Men’s Health notes that shaving against the grain is the fastest way to achieve a close shave, but it may give you razor burn and ingrown hairs. Those red bumps that emerge after irritating the skin can stick around for a few days, and if you’re constantly shaving against the grain, you’re going to keep getting more of them. To avoid the red bumps and all the other unpleasantries, you need to shave in the direction of hair growth.
Other tips for a smooth shave include using a fresh razor, rinsing your blade on the front and back after every stroke with hot water, and using shaving cream or gel that softens your hair and moisturizes your skin. You should also try to use the same amount of pressure throughout each stroke, and of course, shave in the direction of hair growth (via Dollar Shave Club).