After Shave Balm Vs Lotion Vs Splash: The Differences

June 12, 2018

After Shave Balm Vs Lotion Vs Splash: The Differences

More often, we emphasize on sharp safety razors with brand new blades and shaving creams whenever we shave and forget about aftershave products.

Even those who are aware can’t figure out the right aftershave product to use.

Choosing the appropriate aftershave product is vital for the health of your skin. Some would choose an after shave product based on their scent, but that isn’t the case.

Whenever we wet shave, pores open up making our skins vulnerable to bacterial
infections. This is why there are various aftershave products such as splash, balm, and lotions.

Though they are all aftershave products, they have several differences and you should understand them to find the one that is most suitable for you.

The Differences

To understand the differences between these types of aftershave products, we will look at the ingredients, purpose, their state and how they are used. Below is a detailed
discussion of each aftershave product.

What Is After Shave Balm?

Balms are made by combining natural ingredients such as allantoin, glycerin, and Aloe Vera.

Additionally, they contain carrier oils such as jojoba, coconut, and castor oils. Jojoba is known to help mimic natural sebum that is produced by the sebaceous glands.

After Shave Balms are designed for men with rough hair or sensitive skin. If you have both, after shave balm protects, soothes and nourishes your skin.

It also prevents common problems such as skin irritation, dryness and razor burns and other after-shave issues.

The Aloe Vera contained in balms helps to improve skin health and is suitable if you have sensitive skin. Glycerin and allantois help in hydrating and moisturizing the skin.

Aftershave balms are readily absorbed into the skin few minutes after application.

The advantage with balms is that they contain natural ingredients and don’t pose adverse side effects. Balms come in a semi-solid form, unlike lotions

Some balm products contain alcohol. Such alcohol-based balms are good if you’re battling with mild acne. Balms provide instant relief and make your beard and skin feel
very soft.

Compared to lotions, balms are usually creamy and thick. Those that contain no alcohol
don’t pose any burning sensation and are good if you want to soothe your skin
from irritation and razor bumps.

What Is An After Shave Splash?

This is an antiseptic liquid-based after shave product that you can splash on your skin
with your hand. Most aftershave splashes contain alcohol while others have no or reduced alcohol content.

In fact, alcohol constitutes about 70% while the rest is allantois and glycerin. Most splashes after shaves are scented just like lotions. They are designed to refresh the skin after a shave. They also reduce skin inflammation and improve moisture content.

The alcohol contained in splashes help in killing bacteria that often land on the skin
after shaving. Besides, if you share shaving instruments, splashes help to reduce disease transmission from one person to another.

What makes splashes distinct from other after shave products are the tingling effect and invigorating sensation it causes whenever you apply it on your face.

The effect is caused by the alcohol and fragrance contained in the product.

Unlike balms, splashes are not suitable for you if you have sensitive skin. However, you can go for the unscented or those with no alcohol content. The alcohol content also
makes skin pores remain tight thus giving way for ingrown hair.

When using after shave splash, ensure that your skin is clean from all dirt, hair, lather and shaving oils.

Splash your skin with cold water to close open pores and then splash your aftershave product.

What Are After Shave Lotions?

Aftershave lotions are made by combining ingredients such as fragrances, glycerin and
mineral oils, water, myristyl propionate and aluminum starch.

They are designed to help curb skin dryness after shaving. Lotions also come along with pleasant scents. If you experience slight dryness after shaving, then lotions can aid you in closing pores and moisturize your skin.

Aftershave lotions are milder versions of splash though they don’t contain alcohol. If you have acne, then it is not advisable to use lotions.

The glycerin contained in lotions can worsen the acne. You can use a standard splash or balm instead of lotion if you’re fighting off acne.

The aluminum starch contained in aftershave lotions is non-aqueous and acts like an
anticaking agent. Myristyl propionate is a perfect skin conditioner while the mineral
oils help to enrich the skin and improve the scent.

Aftershave lotions are used in the similar manner as splashes i.e. clean your face then
splash your lotion. Lotions come in a liquid form, unlike balm which is creamier and gel-like.

Since aftershave lotions have subtle scents, there is no need to use a cologne once you apply lotion on your skin.

Summary Of The Differences In Point Form

• Aftershave lotions help to eliminate dryness by making the skin to feel soft and smooth. Aftershave balms aid in nourishing, protecting and curbing razor burns and irritations. Splashes help to tighten skin pores and are anti-inflammatory. They aid to fight bacterial infections.

• Balms can contain little or no alcohol while splashes contain a high concentration of alcohol of up to 70%. Lotions don’t contain any alcohol content.

• Aftershave lotions have strong scents, unlike balms. Balms only have subtle scents.

• Splashes have a strong tingling effect and revitalizing sensation, unlike balms and lotions.

• Balms are liniment and are medicated for topical applications. They are typically used to reduce stiffness and pain resulting from muscle pain and sores. Lotions come with no medication and are only used for moisturizing skin to reduce dryness.

• Balms are more effective in curbing razor burns after shaving, unlike lotions and splashes.

• Balms are creamy and sticky compared to splashes and lotions.


Most men have a love-hate relationship with aftershave. However, aftershave problems arise from not using or picking the right aftershave product.

A good splash, balm or lotion can help eliminate common after-shave problems such as acne, dry skin, inflammation and razor burns.

Before picking an after shave product, it is paramount to understand the properties, purpose, and use of each product.

The above are the notable after shave balm, splash and lotion differences.


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