out of shaving cream, take a look at your kitchen – you might surprise yourself with how many viable shaving alternatives you end up finding. For instance, Filippo Berio's Olive Oil can do a surprisingly good job.

Olive oil is rich in moisturizing properties, making it an excellent choice for gentlemen with dry or sensitive skin. Using your best olive oil would be a waste, so stick to a generic brand.

PROS: Contains natural antioxidants that can smooth or protect the skin.

CONS: The smell of olive oil is not everyone's cup of tea.

  • Key Ingredients: Extra virgin olive oil.
  • Value: 16.9 fl oz (pack of 2).
  • Star Rating: 4.7/5
  • Price: $

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Johnson's Baby Hair Oil

Best for Busy Dads

As father of one or multiple newborns, there are going to be days when you have got your hands full. Help is at hand – products like Johnson's Baby Oil have all the properties required for a good shave.

Due to its lubricating properties, moisturizing effects, and affordability, baby oil will always be a handy alternative to traditional shave cream.

PROS: Provides a smooth glide for your razor.

CONS: Can feel a little greasy.

  • Key Ingredients: Enriched with avocado and vitamin B-5.
  • Value: 6.8 fl oz
  • Star Rating: 4.⅗
  • Price: $

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Softsoap Soothing Clean Hand Soap

Best for In-Bathroom Use

In a pinch, Softsoap's Aloe Vera Hand Soap can do the job and leave you with a clean and comfortable shave, as most hand soaps have a similar texture and consistency to shaving cream, which makes it easy to apply and create a lather.

If you have particularly sensitive skin or are prone to razor burn or irritation, make sure to use a hand soap made with natural ingredients such as this one.

PROS: Consistency-wise, the most similar alternative to shaving cream.

CONS: Can dry out your skin if used excessively.

  • Key Ingredients: Aloe vera.
  • Value: 7.5 fl oz (pack of 3).
  • Star Rating: 4.6/5
  • Price: $-$$

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Aveeno Skin Relief Moisturizing Lotion

Best for Avoiding Itches

Shaving rash and itchiness are all too common. You can use Aveeno Moisturizing Lotion to combat itchiness after you shave – but you can also use it as a fine shaving foam substitute during your shave.

Its creamy texture forms a lather easily and soothes the skin. It is also fragrance-free, which some men prefer in their shaving products.

PROS: Odor-free and soothing

CONS: Not as good for close cuts as oils

  • Key Ingredients: Dimethicone, water, glycerin – check label
  • Value: 12 fl oz
  • Star Rating: 4.7/5
  • Price: $-$$

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Is It Okay to Shave With Soap or Lotion?

To answer the question, “Can I use soap instead of shaving cream?” – it is absolutely okay to shave with soap or lotion. Many gentlemen have successfully used both products as a substitute for grooming creams and achieved great results.

man shaving his beard with soap

When using these for shaving, however, it is important to choose products that are suitable for your skin; look for moisturizing soaps or ones specifically designed for shaving purposes. As for lotions, opt for those that are non-greasy and easily absorbed into the skin.

What Has the Same Consistency as Shaving Cream?

What to use instead of shaving creams? Will it have a similar consistency?

shaving gel

Gels offer a foam consistency, whipped soap is fluffy and creamy, butter has a… buttery texture, and normal soaps can create a dense and creamy lather.

Final Thoughts

Whether you are seeking a more budget-friendly option, a natural and eco-friendly alternative, or simply looking for something to bail you out, there are numerous options available to cater to your specific needs. 

Nonetheless, remember, the key to learning what to use instead of shaving creams on the face is to test the options and find what works best for you. Everyone's skin is unique, and what may work wonders for one person may not have the same effect on another.

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What To Use Instead of Shaving Creams

Born and raised in Austin, David is a dedicated writer and avid fragrance lover. When he's not trying out perfumes, he enjoys traveling and exploring new restaurants.