Laguna Beach, California - American men have been shaving every day for nearly a century. The habit took hold after 2 million American soldiers went to France to fight in WW1, a war in which poison gas was Germany's most feared weapon. Every U.S. soldier carried a gas mask and stayed clean-shaven so it would fit snugly.

"Although no longer a matter of life or death, shaving is still a daily chore for approximately 71 million American men," said Kyle Schroeder, co-founder and managing partner of Cremo Company, LLC, maker of Cremo Shave Cream.

Schroeder, a Wharton graduate and former fashion model, insists getting a close shave is especially challenging for teens with acne and men with tough beards.

"Most people with shaving issues experiment with different razors, but they don't consider what small changes in their routine, shaving technique, or shaving cream could do to stop nicks, cuts, red bumps and razor burn," said Schroeder.

To help problem shavers get a closer, more comfortable shave, Schroeder offers five tips:

  1.     Shower First

Shave after, not before, showering. A warm shower will open the pores and make a comfortable shave more likely.

  1.    Shave with the Grain

Shave in the same direction as facial hair grows. Shaving against the grain gives a closer shave, but it is more likely to produce painful ingrown hairs.

  1.     Use Real Cream

If it comes in a can, it's not shaving cream. It is shaving foam or gel. Real shaving creams come in tubes or tubs. Looking at shaving foams or gels under powerful magnification reveals why they expand in a shaver's hand: air bubbles. Shaving with a thick layer of fluffy, air-filled foam or gel between the blade and skin reduces traction and makes a close, nick-free shave hard to get. Kick the can to the curb. Get real shaving cream.

  1.     Prefer Slick to Frothy

When shaving a trouble area like the Adam's apple, the corners of the mouth, or a patch of acne, the more the razor glides along and less skin foam obscures, the better the shave. Choose a shaving cream with less lather and more slickness.

  1.     Go Glycerin-Free

Use a shaving cream without glycerin. Glycerin is a moisturizer found in some shaving foams, gels and creams. It is undesirable in a shaving cream because it is sticky.