The 9 Best Shaving Creams for Women in 2023

Say goodbye to nicks and ingrown hairs.

Woman Shaving her legs in the shower
(Image credit: Getty Images )

For many people who shave, a shaving cream seems like an unnecessary add-on to your shower routine. However, the right shaving cream can actually make your legs, underarms, or anywhere else you choose to shave feel smoother and more hydrated long after you finish shaving. We turned to dermatologist Dr. Heather D. Rogers for her thoughts on the best shaving cream for women, from the ingredients that she looks out for to a few of her favorites. So, whether you're just trying to upkeep your look in between laser hair removal appointments or are just in need of a quick fix, let this list of shaving creams, shaving gels, and shaving bars help you find your next favorite. 

Let me be the first to say that shaving your legs or shaving your bikini line is by no means a necessary task. But if you do choose to shave your body hair, no matter where it is, make sure that you’re using the best and safest products to do so. That means finding the best razors, the best bikini trimmers, and so on—and stocking up on the best tools includes finding the best shaving cream formula for you. (P.S.: The editors at Marie Claire wrote the definitive guide on how to shave your legs  as well as a guide to the best bikini trimmers if you’re a newbie looking for some tips.)

Do I Need to Use a Shaving Cream?

Dr. Heather D. Rogers, the founder and CEO, Doctor Rogers Skin Care and co-founder of Modern Dermatology, notes that while shaving creams aren’t actually necessary to get the closest shave, you do need to use a product in your shave routine that will "limit the friction between your leg skin and the razor.” This can be a creamy body wash, a body lotion, or a body oil. Why? Less friction or tug on your skin equals fewer nicks and bumps as you go, and guarantees that your skin looks and feels its best after you're done shaving. 

What To Look For in Shaving Cream

Turns out, the best shaving creams aren't always your classic whipped shaving foam. Shower bars, shaving gels, and more are popular and safe, options. However, everyone has different shaving needs, and different formulations suit different preferences. 

The beauty team at Marie Claire selected the products on this list because they fit a diverse array of needs: My personal favorite from Dollar Shave Club comes in a handy squeeze tube, for example, and is great for dry winter skin. Marie Claire's Beauty Director Deena Campbell prefers a gel formula from SUGARCOAT because its scent lingers on the skin and because the formula is moisturizing enough to use in the winter yet lightweight enough to use in the spring and summer. Shave bars, like the one from Joanna Vargas on this list that Dr. Rogers specifically recommends, come with less packaging than the ones you find in canisters at the drugstore. However, some of the shaving creams on this list are fragrance-free, if that's important to you when shopping. 

“As a dermatologist, I have to say fragrance does nothing good for skin so I avoid it and advise my patients to avoid it also,” says Dr. Rogers. Plus, she recommends looking for a product that can pull double-duty in your shower: “I want something I can use as my body wash and to shave; that is cream-based and will not dry out my skin; something that is safe for me to cover my body in as well as safe to go down the drain.”  

The Best Shaving Creams

The products on this list have been vetted by Marie Claire's Commerce Editor, Julia Marzovilla  (aka yours truly) and Marie Claire's Beauty Director, Deena Campbell; or have been hand-selected by a board-certified dermatologist. While the *best* shaving cream for you will vary based on personal preference, you truly can't go wrong with one of the items on this list. For a more personalized recommendation or if you have any concerns, check with your board-certified dermatologist. 

Meet the Expert

Dr. Heather D. Rogers,
Dr. Heather Rogers, MD

Dr. Heather D. Rogers, MD, founder of Doctor Rogers Skin Care, sees patients full time at her dermatology practice, Modern Dermatology in Seattle, Washington. Known as “the doctor who can stop time,” Dr. Rogers’ years-long waitlist is due to her outstanding results—but also a result of her dedication to helping her patients truly understand the nature of their skin. Having treated tens of thousands of patients with skin in every state of health, Dr. Rogers knows how to help every person reach their skin goals, all while supporting—rather than hindering—our skin’s natural adaptive capabilities. Empowering people with the knowledge to see what their skin needs in each moment and providing the high-quality products to meet those needs has been the basis of her successful practice—and is now the basis of Doctor Rogers Skin Care.

Julia Marzovilla
E-Commerce Editor

Julia Marzovilla is the E-Commerce Editor at Marie Claire, where she covers everything from the latest beauty and fashion launches and sales to celebrity outfits and news. She also creates shopping guides that span every vertical on the site. Prior to joining the Marie Claire team, she contributed similar shopping stories to sites such as Bustle, InStyle, The Zoe Report, Who What Wear, and STYLECASTER. In her spare time, Julia can be found creating shopping guides for all of her friends, spending too much money on yet another pair of black boots, and cooking in her far-too-small kitchen.