The Easiest, Natural DIY Aftershave for Men (with Aloe and Essential Oils)
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Did you know you can make your own aftershave with easy to find, completely natural ingredients?
Yup, it’s true. Plus, it takes less than 5 minutes to make and costs a fraction of what you’d spend on aftershave at the store.
One of my favorite things about homemade aftershave is how easy it is to customize it for your own skin!
I also love that you get to skip the chemicals, preservatives and artificial fragrances that frequently fill store-bought aftershave.
If you’ve just shaved all the hairs off you face and you’re baby soft skin is supple and absorbent, the last thing you want to put on it is chemicals!
No, no, nope.
Opt for a clean, non-toxic aftershave for your freshly shaven face (or for your man’s face, because who wants to kiss a toxin filled face?!).
DIY aftershave is so easy to make with just a few ingredients.
Now that we’re on the same page about the wonderfulness of homemade aftershave, you might be wondering one more thing……
DO I REALLY NEED AFTERSHAVE?
That is completely up to you and your skin! The purpose of aftershave is to calm the skin after shaving and prevent bacteria growth in any cuts or nicks.
If you have particularly sensitive skin or don’t shave very often, you will find aftershave especially helpful.
If you are concerned about infection in recent shaving cuts, you could simply apply a dab of alcohol or witch hazel on the cut and call it a day. You don’t NEED to apply it to your entire face.
That said, my homemade aftershave recipe is wonderfully cooling and calming with aloe vera, witch hazel and essential oils. It takes only a minute to apply after you shave and feels great on freshly shaved skin.
So even if you don’t NEED it, aftershave is a great way to tighten and calm skin after shaving that is super easy to make.
HOW DO YOU MAKE HOMEMADE AFTERSHAVE?
There are lots of ways to make your own aftershave, and a variety of different styles of aftershave you can use.
Witch hazel, Apple cider vinegar, alcohol, aloe vera gel or even coconut oil can all be used as a replacement for aftershave with success.
The best option is to follow a recipe that includes several of these ingredients to balance skin and prevent drying.
My hubs prefers a lightweight, toner style aftershave to tighten skin and shrink pores without adding excess moisture or being oily.
So that’s what you’ll find in this recipe, since he’s my muse and I made this for him (insert all the heart eyes here).
DIY AFTERSHAVE RECIPE
4 TBS witch hazel
2 TBS aloe vera gel (a natural version like this one)
4-6 drops essential oil
Combine ingredients in a small glass container and mix.
This recipe makes 3 ounces of finished product and will keep for several months at room temperature.
A NOTE ABOUT INGREDIENTS
Make sure you are using a high quality witch hazel with an alcohol content no higher than 20%. I recommend this one.
Skip the green aloe gel from your childhood days at the pool and get the real deal aloe vera gel instead.
(Did you know completely natural aloe vera gel is NOT green?? Nope, it’s clear. There is artificial coloring added to that green stuff, and your skin doesn’t need that!)
Look for the highest aloe content you can find, with the only other additives being mild preservatives (they should be listed last). Even natural aloe gel has some mild preservatives to prevent bacteria growth, but the best natural aloe vera gel will be 99% or more aloe content.
I recommend this natural aloe vera gel, or check your local natural grocery store (Sprouts or Whole Foods both carry natural aloe gel).
BEST ESSENTIAL OILS FOR AFTERSHAVE
You can choose essential oils for your homemade aftershave based on your scent preference or for their skincare properties. Use 4-6 drops total of essential oil in the recipe above.
Rosemary and Mint: rosemary is antiseptic, mint gives a nice tingly feeling that is great for aftershave. Use 4 drops rosemary and 2 drops of mint. This is my husband’s favorite combination and it smells fantastic.
Tea Tree is a great choice for aftershave because it is antiseptic and antibacterial.
Choose Lavender for sensitive skin.
Sandalwood has a lovely woodsy, masculine smell. Mix with lavender for a great manly combo that smells amazing.
Clarity Blend from Plant Therapy is a really nice combination of bergamot, basil, lemon and grapefruit. It works really well for men’s skincare and is a great choice for aftershave.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
HOW LONG DOES HOMEMADE AFTERSHAVE STAY FRESH?
DIY aftershave will keep for several months stored at room temperature. I always recommend a glass bottle for storing homemade grooming or beauty products (especially if it contains essential oils).
I like these glass dropper bottles for homemade aftershave, or upcycle a glass jar you already have around your house.
WHAT CAN I USE IF I DON’T HAVE AFTERSHAVE?
There are a handful of ingredients you probably already have around the house that you can use as an aftershave in a pinch.
Which one you choose depends on your reason for using aftershave. As I mentioned above, aftershave is meant to kill bacteria in shaving cuts and sooth freshly shaved skin.
Facial toner has very similar ingredients to aftershave, and could be an easy swap if you don’t have aftershave. It is usually witch hazel or alcohol based and soothing, so give it a try in a pinch!
Apple cider vinegar, rubbing alcohol, or even vodka could be used to treat cuts from shaving. I do not recommend rubbing alcohol or vodka all over your face, however, as it will be very drying. Use these as a spot treatment for cuts only.
Ale Vera Gel is a great ingredient to calm and sooth irritated skin after shaving. Apply it like a lotion to sensitive skin and let it soak in.
Moisturizer or facial oil is a great aftershave option for super dry skin.
CAN I USE COCONUT OIL AS AFTERSHAVE?
Yes, you can use coconut oil as aftershave with some success. Coconut oil has antibacterial properties and is moisturizing, so it makes a nice choice for an oil to apply after shaving.
If you have dry skin and need a moisturizer after shaving, I recommend first applying a homemade aftershave like the recipe above and then following it up with coconut oil.
A little coconut oil goes a long way as an aftershave moisturizer! Just a dime sized amount is likely enough for your entire face. Gently rub it in to skin and neck and you’re done.
CAN I USE VODKA AS AFTERSHAVE?
I don’t recommend using straight vodka as an aftershave because it will be very drying for your skin.
It does work to kill any bacteria you may have from shaving cuts, but other than that it won’t do anything good for your skin.
If you’re set on using vodka as an aftershave, you can mix it with water to get it to a 20% dilution (equal parts 80 proof vodka and water will accomplish this).
Now follow my recipe above and replace the witch hazel with the vodka mixture.
Once you’ve diluted your vodka to use as an aftershave, you could use it straight if you like, but I’d recommend it for spot treatments only for shaving cuts or abrasions.
More Homemade Men’s Skincare: