The Product You Can Use In A Pinch If You're Out Of Shaving Cream

There's a science to producing shiny, clean-shaven legs. That's why it can seem borderline catastrophic when you're set to shave, but remember that you used the last dribbles of shaving cream on your bikini line during the previous session. What's a hairy-legged gal to do, right?


The last thing you want to do in this situation is shave with only a razor and water. That's because the razor blade can do some serious damage to the skin. After all, it's either super sharp (if new) or dull and dangerous (way past its prime). The use of some sort of moisturizing shaving agent will help the razor move seamlessly across the skin, hopefully avoiding any nicks or cuts, Gillette Venus advises. It'll also hydrate the skin, which is always a plus.

Fortunately, you don't have to skip the shave altogether because baby oil — which you probably already have in your bathroom — is an excellent substitute for shaving gel or cream in a pinch. Plus, it smells oh-so-sweet!

Why baby oil is a great shaving cream substitute

Baby oil often conjures up only the sweetest memories, whether from a person's own childhood or caring for their newborn wee one. That said, its uses are not limited to tasks involving children. In fact, the product has a ton of alternative uses in addition to leg-shaving, like as a household lubricant (hello, squeaky doors!), a tattoo moisturizer, and even a cleaning agent, per Johnson's. Who knew?


Baby oil is ultra-hydrating, as it's made up almost entirely of mineral oil. This is a liquid produced from refined petroleum, Johnson's says. Mineral oil is in a ton of skincare products already, so your body should be good and used to it. The reason that mineral oil is part-for-parcel with a lot of products is that it's known to lock in moisture. It's what's known as an "occlusive moisturizer" (via MedicalNewsToday). Such products create a protective layer on the skin, which keeps beneficial moisture from escaping. So, when you shave your legs in the shower, the baby oil will actually help trap some of that water into the skin, making it shinier and healthier.

How to shave with baby oil

Shaving with baby oil isn't all that much different from shaving with a gel or cream. The main contrast is simply that baby oil won't lather up nice and thick. To use baby oil to shave legs, leave the task to the end of the shower, so that the skin and hair are warm and soft, Henning Dermatology Group advises. When you're ready, just apply a few drops to the hands or directly to the legs and then work it around evenly. Shave as usual in the direction that the hair grows, not against it. Rinse and pat dry so that the baby oil can continue moisturizing the skin long after the shower is over. 


Even after you've restocked the shaving cream, there's no reason to excommunicate baby oil from the routine. Westlake Dermatology says that people who struggle with razor burn can first apply a small amount of baby oil, then lather up with shaving cream for good measure. This will effectively calm the skin and reduce or eliminate bumps. Since dry, bumpy legs are what so many people struggle with, this is an easy, inexpensive fix!