How to Shave Your Head Bald : 11 Step Guide

I will explain how to shave your head bald in this guide. I have been shaving my head for years now and it is not all that difficult once you get the hang of it.  It will take some practice, but you will find that if you are systematic about it, you will end with that elusive shiny dome any day of the week.

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1. If your Hair has Length, Trim it Down with Clippers First

If you have some length to your hair, you will need to trim it off with a trimmer beforehand.  I recommend the hair trimmer by Wahl 79300-400T (link to Amazon).  You can use any trimmer that allows you to create a relatively short trim.  You could use a beard trimmer or clippers that are designed for haircuts. It does not really matter.

Just ensure that you cut back all of the hair on your head.  I find that it is best to trim in sweeping motions from the front to the back. For the sides, start at the bottom of your head and then pull the trimmer up to the top of your head.

You may need to bend back your ears so that you can reach the hard to reach areas around your ears.

For the back of your head, it is easiest to start at the bottom of the neck and then trim in an upward motion to the top of your head.

2. Give Your Head a Quick Shampoo

I was wondering if this is really a necessary step; the quickie shampooing of your newly trimmed hair. I feel that it an OK step to follow, although it is not crucial.

If you were just recently in an environment that can contain a lot of bacteria, such as a gym, shampooing is a good plan. Also, if you are a blue collar worker and you were at a worksite where the wind can blow dirt particles into your hair, again shampooing will be a plus for you.

Before shaving your head, you need to remove any dirt particles and germs just in case you were to cut into your scalp. Shampooing will ensure that your scalp is ready to be shaved. I recommend the body wash by Nivea Men 3-in-1 Body Wash (link to Amazon).

Simply add some shampoo to the top of your head while in the shower and massage the shampoo through your scalp. Rinse off your head and presto, you are ready for the next step.

3. Apply Shaving Gel

I noticed that some videos suggest that you add body gel to your head to shave it.  Sometimes, gel remains a gel and it just creates a slick mess on your scalp.   I realize that this slimy surface is probably great for shaving, but how will you tell if you had covered all areas? It would be like mowing a lawn without being able to see a strip that you had just mowed.

I am old-school, I like a shaving gel that becomes foamy and that is easy to see when on your head.   I like the EZ Blade Shaving Gel (see price on Amazon).

Just add a quarter-sized amount of a gel to one of your hands and then rub your hands together. Add the resulting foam to your head ensuring that you cover the complete surface of your scalp. Also, add some foam around your ears since this area will be shaved also even though there are fewer follicles that surround your ears.

4. Pick the Right Razor

I would not stress out about which razor to use.  Just try to buy one that has multiple blades since this will reduce your shaving time.  If you are on a tight budget, a disposable razor will be fine but please make sure that it is not a dull one.  If your blade is dull, you will need to apply more pressure to your scalp which could increase the chance that you cut into it.

I suggest a razor that has 5 blades for shaving your head, like the Gillette ProGlide(link to Amazon).  I do not like to use disposable razors because I find that the hollow plastic handle is too light.  I want to use a razor that has some weight to it,  it just feels odd to shave with a toy-like razor from the dollar store.

5. Shaving the Front of the Head

Now we are getting down to business, let the shaving begin!  The first portion to shave is the front portion of your head.   I like to shave from the front to the back in this area.  First, run some hot water over your razor so that the blades will be slippery.

Pull the razor from the top of your forehead to the top of your head.  Most men that are balding will not have much hair here, but our goal is to create a smooth scalp all over.

After every 5 passes, rinse off the razor for a few seconds in hot water and continue shaving until you have covered a good portion of the front half of your head.

6. Shaving the Sides 

This step involves the shaving of the sides of your head.  I suggest that you start with the razor near the top of your head and then pull the razor down to your ear level.  It will take several passes in order to shave the complete surface of the sides.

By shaving from the top to the bottom, you will be shaving with the grain of hair growth on the sides of your head.   It is always best to shave with the grain on this first pass so that you do not pull on your scalp.  When whiskers have not been partially shaved off, a razor may pull on them because of their length.

The second pass for the sides is to shave against the grain of hair growth.  To do so, just shave from the bottom of the sides to the top of your head.

When shaving around your ears, you should bend the tops of your ears to allow the razor to pass as close as possible to your ears.

7. If Blades are Pulling

If you are finding that the razor is pulling your skin, verify if you are dealing with one of the following situations:

  • The blades are dull. I personally change the blades on my razor once a week.  I shave my head every second day but I shave most of my facial whiskers each day.  I have found that after a week, I have more of a problem with nicks and cuts.
  • You have not been running water over the blades often enough.   You need to rinse the blades under a tap after every 5 or so passes with the razor to de-clog them.  This also helps the blades to glide easily over your scalp.

8. Shave the Back

The next area to shave is the back of your head.

  • As with the sides, you need to shave initially with the grain of hair growth.
  • To do so, start at the top of your head and shave down to the bottom of your neck.
  • I like to shave the neck along with the head because I tend to have a lot of hair growth along the back of my neck.
  • For some people, their neck hair is not as apparent.  Nevertheless, doing a quick shave will cut off any strays hairs.
  • Now do another pass, but going against the grain.  In other words, shave from the bottom of your neck up to the top of your head.

