Aftershave Balm Vs After Shave Lotion - What's The Difference?

I’ve never really understood Aftershave. What's the difference between an After Shave Balm and an Aftershave Lotion?

Among all the grooming products I own and use regularly, Aftershave Balm has always been left by the side. 

I was doing a clear out over the weekend and found about 5 half-used bottles lying around my bathroom.

This got me thinking, so I started researching online. 

One thing has become clear… Aftershave Balm is one of the most important elements in your shaving routine. 

Let’s start from the top.

First up, don’t confuse Aftershave Lotion with Aftershave Balm. Both are used after shaving but they're very different.  

What exactly is an Aftershave Lotion (also known as just 'Aftershave')?

Aftershave Lotion (sometimes just referred to as Aftershave) is scented and often alcohol based. It is designed to help calm shaving irritation and disinfect any small nicks you might have given yourself.

Alcohol can also help get rid of bacteria on your skin but the problem is - alcohol can also worsen irritation, dry your skin out and cause it to flake. 

Some men like the fact Aftershave Lotion is scented (meaning they don’t have to use a cologne afterwards) but in my experience, it leaves my skin red and dry and it feels irritated all morning.

I’ve also never had an Aftershave with a scent I actually like. (They all tend to have that "Christmas present gift set" smell.) 

What exactly is an Aftershave Balm (also known as Post Shave Balm)?

An Aftershave Balm serves the same basic purpose - to soothe your skin after shaving. 

However unlike Aftershave Lotion, Aftershave Balm generally does not contain alcohol and is designed to moisturise your post-shave skin. It’s thicker and creamier than Aftershave Lotion. 

The moisturising properties are - in my opinion - what makes Aftershave Balm the superior choice.

A typical Aftershave Balm has a light scent which comes from its ingredients and in my experience, is much kinder to post shaved skin.

PS You’ll know if the product you use contains alcohol - it’s what produces that ‘stinging’ sensation after shaving. 


What to look for in a quality Aftershave Balm

Select an Aftershave Balm without alcohol. You should look for natural as opposed to synthetic ingredients.

Look for a balm which contains soothing natural ingredients like Aloe Vera Leaf Juice and Spearmint Leaf Oil.

Witch hazel is a natural astringent and has antiseptic properties - think of it as a natural alternative to the alcohol found in Aftershaves.

And Vitamin E is great for skin which needs that extra moisture after shaving. 

You should also look for a non-greasy formula and an Aftershave Balm which is pH balanced so as not to upset the chemistry of your skin.

mens aftershave balm

If you're looking for a great Aftershave Balm, we've got just the thing for you here at VITAMAN. Our non-greasy, quick-absorbing men's aftershave balm is one of our worldwide best sellers.

Click here to refresh your skin with our cooling, alcohol-free Aftershave Balm.

For a full list of the natural ingredients VITAMAN use in their products, please click here.