After Shave Balm Vs Lotion Vs Splash: The Differences

June 12, 2018 5 min read

After Shave Balm Vs Lotion Vs Splash: The Differences

Naked Armor

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.

Published by Naked Armor

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 do shave sometimes can’t figure out the right aftershave product to use.

Choosing the appropriate aftershave product is vital for your skin's health.

Some would choose an aftershave product based on the scent, but that shouldn't always be the case.

Whenever we wet shave, pores open up making our skin vulnerable to bacterial
infections. And since we all have different skin types, this is why aftershaves come in various forms such as a splash, a balm, or a lotion.

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, their purpose, and how they are used. Below is a detailed discussion of each aftershave product.

What Is an Aftershave 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 the natural sebum that is produced by the sebaceous glands.

Aftershave balms are designed for men with rough hair or sensitive skin because they are readily absorbed into the skin a few minutes after application. If you have both, an aftershave balm protects, soothes and nourishes your skin.

It also prevents common problems such as skin irritation, dryness and razor burn and other aftershave issues.

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

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.

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

— Derek, Naked Armor Founder

What Is An Aftershave Splash?

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

In fact, alcohol constitutes about 70% while the rest is allantois and glycerin. Most aftershave splashes 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 helps kill bacteria that often land on the skin after shaving. Besides, if you share shaving instruments, splashes help to reduce germ transmission from one person to another.

What makes splashes distinct from other aftershave products is 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 sensitive skin. The alcohol content also makes skin pores remain tight thus giving way for ingrown hair. However, there are now unscented or zero alcohol alternatives available in the market.

When using an aftershave 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 before splashing your aftershave product.

What Are Aftershave 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 with pleasant scents. If you experience slight dryness after shaving, then a lotion can help you by closing pores and moisturizing your skin.

Aftershave lotions are milder versions of the splash though they don’t contain alcohol. If you have acne, however, 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

Aftershave lotions help eliminate dryness by making the skin feel soft and smooth. Aftershave balms aid in nourishing, protecting and curbing razor burnsand irritations. Splashes tighten skin pores and are anti-inflammatory. They help 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 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 aftershaves. However, aftershave problems arise from not using or picking the right aftershave product.

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

Before picking an aftershave product, it is important to understand the properties, purpose, and use of each product.

Start to wet shave and do it right with Naked Armor Razors. Our wet shave razor shave kit includes everything you need to shave at home or on the road.

We make it easy, you don't need anything else but this kit. Click Add To Cartbelow.

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