With drugstore shaving aisles packed with all manner of creams and gels, Softsheen-Carson's magic shave shaving powder -- which has been around since 1901 -- might seem like a bit of a throwback. A product designed to eliminate razor bumps, Magic Shave is a depilatory that removes facial hair simply by spreading it on and wiping it off. It is especially helpful for black skin, which can be prone to the ingrowns and razor bumps that often accompany naturally curly facial hair.
Before using Magic Shave for the first time, test it on a patch of skin, and then wait for 36 hours. If no irritation occurs, you're good to go.
Wash your face thoroughly with plain water -- using soap before using Magic Shave may cause irritation -- and pat it dry with a clean towel.
Add about 2 heaping teaspoons of Magic Shave depilatory powder to a shaving mug -- a plain old coffee mug or cup works just as well. Add an equal amount of room-temperature water, and mix it up until it takes on a creamy consistency.
Use your fingertips or a shaving brush to spread an even layer of Magic Shave over the area you wish to treat.
Let the product rest for about 5 minutes. If removal doesn't work the first time, let it rest for another 2 minutes, but don't exceed 7 total minutes. If the cream starts to dry before removal, give it a light misting of water from a small spray bottle to re-moisturize it.
Use a wet washcloth or plastic, no-razor shaver to remove the cream and the hair along with it, applying moderate pressure and making regular downward strokes.
Rinse your face thoroughly with plain water -- no soap -- removing the product completely. Make sure you rinse any residue from your hands, as well. Pat your face dry with a clean towel.
Wait 36 hours before using Magic Shave again. To avoid irritation, do not follow up the application with products that contain alcohol, such as aftershave.
With a diverse professional background and a decade of experience as a freelance writer, Dan has contributed lifestyle content -- from fashion to travel to fitness and more -- to publishers including Chron, Fortune, Sony, GlobalPost, ModernMom, Moviefone, Salon.com, Techwalla and dozens of others.