9. Shave Top of Head

The last area to double check is the top of your head.  You will have covered most of this area already because of the way that you had shaved this rest of your head.  However, this section dips in slightly which means that you need to inspect it to ensure that it is smooth.

  • The quickest way to check for remaining hair on the very top of your head is to use your fingertips.
  • Just rub your fingertips along the skin and if you feel any hair fragments, use your razor to cut off the tiny pieces of remaining hair.
  • Since there are a few sloping areas at the summit of your head, you will need to shave towards the direction of your ears so that you do not cut into the angled portions.
  • I have found that this area to shave is tricky, but if you verify the smoothest several times with your fingers, you will be able to create a completely smooth surface.
  • Since you will need to do several passes with the razor on the top of your head, from time to time rinse the razor under hot water to keep the blades more lubricated.

10. Remove Excess Shaving Cream and Pat Dry

After you have shaved your head completely by following the above steps, now is the time to remove any remaining shaving cream.  I accomplish this by first soaking a facecloth in hot water, and then I remove as much water as possible from the facecloth by wringing it out.  Next,  I just wipe off the surface of my scalp to remove all traces of cream.

It is easy to miss behind your ears and along the bottom of your neck.  To verify that you wiped clean those areas, hold up a handheld mirror to the back your head and scan for any traces of shaving cream by looking into your bathroom mirror.

I have embarrassed myself a few times by going to the gym with dry clumps of shaving cream sticking to the back of my ears.   It is also harder to remove the dried out shaving cream versus when it is soft and non-crusty.

After wiping down your scalp, pull out a clean hand towel and pat dry your head. Do not wipe it excessively because your skin is already sensitive since you had just shaved it.  Also, if you rub your scalp too hard, you will create red marks on it because your scalp has a large network of blood vessels.

You are just about finished, the last step is to protect your skin from breakage and irritation because it will now be dried out. You have just shaved off the natural oils that keep your scalp moist.

11. Add Moisturizer

Skin that has been shaved dries out very fast.  You need to have moisture in the dermis to prevent cracking.  Your scalp may seem tough, but it is full of follicles even if they are void of strands of hair.   I used to think that I did not have to worry about my scalp at all after shaving my head until I had noticed that the surface can become very itchy as the skin dries out.

You do not need to add a lot of moisturizing cream to your head, just enough to protect so that moisture will penetrate the top surface of your scalp.  The easiest method is to squeeze about a quarter-size of moisturizing cream into one of your hands and then simply rub your hands together a few times.

Now rub the palms of your hands on the top of your head in circular movements. Then pull some of the cream down the sides and onto the back your head.

If you are going outside, you should also add some sunscreen to further protect your bald head.  Even if it is a cloudy day, the UV rays will be able to penetrate the cloud cover.

How to Deal with Cuts

It is inevitable that you will cut or create nicks in your scalp from time to time.  Nevertheless, rest assured that these incidents will become very rare once you have shaved your head a few times.   If you have nicked your skin, sterilize the cut by adding some hydrogen peroxide to a cotton swab and then press the swab to the cut for 10 seconds.

After disinfecting the cut skin, soak the corner of a facecloth with cold water and hold this corner to the cut.  Apply some pressure and hold the cloth there for 30 seconds.   A good trick to sing the birthday song to yourself 3 times since it takes about 10 seconds to sing this song.

The cold water will constrict the blood vessels which helps to stop the bleeding.

How to Deal with Contours on the Head

Your head is not completely round or even perfectly oval in shape.  We all have contours and lumpy areas in our skulls.   Just be extra careful when shaving these areas.  Ensure that your razor blades are wet and that you use short strokes instead of trying to hold the blades firmly against your scalp.

How Far Down in the Back to Shave

The distance to shave in the back your head is further than most people realize.  The back of your neck has a lot of follicles.  Personally, I like to shave slightly past my neck in the back since I am very hairy and some of my back hairs are rather long.  It is hard to see if you have shaved adequately the back portion, so always have a handheld mirror handy to ensure that you did not miss any areas.

How Often Do You Have to Shave Your Head

I would not shave your head daily.  Your scalp will become super sensitive.  Also, you will tend to cut into the skin more often if you were to shave too often.

I shave my head every two days.  For a few months, I used to shave it daily, but I had noticed that my scalp always had a red tinge to it and it was sore.

Nevertheless, always use a moisturizing cream after each shave to reduce the chance of creating nicks.

Related Questions:

Can You Go Bald From Shaving Your Head?

We all have heard of the rumors that shaving your head bald will actually cause you to go bald.  The fact is that is just not true.  What usually happens that someone starts to shave their head once they have a well-pronounced receding hairline and then they let their hair grow back a few years later.   Of course, they will more baldness because the balding process is still going to continue even while they were shaving their head.

There is some evidence that plucking or waxing could damage a hair follicle which could cause bald patches.

Does Shaving Your Head Make Your Hair Grow Back Thicker?

Shaving your head is not going to make your hair grow back thicker.  Your hair is dead material, it cannot be affected by trimming it off.  It is the follicle that determines the thickness of a hair.

It does seem to be thicker when it starts to grow back only because it is stubble and it is pointing straight up which makes it bristly to the touch.  The frequency of shaving has no effect on the rate of growth of hair.  Also, even if you were to remove hair through waxing, you are not going to have an effect on the thickness of a hair once it begins to grow back.

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